Its 7:30pm. His long hour and a half journey on the Interstate-10 East freeway has finally ended. William, is parking his 2010 gray KIA Sportage into a parking spot in front of a red bricked sidewalk. He gets out, stretches, locks his car, then starts walking. The sidewalk leads to a colorful Art Walk in downtown Pomona, California.
He decided to stop by a local bookstore he had always seen passing by, but never explored. Maybe a stroll around the store would take his mind off of the horrible workday he just had.
The Pomona Arts Colony is approximately four city blocks jammed packed with arts and crafts stores, antiques shops, and thrift and vintage establishments. Multiple Art Galleries continuously display new Avant Garde paintings, sculptures, and exhibits. Event tickets tend to sell out quickly.
Many walls of buildings have murals of either the Roman Goddess Pomona herself, proudly standing with a cornucopia filled with fruit, or without the cornucopia.
An older artistic mural from the 1980’s presents a bright future for humanity’s youth in the city of Pomona while operating touch screen technology. Another mural close to that one gives respect to the working class that have toiled and struggled in agriculture and other fields.
Besides the artistry, there are many various themed dive bars for the local college students to visit as well as burger and taco restaurants. There are night clubs on rooftops and ones actually underneath the street that are only enter able from a special passage that leads you underground. There are entertainment venues like the Fox Theater and the Glass House concert hall where many famous musicians and acts play, frequently to sold out crowds.
After walking past some shops, part of the red brick walkway veered to the right and stopped up three steps at a solid green wooden door. The rest of the outside of the building was a mixture of green, brown, and silver. It had artificial molding in the shape of tree roots coming down its sides with the middle section resembling a huge tree trunk. There was a small tree house at the top ornamented with plastic owls, squirrels, birds, cats, and turtles. Underneath the tree house and above the entrance door hung a sign reading: “Magic Door”
Coming to a stop at the first step, William admired the artistic architecture outside of the store. However, he was very unaware that to the right of the entrance door, stationed directly in front of the window, was the 1850th Girl Scout Troop of Pomona.
“Don’t try to hide from us. We saw you coming up the sidewalk,” a blonde eight year old Girl Scout yelled. A brown haired Girl Scout behind her said, “Yeah!”
William turned his head and gave her a puzzling look. She was surrounded by three other Girl Scouts on both sides of her.
“Sorry cutie pies, I’m low on money right now. I can’t buy any cookies.” He tried to walk up the steps and enter the book store then the first Girl Scout came over to him and jumped on his back. After her, the rest piled onto him and started dragging him down.
Why not something simple, like trying to stop by the bookstore on the way home? What could possibly go wrong, he thought to himself.
This deeply irritated him to the point where he wanted to smack these little children, but if he responded to them in the wrong way he might be perceived as a strange man attacking the cute little Girl Scouts.
“Get off me you stupid little cookie bitches!” he ferociously scolded them.
“Oooooooooo,” they all gasped while clinging on to him.
He fell to the ground and then one of them pulled out his wallet, took out a five dollar bill, and said, “Thank you.”
He yelled at them, “You girls are horrible.” They all laughed at him.
One of them crumpled up a one dollar bill, ran up to him, threw it in his face and said, “Here’s your change Mister.”
“Where’s your scout mother or monster or whatever the hell they call that bitch,” he ragefully responded.
“Oooooooooo,” they all gasped again.
“You curse too much,” a Girl Scout in the crowd said.
“So what! You just attacked me,” he replied while calming down and straightening out his shirt then dusting off his pants.
He was tired from work so he just moved on and said, “Whatever…you little rats,” and he finally walked up the steps and opened the door to the store. He started to walk in. As he crossed the threshold, a Girl Scout the size of a sixteen year old linebacker with the face of Andy Richter and the voice of an old woman who smoked for years, yelled, “Don’t forget your cookies Mister,” while she launched a box of awful delights directly at his head. As the box smacked his head, he frowned and cursed, then he stumbled in and knocked over a book rack. The door closed right as the rack hit the ground.
He gathered his bearings and looked outside to see all of them, including their table, get picked up in a blue minivan that peeled out and took off. A bumper sticker on the rear said: “If you don’t like the way I drive, then get off the sidewalk!”
“Sorry mam I didn’t mean to mess up your books. I’ll put them back,” he said as he was gathering the books from the floor. He didn’t even bother to look at the attendant. He just picked up the books and put them back on the swivel racks.
The inside of the book store had a mixture of tree roots lacing the ceiling and walls as well as an old 1920’s and 30s vintage look and feel to it. There were paintings of famous authors from that era like: James Joyce, Sinclair Lewis, Ernest Hemingway, and F. Scott Fitzgerald. There were also movie posters featuring: Charlie Chaplin, Buster Keaton, Nosferatu, Flash Gordon, Dick Tracey and Metropolis.
“That’s fine. I know it was an accident. I saw the whole thing. Those little girls are like the cookie mafia or something,” the bookstore attendant sympathetically stated. He finally gathered himself together and looked at her. His butterfly motor revved up quickly and he became very warm inside. To him, she appeared to be a mixed Asian girl who looked like “The Newsroom” TV star, Olivia Munn.
“Tha…thanks,” he stuttered a little while staring at her like she was two bright lights on a dark country road and he was a mesmerized Dear about to be smacked by a diesel truck carrying freshly cut timber.
She smiled and said, “Can I help you find anything special?”
“Not really I’ll just look around a bit,” he replied. He walked around the store and saw a lot of books he’d like to read including the ones about: Magic, Secrets, Wizards, Mythical Creatures and Fantasy Worlds.
“I recommend the Sci-Fi\Fantasy novel, Scripture,” the bookstore attendant encouragingly noted after a few minutes past, “The owner told me that she mysteriously received only one copy on an early Sunday morning, right after she opened the store. It’s about a Magic Pencil that could create doorways into other Worlds, Evoke Gods, Fairies, Gnomes, and other Magical entities, find missing people, places, or things, and construct Magic Spells.”
Her recommendation seemed to be spot on and it piqued his curiosity and excited him thinking about it so he grabbed a copy and brought the book to the counter to buy it. He noticed the girl’s name tag said Chu Mei.
I’d love to, his lusty horn dog mind thought to himself while he quickly became very noticeably aroused.
He bought the book, started to leave, and then Chu Mei said, “Wait, you forgot your cookies,” as she walked over and handed them to him. They kept eye contact for a little while. They both smiled. Then he became more aroused than before which led to more embarrassment. She noticed it and giggled. She then returned to her cash register behind her counter.
He said, “Thank you. Have a nice night,” and quickly left. As he was walking back to his car he looked back and noticed that she was closing up and leaving the store too. He kept walking down the red brick sidewalk thinking about her and looking forward to his new book while holding the Girl Scout cookies.