I’m glad to see I’m not the only one around here who cares about dental hygiene,” I said.
There was a bottle of red cinnamon Listerine on the counter of the men’s bathroom. Joe Jockstrap was hunched over the sink, scrubbing his pearly whites with a Colgate toothbrush. Most men come into the restroom after lunch and only swish with a little warm water. Some go as far as to use their finger to do a quick scrub.
Joe spat out his toothpaste and ran his toothbrush under the faucet, “I have to bro,” he said. “I’m still on the market.”
The corporate workplace provides a cast of colorful characters.
I remember the first time I met Joe. It was my first day in my new position. I had recently been promoted to the Training and Development Team. Our cubicles were stationed across from the Auditing Team. I was busy wading through the endless standard operating procedures and processing guidelines. Suddenly there was an eruption.
I sprang from my seat and peered across the cubicle farm landscape. I was determined to pinpoint the origin of the eruption. A slab of meat with spiked black hair grinned at me, his mouth full of braces.
He nodded at me, “Sup, bro.”
“What was that?” I asked. His grin got bigger.
A co-worker of mine shook her head, “Such a drama king.”
I’d left my Acme mallet at home otherwise I would have flattened those spikes.
Joe is a self-proclaimed narcissist. He spends an exorbitant amount of time maintaining his man suit. He fancies himself a gift to woman, a stud; the king of the concrete jungle. His sole purpose in life—when he’s not auditing claims or picking up things and putting them down—is space docking women. I know his type well. I see them all the time at the gym. They’re pretty easy to spot. Usually they look like a mountain on toothpicks. Really big upper body. Chicken legs. Grunting like gorillas. They spend most of their time on the bench press with their “bro” hovering over them with his ball sack about a foot away from their face as he spots them.
I always laugh—inwardly because I don’t want to get my face Kung Pao’d. Picture this: a man lying on a bench press trying to push 300 pounds off of his chest, his body trembling, his crotch pushing into the sky like he’s humping the air, ripples of veins protruding from his body. With a little help from his “bro” he completes his final rep and slams the weight down to make sure all the other apes notice. For all we know he might have just shat a hemmy or chocolatey quick stained his pants.
The first thing Joe Jockstrap ever asked me was: “What’s the next best thing if you don’t have money?” I considered then concluded: the ability to round house like Chuck Norris. Incidentally did you know Chuck Norris once urinated into the gas tank of a truck? The truck is now known as Optimus Prime.
I gave up and said, “I don’t know.”
“Muscles. Women like muscles.” I think they like brains too.
At times I wonder if he’s had a vasectomy because he’s always complaining about child support. I hope for the sake of his paycheck and the human race he has.
Every morning Joe tromps to the kitchen to make his muscle man milk shake with his industrial blender. He walks as if he’s marching onto the stage of a Mr. Universe competition. In the afternoon’s he can be found in the break room preparing chicken breast to throw on his foreman grill.
“To maintain a body like this takes a lot of work,” he would say.
Joe’s cubicle neighbor was flabbergasted when he learned how much Joe spent on his blender.
“That thing cost a thousand dollars?! What did you have to open a credit card to buy that thing?” His cubicle neighbor asked.
One day I walk into the break room. Joe is preparing his muscle milk shake, all of his paraphernalia spread out on the counter.
“Ah! The man with the thousand dollar blender,” I said with hearty vibrato.
“And the million dollar body,” he responded.
“I don’t know if it’s worth that much.”
“Oh it is, bro. This body is insured.”
One thing about Joe though is he’s generous, always willing to share his wisdom with the world.
“Don’t ever have kids, Rob.”
“Why’s that? Kids seem neat,” I said.
“As soon as you have kids the sex stops.” He pours his muscle milk shake into his behemoth cup.
“There’s always some excuse. She’s tired or she has a headache.” Probably because you’re just another kid she has to take care of, I thought.
“I’ve heard there’s more to a relationship than sex.” Maybe that’s why it crumbled. I’m astounded he and his Ex even made it to the Alter. I can only imagine what was in his wedding vow. “I will love you until death do us part or until your ass turns to cottage cheese.”
Now his department has moved and I’m a little sad about it. I kinda miss the big lug. I used to look forward to our interactions. It was like being on the set of Kids Say the Darndest Things.
Often our momentary interactions would end with him saying, “Find out more. Follow me on Twitter, bro.”
Believe it or not I’m actually tempted to open a Twitter account, just to see what Joe Jockstrap has to say.