NOT LIKE CHARLIE SHEEN AT ALL!
As well as a pipe.
But unlike me, she took pains to add, he was an old man, being already forty seven.
At his advanced age, smoking a pipe looked suitable and proper.
Whereas on me it looked like an affectation.
[Of course, in broad daylight the silver in my beard is visible, as well as the salt and pepper in my hair. This is different from bars, where the lighting is usually that bad that all of us look much younger.]
Ma'am, you're much too kind. Let me be the first to NOT inform anyone that I'm fifty two.
In fact, we shan't even mention anyone's age at all anymore.
It's immaterial, as I'm full of piss and vinegar.
And you are extremely young.
High school, is it?
Part of the problem is that I look like a bright-eyed forest creature.
Part of it is that I resemble Charlie Sheen.
Or so I've been told.
Admittedly the couple who thought so knew me many years ago, and may have been addled by alcohol or 'substances', but at that time it was sufficient reason for them to stalk me at the places where I had coffee in the evening for several months.
They were rather charming in their obsession.
Nuts, but charming.
Personally I've never understood the resemblance, or what either of them saw in Charlie Sheen.
Instead, I think that I look half-way between Chow Yunfat and Andy Lau.
If both men were Caucasian, instead of Chinese.
And had little beards.
BRIGHT-EYED FOREST CREATURE
Recently I was smoking my pipe underneath an overhang on Stockton Street, near a transit stop. Several lively little girls were there too, with their mothers, waiting for the bus. Normally I pay other people of whatever size little mind unless they speak to me, but these children came darn close to demanding my attention.
Without any of them realizing it in the slightest.
For one thing, they all wore riotously colourful rain slickers and brightly hued gumboots. For another, they were happily splashing around and gesticulating with their Hello Kitty umbrellas. Well, except for one little tyke with a Spiderman umbrella.
Totally energetic. And veering perilously close with their spiky things.
An eye-catching girlish cuteness overload.
Rambunctious and armed.
At one point one of them careened into me, and was promptly told by her mom to stop horsing around and say 'sorry' to that Ah Sook.
That Ah Sook being me. Ah Sook being what you call someone male of respectable age.
The girl looked up and whispered 'sorry', then quickly looked away.
I guess I just don't look avuncular enough even to her.
The correct phrasing should have been "sorry, uncle".
But I'm hoping she was still too young to know how to say "Ah Sook" in English.
Or whatever she assumed that pipe-smoking forest-critters speak.
If anyone is going to crash into me, it might as well be charming little girls.
They're far too small to do any damage.
Unfortunately, they're also too young to know who Chow Yunfat and Andy Lau are, so they can't see the likeness.
And I do not think I look like Charlie Sheen, who is addled by alcohol or 'substances'.
Instead, more like a kindly forest creature.
With pointy features.
Remember, that's Chow Yunfat and Andy Lau, not Charlie Sheen.
Who has a lantern jaw and far too many "bad hair" days.
No one in their right mind should call him 'uncle'.
NOTE: Readers may contact me directly:
All correspondence will be kept in confidence.
Labels: San Francisco Chinatown