My brain-dmanaged housemate

30Oct03

Meet my housemate Toula. She has brain damage.

Caused in a car accident, this handicap mainly mainfests itself in an inability to understand the difference between first-run television programming and reruns, leading to much confusion over — and I have to explain this on a weekly basis — how Friends can air two or more nights in a row. (“But this was just on yesterday at 5:30!”) Over the years, living with her has afforded a steady supply of comedy. Take this example:

Toula (standing over stove): I’m going to put this pie on the windowsill to cool.

Me: You’d better watch out for the proverbial pie thief.

Toula: What’s a “proverbial pie”?

Me (wearily): No … what I meant was —

Toula (catching dishtowel on fire): Eeek!

Me: (slips away, thankfully.)

But, I don’t even know what to say about this latest one. I’m on my way to a Hallowe’en party tonight. I wanted to go as something scary, yet imaginary, like a vampire or a werewolf, so I’m being the missing weapons of mass destruction. (How deliciously satirical!) My costume basically consists of me wearing black pants, a black knit cap, and a black shirt that says WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION on it. I’m planning on sneaking around from place to place and hiding from any Americans who might be looking for me. You know, good times. But before leaving, I thought I’d run into the kitchen to grab a sandwich, whereupon I encountered Toula.

Toula: You’re all in black!

Me: Yep.

Toula (laughing like Muttley the cartoon dog): Are you sure you don’t want to be a black man? Haw haw haw!

Me: That’s … not my costume.

Toula: You would have really scared me then!

Uh … okay.



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