"I'll kill you! KILL YOU DEAD!" he screams, his eyes filled with rage...
It all started innocently enough when Bob (of Chasing Vincenzo fame) read that I would be back in Chicago and was kind enough to write and ask if I wanted to meet for dinner while I was in town. Since he's a great guy with a lot of interesting things to talk about, I agreed immediately. Bob ended up choosing a very nice tapas restaurant with authentic authentic Spanish tapas (quite a different story from the "fake" authentic tapas houses I've run into).
The restaurant, Emilio's, was celebrating an anniversary, so there was live music and flamenco dancers for entertainment. We started out with a bit of light pre-dinner conversation... war, politics, religion, who would win in a fight between Batman and Spider-Man... you know, the usual kind of stuff. But then we somehow got on the topic of nuclear fusion and all hell broke loose.
"You can't contain the super-plasma using inert gasses as a barrier between the magnetic fields. You need a total vacuum or it's not going to work!" Bob says.
"Oh I think it will work just fine if the molecular state of the gas is excited by injecting weak protons into the barrier matrix" I reply. "Perhaps xenon or argon would be a good gas to use."
"What did you just say?!?" Bob asks over the escalating sounds of the guitar and rat-a-tat-tat of the flamenco dancers stomping away.
"Errr... maybe xenon or argon..." I offer meekly.
"Argon?!? ARGON?!?? How can you say 'argon'— I hate argon gas!" Bob says loudly as he tries to compete with the music filling the restaurant. "No self-respecting scientist uses argon gas for containment!"
"Uhhh... calm down, Bob" I say diplomatically. "I'm sure quite a few nuclear scientists have had good success using argon to—"
"NO! NO THEY HAVEN'T!!" Bob bellows as he jumps up from the table, his temper soaring. "Stop saying that! Stop saying 'argon!'"
"Bob, you're overreacting" I say, trying to keep my voice calm. "Argon is just a gas, it's not—"
"THERE! YOU SAID IT AGAIN!!" Bob screams, his voice filled with fury. "I TOLD YOU NOT TO SAY THAT!"
Bob then grabs a handful of papas bravas (a yummy potato dish) and throws it at my head. The restaurant, once noisy with flamenco dancers, music, laughter, and conversation, suddenly becomes silent. A kindly waitress appears at our table and tries to fix things...
"Is there a problem here gentlemen?" she asks nervously.
"YES, THERE IS A VERY BIG PROBLEM HERE!! THIS BASTARD THINKS THAT ARGON GAS WOULD MAKE A GOOD BARRIER BETWEEN MAGNETIC FIELDS OF A FUSION REACTOR!" Bob roars, all eyes on him.
"Argon?" the waitress says in a small voice. "Well, maybe not argon per-se... but certainly if the gas molecules were in an excited state... perhaps by injecting weak protons?"
Bob just stands there for a minute fuming, his hands bunched into fists. Nobody moves. It's as if the restaurant has been suspended in time.
Suddenly, Bob springs across the table and lunges at the waitress. "I'll kill you! KILL YOU DEAD!" he screams, his eyes filled with rage. The waitress is paralyzed with fear as Bob knocks her to the ground and wraps his hands around her neck. "ARGON THIS!" Bob wails as his hands tighten on her throat.
Panic fills the air as people start running around screaming. One of the busboys and a team of flamenco dancers manage to pull Bob off the poor waitress and hold him at the bar. He starts yelling something about "argon gas being a tool of the devil," but I am in a state of total shock and don't hear it.
I just sat there sobbing quietly with papas bravas in my hair until the police showed up and took Bob away. Something tells me he won't be welcome back at Emilio's any time soon.
Well, okay, that's not really what happened.
We had a wonderful dinner with fantastic food, and it was a lot of fun. But I'm getting tired of writing about how great it is to meet up with my fellow bloggers, and so I thought it would be more entertaining to write about what would happen if Bob went crazy and tried to strangle a waitress.
