Atlanta Vacation: The Tale of Butter Guy

So this last weekend, I went on vacation with my husband. He attended DragonCon, I did not. I spent the majority of the time sleeping. When I wasn’t sleeping, I either went out or most often stayed in and watched TV. Or was downstairs at the bar getting something to eat.

On Sunday, I was down in the bar having a pizza and chatting with the bartender. It was slow, and I was the only one sitting down there. I’d intended to read a new book I’d bought earlier that day as I ate, but the bartender saw what it was about and struck up a conversation.

I was half-way through my pizza when Butter Guy appeared. He came out of the elevator area carrying only an ice bucket. Remember that, it’s important later on. This guy comes up to the bar, leans forward and places an elbow on the counter. And he says, drunkenly, “Hypothetically if I came down here 12 hours ago, there would be butter.”

The bartender just sort of stares at him. I just sort of stare at him. He turns to look at me with a goof smile on his face, and continues. “Hypothetically, if I were here 12 hours ago, could you have given me some of that butter?”

Unsure of what else to say or do, the bartender nods and says, “Yeah. I could give you some butter.”

Butter Guy is ecstatic! He grins at me again as I set down the slice of pizza I was trying to eat. Butter Guy turns back to the bartender, now lowering his voice as if trying to score some sort of illicit substance. He says, “Can you get me some butter?”

The bartender, now back in familiar terriroty says “Sure. How many do you need?”

This throws Butter Guy off into the land of disbelief. He stares at me wide eyed and jaw dropping. Then gives the bartender the same expression as response. But he quickly recovers and says loudly once again, “I… I don’t know. I mean, some? Tell you what, I’ll throw out a number, and you tell me if you can get me that many butters.”

The bartender nods.

Butter Guy says, “Three.” Bartender responds, “Yes.” Butter Guy is excited, and he replies with “Four?” Once again, the bartender responds with “Yes,” and adds “I’ll just go to the back and get them, okay?”

The bartender hurries off, leaving me alone with my pizza and Butter Guy. I turn in my seat some to face Butter Guy and I say to him, “Of all the shit I’ve seen and heard this weekend, that’s just the strangest, weirdest damn thing I’ve ever heard.”

He is confused. He blinks at me as we sit in the awkward silence then says, “My room has a dishwasher. My room has a stove. We figured why not have a spaghetti party. I mean, I don’t know what the butter’s for, but we need it for something. I don’t know, but we’re having a spaghetti party. You can’t have a spaghetti party without butter.”

So, I smile as it dawns on me what the butter must be for. I say, “Oh, so you need it for garlic bread, right?”

He blinks and stares. “No. I’d remember the bread.”

The bartender returns with a handful of little individual serving packs of butter. You know the sort. The kind you get in restaurants that you have to peel back the top and can’t dig it all out with your knife, but your spoon is too large to get into the corners. And it’s never enough butter for your 2-4 pieces of toast. Mixed in with them are some Country Croc little single servings as well as some Promise brand ones, too. The bartender finds an empty plastic cup and puts them in it, then hands it to the guy.

Butter Guy puts this cup of butter into his ice bucket. The bartender asks if Butter Guy would like him to fill the ice bucket for him. Butter guy shakes his head and says he’ll get ice on the second floor on his way upstairs.

So, he thanks the bartender, says bye to me, and leaves.

You’d think that was the end of Butter Guy… but you’d be wrong…

About 5 minutes go by, the bartender and I giggle then resume our previous conversation. Then… we hear him in the elevator area. And he’s loud about it, too. He comes up to the bar, and he throws his elbow up just as before and he says “So did you guys see me leave a drink down here?”

The bartender and I look at one another. The bartender says no. I say, “All you had was that ice bucket you put the butter in.”

Butter Guy looks at us like we’ve each grown another head. “Are you sure?”

We both reply in the affirmative. Butter Guy starts looking all around the room. Even though on his quest for butter not 5 minutes earlier, he came straight to the bar and then straight back to the elevator. He comes back to the bar, throws that elbow up just as he had 2 times before and he says, “That thing had whisky in it. It wasn’t empty. Are you sure you didn’t see me leave it here?”

And so we both replied, once again, that we did not see him with a drink, let alone leave one behind.

