Couch Girl

  • Location: Vagabond Hostel
  • Appearence: young girl in her mid 20s
  • Distinguishing Characteristics: For over one week, she never left a couch and remained transfixed on her phone

My Encounter

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One day, I entered the hostel living room after a long day of work. I had one thing on my mind, and that was to sit down on the nice, comfortable couch and let all the stresses of the day just melt away. But just as I was about to flop down, I noticed something that crushed my hopes like like a bug. Someone was already there. A girl, who I had never seen before, was laying down, taking up the entire couch, and transfixed on her cellphone to the point where. Ok, I thought, maybe she would leave soon. She didn't.

For more than a week, this girl remained attached to the hostel common room couch as if they were Siamese twins. Not once did she get up or speak. Food? Toilet? The great outdoors? Regular humanly needs? Not for her. There was just the  couch and her phone, from which she would periodically laugh at random intervals. 

Legend

Once upon a time, in a small, tucked-away town, there was a woman who did not like people. She couldn't really pinpoint why. Maybe it was the fact they moved around too much, maybe it was the sound their vocal cords made, she wasn't completely sure. All she knew, though, was that they were largely irreverent to here. And she was fine with that. She didn't need people, because she had found her true love: a couch. But there was only one problem, they had to keep their love a secret because her parents forbid any such relationship. So one night, she stole a pick-up truck and strapped the couch to the back. They were going to go to the big city where they could grow their relationship without any of the small-town judgement.

Once they arrived and settled in, the two decided to take their relationship to the next level and soon were married. Everything seemed to be going so well, but one day, the woman wasn't feeling so good. She went to the doctor to see what was the matter, and to her surprise, the doctor told her that she was pregnant. How could this be? She did not know, but now it was her reality. She waited and waited over the next few months, not sure what would happen. Then, finally, one day she had a baby girl. But this was no ordinary girl. She was half human and half couch. Person and furniture had infused into one and Couch Girl was not in existence.

 

Dude Man Bro

  • Location: Wherever there's masked masculine insecurity
  • Appearance: Short hair, but usually wearing a winter cap. Dark circles under his eyes and often wears a beater undershirt with nothing over it. Seems to be in his early 40s.
  • Distinguishing Characteristic: The words 'dude, man,' or 'bro' account for 50% of his vocabulary.

MY ENCOUNTER

One evening, I was enjoying my dinner just as any other day when a middle aged man who looked like he hadn't slept in a few weeks sat down, looked over to me and said, "Hey my dude, man!" I stopped mid chew. He continues, "Bro, man, you know, dude, whats going on tonight, man?" I paused. This was a strange man I did not know who just appeared at the hostel table, and, from what I gathered, was trying to make himself sound cool and young. Naturally, I suspected he was going through a mid-life crisis.

"Hey, yeah, I'm not really sure if I'm going out. I'm kinda tired," I replied while trying to hide the coffee I was currently half way through drinking. "But I think those guys over there might be going somewhere soon." I pointed to a random group of people, and thankfully, he fell for the bait and walked over."

"Hey my dude, man, bro. I heard, man, that you're clubbing tonight, man. Where ya going dude?" Not sure whether I should laugh of lose my faith in humanity, I listened in, as this guy proceeded to start showing this new group all the girls he recently matched with on Tinder, while always mentioning to say how they were just 19 or 20 (keep in mind this guy is in his 40s). I took a deep breath. This should all pass by in a day or two...

It didn't.

And even after this character left three weeks later, there were others who followed. Many others. All guys trying to be hyper masculine, showing off Tinder matches in an attempt to hide insecurity, while constantly relying on the three golden words, 'dude', 'man,' and 'bro.'

The Legend

Along time ago in a remote, undisclosed location lived a man who, at first sight, seemed completely standard. On the surface, he had an open and outgoing personality, and his vocabulary was fairly limited (seeing as there were just a couple words he repeater non-stop throughout any conversation). But there was something different about this man. Something very different, for he was a shapeshifter who had mastered the art of traveling through time and space. He could be anywhere at any time. In fact, you may have even seen him at some point.

But even though he could change location and appearance whenever he wanted, there were some things he could not change: his personality and his overbearing desire to prove himself. If you saw him, you may have noticed this. He was the guy who was always talking to other guys about the girls he was after, bragging about his abilities, and constantly looking for masculine reassurance by saying 'dude', 'man', and 'bro' as much as humanly possibly.

His origins remain a mystery. Some say he is a product of modern society. Others say he has been around since the dawn of time. No one really knows, but one thing is for sure. Whenever there is an insecure group of boys pretending to be masters at getting girls, he will be there. Whenever there are middle aged men trying to act young and hip, he will be there. And whenever language is lacking vocabulary, he will be there.

