Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Bob or Robert

You know when Bob, depending on his mood it could be Robert, comes into the room. When he swings the door open he bellows out a big "HO HUM", his version of "Honey, I'm home." He offices in the next cubical to mine and is always late, sometimes two to three hours late, but it never bothers him. "I put in my eight, it doesn't matter when I get here. If I want to sleep late I will", and there isn't a manager that will tell him otherwise.

Bob has had polio, or some other disease, that causes him great effort to walk. But he doesn't want your sympathy. He says that he can't wait until he can't make the walk to the office from his pickup so he can ride his four wheeler to work. An ordinary scooter wouldn't do, it would have to be a four wheeler or he'd just stay at home.

The way he dresses is different from most of us. His jeans and slacks have to be "stretchy" and they can't be a designer label, he couldn't let any of us think that he might have some style. His shirts are usually solid brown or beige button up dress/casual with the collar unbuttoned. To button his collar would make him look like a "pervert". He does sneak in a t-shirt every now and then but they have to be solid also, "I ain't buying no shirt that has some name on it, I ain't advertising for no one". Black roper boots and a black belt, "I don't need karate to get a black belt", rounds out his wardrobe.

When Bob becomes agitated, he morphs into Robert. Many a computer mouse has died when Robert's computer has crashed. Noisy co-workers also bring the Robert out in him, if someone is close by in an office and their laughing is loud he will yell, "It must be crazy laugh day today." When a maintenance man comes up to rearrange an office or do some routine work that makes some unusual noise, Robert yells, "What's all the noise?" The best Robert phrase is when you do something that startles him, "That scared me, and I'm not scared of nuthin' but women and police", which he stole from some movie.

Bob isn't married and probably never dated, but he feels that is "one of my strong points". His latest scam was trying to get one of us to pay him a hundred thousand dollars to become his beneficiary. He figured that by the time he retired he would have "close to a million" in his retirement account and that a hundred grand now will help him more than a million "when I'm in the grave".

Bob is Bob and there isn't anyone else like him, that's good or bad depending on your impression of Bob. To the outsider he seems brash and rude, but to his close friends and co-workers, life would be boring without him. That's right Bob, just keep being yourself, it gives me plenty to write about.


Cheryl Peters said...

Those unique humans do make our lives much more exciting by their blatantly honest words and actions.

By seeing Bob/Robert's unusual personality in a positive light, you have grown in my appreciation of you.

Anonymous said...

I love it--whether Bob is real or imagined, he makes for great characterization. Good job portraying him!