and Why was she So Mad

July 26, 2017

I was pumping gas at the local Arco…when I felt this tug on my sleeve…saying “I AM Mad!!”….


looked down to see this ragamuffin with dirty curly blonde hair…with an open  bejewelled plastic purse…stuffed with plastic toys…she must have been 4 or 5…she looked Just like the young Shirley Temple…..


looked up to see this Tall, skinny,  young Brad Pitt looking man with dirty blonde hair and tats everywhere with a red gas can….


He said “Sir…I wondered if you could let me pump some gas…as I just don’t have any money…..”


His white old  Old Camry or Kia sat near the next  pump over….


I NEVER give money to people that ask for it…well that’s not totally true….but this time I was taken by such surprise by the young dirty Shirley Temple….that I said yes…..


At least he did not ask for money for drugs…but later thinking about it he was probably on his way to his drug dealer and ran out of gas….but Immediately erased that from my thoughts as one can NOT think so Negatively in these times…….


As he was pumping (and Gosh it went on FOREVER…that red plastic gas can seemed bottomless as I watched the numbers roll on the pump….)


Thinking of Shirley…I asked him does she “Tap”….and he thought I said “Rap”…..and said “no she no good at rap….”


I said NO I meant “TAP”…he said What the Hell is that……


I sighed and realized for my $15 plus bucks would NOT get to see Miss Shirley  Temple perform at the ARCO station in the middle of the desert….but Hey I am a dreamer……


After his can was filled he said “Bless You Sir”…..(I thought for a nano second….Well I DID get a blessing out of this….yeah that is so wrong….sigh…)


Miss Shirley as she was dragged off by this man with her bejewelled overstuffed open purse turned to me and said “I AM Mad”


and I Never asked Why???

7 Responses to “and Why was she So Mad”

  1. Tim said

    I always wonder HOW they get to the gas station in the first place if they are out of money! I just say “NO!” (See? The Reagan’s were good for something!) Great little story, Rob! Although, I think she was “trained” to say “I AM Mad!” to elicit more positive “off guard” responses as you had. 🙂

  2. Janet Nelson-Alvarez said

    if she was of the Shirley Temple era, that could have meant ‘mad’ as in ‘insane’. Which she sounds a bit of. But if you had a dumb dad (if it was her dad) who, although he looks like a disheveled Brad Pitt, has nothing better to do than to run out of gas with his little girl, you’d probably be mad, too. And scheming on how and when you could dump the loser (with a Capital “L”)!

  3. Jack B said

    A new twist to getting free gas. You often wonder how these people come up with these ideas. When we travel cross country back and forth from PS to Wisconsin we often see people in the Flying J and Loves truck stops asking for free gas but none have been as creative as little Shirley Temple….This time we missed this slice of Americana … We flew back…first class….all we saw were the coach passengers trying to get freebies out of first class…kinda Usually we’re in coach…so we know :).

  4. Omar said

    I once had a Mexican man approach me at a local grocery (Meijers) out in the parking lot as I was going in and had a story how his wife was pregnant and they were on their way to Detroit and didn’t have enough gas, so I decided to give him twenty bucks and somehow his vehicle was close by. He opened up his trunk and said I could have any of his belongings as the car was full with their belongings. In the front seat sat his very pregnant wife with a gentle smile. I don’t know if it was a scam or not but at that very moment I felt good about myself. Maybe we are to quick to think the worst, so Robby your heart and intentions were in the right place…..that is why I think of you s a wonderful human being.

    • Janet Nelson-Alvarez said

      Omar, I bet you think of them sometimes (well, obviously you did today) and wonder how they are ……it kind of *kills* me that I help people and then never know how their story turned out. Billions of us and we really don’t know hardly any of the stories….(except Rob….he knows all the best ones). Omar, I hope your little man and his wife got to their destination and that the baby is now a fine and happy being. And…Mr. Rob…I agree with Omar….your heart and intentions are *so* in the right place. Someday, I have no doubt, you will ascertain why she was mad. Better yet, hopefully she will and be able to draw a line in the ‘sand’ of her anger. It was a scam worth of a monetary reward, if it was, indeed, a scam……

      • Omar said

        I sometimes look into an old homeless persons eyes and wonder what and how did you come to this time and space? Was it drugs and alcohol or a death of a child or the love of your life that sent them spiraling, I mean everyone has a life story, what is theirs? Yes, I sometimes help out with a couple bucks not every homeless one I see, but here and there, I tell myself it is only one or two martinis knocked off my Friday night out…..funny how I rationalize that so I will be okay it.

      • Janet Nelson-Alvarez said

        (your heart AND your liver will be better for it, Omar!)……I once knew a guy who had a lawyer for a bro. One day, the guy just walked out of the house and never came back; he became homeless and he was happy that way. So, there are all sorts of reasons. (I also have a friend who does a homeless feeding thru her church once a week….there’s a guy who shows up: once a year, he takes a trip to Australia! So, yeah, there are druggies and alkies and those to whom life has been cruel. And then there are those who just see the whole thing differently)……Maybe it is we who should be walking around saying “I AM MAD” (as hell and not going to take it anymore!). Keep on being that good guy, Omar!

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