by William Bentley Sturtevant
So, my German wife says, “Have you heard about the one-armed man going into the secondhand store?”
This, for no reason, reminded me of when she was accused of being a Canadian goose killer back in, oh, let’s say 2006.
Annelore was the counter manager for Lancome at Carson’s and she was late for work, per usual.
This part of Illinois seemed to have more than its share of Canadian geese, who were supposedly migrating from the south back to Canada, but never seemed to make it past Illinois. Maybe they mistook the Chicago skyline for downtown Toronto. Who knows? But as our Annelore was rushing to work, a couple dozen birds were walking slowly, as they always do, across the access road to the Carson’s parking lot. I wasn’t there physically; however, knowing Annelore as I do, I say she slowed down to maybe 10 mph to allow these massive-winged birds to flow around her Honda Accord like a ballet. After the dance, she proceeded at higher speed, parked in the employee lot and punched in no more than ten minutes tardy. She always made up for the time at the end of the shift.
As she got out of her car a wacko woman was yelling at her; something about slaughtering a goose with her car. Annelore responded that she was late and didn’t have time for such craziness. “Sie spinnen!”
Punched in on the time clock, she was greeting the other associates, both at her own Lancome counter as well as at the enemies’: Estee, Arden and her friends in their lab smocks over at Clinique.
After about an hour, a very serious-looking group arrived consisting of the store manager, two local police officers and the shrill woman from the parking lot.
The manager took control and told Annelore that the woman had identified and accused her of killing a Canadian goose with her car.
Annelore asked,“Well, what makes you think that it was me?”
The manager said that the woman described the assailant as being blonde, arrogant, with a European accent and in her 40s.
Annelore turned quickly to them and asked, “Did you say in her 40s?”
The manager replied, “Yes.”
Annelore, so pleased, responded, “Yes! That must have been me!”
She had celebrated her 62nd birthday earlier that year.
Annelore inquired, “Is there any evidence of this killing on my car or a dead bird someplace? If so, come back and talk to me. Otherwise, I have an important job here making so-so housewives look terrific. But you can find me here.”
The two police officers had trouble not laughing out loud. The store manager gave the complainant a shrug and they followed her into the parking lot, never to return.
Annelore presented a pleased look in the always flattering mirror and said to herself, “I guess this shit really works.”
A lifelong creative and promotional writer of sorts; from writing copy for plastics products to a memoir series about growing up in 60s Southern California: Hobie and Dewey Days 1961-1963, available on Kindle , Dead Stones Days 1968-1972 due January 2016. He resides in Kitzingen, Germany with his wife of 43 years.