“You actually going by Branson now?” queried Slim.
“I’d have to look at my driver’s license to be sure” I responded.
“Mr. Branson! You are in enough trouble already and so are they! You do not need to drag them into your end of the pond” bellowed HR again. The pretty little thing was frozen in place. Giant, Stretch and Slim had taken chairs on both sides of me. They cared even less about this meeting than I did. The pretty little thing was wide eyed and sheet white, physically unable to move. Obviously went to one of those colleges with “safe zones” and “trigger word warnings.” She went there a baby trying to educate herself into being a woman of the world, but graduated more of an infant than when she enrolled. How the Hell did someone like that get hired here? How the Hell was she going to survive in the real world?
“Well, at least there is a town named after you in Missouri” offered Giant once he raised the chair up so his head appeared about as tall as ours at the table.
Oh, you probably need to understand something. Giant is pencil thin and 4’ 7” in sneakers. After a big meal he might way 120 pounds. Slim looks like someone the NFL would try to put on the defensive line. North of 6’ tall and a mobile brick shit house. Stretch is the only one whose nickname fits. Topping out at 7’ with a thin muscular build. His thin strong arms are so long when he stands with them down at his sides his wrists don’t happen until well below his pants pockets. Those aren’t hands at the end of his wrists. I don’t know what they are, but I’m an average sized guy and when he shakes my hand it disappears inside his like I’m a child.
This crew are known as The Acrobats. All three have shaved heads and share the same bed. I’ve worked them them a few times and we get along great. Back in the day we used to have an expression, “Queerer than a three dollar bill.” I will admit, in my youth I used it. I use it today, but not for gay people. Have you forgotten that I’ve worked with Henry? No! I’m still not telling you what I saw in the hotel room.
“Mr. Branson we do not tolerate language which demeans a person’s sexual orientation. If you persist in this manner of conversation you will be terminated!” bellowed HR again.
“Oh he just wants to make it a foursome” uttered Slim in the most limp wristed stereotypical lispy gay whisper voice I’ve ever heard. It was all I could do to avoid busting a gut right there. Like I said, I’ve worked with these guys before and we get along great. It’s just not a conversation suitable for minors, including the pretty little thing still frozen in place behind us.
Giant just couldn’t leave her out of it. I’ve always suspected he was more bi than gay. He turned his chair and asked her “What designer made your suit? The material and cut are fabulous! You really pull it off too. I need to get their name and see if they will make something for me.”
Stretch lost it then. Laughing loudly he tried and mostly succeeded at saying “You and your fancy ass clothes. You’ll die broke and we will live in mansions.”
“But I will be the best dressed homeless person out there” retorted Giant as he turned back to the conversation. Well, by that time we were all sitting kind of sideways so we could see both HR and the pretty little thing. Slim, however, refused to be outdone. He turned to face HR, looking her directly in the horn rimmed glasses and, once again in that lispy voice said “Terminated? You are aware of what he does for a living are you not?”