Because that would be kind of cool.
Not for the waitress, obviously, but it would make for a far more exciting blog entry.
Anyway, thanks Bob for a great dinner!
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Good story, Dave.
See Chasey, if it’s that damn boring make something up.
Note to self: If you ever meet Dave….. attempt to murder someone to keep things exciting, as he’s obviously quite jaded.
Once the waitress knew what you were talking about, and injected her own theory, I knew you were stringing us along….:)
Glad you had fun, even if there wasn’t an attempted murder!
i love made up stories involving food throwing.
I think someone’s been snorting too much pure argon. Bob, admit you have a problem.
Shows how gullible I am, I had sympathy flowing towards you and everything… and now? Now I just feel dumb, but highly entertained.
Actually, a helical magnetic field of just a few Tesla is sufficient to provide insulation and stabilize the plasma pressure…
I can just see the headlines now in the Salt Lake Trib…
“Two Dead at Big City Soup After Altercation”
Of course, the two dead wouldn’t be either you are myself. You would have to blog about it and I’d have to comment on it as a first-hand witness to the entire scene.
The weird thing is that I have often had fantasies of busting up stuff just like that.
But allow me to assure everyone that I would never react that way about mere gas.
Cubs vs. White Sox, however…
Dave, I’m devastated that you’ve never come to LA and told me about it beforehand.
I’ll even strangle a waitress for you – okay, maybe I won’t.
Wow, I must be tired because I actually believed that Bob freaked out over argon gas.
I think I need a drink.
Thats good… but he is right you know…I mean about hating argon…Nitrogen thats the money inert gas.
“How can you say ‘argon’ — I hate argon gas!”
That shit had me in stitches.
So um.. Dave, you might want to think about some anger management classes… You obviously have some pent-up rage that you really need to deal with. Either that, or damn just go through with it and mow someone down! (j/k)…
Good story though, you had me going for about 3 or 4 sentences.
Egads, man! I read your blog when I first get up in the morning while my brain is still fuzzy. I was stuck on the nuclear fusion/super-plasma/magnetic field sentence for 20 minutes. If I didn’t know that you followed Buddhism I would think you were trying to kill me by making my head ‘splode.
Wow. I know this will sound crazy but…I had that EXACT discussion last night at a bar here in Norway. It was me and a group of people from Poland, Scotland, Turkey and Brazil. My my how fiery that discussion got. So strange you had the same argument as us!
We came to the conclusion that xenon was actually more effective than argon, but that made the Russian guy kind of pissed off and he threw his vodka at the Brazilian. Fisticuffs ensued, only stopped by my unleashing a rebel yell that could be heard all the way throughout town. It froze the action long enough for the Polish girl to separate those two wacky boys.
Good times, my friend. Good times.
You write well and draw well… and know Hard Rock Cafes well too.
As soon as the waitress came over, I knew she was going to be able to get right into the conversation, thereby infuriating Bob into violence, hence making this scenario a joke. It was a very Python-like skit, very funny.
I have fantasies like this in my head all the time…then reality comes back and it’s usually far less entertaining. Maybe I’ll start a big food fight tomorrow at this brunch I’m attending with Hilary and some other bloggers.
Bob’s been doing this shit since high school; it’s some deep-seated thing that happened in jail, but he refuses to talk about it.
if you think that little scene was bad, christ almighty, whatever you do, though, never say the words isotope, dipthong or Addison to him; the other guy who did that is still in a coma.
And you have not published a for-real, honest-to-gosh graphic novel WHY? Seriously. Slacker. Talent-hoarder. Um…butter-eater.
That was very nice and actually made me laugh out loud. Sitting at my computer. Alone. Which means that I’m obviously losing my computer.
That being said. Orlando. Food, drink and merry. Any time.
That was a great story!! I was laughing out loud here in my office at work. Gettin funny looks too..hmm.
Great If you like the flamenco east he is your weblog.