The Dragon

  • Location: Moscow Russia
  • Description: Very tall and large man in mid to late 30s. Short, dark brown hair
  • Distinguishing characteristic: One of the loudest human beings ever to walk the face of the earth. When he speaks on the phone (as shown) his booming voice makes the ground shake. But when he snores, the sound is said to be so loud that it can be heard from space.
Location: Moscow Russia

Location: Moscow Russia

My Encounter

It was a cold night in late November as I lay down in my bed at Vagabond Hostel. It seemed, at first, as if this would be another standard evening, nothing special or out of the ordinary. I was wrong. All of the sudden, I was awoken to a frightening roar. The hostel walls shook and the ground trembled. What could this be? Frantically I ran around looking for the source, and then I saw it: an enormous man was lying on his back, just two beds over. His eyes were closed, but his mouth was open, and out of it came a sound so loud and frightening, as if a lion were angrily devouring a atom bomb. I tried to rouse this man, but alas, it was to no avail. My best efforts were in vain and I had to resign myself to a night without sleep.

But that was not the end of it. Oh no. For the next ten days, my slumber was heavily impaired by what sounded like someone desperately trying to start a chainsaw. And when he spoke, the whole building shook with such a fury, it nearly crumbled to its foundation. I foolishly tried to adapt to this and adjust my sleeping schedule for afternoon naps, but right when I layed down the first time, off in the distance a phone rang. Then I heard it. "ДА!" The word 'yes' in Russian echoed through the air like a cannon being fired, commencing a battle. And what a battle it turned out to be. For the next twents minutes, I lay there absolutely defencless and this man spoke without stop into the small handheld device in his giant hand. Goodbye sleep, see you next week.

The Legend

Centuries ago, in the far arctic north stood a lonely mountain. To an outsider, this may have seemed just like another geographical landmark, but to the locals, it was something far more sinister. For on this mountain lived a giant and terrifying dragon, and every once in a while, he would swoop down from his nesting place and raid the local farms, steeling the livestock for his meals. For years, there was nothing the towns people could do. Swords and arrows were no match for the fire-breathing beast.

But as time passed, the people's technology grew stronger and stronger, and soon the dragon went from hunter to hunted. He knew he needed to act quickly in order to survive, so he decided to adapt. If he could no longer defeat the humans, he would try to become one of them. He would disguise himself as a person and try to make a living in the buisness world. But as expected, it was a bit of a difficult transition. Based on appearence, he seemed quite person-like, but every once in a while, some of his old dragon traits come back (especially during sleep).

Papa Vegas

  • Location of meeting: Moscow Russia
  • Home: Las Vegas, NV, USA
  • Description: A very big man with glasses and short, thinning hair. He has a loud voice that carries, similar to that of a sporting announcer and is most likely in his early 50s.
  • Characteristics: Very talkative, yet a friendlyand warm personality. Can easily draw people around and become the center of attention.

My Encounter

One December evening, I came back to the hostel after a long day at work. It had been a standard day so far, nothing out of the ordinary. That was until I opened the door and walked in the hostel's common room. There he sat in the center of the room, a larger man roughly in his 50s with a big booming voice. He was quite unlike the standard quiet and reserved Russian guest as he quickly introduced himself and did not hesitate to make his presence known by grabbing everyone's attention through story, just like a seasoned entertainer. It was no surprise to find out that not only was this man an American, but that he was also from Las Vegas.

Over the next week, Papa Vegas (as he came to be known) saw to is that no one ever sat in silence. If he was in the room, within seconds, you would be drawn into conversation, often without even realizing it, as he had this uncanny ability to charm and relate to people. Even when it came to me and I previously mentioned living in Providence RI, he happened to recall the entire city, as if by photographic memory, and drew me into a discussion about the neighborhood Fox Point. It felt like talking to an old friend from long ago, which, I guess, is the skill of a true entertainer.

The Legend

Once upon a time in the not so distant past, the fabled Nevada city, known to the world as Las Vegas, was about to collapse into itself. The various mob families, Nevada politicians, and Federal Gaming Commission that had held the city together for so many years was starting to become undone. There was no longer any bond of trust, tensions were at an all time high, and organized crime related hits were up 70% from years past. Something needed to be done to bring all the sides back together, and something needed to be done fast.

It was at this time, one of the mob family patriarchs got an idea. Word had been traveling around the city about this new entertainer in town. He was said to have a big booming voice, highly relatable personality, and was able to incorporate a little bit of everything (i.e. magic, acrobatics, animal tricks, music, dance) into his performances. Maybe this guy could be the solution to bring everyone together again. The mob patriarch decided to take the chance, and, staking his entire reputation on the line, made the suggestion they all go to a performance. To his surprise, they all agreed.

The day of the show, the mob patriarch was in a nervous frenzy. What if the show wasn't any good? What if no one liked it and everything got worse? Vegas as a whole would be doomed! Then the show began... and within seconds, all of his fears were put to rest. The entertainer gave the performance of a lifetime, and had such a open and friendly personality, none of the feuding groups could be mad at each other any longer. After the show they reconciled their differences and the city was saved.

As for the entertainer, he soon dropped his given name and adopted a new and more fitting stage name: Pappa Vegas. He now travels the world, easing tensions in the most heavily conflicted areas with his personality and entertainment.