Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Puerto Rico - Day Seis

So I'm walking out of a USVI baseball game and I run into this young fella. He tells me his name is Juan and that he is from Columbia. He then started to tell me about how he couldn't find work in his home country and came to Puerto Rico to make the big bucks.

Real estate? Nope. Stocks? Nah. Pyramid schemes? Not even close.

Juan has decided to sell Vuvuzelas to the fat-wallet spectators at the CAC Games. In a totally unrelated story, the sale of headache medicine has skyrocketed in Mayaguez.

Now if you even gave the World Cup a gander, you surely saw these Vuvuzelas in action. It's basically a plastic horn that people blow into to make some low-tone buzzing sound, that disturbs and drowns out the normal sounds you can hear at a CAC sporting event: athletes cursing in Spanish.

I decided to ask him a few questions. At first, he kind of ignored me because he was busy ripping people off for $4 a horn. Then he kept calling me "bro," which I thought to be condescending. So of course, I had to fuck with him.

Me: Hey, gimme a horn. I'll blow into it and help you sell them.

Juan: No way, bro. Four dollars.

Me: But I'll work it off. I'll help you sell. In America, it's called pitching the consumer. Don't you know anything about sales?

Juan: You're from America? I couldn't tell.

Me: What? Is that supposed to be an insult? What happened in the 1994 World Cup? The only thing Columbia is know for is Chavez. Or is that Venezuela?

Juan: That's Venezuela, bro. We had Pablo Escobar.

Me: Yeah, yeah -- I saw the Entourage episode. HBO taught me the history of your country, my friend. What do you think about that?

Juan: HBO?

Me: Never mind. How about I give you three dollars for the horn?

Juan: No. Four dollars, bro.

Me: Please stop calling me bro. Do you have change for a five?

Juan: No.

Me: Alright, chief. You sonofabitch. Gimme a horn. Here's a five spot.

He handed me a horn without looking at me and then gave me a dollar in change. I immediately started to blow patriotic U.S. songs with the horn just to annoy him. I also started to scare away his customers, which really started to annoy him.

Juan started to give me the evil eye and blowing the horn got old fast. A little boy walked up with his father and wanted a horn. Right before the dad asked Juan how much, I handed the horn to the little kid and told him to have fun.

Immediately after I cheated Juan out of another sale, he started to yell in Spanish to one of the stadium security guards and that was my cue to leave. A security guard started to walk toward us and I just grabbed my camera equipment and headed for my rental car.

"See you in the promise land, bro," I muttered as I walked by him.

I couldn't help but smile as I arrived at my car. I showed him, huh?

In retrospect, I was not proud of my juvenile behavior but I rarely am. It was just another example of the pure sportsmanship and crisp demeanor that have soiled these CAC Games.

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