How To Succeed Without Really Trying
by Marian Allen
I was never much of a bowler, so I usually had the low score, which means I usually paid for the team’s between-games beer. I had gotten pretty good at carrying all them them by the necks (the beer, of course, not my teammates).
This one time, though, Jimbo got up when I did, and I thought he was coming to help me. I put in the order and, when I heard a heavy step behind me, thinking it was Jimbo, I said, carrying on a running gag we’d had that night, “Do these pants make my butt look big?”
A rumbling voice that was not Jimbo’s said, “Do I look like a f’ing haberdasher to you?”
He was large, with a trim beard, aviator glasses, and the look of a casual maniac.
I looked at the name on his team shirt and said, “No, Walter, you don’t. I apologize. Not that there’s anything wrong with haberdashers. Just in case, you know, you might know any. Unless you think there is something wrong with haberdashers, in which case I totally agree. Either way.”
Walter ordered two beers and a White Russian — which sounds like a haberdasher’s drink to me — and, giving me a dirty look and a grunt, went back to his team. I was happy to see they were on the other side of the alley from mine.
When I carried the beers back to my guys, I kept the encounter to myself. Keeping things to yourself: that’s really the key to getting along in the Goodfellas League. That, and usually getting the low score in bowling.