The Importance of Pronouns; Cannons and Cocaine

I had the tremendous pleasure of being featured on the fab writer da-AL’s website/podcast Happiness Between Tails last week. My guest post was a short history of pronouns, and why people should stop worrying about what pronouns other people choose to use. You can read it, or listen to it, here: https://happinessbetweentails.com/2022/02/23/pronouns-suzanne-craig-whytock-podcast-henna-artist-alka-joshi/#comment-223338

There’s also a lovely intro by my friend da-AL and a very large picture of my face, and if you recall last week’s post, you can decide for yourself if I look like I qualify for the seniors’ discount.

In other news, I had what was probably the weirdest conversation I’ve ever had with anyone in my life last week. We get a lot of interesting characters coming into the antique warehouse where I work, but this guy took the cake, ate it, and then ran away with the plate. I was walking down one of the aisles, when a rather scruffy-looking man gestured at me. He was holding a tiny brass cannon about 6 inches long mounted on a wooden base.

Man: Isn’t this cool?
Me: Yes, it’s really cute.
Man: Do you think it works?
Me: You mean like, shoot cannon balls?
Man: Yeah. It looks like it could work.
Me: I think it’s a replica.
Man: But the metal’s really thick. Do you think I could drill a hole in it and get it to shoot cannonballs?
Me: Like put a fuse in the end, fill it with gunpowder, packing, and bb pellets or something?
Man (eyes light up): Ooh, good idea!
Me: No, I would worry that the brass might get damaged.
Man: Oh yeah, you’re probably right.

And I’m sure you’re thinking that THIS was the weird conversation, yet it’s not. Later, the same man asked me if I could open up a showcase so that he could look at a pair of high-powered binoculars:

Me: Here you are. They’re a very good price.
Man (holds binoculars up to his eyes): I was under police surveillance once… (pauses, readjusts binoculars, peers through them) …because I sell a lot of cocaine… (pauses, readjusts binoculars, peers through them) …and the police could see me from over a kilometre away. It was crazy.
Me: I hear the same thing is true of sniper scopes.
Man (hands me back binoculars): Yeah. It’s a good job they weren’t trying to shoot me.
Me: So that’s a no on the binoculars?
Man: Yeah, you can put them back. I’ll just take the cannon.

I have never in my life tried so hard not to laugh, but he was dead serious. And he sells a lot of cocaine.

Not cocaine. In case you were wondering.

64 thoughts on “The Importance of Pronouns; Cannons and Cocaine

  1. The tiny cannon has really got my attention because there was an episode of the ‘70’s Wonder Woman where a guy gets shot with a tiny cannon and, if I remember correctly, he’s replaced with a doppelgänger made of plastic that melts under hot lights. The details are fuzzy but I’m pretty sure the writers were using a lot of cocaine. How old was this guy? I just think there’s a connection.
    Now I really want to get on to your pronouns article because that’s a fascinating subject. Where I work there are posters that say “What Should I Call You?” with the pronouns people use, and it really made me think about how it’s just courtesy.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Cocaine certainly has a lot to answer for! Now this guy was only in his thirties so unless he was a plastic doppelganger…although he could be–our lights are only flourescent. And I love that poster–I wish more workplaces normalized asking this. As you say, it’s just simple courtesy:-)

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  2. Congrats on the podcast–such powerful and necessary and important work you’re doing 🙂 Also, I’ve always enjoyed antique stores because each piece seems like it could tell a story. I never thought to ask random people in an antique shop what their story is. I probably don’t want to know, but maybe I do?

    Liked by 2 people

  3. thanks again, Suzanne, for contributing the guest blog post. it warms my heart to see how many people are in agreement ❤
    as for your age, you never told us what it is, so all I can answer is that you’re lovely & vibrant. one person (only a couple of years younger than me, if that helps anyone decipher what she meant) told me, “you look ageless” lol

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Anyone who sells a lot of cocaine prolly needs a cannon. Though, the reload time is a bit long in case, you know, you miss with the first volley.

    “Can I try your harmonica?”
    “No. It’s full of my spit and stuff.”
    “I don’t mind. The peanut butter will protect me.”
    “Then that’s a double no.”
    “That’s OK. I doubt it would have the right notes for Dixie.”
    “The song Dixie? I’m sure it does.”
    “No, the bread that goes with the peanut butter.”
    “Dixie bread?”
    “Born and raised.”

    Liked by 2 people

  5. OMG I am so sorry. I do not know what happened but realized I had not seen your posts for awhile and it is because somehow I had unfollowed you without my doing so! Arg I hate when that happens. I have missed you so much being in my email. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Wow that was weird….the mini cannon convo. Although I was under police surveillance once too, not really just kidding……or AM I? You have the best luck when it comes to meeting these colorful characters. I’m still telling my friends stories about your story of Blaze For Dayz Shane….🤣😝😆😂

    Liked by 3 people

  7. Just another day at the office. . . Don’t you wonder what his endgame was? He had to have been hoping you’d ask all the questions about the stories he wanted to tell. Telling a stranger one sells a lot of cocaine is a bold opener! You’ll have to report back if he becomes a repeat customer.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. just shared to all my social, including linkedin, tho have yet to get the hang of reddit. for some reason reblog not working, so I added link to here & re-posted original post at my site so it’ll show up anew on wp reader.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. My uncle shot off half of his fingers on one hand while fiddling with a cannon. Hopefully, the strange little man will have better luck. Did you tell him to hold off on the cocaine when he’s ready to blast away? And I enjoyed your post about pronouns, Suzanne. People can identify any way they want to as far as I’m concerned. There are bigger things to worry about in the world.

    Liked by 2 people

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