Freudian Slips: Short Verses Tall Orders

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Location: Irony, New Jersey, United States

Life takes us many places. It's a box of chocolates and a Hansel and Gretal trail of candy wrappers. I have filmed as an actor in The Happening, Invincible, The Lovely Bones, The Bounty Hunter, The Greek American, Bazookas, Limitless, TV's Its Always Sunny in Philly, Outlaw, New York, The Warrior, The Nail, Game Change, Cold Case, & commercial work includes The Philadelphia Eagles, Septa, Coors, Turbo Tax & Carnival Cruises. Freudian Slips spotlights irony in short story format.

February 25, 2007

Short Verses Tall Orders

I backtracked to a family operated deli that I frequented as a hungry teenager. I recognized the middle-aged woman behind the counter who took my sandwich order. With her apron covered wide back to mine, I remembered that I knew her from high school. She was the daughter of the shop owners. A quick study determined that she had not aged gracefully. Assuming she was just filling in for the day, I decided to catch up on old times. There was so much to talk about.
I inquired for openers, “I haven’t seen you in eons, what have you been doing with yourself?” She turned around and looked up at me from a bed of shredded lettuce. Her face changed to a pathetic look. “Making hoagies six days a week for the last 25 years leaves little time for anything else. How about you?”
She summed up her life with shreds in her hands. I did not know what to say. I lied and answered, “Nothing, really. Same old, same old.”
While waiting for my hoagie to be made, I started to think about the meaning of life. I carve my life with an ice pick to shape it and get the most out of it. She looked like she wanted to take the knife slicing tomatoes in hand to her throat.
A few minutes later, I paid her the money due with a tight smile. I picked up my brown-bagged order and before hitting the doors I squeaked, “You sure make the best hoagies here.”
Someone famous recommended inventing yourself every seven years. It was a tall order that she could not fill.



Blogger mommanator said...

Well at least she did not come at you with the knife or throw it at you, BUT if thats a pic of the hoagie you rec'd let me know and we will have some at work one day!
look wonderful!

6:43 PM  
Anonymous et said...

How sad!!!!

7:48 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

what about breakfast?

the world might be a stage but it needs players. i gues you know what deli that was.

1:13 PM  
Anonymous Catherine Mary said...

Joe, That's why I always told Tommy to follow his dreams. If he hadn't he would be digging ditches for PECO like his dad did. A good living but not a dream.

12:58 AM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

catherine mary,
good advice from a good mother.

8:13 AM  
Blogger Pax Romano said...

And yet ... sometimes don't you dream for a job where you make hoagies instead of dealing with the red tape and ludicrous politics we deal with on a daily basis.

It all depends on what end of the counter you are on.

And what do they say? When life hands you lettuce, tomato, and rolls: make Hoagies!

8:22 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

and that comes from a guy who won't be in work another two weeks. lol

8:30 PM  
Blogger E said...

That's great advice, to reinvent yourself every 7 years. I think it's been happening with me, but not by design. I wonder what could happen if it was by design!

7:38 AM  
Blogger Weary Hag said...

Well Joe, the fact that you took the time to speak with her that day, heck, that probably made you here HERO for the week!

It can be annoying to have such a sub-job (!) such as hers. I recall those days very vividly. Back when I made sandwiches for a living, the only hope for a good time I had was being able to HAM it up with those who shared my sense of humor and fondness for a healthy pun now and again.

1:22 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

if I ever need a ghostwriter on my blog, you are who I am turning to. great material.

6:53 PM  
Blogger Joe Tornatore said...

The existential question you got to ask yourself is could it all be by design?

7:19 PM  

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