On getting suckered. By a fanboy, nonetheless.

I was at the comic shop the other day when I realized I had forgotten my bus pass at home. Oops. So I asked around the room real quick to the people (the fanboys who hang out at the shop literally open to close every single day) who I knew had a car if any of them were going south towards Cap Hill. No dice across the board.

Then someone (who will remain nameless, let’s call him… Fanboy McGee) pipes up.

Fanboy McGee:
“Shane, do you need a ride to Cap Hill?”
Me:
“Yeah. You going that way?”
Fanboy McGee:
“Yeah.”
Me:
“When?”
Fanboy McGee:
“Whenever you’re done here.”
Me:
“Cool. I can just wrap it up now.”

So then we’re in the car driving toward Capitol Hill.

Fanboy McGee:
“I need to stop and get some gas.”
Me:
“That’s fine. I’m in no hurry. Take your time.”
Fanboy McGee:
“You think you could give me a couple dollars for gas?”
Me:
“…sigh… I don’t have any cash. I just have my card, sorry.”
Fanboy McGee:
“Ok, then maybe you could put like five bucks in.”
Me:
“…sigh… Sure. I guess.”

Now in hind-sight I should’ve told him to go straight to hell and gotten out of the car. $5! Granted, five dollars isn’t a lot of money in the grand scheme of things, but there was a principle here. A few principles, actually.

  1. We had already talked about the economics of taking the bus versus gas prices. So he knew full well that this bus ride cost $1.25. Markedly more than the amount of gas it takes (even at current prices) to travel that distance (yes, I know that for the same $1.25 I can go very, very far and sometimes do, so it all kind of comes out in the wash). I had even explained to him that sometimes my girlfriend, Emily, has to take the bus four times a day because she works both morning and evening but not afternoon. For non-math nerds that’s there in the morning (1), back in the afternoon (1+1), there again early evening (1+1+1) and finally home again at night (1+1+1+1=4). [“There and back again and there and back again again again: A gymnastics coach tale” by Bilbo Baggins]. I digress.
  2. I told him I forgot my bus pass and didn’t feel like paying for the bus.
  3. He said he was going there anyhow! He said that he lived there! (So it shouldn’t’ve cost him ANY gas.)

Anyone I’ve told this story to that knows me and my …what’s the word …brashness? …tactlessness? …confrontationalness? has said “What! Why didn’t you just get out of the car?” I’m sorry, my friends, I was off my game. I was really, really hungry. I wasn’t thinking clearly. I ponied up the five duckets and grumbled the whole way to Vivace for Nerd Party. I have secretly (not so secretly now that I’m putting it on the The Interweb Tubes) vowed to never ever give him another cent for gas money and I will jump at every opportunity to get a ride out of him in the future. Not because he got $5 out of me, because he was sneaky and manipulative about it.

The double punch line of it all is this is the second time that a fanboy from the comic shop I work at has pulled this wait-til-we’re-already-in-the-car-going-to-ask-for-money bullshit. Fucking sneaking fanboys.

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