Guillermo and his Amazing Dreamcoat

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As I was sweating my balls off in this ungodly heat today on Metro North, I started dreaming of winter and how refreshing the cold weather can be and it made me think about a former colleague, Guillermo, and his winter wardrobe.

If you’ve never seen a hustlin’ seventies pimp in real life before, head over to Accounting to take a gander and you won’t believe your eyes. If only Ben Affleck had consulted Guillermo for wardrobe ideas before they started shooting The Accountant, the movie probably would have done a lot better. He’s short, mid-fifties, wears big glasses and looks like Super Mario’s brother Luigi. I don’t want to be mean and say he was fat, but when the police eventually draw his chalk outline, it’s going to be a circle….Now add a huge fur coat on top of this and he looked like a cartoon character. Forget Joseph’s Technicolor Dream – he wore a fur coat and matching hat that made him look like the product of a hot three-way between Luigi, Huggy Bear from Starsky & Hutch, and an actual Grizzly Bear.

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Our Accounting Team

As the seasons turned and the winter breeze crept into the air, it’s normal for most people to gradually work longer sleeves and sweaters into their wardrobe, but not Guillermo: he went balls out straight to the fur! The best part was his matching hat which made him look like a Yeti covered in fur head to toe. You just couldn’t look at him with a straight face. At first, I thought that he might have accidentally worn his wife’s coat, but day in and day out, he rocked it like a Hurricane. My wife has informed me that normal and mature people don’t stare or make comments in situations like this, but I’ve never been mistaken for normal or mature.

Guillermo was a nice man, but I couldn’t get past the coat. I had to know where he got it and why he wore it and how the hell he wasn’t sweating like crazy in it. I have very lite self-control in situations normally, but this was putting me over the edge. He felt like people were making fun of him (Newsflash – we were!) and didn’t like to talk about the coat, but curiosity was getting the better of me and I just knew that had to try it on. I’m OCD and the thought of being inside that pelt skeeved me out big time, but I knew I needed to step up here and that it had to be done.

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Guillermo Namath

I was leaving the company to work at another company and I knew it would be my only chance, so I casually started talking about the coat and was leading up to me trying it on for a picture. He randomly told me the story of how a homeless man attacked him on the subway trying to steal it, yet he fought him off with all of his might causing the left arm to be ripped off the coat. It took his tailor three weeks and the skins from two raccoons and a squirrel to mend it, but apparently it was good as new. I was picturing his subway Fight Club in my mind as he was telling me, but all I could think of was the Wampa cave scene with Luke Skywalker in The Empire Strikes Back. Apparently, G isn’t Star Wars fan…


At first, he was playing hard to get and didn’t want to let me try it on. “Stop it, now give me that coat” I said which forced him to explain to me what his hesitation really was: apparently, not every man can wear fur because not everyone has that certain swagger needed to pull it off. AS IF! “G, are you asking me to wear this down Fifth Avenue? OK, now it’s on!” With that I put on the coat and we headed for the elevator!


Now this is swagger!

What I failed to realize, was just how heavy the coat was actually going to be. It was literally as if I had crawled up inside a bear’s ass and then walked around carrying the bear. It was also hotter than the sun inside that coat by the way. I felt like Han Solo when he cut the Taun Taun open for him and Luke to sleep inside and keep warm. I mean, I sweat excessively in just a t shirt and shorts, but I didn’t have that coat on for a full minute before I was soaked right through. I don’t know how the hell he wore that around and didn’t pass out! It gets cold in New York, but for Christ’s sake – global warming people…you don’t need fur! Forget about mistreatment of animals and that it’s wrong to wear fur or that it’s just mean; what’s mean is making a person sweat like that from a coat!

taun taun

G looked at me and said “how does it feel?” as if I were test driving a Ferrari and I’m not sure if it was my spirit animal literally engulfing me right there in the office, but I said “it makes me feel like this!” It was at that moment that I chose to jump on the conference table and pose like Burt Reynolds in Cosmo and show him who had swagger. While the ladies in my office thought it was hysterical, Guillermo felt I was crossing line and was now being disrespectful to the coat as if that point hadn’t been passed long before. With that, I told him we’d take it to the streets and we headed for the elevator so I could prove my swagger on the streets!

Conference Room Table

Swagger to spare!

The winter Holiday scene in the lobby of our building had a nice display featuring polar bears, snow, and penguins – the perfect winter scene scape for me in the fur! I proceeded to do what every sensible person does right about then and get into the displays and frolic with the wildlife until security sent us on our way.

coat in lobby 010

I did rock that coat and prove my swagger, but he was right – not every man can pull of a fur coat. I probably could and should have gotten one of my own just to spite him, but I’d have died from heat exhaustion like I do on Metro North each day I commute, so no fur for me. I did get a few strange looks, but being that it’s NYC, no one cares about this idiot strutting around inside a carcass. The moral of the story is be careful what you wish for or you’ll end up hot and sweaty on your knees with a bunch of penguins and not the good kind of hot and sweaty either!

Hasn’t Baltimore been through enough?


One of the best perks about working in Sales, is that I get to do fun things with clients and spend other people’s money to do it! A group of us used to take Washington DC clients to a Baltimore Orioles game as a great way to spend time with them and develop better relationships with our clients. OK, come on it’s the Orioles, no one ever really cared about the game – we just drank and had a fun time. Here’s a few highlights from our last trip.


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We would go with about ten to fifteen people from different areas and invite about a hundred clients so it was always a big crowd. The last time we went was an absolute disaster; the forecast was calling for a washout, the sky was black and it was a torrential downpour! Rain like that only exists in the movies so I should have known that shenanigans would be on the menu.


