For the full experience, read the preceding entries from the Collector before meeting Magic Mike.

Entry #3 Posted on May 3, 2019:

Rent-a-Bob (and Friends)

The woman got up from their table, kissed him once on each cheek and departed, leaving Bob alone to finish his decaf coffee with two creams and one sugar. She had paid for it. The women always did, the two men I had seen with Bob had followed the trend as well. I was intrigued. I had a few theories and I had decided today was the day to throw some spaghetti at the wall.

As soon at the woman had left the Soggy Sonnet, I made a move for the chair. I asked my question before he had a chance to voice any opposition to the advance, “Are you a gigolo? But, also a player? A juggolo?

“Juggolo?” He was confused enough to let the interaction continue.

“I thought it was creative, you know, a juggling gigolo? There’s maybe a balls innuendo in there somewhere, but your ‘clients’ are mostly girls…”

He cut me off there with a look. He glanced behind him to ensure that no one else was listening, then he pulled out his business card.

It certainly was odd... Odd Bob has a nice ring to it... maybe I should change his collection entry title. Sadly the truth wasn’t nearly as intriguing as my juggalo theory.

Bob wasn’t really what I was here for though – I was most interested in the patrons of Bob the professional friend. Two in particular had caught my attention as I watched Bob’s business dealings in the preceding weeks: “The Regular” and “The Queen” – both my names of course. Bob, a true professional, wouldn’t release the names of his clients and I hadn’t caught them in my snooping. Heaven knows I tried. After a few days of open staring, Bob had begun to choose tables as far away from mine as possible. I guess I couldn’t blame him.

He had given me his business card, but Bob wasn’t ready to talk just yet. So, I returned to my stalwart method to get the conversation going: I stared at him for an uncomfortable amount of time. Bob got up and left. He was a hard nut to crack, but I continued staring for the next three days.

Three days later, Bob sat down at my table. Apparently, this nutcracker had compromised Bob’s structural integrity.

“Dude you got to stop. I’ll get coffee with you if you want, but you need to stop staring. You’re scaring away my customers and I’m going to have to switch coffee shops. I dig this place.”

I was getting the story I wanted, still sabotage wasn’t my style and I regretted putting the man’s livelihood at risk, but it would have to do. I could always apologize later and give him a good review on whatever website people find him on. Whatever helps me sleep at night, right?

I explained the character sketches that I had been working on in the Soggy Sonnet and came out and asked for the information I wanted, “Can you tell me something about ‘The Regular,’ the woman you see every day, and ‘The Queen,’ the woman in the limo?”

He shook his head. I kept staring – the nutcracker was unrelenting. Bob’s nut cracked: “I think you mean my wife. I’m married.” He held up his left hand. He continued, “The Queen though… I won’t use names. That would be bad business, and the only reason I’m telling you is because you’re seriously creeping out the customers. Put that in your encyclopedia of people.” That was his name, not mine. I didn’t bother telling him that normal encyclopedias also had people.

‘The Queen’ was certainly collection worthy. They have broken into explosive arguments on two separate occasions and he had his own nickname for her: “Ya old bitch.” She had one for him too: “Bob-saggy-butt.” She had gone through a variety of names before finding one that actually pissed Bob off. The others had caused him to laugh and break character. His butt was saggy, but what would you expect from a guy whose career required him to drink ten cups of decaf coffee a day with two creams and a sugar.

“She’s like everyone else I see, lonely. She is different though. She has family: she’s married, has kids, a grandkid, and knitting club. She has money. She’s confused though.”

“She said she was watching Real World, you know the reality tv show, and she started questioning the authenticity of her relationships. So, she came to me to see what else there was. The first time we met she said she was looking for something gritty and real. I didn’t know what that meant until she started trying out insults on me. Bob Saget turned into Bob saggy-butt and that one really got me, so I called her ‘Ya old bitch...’ I’ve never seen a customer with a bigger smile.”

He went on to tell me about her life and family, but I wasn’t allowed to reproduce that. Hopefully it suffices to say that they seemed lovely. I guess life can be too lovely at some point. Her life seemed like a dream to me, but I guess that was her point. It was too cushy – too dream-like.

I had never actually seen Real World, but I could imagine what type of world it showed. I didn’t realize something like that could drive a woman to question the authenticity of her life, then again, people do buy Kardashian brand beauty products. I don’t think I could do what Bob does for her. I guess it was what she ordered, what she needed? The man is good at his job. I just hope she can find something more authentic than Rent-a-Bob. As our conversation progressed I found myself wondering if his name was even Bob.

I promised Bob I would stop my staring. There were new faces in the Soggy Sonnet that required my attention anyways.

Sogs is a magnet for collectable people.