Butter Guy is visibly annoyed. Then he takes out his wallet, and he looks inside. Then he looks at the bartender and he says “Can I get $3 worth of whisky?”

The bartender replies, “Our shots cost more than that.”

Butter Guy, “Well, that’s all I have.”

Bartender shakes his head. Butter Guy grins goofily at us both and leaves the bar. On his way back to the elevator, he meets a woman. She, too, is drunk. And on a quest…

Drunk Woman sees Butter Guy and she says, rather loudly, “Where’s my butter?”

So apparently, he lost the butter on the way back to his suite, as well as a glass of whisky. The butter, if you remember, was in the ice bucket. So presumably, he might have forgotten it was in there and everyone assumed he got ice. Or, alternatively, he may have stopped for ice, took the butter out and forgotten it at the ice machine. Either way, this woman’s pissed because he didn’t bring her butter.

They go back and forth about the butter, he asks her at one point if she knows where he set his drink. She retorts with, “I dunno. But where’s MY butter!” Eventually the pair reconcile and go back to the elevators.

At this point the bartender and I are just trying so hard not to bust out laughing. The front desk hostess runs over to us and she asks if we saw any of that. The bartender laughs with me, and I look at her and I say, “See it? We were part of it!” And the three of us laugh our butts off.

Well, the hostess heads back over to her desk when we heard the elevators ding.

And wouldn’t you know it….

Yes, that’s right….

It’s BUTTER GUY!

Drunk Woman was left upstairs I assume. Butter Guy comes straight to the bar, he does his elbow thing. I’ve finally finished my pizza and am nursing the remnants of my Pepsi. By now, it’s hard for both the bartender and I to keep a straight face. Butter Guy grins his goofy, drunk grin. And he says, “Can I get some forks?”

The bartender, finally getting a more normal question nods and he asks, “Plastic or silver?”

Butter Guy’s eyes widen. He gasps in surprise. His elbow is taken off the bartop and he’s blown away that he has a choice of forks. “Silver!” he blurts out. The bartender quickly excuses himself to get the forks. Butter Guy turns to me, and once more I am turned towards him to pay attention to this trainwreck of a Butter Quest. He simply says, “It’s for the spaghetti party. Because it’s a Sunday Spaghetti Party. Silver seems good. Right? Kinda fancy? Because it’s Sunday.”

The bartender returns with 5 forks. Butter Guy is blown away. He’s amazed. It’s like he’s just found the Holy Grail, and it’s full to the brim with his lost whisky and butter. Like a butter whisky in a fancy silver cup. Because Sunday.

Butter Guy thanks the bartender profusely. I finish up my Pepsi and start packing up. In the midst of all this, from the start to the finish, I still have not paid my bill. At this time, I do so. the bartender and I share a glance and I bid him goodnight, laughing all the way back to my room.

And yet…

This is not where the story of Butter Guy ends. Oh no, there is one last sighting of Butter Guy, Drunk Woman, and the rest of the Sunday Spaghetti Party Crew.

Check-out was the next day at Noon. Husband, myself, and a third wheel were the last of the people in our room to check-out, and we took advantage of the time our other roommates left to tidy up after and watch some more TV (since we don’t have cable it was bliss). We went downstairs to wait in the lobby for our ride, and who do I see standing in line to check-out? Standing next to the chair that I choose, on a whim, to sit in?

It’s BUTTER GUY!

When I notice who it is, I get his attention and ask, “So, did you ever find the butter?”

He looks at me strangly, narrowing his eyes in concentration until he comes to a vague conclusion that perhaps I am recognizable. So, I ask something else. “How’d your spaghetti party go?”

This prompts a hazy recognition from him. “Oh? Oh, that. It was fine.”

“Did you ever find your glass of whisky?” I asked.

He blinks at me. “I don’t drink whisky.”

“Could have fooled me. Last night you came down for butter, forks, and a lost glass of whisky.” He starts to turn a little red. Clearly, I’m embarassing him. So, I politely laugh it off, and leave him be. Just as I was standing up to go catch my ride, I hear from behind me at the front desk the voice of the same woman who was on duty the evening before.

“What’d you need all that butter for?! Garlic bread?!”

And so closes The Tale of Butter Guy.

 

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