Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Prosthetically Speaking

There's a "friend of a friend" story in my cache that bears repeating. I recognize and accept that such stories are often written off as folklore due to facts and truths being diluted with each extension. Taking this into account I'll add a deeper human element and disclose that this is not just a friend of a friend but a pot dealer of a friend. Not sure if that makes it more or less legit, but there you have it.

Let's call this guy Moose. He lives in Chicago and loves getting by on his own supply. That might be an understatement. You could also assert that he cherishes it, or it completes him. To support this love affair, he dispenses a heavy share of it to locals and keeps a healthy stash for himself. This scenario is rather common among dealers and not breaking news, I know. The intriguing angle of this story stems from the fact that Moose also needs to obtain a full time position in the rat race. Due to spending most, if not all, of his free time in cloud of pot smoke, he's had a hard time holding down jobs in the past. No surprise there.

But there's a new found jumpstart in the works for Moose -- a third interview for an inside sales gig at some nondescript company in an office park in Schaumburg. If this goes well, which he expects it will, he just needs to pass a urine screening and he's back in the game, watching the clock, counting down the minutes of the work day until he's back on his couch with an overstuffed bowl. Most people you know, at least those with such vices, would put the pipe down for the requisite 4 to 6 weeks, make pounding water a habit, maybe pop some golden seal root, and wait for the moment of truth to come. You should know that Moose is not most people.

No, Moose is either a genius or completely out of his mind. You know, back in the day, genius was synonymous with insanity, so maybe that's what we're dealing with here. (If you want to experience a wonderful piece of supporting evidence, pick up a copy of The Professor and the Madman.) Either way, Moose hatched a hell of a scheme that entailed dropping over $300 on a strap-on, prosthetic penis that stores and insulates a reservoir of clean urine. It gives me pause to know that somewhere out there exists a factory where workers are paid 13 cents per hour with no bathroom breaks to mold and craft such implements. I mean, this is a niche business that somehow survives. It's fascinating and simultaneously disturbing.

Practice makes perfect, so in addition to brushing up on company research and speculating on possible 3rd interview questions, Moose adds several piss test rehearsals to his daily routine. The essence of the drill is pretty basic, akin to the usual business a guy tends to in the Men's room, except his unit is fake. However, Moose picked up on a critical nuance and reached into his bottomless well of ingenuity to address it. There's a small valve on the head of the unit that requires turning in order to unleash the clean sample. When turning it, Moose discovered a squeaking sound, so he puffed for a few hours and came up with the solution -- chewing on a piece of hard candy at the precise moment he turns the valve to cover up any suspicious sounds. Talk about covering the bases...

How's this for an anticlimax: when the day of the 3rd interview arrived, Moose had to cancel because one of his cats perished. He called the HR woman and explained the situation to her, and she was very understanding. She has yet to return any of his follow-up calls about rescheduling, but she was so understanding that day, and he's sure she'll get back to him any day now.

Until then, the prosthetic sits on a shelf, pining for its day in the sun. I, for one, hope that day comes soon...

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