I went out with my cousins, Jase and Anna, and my brother, Alex, for Alex’s birthday the other day. It started off predictably enough—with Alex, Jase, and I failing fantastically at mini golf—and took a turn for the weird as soon as we hit the arcade. Alex and Jase were blessed by the arcade gods at birth and usually reel in plenty of tickets without spending much money (whereas I can waste fifteen bucks and come out with nothing but a pair of those Chinese finger traps). Jase and I gave all our winnings to Alex since it was his birthday (Jase’s contribution was a lot more impressive than mine) and we were all standing by the counter trying to pick out prizes when this middle-aged man approached us, promptly shoved three thousand tickets in my arms, and said gruffly, “Have fun.” We all stood there in shock for a moment. Then the guy came back and pointed out the phallic imagery of the lava lamps. And then he was gone, like some strange, inappropriate ghost.
“Did that really just happen?” sputtered Jase, who was actually on the ground laughing hysterically.
Then we raced go-karts. Anna spun out and the entire race had to be halted for fifteen minutes. Jase and I were told we had to “stop cutting off little kids.” All in all, quite a successful day, I think.