Flamingo Trainer by Dee Rea

Austin: Just because…

“You meet the most interesting people in the ER, but it got awkward when the nurses were able to cut away the pumpkin and we recognized the flamingo trainer from the distillery.”

“You’re kidding, right?” Adele asked through her laughter.

“I wish I was! I don’t know who was more mortified: Pixie and me or the poor trainer.” He snickered as he reached down to check his pager. Michael was on his lunch break but that could change in the blink of an archaic piece of technology.

“Oh, man! How in the world did that happen?” Adele shook her head as she motioned for their waiter.

“Did I mention it was at the distillery? Apparently, that wasn’t even the weirdest part.”

“Um, weird? Did you hear yourself? Flamingo trainer, distillery, and a pumpkin were all in the same sentence. I think that’s enough to be weird all by itself!” She sighed as the waiter walked passed their table and didn’t seem to even notice that she’d gestured for his attention.

“Well, apparently he was training the flamingos for a new show and somehow it involved pumpkins. We never did ask why pumpkins because we were too busy trying not to laugh.”

“How could you not ask? I’d have been like ‘So, trying to be part of the show or what?’” She remarked picking up her empty glass of ice. She was going to throw the ice at the waiter if he didn’t stop on his next trip passed their table.

“We were a little busy, ya know, cutting the pumpkin off his head.” He cleared his throat and smirked.

“It was on his head? Why couldn’t he have just pulled it off? I mean, was it still full of the gooey seeds and create a vapor lock? Or do you mean the other…..” She gasped and went to cover her mouth with her hands forgetting that she was still holding the glass of ice. She squealed when the contents of the vessel slid down her front. Some of the cubes found their way into her shirt and she frantically tugged at the material.

Michael couldn’t help but laugh more at the sight of her flailing around. The waiter came over and asked if she was okay. Michael laughed so hard that he felt like he couldn’t breathe at her screech. Her glare made him cough to cover his laughter. The whole day had been just a little too much, too surreal.

“Laugh away mister, see if I don’t get you for it!” She couldn’t help but laugh at the sheer silliness that she found herself in shaking the ice from her blouse. She waved her hand at him ,“So tell me about the pig trainer.”

“Flamingo trainer…”

“Yeah, yeah, yeah, whatever! The trainer.” She reached out and extended her arm in front of their server. “So yes, I would like more tea. How kind of you to ask.” She shoved the glass at him. Adele ignored the huff of the server and leaned back in her chair waiting.

“I um,” he cleared his throat. “Well without breaking any sort of laws, best I can tell there were real and styrofoam pumpkins. The flamingos like to… well, defecate frequently… and something with a loud noise. There was a small dog that was one of the makeup people brought in against the rules spooked the birds and the trainer was well… indisposed with his boyfriend.”

“He was….making out or in the middle of something a bit more,” she gestured crudely.

“I don’t know!” He laughed and shook his head nervously. “All I know is the birds went nuts, started a huge ruckus, and ended up knocking the trainer into one of the styrofoam pumpkins. He tumbled into the opening of the thing and got stuck. There’s not much else I know other than the ride to the hospital was comical because he could barely fit in the back.”

“Well, that’s kind of anti-climactic, don’t you think?” She said as the waiter placed her refilled glass on the table. She picked it up and took a sip. She made a face and turned to spew the mouthful of tea into the walkway. “Ugh! Oh my flaming candles, what the hell?!?””

He looked over to the bar and saw their waiter give the bartender a high-five. He shook his head and groaned when he felt the vibration at his side. He glanced down and saw that his break was indeed being cut short. “Addy, haven’t you ever seen the movie about the waiters taking revenge on bitchy patrons? You should know better.” He rose and pulled a crumpled bill from his pocket. “Gotta go. babes. This should cover my half.”

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