You may remember several months ago I did a series of blogs after a vacation that we took to London. In one of that series, I introduced you to the most interesting man in Great Britain (or at least in the particular pub I was in on that particular night). He enthralled me with his drunken wit. He motivated me to be a better person. He grasped at every emotion I had and made me want to hear more. More importantly, he gave me easy blog fodder for a day or two.
So contrast the most interesting man in Great Britain with what the American version of that might be. The strongest man in Fargo, North Dakota? The wisest man in Laredo, Texas? No. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you:
The Most Annoying Man in the EPCOT Cool Club on January 25
First of all, picking out a single annoying person at EPCOT in Orlando, Florida is a huge challenge as it is a ridiculously target-rich environment. As a matter of fact, we took bets walking in to the place how many annoying people we would encounter during our day of enjoyment. However, in our hearts and minds this one guy (we’ll call him Gabe for some reason – probably because I knew a guy named Gabe at one point in my life that knew everything about anything) stood out among all others. Note this guy’s casual attire. His jeans, his purple jacket screaming superiority (the royal color), his ball cap nattily poised on his tiny head ready to pounce. It all adds up, does it not?
I’ll get back to him in a minute. The Cool Club at EPCOT is where you can go and sample free types of drinks from all over the world. I say free, but actually they are approximately $25 per choke-inducing Dixie Cup since tickets to EPCOT were $100 PER STUPID PERSON! Digression alert.
OK, so you walk up to this machine:
As you can see, there is a beautiful array of beverages “free” from around the world. Simply insert your Dixie Cup underneath the spigot, press the magic button and you are instantly transported to a different culture. A culture full of mirth and whimsy. It’s a beautiful experience. You can see that in our particular ‘world taste station’ (I just made that phrase up – copyright 2014) we were able to sample fine colas from Zimbabwe, Italy, Greece, and some others. Underneath each of these countries was a description of each drink and what it was used for/made from/tasted like.
All good so far. Let’s look as an example at Italy’s description:
Beverly, with its bitter flavor, is a popular non-alcoholic aperitif that is a traditional part of Italian refreshment culture.
So where in this blog does Gabe meet the ‘World Taste Station’ (copyright 2014)? Gabe, as Gabe’s all over the world tend to do, would stand at the ‘WTS’ (copyright 2014) and explain to everyone about the drinks. I mean every person and every drink. But his particular favorite was Italy. He must have used the word aperitif and the phrase ‘palate cleanser’ 50 times during our all too brief stay. When someone would come up and put their aforementioned Dixie Cup under the spigot, he would immediately say to them (no matter which drink they had chosen):
“That’s a good one, after that you should try the Beverly…it’s used as an aperitif and you’ll need to cleanse your palate.”
He seriously must have said it to every person at EPCOT that day. My children were scared of Gabe. They wouldn’t approach the WTS (copyright 2014) where Gabe had chosen to hang out. He would then throw out random facts about each of the drinks as people would pour them into their cup – pulling words and phrases directly from the descriptions clearly written above….
“Oh, that’s really popular in Japan. It’s really rich in beta-carotene.”
“Oh….I wouldn’t go for that Inca Kola from Peru – it tastes like liquid bubblegum.”
And he would KEEP doing this over and over – using the same lines from the descriptions dozens of times.
The best part about all of this was that I did not even notice him. I was oblivious to all of this going on – it was my family that pulled me over to be near him so that I could experience Gabe. That’s right – they are actively farming for blog fodder for me.
We left Gabe just as we had found him, just like you’re supposed to do with all natural treasures. I just hope that somewhere, somehow, Gabe has found someone who will talk with him about all things cola and all flavors of the world.
If not, I can point him to a pub in West London where there’s a fellow that would LOVE to chat with him. He would certainly get his palate cleansed.