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Stories from Mr. Canada’s Visit: Part 3

January 25, 2017

He talked constantly. He argued with me all the time. He antagonized me and told me lies to see how far he could push me. He reveled in getting me all riled up about something. The more passionate my response the more he would push the other side of the argument. I was extremely gullible at first. But after a while I would catch on when he was messing me and tell him to hush because his argument was illogical and he didn’t even believe it.

He did this to my friends as well. It was fun to watch with Amy who just gave it right back to him and shut him down, but it was a bit awkward with Liz, as she looked at him with her serious face, interrogating his seemingly sexist comments. “But why. Buy why. Buy why,” I remember her saying to him. Mr. Canada didn’t give too shits about what anybody thought of him. Which made him both a joy to be around and exasperating at times.

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The day he made the Korean ribs, I commented that the meat would make a great, next-day sandwich. He feigned outrage at the suggestion of putting the meat he had so carefully marinated and prepared into a sandwich. What? White bread? Mayonnaise and Ketchup? Pickles?!!! My God, Pickles!!?

I made him that sandwich the next day and he hated it and I thought it was wonderful. Then two things occurred to me: 1. I just like eating white bread with mayo and ketchup mixed on one side, then a tomato, then lettuce and a pickle and maybe a little mustard and mayo on the other slice. The meat you add in there is almost irrelevant. 2. Making a sandwich with leftovers must be a southern thing. Anytime we make a good meal with meat we make a sandwich with it the next day. Turkey. Boudin. Ham. Meatloaf. Whatever.

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One morning, we were waking up and sort-of playing with each other when I caught a glimpse of a roach in the corner of the room, near the ceiling. It was a typical tree roach, a common sight in an old house next to a cemetery with a giant oak tree in south Louisiana. They love those trees.

“Is that a roach?” I asked.

“Yes,” he said.

We started making up a story about the roach. His name became Ian somehow. He had a backstory and dialogue. A family and plans for the day. All to be dashed when I decided I couldn’t stay in bed with a roach on the wall. Using chemical warfare, I defeated Ian and threw his body in the garbage. Getting back in bed, the story continued. We were sitting up with our legs over each other as we laughed and made up details about the investigation into Ian’s death. We were unstoppable. The more he said, the more I added. We egged each other on. There would be a memorial in the corner. Flowers or maybe a missing poster. Have you seen this roach? Witnesses would testify that they heard the woman in the bed say she couldn’t possibly have sex with a roach in the corner. Hints of floral scented Raid were detected at the crime scene.

“We are ridiculous people,” I said to him laughing.

“Yes, we are.”

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I got him to watch Home Movies, which is kind of a test. If you don’t think Home Movies is funny, we might not be a match, but if you do….major brownie points. He loved it. After the episode with the pee-canteen, I caught him in the kitchen bend over the counter laughing and saying in that high pitch voice of his, “wee wee breath,” over and over again and laughing.

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I took him to Avery and Jefferson islands. We chased peacocks on Jefferson Island and he found a kumquat. Avery Island was disappointing. No birds. No alligators. He put me on his shoulders and carried me away from my camera bag as I giggled and screamed, “No, put me down,” instinctively trying to steer him with my legs, to no avail.

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And there was the smush. That happened early on, actually. We talked about the movie Man Up, what I consider to be the greatest rom-com ever made. I told him how I loved the scene on the train where Nancy tells Jessica,

“You need to shhmush…..you need to smouth.”

“You want me to…..,” Jessica asks.

“I do. Yeah. That would be great. It’s time.” Nancy answers.

We watched it together and “you need to smush……you need to smouth,” became our inside joke, our secret sign, our cute couple thing to say to each other. He even made into a ring tone and now every time he calls me, I hear that piece of dialogue and answer the phone laughing.

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He took forever grocery shopping. He shops in a grocery store like a woman shops for shoes. I watched him stand in the spice isle for what seemed like an hour. One hand on his hip, the other up to his chin. “Hmmmm,” he seemed to be thinking, “what strange cajun concoctions can I play with.” Completely unselfconscious in his shorts and flip flops. I was watching him when it occurred to me, He’s Mr. Bean. I’m dating Mr. Bean. I’m dating a ridiculous, happy, tall, handsome, sexy, Indian Mr. Bean.

He finally emerged from the aisle.

“You sure you got everything there, sport?” I asked. “You don’t want to go back and stare at the shelves for another 20 minutes?”

“You need to smush,” he said and put his arm around me.

to be continued….

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