Inexplicable, Really

I don’t know what to tell you, honey. If I broke your heart, I’m sorry---but I’m The Calibrator. I move from town to town, alone but not lonely, untouchable, unknowable. When I get to a new place, I make sure the C02 cartridge inside the local convenience store’s fountain drink machine is properly set to deliver maximum carbonation to the water passing through the bib connects and syrup pumps, I befriend someone whom justice has done wrong, I break a heart, and then I move on. The Calibrator knows no other way to live, and just as sure as you should never hook a generic secondary regulator to any post-1997 stainless backflow preventor lest you want your town’s Dr. Pepper to come out flatter than the opening number of High School Musical 3, I never will. I’ve calibrated in burgs bigger than this and loved women more beautiful than you---but neither my heart nor my mission ever changes.

But because you’re special---yes, it’s true, no woman ever had the kindness to show me season five of The West Wing before---I’ll leave you with a little memento of our time together. This here’s a 10-button bargun with barbed input fittings, drain tube, and mounting hardware. I took this off a Pepsi fountain drink machine in Winnipeg nine years ago. See how the soda water button is a little chipped? Still works perfectly.

I also want to leave you with this DVD, The Calibrator’s 20-Minute Ab Workout. I produced it a couple of years back. It did okay, I guess, but I wish the public wasn’t so fickle. There’s a problem with the left audio channel on this copy, like most of the others, so it can be tough to hear at points.

Oh, here’s a keepsake I know you’ll like: a hardbound copy of Archery Basics with The Calibrator. Everything you need to know to get started is right in here, and of course I’ll autograph this before I hit the road. There’s some pretty serious legal wrangling going on with this book at the moment, so this edition may get kind of rare.

Let me see here, what else...oh, here’s a roll of nickels. Nowhere I go ever seems to have a CoinStar machine. Man, how I’d love to get into that racket. I bet those things are really easy to fix. And that sweet music they make...RATCHA RATCHA RATCHA RATCHA RATCHA RATCHA RATCHA....ah, pure pleasure!

Do you want these Clippers tickets for next Tuesday? Section 370, row H...not terrible, not great, but I just can’t deal with the NBA since they put in the jump shot.

Okay. Ready to go. If you could just sign this release form saying that I didn’t damage any property while I was here...great. Thanks.

I leave you now the way all Calibrators have always left their lovers: by gently singing Rush’s classic eighties hit “Tom Sawyer” to you as I back slowly away.

Oh, sweetheart, looking at you as I fade away into your trove of most secret memories, I can tell exactly what you’re thinking: A) Who the hell is this total freakazoid, and B) how quickly can I close and lock the door behind him, peering out the blinds when he leaves to make sure he’s really gone. And it’s okay; I know that the Calibrator has some quirks, and I’ve accepted them. I should probably tell you, though, that I have an unfortunate habit of getting ridiculously lost on my way out of every town, to the point where I usually have to walk back in the middle of the night and ask if I can sleep on your sofa until the next Greyhound run, so you might want to open up that sofabed before you go off to do your errands. FYI, the Calibrator’s always been a two-pillow man, so if you could make that happen, that would be aces.

Is that a policeman you’re waving over here? Sure, I understand. No problem. I would do the same thing in your position. Just one question before I run for it: Are you really happy with your current cable, internet, and phone bundle?