The Waver

This happened the other day.  My wife comes into the living room looking pissed.  So I’m like, “Let’s hear it.”

“This guy just waved at me,” she said.

I’m like—I don’t know.  I said, “What are you talking about?  You’re inside.”

She’s like, “I was in the window washing dishes.  He was passing by and saw me.”

“He was looking in our window?”

“He was passing the driveway.  He waved and kept walking.”

“What the fuck.  Was it a normal wave, or like—”

She imitated the wave and it looked normal, but who fucking knew if she got it right or was even telling the truth.  She might have been trying to calm me down.

“Not a neighbor?”

“I recognize the neighbors.  No.”  Like it’s a ridiculous question.  “A stranger.”

“Some strange guy.  A waver.”  I was starting to feel like a lawyer.  He might have still been out there, was the important thing.  I went to the kitchen window—no one in sight—then outside and out the driveway past the bushes.  Sure enough, the guy was like four houses down the block, walking a dog, not in any hurry.

She hadn’t said shit about a dog.

I stand there staring while he ignores me or doesn’t notice.  I pray he comes back or at least looks back.  I feel like yelling would be too much, and coughing would be too pussy, so I take my keys out of my pocket and make my truck beep.  It works.  He looks up, I stare at him, and what do you think the fucker fucking does?

He waves.

I wave back, but kind of sarcastic, keeping my elbow cocked like, “What are you waving at?  I could smack you with this arm.”  But not totally rude, because he must live or be staying within a dog walk away, so—whatever.  I stayed there until he was way, definitely gone and not coming back, then came back inside.

My wife stood there waiting for the report.

“Fuck him,” I said.  “He’s gone.”

She stood there all rigid and sexy.  No question what was happening later.

“You okay?” I asked.

She shrugged like it was nothing and said, “What the fuck, right?”

“Come get a hug,” I said.

She came in and gave me one, and a kiss.  I realized how loud the TV was.  The real question was whether or not the guy would have the balls to try that shit again.

–Greg Doherty


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