His Name is Juan Der-Ful

Do you, at times, make impulsive decisions? I do. I made an impulsive decision earlier today I regret. In yesterday’s blog, La Flor* discovered a new main squeeze. His name is Juan. Like La Flor, Juan is an alt ego. I thought it would be a good idea if I invited La Flor and Juan to Carmen’s Pizzeria. It was a good idea because Carmen uses tacky plaid tablecloths, it’s small, and it’s mostly a take out business. Big Carmen and his son, little Carmen, who is bigger than Big Carmen are the cooks and waiters. I was sure La Flor would say no. She didn’t.  and, it is in Carmen’s Pizzeria where the following takes place.

We are sitting at one of six square tables. We’re the only people in Carmen’s other than Big Carmen and Little Carmen.

Juan said, “Nobody’s here.”

Big Carmen overheard Juan, and said, “Me and Little Carmen are here and use is here. So, what’s your problem? Use with the beautiful, tough, and edgy PI?”

Carmen has a way with the ladies.

La Flor puts a kiss on her palm and sends it off to Big Carmen. Big Carmen said, “If Gina was visiting her mother, I’d ask

Big Carmen said, “If Gina was visiting her mother, I’d ask use to come over. Not use, whoevers you are,” Big Carmen jabs a large flour covered forefinger toward Juan. Then he said,  “I’m talking to the beautiful, tough, and edgy PI.”

La Flor winked at Big Carmen. Then she said, “Now I know where Little Carmen gets his good looks.This table is perfect.”

Big Carmen turns toward Little Carmen, “The beautiful, tough, and edgy PI is one smart dame.”

Back at the table, La Flor said, “What are you doing Juan?”

“I was sitting down, La Flor.”

“Did you forget something?”

I know where this going. A fast ball catches the inside corner of the plate. Strike one. Juan’s young, naïve, self-centered, typical male at that age. I said, “She wants you to help her with her chair.”

Juan looks at the chair, then he looks at me. He looks back at the chair, then he looks at La Flor. I can almost feel his brain trying to make a connection it never made. It’s painful to watch. La Flor cocks a hip and puts a hand on it. I whisper to Juan, “Pull her chair out and don’t forget to slide it in under her as she sits down.”

“Oh. Thanks, man,” said Juan.

La Flor and Juan slide their chairs to the corner of the table. They are holding hands. La Flor, in my opinion, overdressed for Carmen’s, but if anyone can pull it off, it’s La Flor. Juan is staring at her, I want to ask Big Carmen if he has if a bib for Juan, he’s drooling. Instead, I want to get to know this alt ego better. I said, “What is your last name Juan?

Before Juan can answer, La Flor jumped in, she said, “I already told you. Are you sure you’re not having short-term memory problems, Ray?”

“You told me Juan’s last name?” I said.

“Duh, yes I did. His name is Juan Der Ful.”

Juan nodded his head, “Yes I have a hyphenated last name. My mother’s name is Dür and my father’s name is Ful so I’m Juan Der-Ful.”

“How did your parents chose the name Juan,” I asked.

La Flor squeezed Juan’s hand and said, “Do you mind if I tell him?”

Juan shrugs and said, “It’s okay.”

La Flor said, “When the nurse asked his mom what they wanted to name Juan, she said Won.”

“That makes sense.” I said.

“No, Ray. She said, Won.”

“Like the number,” I said.

“No, Ray. You are slow. Won, like winning a game.  It still works because Juan is Juan Der-Ful.”

Little Carmen who is six feet three inches tall, his dark grunge is spotted with flour. his chest and arms overdeveloped from lifting one-hundred-pound sacks of flour came over wearing his sauce and flour stained apron, “Whatchu guys want. How ya doin, beautiful, tough, and edgy PI? You free after? Maybe use and me we go dancing at the new hot alt ego dance club.”

La Flor gives Little Carmen an encouraging smile. Juan makes his first bad move, he gives off a slight scent of male testosterone.

Juan turns toward Little Carmen and is about to say something I fear he will regret until he visits an oral surgeon. Little Carmen spoke first, “Use better be giving me use order and not any crap about me asking the beautiful, tough, and edgy PI to go dancing after she dumps use for the night.”

Juan moved to male level two until he noticed the twelve-inch cutting knife in Little Carmen’s holding left hand. Instead, Juan said, “We haven’t seen menu’s.”

“That’s okay. Me and Big Carmen, we can make any pizza anybody wants, if they wants pizza. Do use wants pizza?” said Little Carmen waving the knife like he was conducting the symphony.

I saw it happen a couple of times before and it never worked out. Juan decides to go full throttle and impress La Flor. He said, “I’ll order for everyone.”

“I looked at La Flor. I know how picky she is about her pizza. And, she is not as picky as me. She rolled her eyes and slid her chair away from the corner of the table.

Juan said, “We want anchovies, lots of them. Don’t skimp. We want sausage baked into the crust. We want big black and green olives. I want you to spell La Flor with the olives. Instead of mozzarella can you use Velveeta.”

Juan sat back his chair, a sense of male pride sweeping over his body. His arms crossed over his chest.

Little Carmen bends over and puts his large, somewhat bent nose three inches from Juan’s face, and said, “The beautiful, tough, and edgy PI don’t like pizza like that. Whoever heard of pizza with Velveeta?”

Juan still being cool said, “Pizza Hut serves it.”

Bam, Little Carmen sticks the point of the knife into the tablecloth. “Big Carmen don’t use Velcheeta. And we don’t have lots of anchovies. Use gets four. No more.”

Big Carmen looks at La Flor, “Does the beautiful, tough, and edgy PI want her special pie with a glass of wine, on the house of course.”

Juan said, “I’ve had enough.”

Little Carmen turned back to Juan and said, “Use full already. That’ll be ten fifty. Thanks for coming. There’s the door.”

Juan looked at La Flor. La Flor was looking at Little Carmen.

I said, “Juan, it’s better if you leave. I’ll cover your tab.”
Today’s Lesson: A Little Carmen in the hand is worth two Juans in a bush (I know it’s not deep or profound. And, it doesn’t make much sense. It was the best I could do on a Saturday).

* La Flor is a fictional character and acts as my alt ego. Her character has evolved over the blog posts. She began with a single letter as her name. Her name gradually grew to two letters, then three before she settled on La Flor. She liked the name because it fit her idea of a beautiful, tough, and edgy feminine PI.  It is my interaction with her persona that serves as the source of these blog posts. I have no notion how La Flor will continue to evolve. It is an adventure for me as well as the reader.




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