Yesterday evening, when the Fiery One arrived home from work, I waved a slip of white paper in front him.

I said We've got a package waiting for us at the post office!

What? That's incredible! he said. We will have to pick it up on our way to supper, because I'm taking you out! he said.

That's awesome! Let's go! I said, and off we went to our local postal outlet.

We ran into a friend outside the post outlet, and he was as impressed as we were with the our little slip of white paper promising us a package. We explained how this whole thing was such a surprise, because neither of us was expecting anything in the mail.

Can I come with you? he asked.

Of course! I said.

This is like Christmas! he said, and all three of us marched into the back of the drug store to the postal counter.

The Fiery One handed over the white slip of paper and the postal counter guy went into the mail room and came back with a mid-sized box. The postal counter guy's face screwed up like he was having difficulty reading the label on the box. Written on the side of the box in black marker was the word "pickles".

Pickles! That's me! I said.

Do you have any ID with your address and name on it? he asked. Which one of you is this for?

Does that label say "Schmutzie Pickles" on it? Because I don't have any ID with that particular name on it. Is that the name on it? I asked.

Well, yeah, he said. Do you have any ID with "Schmutzie Pickles" on it? 'Cause I'm not supposed to give this to you without ID.

No, I don't. See, I have this website, and that's the name I use on it, and that's the name I use on my wishlist. It's not like I can get "Schmutzie Pickles" on my driver's license I said, thinking that I never would have guessed I could feel that dorky at a postal outlet.

The postal counter guy kept holding his face the whole time in that way that made him look like he had trouble reading, and I was quite impressed with his ability to question us with his mouth squinched up like that.

How many people would know that if the box said "pickles" on the side that it would include "schmutzie" on the label and that it had to be from Amazon? I offered. I freaking wanted that box already, and if my secret identity was going to deny me my present, I was going to have to wrangle that box from his peeling, nail-bitten fingers. Instead, I smiled like this was such a crazy thing to have happen, like life could be so zany sometimes, like this was some kind of unpredictable fun. I know. Ew.

He conceded that I must be this "Schmutzie" and handed over the box in direct contravention of postal outlet rules. I can be that winning. He even loaned us the scissors to open it up right there at the counter, because the three of us could not wait to see what my surprise present was.

Give me another moment here to be thrilled to the hilt: I GOT A SURPRISE IN THE MAIL FROM THE INTERNET!

After cutting through tape and peeling back cardboard, we found a stack of three shrink-wrapped books inside: it was the Henry Miller's trilogy, including Sexus (Rosy Crucifixion, Book One), Plexus (Rosy Crucifixion, Book 2), and Nexus (Rosy Crucifixion, Book 3). They were from Ladyloo as thanks for building her template (I am assuming), even though I still have yet to do a bit of niggly fix-it work with a table height issue, (which, by the way, Ladyloo, I honestly will).

Ladyloo, you have no idea how perfect it is that you chose to send these particular books. I started reading Sexus several months ago, but the copy I had was second-hand and missing several pages, so I eventually gave up. I promised myself that I would get my hands on a complete copy at some point and read the whole trilogy, but my chances were lessened by the fact that the Fiery One has my library card and keeps running up charges on it.

You stumbled upon the perfect gift, Ladyloo. Thank you thank you thank you.

If this sort of thing ever happens again, I am now armed with a shipping label as proof of my schmutzie-pickles-ness.

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Tomorrow, or at least sometime soon, I will share what happened directly after receiving that fantastic present, the event that means I will not be walking alone anywhere like I did a couple of months ago in that park pictured above. (Don't worry. I'm fine, but the next guy who tries committing some petty crime involving my person is going to have to contend with one angry motherfucker).

"Dream Song 76: Henry's Confession" by John Berryman

The Dream Songs by John Berryman

Tuesday Was a Glo-Ball Waiting to Happen