The Ideas Guy

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

Entry #5 Posted on July 18, 2019:

“Everyone thinks that Amazon is the future with their robots zip zapping around, dropping of packages quicker than Jimmy Johns. They don’t see it, though. There’s no entertainment value in that. You see, as the world gets more automated, we have more time for leisure. So, all those things that were everyday mundane tasks, they become leisure activities now too. You see where I’m going with this now... Elephantine Unicycular Package Delivery. Trained elephants delivering packages on unicycles – making the mundane extraordinary. Shoot. What would someone pay to deliver their girlfriend flowers by elephant? Then throw in the unicycle? Damn. I’ve got something there.”

That was a relatively normal idea for my buddy. They came to him like paparazzi to a Bieber and Jennifer Lawrence date – hopping out of bushes and rolling out of moving cars. When something is jumping out at you that hard, you can’t ignore it or contain it. It just spills out.

I first noticed him as he whispered conspiracy theories to a two-dollar bill: “Why make the two-dollar bill, if not to contain some secret. Who’s the guy on this thing anyways? Does anyone even know?”

He was almost named the conspiracy guy, but two more days of surveillance revealed that his interests were far too broad to limit him with that title. A few moments after his reflection on the two-dollar bill he was contemplating the creation of hygiene products from the coffee that the two-dollar bill had bought him (Sogs makes good coffee and their prices are better). His verbal train of thought nearly had me convinced of the merit of a coffee-based toothpaste that would make coffee breath the new normal.

He was easy to talk to. I just sat down across the table from him and he began sharing his ideas with me. Better yet, he didn’t care if I didn’t pay attention or left. What a pair: I love listening and he didn’t care who heard him.

A week into our relationship, he looked up from a scone that was crumbling more today than usual – he had been debating the effects of humidity on his pastry – and stated simply, “My name is Barry.” We shook hands and returned to our normal practices: me watching the crowd for interesting examples of humanity and Barry ideating. I was too shocked to respond in kind, but Barry didn’t seem to mind that he didn’t know my name.

I liked Barry. Past tense. He disappeared the other day. Not out of the blue, but rather into. Gone and I could only hope that one day he might return out of it.

We were splitting a newspaper Monday newspaper, the best kind. It had an easy enough crossword for me to do while listening to the people around me and for some reason Barry thought the cartoons were better on Mondays as well. I’m positive what it was that got him to go, but before he did, Barry left me with one last idea. He was reading the newspaper – the real part of it that features all of the bad news, not just the funnies. Something struck him. He dropped the newspaper unceremoniously on our table, pulling my attention from a guy that was searching for the gum he stored under his regular table to chew each day.

Barry asked, “What if everybody just got along.” Then he got up and left, perhaps to make it happen.

That guy is crazy.