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December 05, 2022

The Many Faces of George 02

By Sand Pilarski

Long ago, I worked in the vault room of a large retail store. A secure, windowless room, the vault's daily sameness was driving me nuts. In a feeble bid for some entertainment, I began collecting defaced one-dollar bills.

The portrait on a dollar bill is that of a formidable man. Yet there is a certain look in George Washington's eyes that hints that he might have been a cool guy to hang out with; maybe just the hint of a smile about the lips suggests that he has some entertaining stories to tell. I can imagine that the artist who drew "Goofy George" borrowed the barkeeper's pen after the barkeep brought him his change.

Artist: "Hey, George, great to see you, man. Guess what? She stood me up. Again. Why do I keep waiting for her?"

George: "Because you like waiting for women in bars?"

Artist: "You're pretty smart, George. Let's have another round."

George: "Brilliant strategy! That will make the other ladies in the bar think that you came here to be on your own, a strong man who knows what he wants."

Artist: "You think so? I am a strong man, you know what I mean? I shouldn't have to order a whiskey on the rocks just to look like a tough guy. The next one is going to be a strawberry daquiri, dammit. I have a hankering for fresh fruit, and I don't care who knows it."

George: "Fresh fruit -- what I wouldn't have given for some decent fruit back in the day. We did carry rum, however. It was an all-purpose commodity back then. Warmth when we were cold, anesthetic when we were wounded, trade goods for native commodities; it helped get more than a couple campfires started, and on a day off, it was useful for lightening the heart. You shouldn't pepper it, though. Peppered rum will knock you out nearly as quickly as an angry Mohican."

Artist: "George, old buddy old pal, it's after midnight, and I do believe you're drunk."

George: "The Father of the Country does not get drunk."

Artist: "You're drunk, all right. I can see four of you. Say, can I call you 'Dad?' Hey, Bartender, can I borrow a pen? Thanks. Now look here, George, I'm going to show you just how drunk you are ... "

Who's in your wallet?

Article © Sand Pilarski. All rights reserved.
Published on 2006-06-12
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