Oh, man, you’re not going to believe this.

Ok, so I go to Sav-On to get change for stupid laundry day, and on the way home I am driving down Pacific when I see The Van turning down an alley just ahead. I gun it, and nearly hit some lame-ass who comes pulling out of the alley blind. Once behind the van, I am kicking myself for not having my camera with me. It’s The Van! In motion! Right now! He has an Arizona plate, and a bumper sticker that says, “Be Yiddish, Say Kaddush” (the last word I’m not sure about, but I know it was not Kaddish). Anyway, he turns onto Speedway and I try to catch a glimpse of him, but no luck. At the first pay lot, he pulls over. Finally, I see the driver of the mystery van. He looks Caucasian, mid-30s, and pretty clean cut (short hair, shaven). There is a big golden retriever in the backseat. I pass him, and head the three blocks back to my apartment.

I run inside, grab the digital camera and memory card, and look out my window to see he is a mere three blocks away. The card won’t go into the camera. He’s two blocks away. My gauzy drawstring skirt has come unknotted, and is starting to slide down my waist as I throw open the front door. One block! With the camera in one hand and keys in the other, I try to pull the skirt up and get to the gate before he hits my street. I stand at the corner and snap this shot, right before he turns onto Park Court. Damn!

Briskly walking up to park court, I round the corner to see that he has stopped halfway up the block. Excellent. I stealthily approach the van from behind, I am holding the camera down by my waist, and looking down at the viewfinder so it isn’t obvious I’m taking photographs. He starts moving forward slowly as I am right next to him. Then stops. Then he puts it in reverse and nearly runs my ass over! He backs up into a parking space at some building where he clearly does not live. He must have noticed me, since he nearly killed me. But I can’t leave without getting a shot of him! So I stand in the alley and make some unnecessary phone calls while I’m waiting for him to emerge. You know, to seem less suspicious.

“Hey, how’s it going? Oh yeah? Me? Not much. Just, you know, did I tell you about that van? Yeah, I’m stalking him right now. He’s looking at me. I think he knows I’m taking his picture. I just…oh, ok, no problem, call me back later.”

He gets out, and is pulling something out of the backseat of the van, where his enormous dog is looking right at me. The dog so knows. He brings out what looks like a blanket or flag. I snap a photo. Oh my god! He’s getting dressed! And I took a picture of him getting dressed! I feel like a total perv and walk down back down the alley before he asks me what the hell I think I’m doing.

So that’s what I did this afternoon. I feel an odd satisfaction, having a face to put with the mystery van. But I still have so many questions. What’s the deal with the little room on top? Do you go to temple? Why did you leave Arizona? Why do you put a pair of shorts on, over another pair of shorts?

Ah, the mysteries of life.