i gave brett a present.  it was a game he had been wanting.  but when he opened it and pulled out the controller and the floppy disc, i stopped him and realized my mistake.  i had gotten him an xbox game.  he needed playstation.  how could i be so stupid? i took it from him and told him i would exchange it.
in an upstairs apartment, we are looking at a wooden staff.  jason examines the tip carefully.  the whole thing is shaped like a 4.5′ tall asparagus stalk.  we tell him it belongs to a ghost that my mother can speak to.  he doesn’t believe us.  so my mom calls the ghost on the phone and puts her on speaker.  jason looks at us over the back of the couch, he is enthralled.  tied to the bottom of the staff with a leather strap is a yellow plush muppet. he asks why it’s there and we tell him that it belongs to Skylar, a ghost that the ghost can contact through it.  he doesn’t believe us so we ask the ghost to explain and jason sits on his knees , backwards so his elbows are on the back of the couch, just staring open mouthed at us while the ghost confirms our story.
i go to the electronics store looking to exchange the xbox game for a playstation game.  they don’t have it.  there are signs everywhere reminding buyers to be sure they have all the parts! this game requires a disc, a motion detector, and a pilot’s wheel.  i can find the detector and the wheel controller, but not the game.  there doesn’t seem to be a bundle available.  there are so few playstation games that i think there must be another section somewhere so i walk around the store.  a full room is dedicated to sports teams baseball caps.  a wall of Bears hats in neat orderly boxes faces me and i think that they can’t possibly sell that many.  in the middle of the room is a display showing a wooden rollercoaster and a plastic red humvee looping through it.  i watch it for a few loops, soothed by the repetitiveness and noticing where it catches and slows.  overall it runs relatively smoothly considering the humps and climbs and turns.
at a local theater, we are there to support the troupe.  as soon as it starts i groan and regret ever coming.  i fucking hate musicals, Grease in particular.  they insist on audience participation.  i refuse to be part of a song and dance so they put me in a role between songs. i have a cape and i am supposed to fall to the ground, covered by my cape, and disappear in some kind of Wicked teaser.  i assume a trap door will open beneath me so that i can fall through and leave the cape on the stage, feigning disappearance.  but that doesn’t happen.  and so after being still for a few moments, the show goes on and i have to kick the cape off of myself and exit in plain view of the audience.  whatever.  they are talking to the audience now about the magic of theater and imagination.  they are talking about how a cape can be a superhero, a witch, a beggar.  a towel can be a rope or a toga.  i walk behind the speaker and talk to volunteers working at a table.  they are sorting cases and cases of clip-on sunglasses.  a girl holds up one of the many translucent blue boxes and tells me that they are confusing to her because they look just like her makeup case at home.  someone asks who is getting married.  they need to find the right pairs of glasses.  also, they dropped off shoes for the wedding.  shoes? we ask.  where? we want to see them.  they hand us two maroon boxes and we open them up and pull away the tissue paper.  i am baffled as i look at the contents.  they aren’t shoes, i tell the volunteers, they are decorative wax yurts.  they don’t believe me and so i show them the white and green and red items.  they smell like fake pine and look like Avon christmas candles. we close the lid and set them aside not understanding why anyone would want them.
i go back to the dressing room and the guy demonstrating the towel toga and rope is pacing as if he really is some Greek philosopher.  he says that he is anxious for the day when his mother is too ill to go out and must remain bedridden so that his dad can go out and drink and be melancholy with his friends. i think it’s pretty shitty that he wants his mother to fall ill just so his father has an excuse to be the drunkard he already is and i tell him so. along the walls of the dressing room and in corner displays are loaves and loaves of fresh bread.