Friday, July 22, 2011

Checking in With the One-Armed Man


Back to my road trip and my scintillating observations.

I stopped for lunch at Buttonwillow. Seriously, did I really have a choice? You put two of the greatest words in the English language together and use it as a place name and I am drawn off the highway towards it like a moth to a flame.

OK, OK, there is another reason I stop there and that is because there is a certain fast food establishment run by a man with one arm. Well, he has two arms, but one is plastic and hangs by his side. It has knuckles, fingernails and a the fingers curl under just slightly.

Of course I don't stare at it. Hey, I'm cool, but just a glance at it starts me thinking about what kind of arm I would choose if I lost one of mine. I am pretty sure I would get something with a hook or a clip of some kind. I don't think I would try to fake it, especially if my job entailed working a cash register or making sandwiches.

I stop at this restaurant every time I travel this road, not only to mull over which kind of fake arm I would choose, but also to check out the family dynamic within. You see, it's clear that the arm man is the father of the girls who make the sandwiches and stock the chips. There are three daughters and last time I visited, there was a lot of tension. One girl looked so miserable, I just wanted to back my car up to the front door, open it and yell, "Get in!"

This time, there were only two of the daughters there and the vibe of the restaurant was much more relaxed. I hope the one daughter escaped and is running toward her dreams.

I ate my sandwich, drank massive amounts of Diet Pepsi, and waved goodbye to the one-armed man.

I think he knows I'll be back.


35 comments:

Hilary said...

I hope he wasn't carrying anything when he waved back...

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

You know how to find the unusal characters, Betty.

Old Kitty said...

I'm laughing at Hilary's comment. I feel terrible! Oh dear!!

Buttonwillow sounds like a US version of Checkov's Three Sisters!!! Yay! Take care
x

Sush said...

I keep erasing my comment...I just don't have an appropriate thing to say and my Momma told me long ago that's the best time to shut my trap.

Here's to many more adventures!

Leah J. Utas said...

It sounds like a place to get one's imagination fired up.

That Janie Girl said...

Girl. You are too funny!

That Janie Girl said...

Girl. You are too funny!

That Janie Girl said...

Girl. You are too funny!

Flartus said...

I'm hoping Old Kitty's comment leads to a Bossy Betty version of the 3 Sisters. Frankly, the original could use some livening up, amiright?

Joan said...

Between your post and Hilary's comment, I came precariously close to snorting hot coffee. =D

Laura said...

Well, I'll just say that I love it when I get into check out new blog posts in the morning and there's one from you. It's the best way to start the day!

Linda said...

My hubby and I just recently re-watched "The Fugitive," so all I could think of as I read about your one-armed man was that he was a murderer. I hope Daughter #3 did indeed escape. :)

Susan in the Boonies said...

Well...from a writer's perspective...I can see where this family and their family dynamics are a novel waiting to happen.

But, man....

I don't go seeking bad joujou with my burger.

Who knows if that's how the daughters take their revenge?

Madi and Mom said...

BB we love the way your creative mind can tell such a colorful story. Family dynamics are very interesting. Lets hope the missing daughter has found her happy niche too.
Hugs Madi and Mom

Mamma has spoken said...

Your story reminds me of the one handed cashier we had at a local grocery story. However he did have a hook hanging from his left side. He never used the hook while checking you out, just his right hand. It always made me wonder why he even had a hook any way....

The Green Streak said...

Your version of Chekhov would have to be five sisters!

Our friend has a computer-operated leg adorned with decals of every car marque he's owned (which is a lot) and a photo of him racing in Europe. I'm thinking about possible decorations for your arm, BB. . .

jenny_o said...

Hoping for a better situation for that girl also.

(& Hilary, thanks for the chuckle!)

Bouncin' Barb said...

I once went to a restaurant in VA Beach for breakfast and the waitress had only one hand. The other was removed above the wrist. While I credited her for working and using her arm to hold things, I have to admit it was not pretty to see the scar from the stitches on an empty stomach.

welcome to my world of poetry said...

He appeared to be unusual Betty,
but none of us are perfect are they.?

Yvonne.

Linda Myers said...

"Get in!"

I laughed out loud. Thanks.

Brian said...

Such a trip you are...and take! I'm giggling at Hillary's comment too!

Daisy said...

Well! It would certainly be interesting to know what is really going on with that family, wouldn't it. I hope you enjoyed your lunch, Betty. :-)

Ms. A said...

Family dynamics are interesting to observe... from the outside. Not always from the insider perspective! So, how was that sandwich meat?

Out on the prairie said...

i used to go to a small family place that sat 99, 11 at a time. It was interesting to always hear the boys getting into it and the mom making it go away.

Eva Gallant said...

Isn't it great when you know good places to eat in your travels.

Lazarus said...

I read a story, long ago, about the owner of that place. His arm was torn off when he refused to stop gripping the car door of a vehicle that was attempting to whisk one of his daughters off to her dream life. Sad story...

Gigi said...

I am constantly watching the dynamics between people and always imagining all kinds of scenarios going on between them. This sounds like the perfect place for that!

Marlene said...

You do have some of the most interesting stories!

Cheeseboy said...

This place sounds like the capital of Quirkyville. My question is, did the one armed man wave back? (good arm)

Ann said...

So the one armed man knows you will be back but does he know that he is blog material? :)

faye said...

You are such a hoot !!
Leave it to Betty to find the one armed
man that eluded the FUGITIVE for all those years.

EmptyNester said...

I hope she is running towards her dreams too! At least one of them won't be settling it seems. Good for her!

Baby Sister said...

Well with a name like that, one would expect the restaurant to have some good tales to tell. Just be careful not to ever give him a high-five... :)

Pat Tillett said...

You are so funny!
BTW, was this the guy Richard Kimble was looking for?

Sara said...

My fake arm would come equipped with a note pad and pen, because I'm forever making lists and losing my notepads. (3 cheers for road trips and Diet Pepsi!)