Coconut Monkey

My desk is a mess.

I clean it up about once a week and it takes about a day to get really messy again. But, the mess is framed by the things I keep around to remind me of good work times and better free-time-times. So, for lack of something better to do…

The Shakes Cup–As you walk away from the Mizzou campus, you start to smell it. If you don’t smell well, you can see a bearded guy named Fin with a sandwich board over his shoulders. He’s promoting Shakespeare’s Pizza. They give away free cups with every beer and soda. Every poor college student who couldn’t afford real glasses or preferred to save his money for more beer has a huge collection of these cups. I still have a few. One sits on the rail of my cubicle to remind me of all the pizza and beer I put down with my college buddies…and remind me of one of the first dinners I shared with the girl who would someday be my wife.

The Coconut Monkey–My wife and I spent some time in Hawaii. We brought back a few coconuts that had been fashioned into apes. My ape wears wire-rimmed glasses and smokes a pipe made out of coconut shell.

Woman Kissing Telescope–One of my finer works…a picture of my wife kissing one of those face-looking telescope viewers that overlooks the Atlantic Ocen on the coast of Tybee Island.

Your Mom–The mugshot of the bankrobber who mouthed off to me. He has a talk-bubble coming out of his mouth that says “Your Mom.”

Woo Sheep–A while back some buddies and I were sitting at a little joint called Zorba’s Lounge. It’s the type of place where everything is made of red vinyl and the owners keep statues of naked tribal people on the shelves. We were trying to get a feel for how we felt. Did we feel like going out on the town or sitting back in some quiet place. At some point we started gauging our mood based on how many arms we wanted to pump in the air in drunken excitement. Two arms in the air classified a full WOO MOOD. As in “Woooooooooo, I’m crazy, I’m crazy!” A few weeks later, a buddy noticed that my Far Side cartoon of the day pictured a sheep with both arms extended in the air. “Sheep’s got the woo,” he said. As it turns out, that sounds a whole lot like “She’s Got the Look.” A few weeks later, my friends and I are at another buddy’s house. And whatta ya know, we all start singing “baa-baa-baa-baa-baa, baa-baa-baa-baa-baa, baa-baa-baa-baa-baa-baa, SHEEP’S GOT THE WOO!” (This would make a lot more sense of you could heard me humming along).

There’s a lot more on the desk, but I should be working.

Brad Willis

Brad Willis is a writer based in Greenville, South Carolina. Willis spent a decade as an award-winning broadcast journalist. He has worked as a freelance writer, columnist, and professional blogger since 2005. He has also served as a commentator and guest on a wide variety of television, radio, and internet shows.

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