Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Me and my Luger

It started innocently enough, My mother had asked me casually, Do you want to show it to your friends?

I’m not much for guns, though at one time I was okay with a BB gun. But my two brothers-in-law are fanatical about guns and rifles. Family get-togethers they disappear into the basement for hours and I know it’s about guns. Plus they kill, deer and such, that time of year can’t happen too soon for them. So yeah, whipping it out during one of those conversations in which I'm normally a bystander sounded kind of cool.

This gun had been my father’s, a trophy of sorts from post-war Germany. The story was that he had gotten it for a pack of cigarettes. I’d never seen it, but it turned out he’d hidden it with the bonds and stock certificates, so after he was gone, there it was sort of thing.

I inherited it a couple of months ago. First question: what do you do with a gun? I was at her place, and I didn’t want it up in the front seat with me so I threw it in a gym bag in the trunk. Now I have two gym bags back there: one with clean shirts and towels and the like (and it never leaves the car), and one that I take in with that day's stuff to the squash club.

Now at the squash club I don’t bother with a lock because I never have anything of value: I leave my wallet in the car, so just my keys, the phone maybe, and perhaps some loose change. Most players are the same, and the bags come out with you and usually are left lying casually around the hall, the viewing benches, whatever, just outside of the courts. Of course it’s unattended while you’re playing, though you can see it and it you through the back glass wall. There are always people milling about watching, waiting, kibitzing, etc. Bags left on the bench (like mine) often get picked up and moved over as more people show up and are looking to sit down.

I had kind of forgotten about the gun, or when I remembered I was never around the car so I was basically remembering to remember to bring it in next time I’m out at the car.

Here is the gun by the way, I’d been calling it a Luger but realize now that it’s not.

Anyway, today it finally clicked: I remembered about it and I was at the car, getting my stuff ready for a squash game actually. But horrors! No gun! Now what? I’m in the parking lot, it’s snowy and cold, and I can’t find my Luger!

Cold sweat. Glances over the shoulder. Could it have fallen out? But my trunk’s not a mess, I don’t see it, and the likelihood of it worming it’s way down to the spare or something is next to zero.

But wait a second, genius, how about checking your other bag, that flimsy little thing that you take into the club and leave lying around (unattended) for everybody to see? Like at least a dozen times since making it my luger’s temporary home? (Here, take my luger, people, more interesting than my squash game.)

I won’t learn though. It’s still in the car, but in the other bag now. Cold for sure, and maybe a little more lonely knowing it won’t be accompanying me to my games, nor waiting patiently for me afterwards, guarding my shoes and pants while I shower.


switters said...

Yeah, I'm way too trusting of my gym. Or, rather, members of my gym. And, additionally, people who aren't members but who get daypasses and such. I mean, I just leave my keys in the top cubbyhole behind the towels in the locker that's not even locked. I do try to remember to leave everything valuable (e.g., phone, wallet, cigarettes, condoms, emergency stash of "China White", my copy of Our Bodies Ourselves, clean needles) back in the car. But still, someone could easily just take my keys and as easily find out which car they belonged to and just, well, drive off.

Really good ending. I love the image of your dad's gun guarding his son's socks and shirts. You managed pretty deftly to give an otherwise inanimate object the nobility, and, well, the savagery it more than likely craves in its absence of war. Cool.

sydbristow said...

Exactly, lock my wallet in the car and leave my keys (and gun) out for anyone who wants to take (either) for a ride. On some things you just wait to get burned before smartening up.

Remember the Seinfeld when George tried to get somebody kicked out for not wiping up the sweat behind them (or was it George getting kicked out for whizzing in the shower, or both, or whatever ..)

topazz said...

I bet you have page 67 of Our Bodies, Our Selves bookmarked too, don't you? Ugh, Where do they get women who are willing to bend that way?