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Speaking of superheroes ...

We have an enormous and moderately ancient apple tree in our backyard that produces an astounding quantity of apples, all which drop over the course of a single months and none of which are fit for consumption. So once a week in July I have to go out and spend and hour or so picking up the damned things and throwing 'em into garbage bags.

Our vacation to D.C. fell right at the tail end of this year's apple-dropping season, and I put off going to the dump until the last possible moment. (Apparently it's called the "transfer station" now. I'm a little unclear on when we got so PC that we started coming up with euphemisms for landfills, but it'll always be "the dump" to me.) Although I knew the tree would still be dropping its treasures in our absence, my goal was to collect as many apples as possible so we wouldn't return a week later to a yard full of rotting fruit.

So Thursday evening I braved Seattle atypical 90 degree heat and picked up the last of the apples, throwing them on the side of the house with the moldering bags of apples I had collected previously and acquiring a pretty good sunburn in the process. And then, Friday morning, I got up bright and early, threw on my rattiest work clothes, heaved the bags of apples into my truck, and headed to the local dump a few hours before our flight was slated to leave.

On my way back I remembered a few more things we needed to pick up for our trip, so stopped at three places along the way: the grocery store, the drug store, and the pet store. Each cashier I interacted with was female, and each flirted with me as I completed my transaction.

Alas, having a cashier flirt with me is a rare enough event that I can state fairly definitively that this hat trick was no mere coincident, and can therefore only conclude that I have somehow inadvertently stumbled across The Secret To Attracting Women. Much as Barry Allen was a mild-mannered scientist until the night he was working alone in his lab and a bolt of lightening struck a nearby cabinet, dousing him with an melange of electrified chemicals and endowing him with the super speed that transformed him into The Flash, some unknown combination of grimy hands, unkempt clothing, disheveled hair, sunburned face, and pervasive odor comprised of sweat and half-fermented apples apparently made me irresistible to the opposite sex.

Were I not a married man I might well devote my free time to trying to suss out the exact recipe; instead I'll post my findings here and leave it to some single, energetic go-getter of a reader to crack the code. Let me know if you figure it out, and godspeed.

Posted on August 05, 2004 to Storytelling