Monday, October 6, 2008

The Archibald Chronicles:Part One :Holding hands at In N Out Burger

My three kids and I met Archibald at In 'N Out Burger near his house. We all squeezed into a booth while we waited for our food. He grabbed my hand and one of my kid's hands and said, "Let's Pray.

Archibald is a hardcore Unitarian and his wife holds a position at the church similar to Monsignor. They are members at the First Unitarian Church of Kensington (F.U.C.K...I kid you not.)

At their church in the Berkeley Hills(where Kensington is) they are working to ban heterosexual marriage and adding the cockroach to the endangered species act. Berkeley is a special and unique place. There is an organic grocery story there called Berkeley Bowl where the patrons are the most angry and aggressive people I have known. I feel much safer at the taco truck in the 'hood than at the Bowl. I was with my four children making our way slowly through the parking lot when a 70 year old woman in Prius covered with bumper stickers stuck her head out of the car window and called me a cocksucker for taking so long. Inside among rows of bulger wheat and 25 kinds of kale the peace loving patrons seem intent on reenacting scenes from Roller Ball with their chopping carts.

My kids were a little confused. Archibald usually only says grace when he comes for thanksgiving but they were good sports.

The Archibalds have been having Thanksgiving with us for as long as I can remember. Invariably some time during the day we ask him to tell the story of the Toferky. We all gather around and he tells this tale.

The Archibalds had two sets of friends: One set were hardcore vegans the other meat eaters. The vegans wanted a toferky and meat eaters a real turkey. They were at an impasse. Like any good diplomat Archibald performed shuttle diplomacy between the two factions. The meat eater was fine with the having a tofurkey as long as there was a real bird as well. The vegans would not come in the house with the dead animal. Then they relented a bit. A settlement was reached. The vegans would come but the turkey would have to be carved in a different room and could only be brought into the dining room in sliced form. And under no circumstances could any jokes be made at the late turkeys expense.

We ended up meeting the vegans a few months later at a party. I overheard them complaining that they had to bribe the guy at the service station so there SUV would pass smog.


Joe Reifer said...

Berkeley has one of the highest levels of irony per capita of any city. Please correct the spelling of tofurky before I send a militant vegan in a tie-dye shirt to make you fix it.

Peace and love,


g said...

I'm a little confused: three kids, or four?

bird. said...

Funny story about the bowl. I was waiting for a parking place one day, and pulled over to the side of the road with my lady friend in the car. Some VW bus driving, peace and love guy pulled up behind me and couldn't manage to drive his hunk of a car around me (there was plenty of room, btw). The drugs must have been strong that day. Anyway, I park, get out, and the guy is STILL there. He screams at me, "Thanks for blocking the whole fucking road YOU ASSHOLE!" and drives off.

True story.

They have really good fruit there, but man, where's the love? I thought I was the only one that had a story like that. Yours might trump mine, however, as you had a woman in a hybrid. I thought they were nicer.


bird. said...

Whoa whoa whoa. Wait a minute. I know what happened.

She confused cockrocker with cocksucker. Innocent mistake.


Qathrin Jean Gallaher Hart said...

I made the mistake of going to the grocery store nearest my house, I was new to the area. The Bowl was just right there, I just need toothpaste, chips and hummus, I thought I'd just run in. 45 minutes later I crawled out of of the place with a new found hatred of mankind.