For my final storytelling presentation, I told a personal narrative to delightfully responsive crowd. I hope you enjoy it as much as they:
Dark Needs at Midsummer’s Edge at a Retail Warehouse
It was a good year, 2004. The first same-sex marriage occurred. Britney Spears got married. Britney Spears got unmarried. A certain wardrobe malfunction happened at the Super Bowl. I was a junior in high school. While there were some exciting moments in 2004, my life would forever be changed when a certain bronze-skinned, bulging-chested man with cascading blonde hair momentarily came into my life. His name is F-A-B-I-O.
I was stuck in traffic going to the grocery store. Weezer (when they were good) was probably playing on my portable CD player. I could see four construction workers up ahead supervising one guy measuring a hole. Quality Illinois road work. My phone began to ring, I picked it up, flipped it open, pulled up the antenna, and heard that it was my good friend Panda on the other end.
“Hey, Panda. What’s up?”
“Kelsey. You need to come to Sam’s Club. Right. Now.” The urgency in her voice had a tinge of sarcasm.
“I guess I can come. I’m stuck in traffic, though.”
“Whatever you need to do, you need to get over here. Kelsey, Fabio’s here.”
Fabio?, I thought to myself. The model for romance novel covers? The I-can’t-believe-it’s-not-butter guy? The wet dream of all middle-aged housewives? That guy’s hilarious!
Regardless of how funny it was to imagine meeting Fabio, there was no way I could get over to Sam’s Club in time to gawk at him shopping. I expressed my dismay to Panda but she quickly replied that he would be there for another hour or so because he was promoting his clothing line. At Sam’s Club. Ah, how quickly the mighty fall, I thought later. But pity was the last thing on my mind and I told her I’d be over there as fast as my box on wheels could carry me.
I grabbed the wheel and spun it all the way to the left, looked both ways, then made a u-turn speeding out of that line of pathetic losers. I made it to Sam’s Club, flew out of my car, and scurried into the large retail warehouse. Past the toilet paper display and bulk kool-aid mix, there it was: the most beloved model’s clothing line creatively called “Fabio.”
Panda was waiting on the sidelines for me. Carefully avoiding the middle-aged women wearing sneakers and folded white socks, we both approached his clothing racks. There was faux fur-lined jean jackets, $100 tank tops, white pants—everything a 16-year-old girl could ever dream of. Except for Fabio. Where was Fabio?
Panda and I stood nervously peering around clothing racks to see where he was. Maybe he needed to get a pack of 10,000 sporks for his party later. Then, I felt a hand at the small of my back and heard in a deep, rolling voice: “I’ll be right with you ladies.” He walked away to attend to some other worldly matter and, of course, we started giggling.
He soon came back with a casual yet strong stride. Naturally, he was wearing a long black coat and brown distressed leather pants. His shoulders were wide as his chest puffed out like a rooster strutting amongst his hens. We were soon told to pose for a picture with this magnificent man. We stood beside him ready for the picture, but this was not enough for the number one romance novel model of all time. He unabashedly grabbed our shoulders and pulled us into him as if he’d done this before. Struggling to breathe, it was a little hard as I discreetly tilted my head upwards and pretended to faun over this man. I guess this made the photographer laugh which, in turn, made Fabio’s mysterious glare turn into a special sideways sexy smirk that only Panda and I got in our picture.
After I was released from Fabio’s bear hold, he concluded our meeting by personally signing a photo of himself for each of us. Don’t worry. There was a lot of white space so he didn’t have to sign over his chiseled pecs. He made sure of that.