Wednesday, August 30, 2006

All My Friends Know the Low Rider (Part 1)

Note: to fully enjoy this post, please take a blank piece of paper and draw on it a spiraling circle. Have this page available.

"Look at this," Gloria said, holding up a carton of Häagen-Dazs chocolate ice cream.

"Chocolate," I said.

"MAYAN chocolate," she said.

"Their civilization was slaughtered, but their ancient chocolate secrets were preserved for all to enjoy."

"By Danes," Gloria said.

We weren't in Walgreens to taunt the Mayans--at least, not at first. And we didn't know then that Häagen-Dazs was founded in New York, not Denmark.

No, we were in Walgreen's to look at a toy, a toy that was the perfect representation of the collision of sheer genius and sheer crap that defines American culture.

We were in Walgreen's to look at the low rider.

I'd seen the low rider for the first time earlier that day, with Eli 5.0.
[For those of you who drew the spiraling circle, start spinning the paper rapidly in your hands, then, as it spins, move it rapidly back and forth near your face. This generates a flashback.]

"Eli, look at this!" I'm standing in front of an end cap of Pringle's potato chips, and I can't believe what my eyes are seeing: the word "JOKE" on the can.

"What, Daddy?" Eli asked.

"Dude, there are JOKES printed on these potato chips," I said.

"Are you kidding me?"

"No, this can says there are jokes on all the chips."

"Can we buy those?" Eli asked.

"Are you kidding me? These potato chips have JOKES on them. We HAVE to buy them!" I said.

Okay, the jokes are pretty silly, but they're just the right speed for Eli 5.0. It's not like I was expecting to see "Wrecked him? Damn near killed him!" as one of the punch lines.

We went to the toy aisle for some leisurely browsing, and while Eli was conducting a meticulous examination of every toy in the row, I saw the low rider.

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