We were taking Amtrak for convenience to avoid the airport and also so that we could enjoy the bar car on the way. As we were dodging the downpour on the platform waiting for the train, we saw the train heading down the tracks. I couldn’t wait for the train to arrive to get out of this heavy rain and also to get away from the woman standing next to me. She was on her phone chatting away louder than loud and complaining about the rain as if her holding that phone in her hand instead of an umbrella was the smart thing to do. As the train stopped and the doors opened, the girl in front of us marched up to get in the train still chatting away like a little yenta. As she was gabbing and not paying attention to anything but her conversation, low and behold she didn’t mind the gap and fell in between the train and the platform. It was a combination of the heavy rain, the conversation, but mostly it was the hooker boots she was rocking on the platform. I can see wearing those in a club or on the runway, but on Metro North in a rainstorm? It’s no wonder she fell.


It was like it happened in slow motion in front of me. Boom: the doors open, boom: she’s stepping forward, boom: she’s in between the train and platform, boom: she’s still on the phone screaming “Oh my God, I fell in the tracks, I’m in the tracks.” At this point she landed with a heavy thud on her elbows and her legs were dangling down under the platform – yet she didn’t stop talking or put the phone down! The New Yorker in me did what any normal person would do in the face of commuter roadkill: I started hysterically laughing and lifted my bag and stepped over her to get a seat on the train as she was staring up at me screaming “What the fuck are you doing?” and then back into the phone “Can you believe this guy just stepped over me? I’m in the tracks.”


At this point, the conductor had arrived to see what was going on and help her up and as I was walking to my seat I looked back and realized that my friends hadn’t moved and were staring in disbelief that I had just done that? As the conductor went above and beyond to help that nitwit on her phone, we got seats on the train. We couldn’t stop laughing at how she never missed a beat on her call when we look up and where is the only available seat on the train for her to sit: right across from us. I couldn’t stop laughing and staring because she was soaking wet head to toe and yet she still stayed on that phone for another hour after that giving me dirty looks the whole time.


So we got to Baltimore and the weather wasn’t letting up. Out of a hundred people confirmed, only about nine brave souls showed up. We sat in our empty section since no one showed up and there was a long rain delay. When the game went on, we just drank to make the best of it. As my friend Karen and I were talking, she just freaked out and started screaming at the top of her lungs like a psycho. I didn’t even get the words out of my mouth “What the fuc…” before this rocket flew right in between the two of our heads and hit the seat in back of us. A pop fly that was inches away from clocking one of us in the noggin and neither of us were paying attention! The ball landed with a thunderous boom and the guy in back of us snatched it. We were freaking out as everyone laughed their asses off and then the guy wouldn’t give us the ball. I was like “dude, that almost hit us in the head!” and he was like “dude, if you were paying attention instead of gabbing, you would have gotten it.” Forget being on TV, if that hit us we would have been hospitalized or dead…


After the game, we tried to make our way through the crowd and out of there. If you’ve ever been to a baseball game, you know that the crowds are crazy and mostly drunk and it takes forever to get out of the stadium. I was walking with Amy, a colleague I’d just met earlier that day, and my impatience took over. I’m not sure exactly what came over me, but I knew that this crowd just wasn’t doing it for me. I linked arms with her and leaned in close so we were face to face and asked “How fast can you go?” “What are you talking about?” she asked and looked very confused and not expecting me to start shouting at the top of my lungs: “GET OUT OF THE FUCKING WAY!!! GET OUT OF THE WAY!!! SHE JUST SHIT HER PANTS!!!” and I started pulling her fast through the mass of people. It was as if the crowd parted like the Red Sea and I just kept shouting “SHE SHIT HER PANTS – GET OUT OF THE WAY” and people were moving like hotcakes to get away from us. She tried to pull her arm away and was pissed “What’s wrong with you? Are you crazy – stop pulling me” “You wanna stay here instead?” as we looked at people staring at us and then I started screaming again.

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Some drunk guy tried to help us and pointed as he shouted “Dude, there’s a bathroom right there, take her in there.” I screamed back “DUDE, SHE SHIT HER PANTS AND SHE’S COVERED – SHE NEEDS A SHOWER” which parted the people ever further away from us. When I tell you that we made it out of that stadium and back to our hotel faster than a speeding bullet, I’m not exaggerating. We had three drinks in the hotel bar by the time the rest of our group got back.


As we were waiting for the others to meet up with us, she was obviously annoyed at me. I thought she was being a little bit ungrateful as I had just gotten us out of the crowd like a streak of lightning, but she was embarrassed. She tried sitting across the bar from me, but it was no use because there was no one else in there. Her phone rang and she started chatting away, and I leapt into action. I ran right over next to her phone and started screaming again “Amy, get your clothes on someone’s at the door!!!” and started hysterical laughing. She was pissed before that, yet this pushed her over. “Come on, It’s my mother. It would be funny if it was my husband, but it’s my mother for god’s sake.” I thought she’d think it was funny, but she absolutely didn’t and you know who thought it was even less funny than Amy? Her mother who started screaming “Where are you? I thought you were at a work event? Why are you undressed? Who is that? Where are you?” and Amy stormed off into the corner trying to explain “Mom, I’m not undressed…he’s an idiot…It is a work thing…”

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At this point the bartender was laughing at what I’d just done and I was in the middle of telling him about how we got out of the game so fast when our friends arrived and we were telling them. Amy was pissed at me and didn’t really want to move past this and be friends with me for some reason…She was mad that everyone was laughing at the antics instead of taking her side and a few drinks later she admitted that she thought it was funny too…but she would have thought it was funnier if I did it to Sue instead of her. Needless to say, it was a fun trip and we made the best of it despite the weather and if you’ve learned one lesson from this post it’s this: Don’t wear hooker boots in a rainstorm on a train platform – no good can come from it!