Few realize what a perilous occupation I have, for the life of a newspaper carrier is fraught with danger and intrigue at every turn.
A paper comrade once gave me wise counsel when he stoically said, "Giiiiirrrrlll, you don't stop your truck for nobody, and I mean nobody." He went on to tell me that he won't even halt his vehicle for a dog in the middle of the street because it could secretly be a nefarious trap. Given that I'm working in the heart of suburban bliss amongst splendorous homes situated on lush golf course greens, I generally don't feel frightened to step out of my truck, even if it is the middle of the night.
Last week, I threw the notoriously gigantic Houston Chronicle Sunday Edition. Each one weighs in excess of five pounds, and makes a lumberjack's eyes glitter with delight. When I double backed down one particular street I saw nothing but litter mayhem. My customer's newspapers were strewn haphazardly everywhere, and I didn't have any extras with me, so I got out to salvage what I could. While bent over cobbling sections back together, I heard a low, rumbling sound coming from behind me. Usually, that means I'm flatulating, but this proved not to be the case this time.
I turned around slowly to find two vicious dogs growling and baring their teeth at me. One, an obvious mottled brown colored Pit Bull, while the other appeared to be some genetics experiment involving a collie gone terribly awry. They approached menacingly towards me, forcing me to retreat further backwards into the street. Escaping to the safety of my truck wasn't an option because of the distance and my painful lack of running speed. The Pit Bull snapped dangerously close to me, and adrenaline took over. I swiftly picked up two of the gigantic newspapers still in the plastic bag, one for each hand, and I deftly started swinging them around like lethal weapons. Surprised, the dogs continued growling but backed up a little. There's me, wielding two newspaper like nunchucks, flipping and slicing the air with them and yelling threats at the dogs. The collie gave up, and went running like the Hell Hound he is back to his yard. The Pit Bull though, snapped at me again forcing me to bring down the awesome force of the Sunday paper on his back, followed by a shouted expletive laced sentence that startled even me. He turned tail and ran down the street whimpering. Shaking, and scared, with visions of Pit Bull mauling stories running through my head, I climbed back into my truck.
I told my kids about it and even demonstrated my newspaper weaponry stance. Instead of them gasping that their beloved mother almost became a midnight snack for a dog, they laughed and laughed. They told me that I looked like a fat, white ninja on a street corner looking to kick butt, take names, and then hawk the newspapers for a meager profit. That's me, doing proud tribute to the memory of oafish Chris Farley everyday. Well, except no self respecting paper carrier would ever wear an all white outfit because it shows the newspaper ink stains, and we must never reveal our true identities during the daylight hours. (That's mostly because people laugh at the thought of adults throwing newspapers)