Dave Foley (except not Dave Foley at all, as previously mentioned) and I are sitting in Dickinson's lone donut place. My huge feet are clad in bright orange boots which has given many a North Dakotan reason to stare at me, generally speaking-- although this really just encourages me and takes me back to being 14 and feeling rejected and saying, ha. Well to hell with all of you, I'm going to be as bizarre as possible now. Let's just say my natural, usual taste in dress has been cranked up to 11 lately, probably another good thing about me being here. But I regress. The donut store.
Dave Foley has bought half a dozen (wouldn't it be ever so much easier just to say six?) donuts, two of them the sprinkled kind that I like. It's been awhile since I felt let loose in a candy store kind of way, and admittedly it was kind of fun to point at the most colorful donuts behind the glass and receive them in a nice square pink box. We split them. I'm tired, so I could probably eat a baby elephant at this point. especially if you poured multi-colored sprinkles on it. This hour has ushered in all of the early birds, and in they are wobbling, all of the stalwart old folks wanting their fix. There are some vagrants, too. According to Dave, who gazes out the window trying to determine their genders, the whole vagrant thing was a zero issue until this year. Now housing is so hard to come by here (there is so much work but no place for people to live), and there are so many people just passing through. At one point, an old lady in front of us started to prattle on about how Dickinson was somehow the very rock of the nation (...?). I'm not sure what that was in response to. At another point, a weird old dude walked into the place, his lady on his arm, and said as loudly as possible to us or anyone who happened to be within a two-mile radius "IT SMELLS LIKE DONUTS IN HERE."
Dave Foley's response: "Well that makes sense, BECAUSE IT'S A DONUT STORE."
Last week was a particularly nice week because Dave Foley and I have become friends. It may just be the weirdest, weirdest friendship and I'm not sure if it'll last very long, but I hope it does. He's something like 17 years old, half my size, and just genuinely, relentlessly bizarre. And, refreshingly, the first person I've met in a long time who doesn't value pride all that much. We worked three nights in a row this week, a rarity as he usually works earlier shifts, and as the morning began to roll around he'd catch his third wind or so and suggest we just do something with our morning. So we did. He'd talk about his college plans, I'd tell him about California, he'd reenact an entire one-act play (really), we'd guzzle more coffee. He showed me the most talked about house in town-- a giant thing fashioned to look like a silo, and explained to me that in Dickinson people get REALLY excited about donuts, apparently. I had forgotten what it's like to actually get to know someone-- of course, it would take a weird little guy like him to bring that back, but it's interesting how open one is inclined to be if the person across the table is an open book.
Anyway, the best part of all of this was the donuts. As Dave Foley shoveled this barely formed sugar substance down (and let's be honest, these donuts were not even good. at all), his delight was extremely infectious. I started to complain about Bismark, the closest real city with real theatres and shopping and whatnot, and the fact that Dickinson doesn't really have anything aside from the necessities, and Dave Foley just kind of laughed and said that that was what made Dickinson so great. Dickinson doesn't have any of those things-- multiple donut shops, coffee chains, Target stores, shoe shops, or movie theatres with more than three screens and total crap movies. And so Dickinsonites are so easily made happy-- a trip to Bismark to see a movie is a treat. Shopping is exciting. And donuts are all purchased at The Hole, and they are so worthy of the joy they incite.