“You know what excites me most about this three day holiday weekend?” Aaron asked from his end of the bench that overlooked the Penobscot River.
“Do you mean the three day holiday weekend that only one person sitting on this bench gets to celebrate?” Holly replied from her end of the bench.
Aaron turned to her with a huge frown, which was clearly more mocking than sincere, and then reached across and tousled his best friend’s long hair.
“Chin up, Slugger!” he encourage in his perkiest voice. “I’m sorry your company doesn’t give you the day off, but if you promise to turn that frown upside down, I’ll buy you a sherbet on the way home.
Holly stared at him with dead eyes and slowly sipped her coffee.
“You’re a condescending ass, but if you change that offer to ice cream, I will totally take you up on it,” she informed him.
Aaron smiled and took a big gulp of his Snapple.
“Anything for you!” he promised. “Now can we get back to what excites me about my glorious three day weekend?”
Aaron chuckled at her commitment to her anger over the holiday.
“I’m thrilled that we are celebrating Indigenous Peoples’ Day, rather than Columbus Day,” he explained. “Columbus was a dick and a horrible human being, who doesn’t deserve any sort of honor. But maybe more importantly, he didn’t do anything to deserve recognition.”
Holly smiled. It was time for Aaron’s Annual Columbus Rant.
“Can we just clarify first?” she asked in a sweet, but annoying tone. “You are talking about the fifteenth century explorer, and not the modern day filmmaker, right?”
Aaron rolled his eyes. “Of course! What’s not to love about my fellow NYU alumnus and director of Adventures in Babysitting and several Harry Potter flicks? That’s a man who deserves a holiday. In fact, whenever I celebrated Columbus Day in the past, it was to honor the legendary director.”
“But has he earned legendary status?” Holly challenged. “I think you might be pushing it, and maybe looking at his career through violet colored glasses…”
Aaron’s face lit up in delight and he immediately extended his arm for a high five.
“Major props for remembering that NYU’s sport teams are called the Violets, and using that knowledge in your violet colored glasses comment!”
Holly’s beautiful face lit up from the compliment, and she proudly accepted that high five.
“Now back to my rant,” Aaron announced. “They taught us in grammar school that Columbus discovered America, but all he did was get horribly lost in his search for a new trade route to the Indies. He failed at what he set out to do, only discovered The New World because his ships ran aground, and if he hadn’t made that discovery, his crew would have starved to death in the middle of the ocean, but hopefully not until after they tossed him overboard first for getting them so desperately lost!”
Holly sighed. “You really shouldn’t hold back. Just tell me how you really feel about Columbus.”
Aaron stuck out his tongue as a reply, and then continued. “I get lost all the time. This is why I hate driving places I’ve never been. I have this paralyzing fear that I’ll get lost, my car will break down, and I’ll just have to spend the rest of my life living along the side of the road wherever my car dies. I guess my only consolation in that tragic scenario would be that the government might create a holiday in my honor for getting lost.”
“You know, you could always just call me to come and get you if you did get lost,” Holly suggested. “Of course, I wouldn’t be able to rescue you immediately because I’m certain I’d be at work because my company never gives me any time off.”
“You need to let that go, Champ,” Aaron advised and reached out to mess with her hair again, but she slapped away his hand.
“Fine, I will let it go, but you know what I absolutely refuse to ignore for another second?” she asked before taking another sip of coffee.
“What’s that?” he asked.
“The fact that my Red Sox knocked your beloved Yankees out of the playoffs,” she answered as the brightest smile possible formed on her gorgeous face once she lowered her coffee cup.
“This is why you don’t get a three day weekend,” he scolded her. “Three day weekends aren’t for those who gloat.”
“Yeah,” she quipped with a sly smile. “Three day weekends are obviously meant to give Yankees fans time to lick their wounds.”
“You are so not getting that ice cream on the way home,” he grumbled.
“Totally worth it!” she beamed.