Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Enthusiast Shocked to be Used as Safety Valve

Lifelong coaster enthusiast Thad Norbert, 35, was amazed and befuddled this weekend at an office party, say sources. The reason for this shock was because, despite the fact that Norbert is quite open and vocal about his adoration of roller coasters, he was used as a safety valve by an attractive female co-worker eager to escape another conversation.

"I simply couldn't believe it," said Norbert. "I was chatting with a couple of office friends when I noticed Gillian out of the corner of my eye, sort of bugging her eyes and making furtive hand gestures at me. Of course, initially I didn't think she was doing it in my direction. I mean, why would she? I'd be very likely to bore her senseless by reciting the world's top fifty steepest wood coaster first drop angles or confuse her by talking about how I don't count Rebel Yell as two coasters but I don't care if other enthusiasts do."

"But after I had turned around a bit, I actually made eye contact with her," said Norbert. "And that's when it suddenly dawned on me that she was indeed making silent, pitiful cries for assistance in my direction. She was clearly shifting around, irritated by the conversation she was having with this guy, and every couple seconds she would mouth 'save me' or 'help' at me. And there was no one behind me, so obviously it was really me she wanted to provide a save for her."

"I still can't get over how Gillian wanted me to save her at a party," noted Norbert. "I mean, we're acquainted, we talk for a few minutes almost every day around work, we get along fine, but it's not like we're really close, and since I'm a coaster enthusiast and she's frankly kinda hot, it wouldn't seem logical that she'd see my conversation as an improvement over some loser who was following her around and hitting on her. Hell, usually I'm the one that people want to escape at parties. I sure wouldn't want to hear about what length of timber Summers and Dinn used to make their bents."

"Well, actually I would," he added after reflecting for a moment. "But I merely use that as an example."

According to eyewitnesses, Norbert indeed worked his way over to the other conversation and managed to come up with a reason why Gillian needed to see some imaginary mutual friend of theirs in the next room. For his assistance, Norbert was rewarded with a hug and fifteen minutes of conversation with a nice-looking member of the opposite sex. As an added bonus, the member of the opposite sex did not noticeably roll her eyes, yawn, or pointedly look at her watch when Norbert started poking fun at Arrow shuttle loops.

"Thad can get all excited that some chick actually used him as a safety valve for a party," said his friend Luke Solomon, 40, "but when some big, smelly drunk guy keeps trying to rub your shoulders while bragging about his awesome new truck and the cool fishing trip he took last week, anything, even some coaster nerd's blow-by-blow description of each element on Talon, sounds pretty cool in comparison."