My Favorite Owl

Today, at a drive-up window, the cashier asked me if I liked owls.

What I Said:  Yes. (handing him my cash)

What I Thought: Uh, this is weird.  Why would he ask that question?  Is it my owl key chain or my owl coin purse that is piquing his interest?  I don’t have my keys or my coin purse out.  They are tucked somewhere in the deeper recesses of my purse, and I probably couldn’t find them right now if I tried.  My purse is on the passenger seat.  Why is he asking?  How does he know?  Weird.

What He Said:  What is your favorite kind of owl? (handing me my change)

What I Said:  I don’t know.  I’ve never really thought about it.

What I Thought:  How can I say that I like owls if I don’t even have a favorite owl?  My key chain – an Advent calendar gift from my husband – is my favorite owl-accessory-of-the-moment.  It hoots, and its eyes light up blue when I press the button on its back.  But what is my favorite owl?  The cute kind?  What kind of owl is the owl on my key chain?  Can I hold up my key chain (if I can find it) and say this kind?  I can’t think of one type of owl at this moment.  Wait…there’s the Great Horned Owl.  Isn’t there?  I could say that, but do I like that kind of owl?  What if he asks me why?  How can I say that I like owls, if I can’t even think of more than one type of owl?  I wish that I could think of a type of owl that would sound super impressive, because right now I’m pretty sure that I sound/look like a stammering fool.  Is there such a thing as a Hoot Owl?  Will I sound dumb if I say that?  It sounds like an owl in a children’s poetry book.  What was that elusive owl that they referenced on The Big Year?  Something-or-other Tufted Owl?  That  would sound impressive.  But it wasn’t the greatest movie, so maybe it wouldn’t.

What He Said:  I like Barn Owls. (handing me my drink)

What I Said:  Oh, with the round eyes? (making a circling gesture around my own eyes with the hand that isn’t grabbing for my drink)

What I Thought:  Is a barn owl a real type of owl?  Or is it from the same poetry book as the Hoot Owl?  Is that the owl on my key chain?  I think it is.  If it is, that’s my favorite type of owl.  They are cute.  Oh, he’s still talking.

What He Said:  I was attacked by a Screech Owl once.  Something something something.  It was huge.  Something something something something.

What I Said:  Yeah, that would scare me.  Huge.  (nodding and making a gesture like spreading wings with both my hands)

What I Thought:  Are we still having this conversation?  Do I look as crazy as I feel waving my arms around like this?  Why do I gesture more when I’m nervous?  How can I exit the conversation gracefully?  Isn’t there another car in line behind me?

What He Said:  Yeah.

What I Said:  Well, have a nice day!

What I Thought:  (as I pulled away from the window)  I’m such a schmuck.  Why would I care so much about what a complete stranger, the cashier at a drive-up window, thinks of me?  He was just being nice; making conversation to help his day go faster.  But why did he ask me about owls in the first place?  I…(looking down briefly, I catch a glimpse of my rather large hinged owl pendant necklace)…oh.  I am an idiot.

This, however, is my favorite owl.

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The Hootch-Owl.  Modeled after a 1930s corkscrew, it’s one of my favorite gifts that I gave my husband for Christmas this year.  I should have told Mr. Friendly Cashier that my favorite owl is the Hootch-Owl and driven away with a confident, yet mysterious, smile.

After paying for and receiving my drink of course.


1 thought on “My Favorite Owl

  1. Pingback: What? Like, it’s hard? | annumography

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