My father, brother, Melissa and I attended David Sedaris’ reading in Berkeley last night and needless to say, I was in pure, solid gold heaven the entire time. If anyone had ever told me that you could get up and read your funny stories to people for a living, my life would have been a lot less confusing.
We all drove over together with my father telling us of his recent trip to New York City where he attempted to visit Bernie Madoff.
“Wait, what do you mean you went to see Bernie?”
“I went to the jail where they’ve locked him up.” He said this matter of factly, as if he’d visited the Statue of Liberty or Empire State Building. Claiming to be a member of the press, which I can attest does indeed occasionally work, my father approached the front desk of, again, the JAIL and requested an audience with Bernie Madoff. He was told by the “incredibly nice and patient” guards that Bernie would have had to specifically request my father’s visit, putting him down on a list.
Mildly disappointed, my father decided instead to go to the adjoining gift shop.
Melissa was confused. “They had a store at the jail?”
My father lives life by the code of a high school honors-level government class. If anything is technically open to the public, required by law to be available to a tax-payer or some random part of a municipality, he will partake out of mere curiosity and entitlement.
“Sure they had a gift shop. San Francisco has one too.”
Slightly exasperated, he responded, “Yes, of course they do. It was a terrific giftshop. And you know what they had?”
“They had these wonderful embroidered pillows of each of the five Burroughs! God, they were incredible. I mean, they pillows were $150 bucks but boy, oh boy those were terrific pillows.”
“I still can’t get over the fact that you decided to try and visit Bernie Madoff.”
“I had an hour to kill before meeting Mom for lunch.”
Oh. Of course. Well, we’re driving past San Quentin right now so what’s say we pull this baby over and see if Richard Ramirez is up for company…