He stole my lunch. It might not have been gourmet, but it was mine. A simple paper bag containing some food items that were specially prepared for me. Not unlike many instances of theft the event happened quickly.
I had been walking when I realized that I needed to respond to Mother Nature’s call. I entered the bathroom and placed my bag on the counter next to the sink and sashayed over to the urinal. It was a zip-n-zip moment, which was good because I was quite hungry.
The door slowly creaked open and a man with dirty blond hair walked in. He was wearing torn jeans, a pair of Doc Martens and a stained white t-shirt. Slowly he turned and inch by inch he walked over to the sink to stare at his face.
There was something about the guy that bothered me. He made me feel itchy and a little uneasy. He was my height and had a wiry build. His face was a little worn and I could see that he was not unaccustomed to working with his hands.
It is hard to look intimidating when you are standing in front of a urinal with your pal in your hands, but I did my best. In a different time and place I might have growled at the jackal. Somehow I just knew that he was going to do something to make me mad.
He must have been watching and waiting for the right moment because he timed it perfectly. When he grabbed my lunch I was in the first stages of the initial shake. It wasn’t like I could just start running after him, but at the same time nobody takes my food and gets away with it.
Cursing, I stuffed the little guy back into his home, zipped my pants and set off in pursuit of my lunch. He moved well for a guy wearing boots, but he didn’t count on the power of hunger and the passion a man has to protect what is rightfully his.
We shot down a hallway, weaving in between startled shoppers. I vaulted over a stroller and spun around the cosmetics counter. Barry Sanders never juked and jived like I did. I made OJ’s run through the airport look like he was mired in quicksand. I was getting closer. I just needed another moment and I would be close enough to grab him.
Just as I was about to tackle him the way was blocked by a group of nuns heading through the food court. In exasperation I shouted “Jesus” and then continued on around them. By this point I was losing steam and beginning to huff and puff a little. I was almost ready to give up when he turned around and taunted me with “I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.”
I roared in anger and gave it one last effort and caught up with him in front of the Cinnabon. He was trapped between me and the counter. He smiled at me and tossed the bag over the counter and dared me to do something. That was a mistake, a big mistake.
It took less than a second for me to close the gap between him and myself and not much more than that for me pick him up and body slam on the counter. As he slid over the side he managed to grab ahold of my shirt, ripping the sleeve. I was irritated when he stole my lunch. Now I was pissed off.
I jumped over the counter and grabbed a hold of the jackass. He was stronger than I anticipated with a grip that would have rivaled a Pit Bull. But that wasn’t enough. I pinned him against the wall with my left arm and held him there.
“I hope that you are hungry,” I screamed. And with that I grabbed ahold of the Cinnabon dough and started forcing huge gobs of it into his mouth. “How does that taste? Do you like it? Is it good?”
He flailed around with his arms and tried to free himself. “Stop, stop, stop, please,” he stuttered.
“You’re right,” I growled. “I forgot the sweet stuff.”
Grabbing ahold of his collar I pulled him towards me and was the recipient of a lucky punch, a wicked right that stunned me. It was almost enough to make me let go, but not quite. Blinking away the tears I got him into a headlock and walked him over to the vat of frosting.
With a grunt I picked him up and dropped him into it headfirst and then staggered over to pick up my lunch. It took all of my effort to drag my body back over the counter and to a table. I collapsed into a chair and dumped the contents of the bag onto the table so that I could finally eat.
And that is when I realized that I had grabbed the wrong bag.