Sunday, February 19, 2017

That Time I Met Slick Rick...At Meijer on Keystone

Look, a lot has happened since I last posted. I left my job in federal law enforcement to coach college soccer, got married, broke my leg in half, and had a kid. More on all that later. Right now, let me tell you about the time I met Slick Rick in Meijer on Keystone.

For those of you not in the know when it comes to "The Rap Music", Slick Rick is a seminal 1980/90s rapper who is probably best known outside hip-hop circles for his look. What look is that, you say? This look, I say:

That eye patch isn't an affectation. Mr. Rick lost sight in his right eye as an infant.
Inside rap circles, Slick Rick is best known for the badass look, his languid, British accented delivery (also not an affectation - he's British) and incomparable story-telling style. This isn't a History of Rap posting, but you probably should Google Slick Rick or give him a whirl on iTunes. Totally worth it.

Now that you have a little background, let me set the scene.

Winter. Indianapolis. Meijer on Keystone.

Your protagonist has just entered the store to pick up a few things that likely include baby food, fruit for my fruit crazed wife, deli meat, half-and-half, and beer. He is likely wearing sweat pants, hasn't shaved, and is feeling old and overweight. Nothing about the scene that has just been set has prepared your protagonist for the encounter he is about to have.    

Exiting the baby food aisle and entering the booze department (I do not think it's coincidence that these two sections are located adjacent to one another), I find myself alone amongst the affordably priced, modest selection of beers one would expect a store like Meijer to carry.

While taking way too long to mull over the choice between Bell's Two Hearted and New Belgium's Ranger IPA, I become aware of a fellow shopper at the opposite end of the beer aisle. I glance up from my conundrum to see a larger black man sporting a black fur coat, backwards Kangol hat, and ALL THE RINGS.  I can't see his face, but snort a little and think, "I hope he has on an eye patch."

I grab the Two Hearted and proceed toward the dairy section to take a similarly unnecessarily long time choosing my half-and-half. My route takes me toward my fellow beer buyer and, as I approach, he selects his beer and begins walking toward me. He has on sunglasses. Close enough.

Without meaning to, I begin to stare. This man is not dressed for a late Wednesday afternoon shopping experience at Meijer on Keystone. This man is dressed to go on with Doug E. Fresh in six minutes. My mouth may even be open at this point because I am trying, for all the world, to figure out why there is a Slick Rick impersonator in Meijer in Indianapolis on a Wednesday afternoon.

And then, right as we're about to pass, he looks over at me and, in perfect Slick Rick intonation says, "How's it going, guy?"

I say, "Good."

I continue toward the half-and-half and Slick Rick heads to the front of the store to check out.

Now, you may be saying, "Come on, there's no way to know if that was Slick Rick or someone else." I completely agree. I even Googled "Slick Rick Indianapolis" on the way home to see if he was playing a show in the area (he was not).

But I ask you, in the situation I just described is there any other explanation that makes any sense and isn't significantly more complex and troublesome other than one in which I met Slick Rick in Meijer on Keystone?

I think not.