And Then Came Mabel
Mabel had a certain bawdiness about her and she often made off color comments out the side of her mouth regarding certain customers. Her ample body was as soft and round as her face, which was framed by coarse wiry puffs of hair that resembled combed out pot scrubbers. She always wore a necklace with the initials G.I.B. at the front.
When I asked her about it, she elbowed me in the ribs and side whispered in my ear, “You know what that means doncha?! Good in Bed! An old lover of mine gave it to me and I never take it off. Even when everything else is on the floor – the necklace stays on!” She laughed a throaty laugh and added with a wink, “Good advertising!”
Mabel had worked in every state in the Union except for Hawaii and she had a story for every one of them too. She’d even worked a lumber camp in Alaska and she’d always make a crack about the amount of “wood” she got up there. She loved to tell about the time she had waited on the Governor of California.
“Of course that was in my younger days when men were always making a play for me. I mean I look good now, but you should’ve seen me 15 years ago baby!” She’d shake her head for a minute as if to erase that old memory of herself and then continue, “Well I was the best so of course I was assigned to the VIP room. When I bent across the table to serve the Salisbury Steak that California governor smacked me right on my rear end. Well just as fast as that S.O.B. slapped my bottom doncha know I turned around twice as fast and slapped his face.” “I told him, ‘I don’t care if you’re the King of Sabu – nobody touches me without my permission!’”
One of the regular truckers interrupted her story to say, “Service sure is slow today Mabel! Think you could speed it up a bit?” as he twirled his empty coffee cup in the air like a cowboy’s six shooter. Mabel made a face at him, grabbed the coffee pot and as she strolled toward him answered with, “I ain’t slow and I ain’t fast Shorty. I’m half fast!”
As his fellow truckers at the table got her joke they chuckled at her remark and as she refilled all of their cups, Shorty nodded at her and said, “Well you sure got that right!” Then they all busted up laughing, even Mabel, who turned her back on the table and said in a low voice to Nelda standing at the counter, “Needle dick the bug fucker! And you know I know.” Both women smiled at that, though Nelda just kept rolling silverware and shaking her head.