“Mary! Mary! Wake the fuck up, or you’ll be served with butter!”

My partner and I were woken up this morning by the apartment building’s main fire alarm.

“Is it a real fire?” my partner asked me as I ran for my moccasins.

Like I would fucking know. He asks the stupidest questions sometimes.

“I don’t care.” I said and grabbed the keys. “Hurry!”

I opened our front door and saw that lady who lives next door peering out her front door. She looked like hell. I’ve never seen her before but my parter tells me that “she’s a real bitch.” This is a lot coming from him. You could shove him in front of a speeding taxi and he’d still think you weren’t such a bad guy. Me, I ran in front of this bitch who was trying to take our cab yesterday. “This is OUR taxi!!!”

My partner said, “Maybe we don’t have to go downstairs.”

“Maybe you don’t.”

You don’t fuck around with fires. My mom scared me to DEATH when I was a little kid. She would tell me warped stories to get me to do the right thing all the time. Her fire story involved this family she “knew” with the prettiest daughter you ever saw. Well, in my mom’s story, this beautiful little princes of a girl runs into her closet when her home catches fire. She lives but as my mom finished her story, “She hid in the corner the last time I saw her. She was a monster. Her skin. It was awful. A monster. Better off dead. If there is a fire, don’t hide in the closet.”

Thanks mom!!!

We live on the 18th floor of a 33 story building. I’m a runner and so was actually slightly looking forward to this morning’s unplanned exercise program. For the first few flights, we encountered no one.

“Babe, where is everyone? I’ll bet it’s a false alarm.” my partner said.

“I can’t hear you.” I said, visions of that little monster lurking in the corners of my mind.

We encountered two Arab guys on the way down. They looked to me for guidance. Me in my pale-blue, Polo pajama bottoms, army-green souvenir t-shirt I got at the border of North and South Korea, and my impulse buy Banana Republic suede moccasins. I looked like an asshole.

We made it to P Level, the 5th-floor pool and fitness floor we share with the apartment building’s sister tower. Two Chinese guys had followed my little line of misfits in our morning dash down the stairs.

“Where is the staircase down to the ground!?” one Arab asked.

“Here!” one Chinese guy said.

I ran over and tried to open it. “It’s locked!!” I said.

We all looked at each other for the first time. My partner trailing behind us. They were Marys, everyone of them. A gay Arab couple and a gay Chinese couple, and us. Together, we were a Neapolitan ice cream band of ferries.

What? Don’t straight people react to five A.M. fire alarms?

When we all did manage to get down to the first floor, the doorman on duty told us, “It is false alarm. Humidity caused false alarm.”

The Arabs seems to take this load of horseshit, but I said, “Does that mean this is going to happen all through the spring and summer? Can we look forward to this nightly?”

The bossy bottom Chinese guy then took the reigns, “I have lived here eight years and we have never had a false alarm because of humidity!”

You tell him!

They told us to go back to bed. Like I could sleep after this shit. We went to the 7-11 because I needed a beer. I bought that and a Diet Coke.

We went back home. My partner went to sleep. I put the beer in the fridge, drank the coke and flipped through the TV.

I’m not a monster. I’m a MexiCAN!

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