Perfect Strangers: Selections from the diary of Larry Appleton

July 22 1986

What a day. I was baking Madeleines for book club when I heard a knock at the door. I secretly hoped it was the buxom redhead from across the hall. Alas, it was some guy named Balki claiming he’s a distant cousin of mine who just got off the boat. He asked if he could “crash my couch”. I was about to call the cops when he produced a picture of me with Aunt Myrtle, so I let him in.

July 29 1986

Well, it’s been a week and he hasn’t stolen anything, touched me inappropriately or threatened my life. Plus he cooks and cleans. Looks like I won’t need to make that call to INS after all.

August 1 1986

Holy shit, I think he’s a got a woman out there. I don’t know whether I should be impressed or jealous. Either way, I haven’t seen a real live naked woman since that lady in 14C across the street changed with her blinds open.

August 5 1986

Two weeks and, I must admit, he’s growing on me. He gets me out of the apartment for more than work and book club. Like last night we went to a bar and I talked to a woman. (Note to self: Find out more about this Bartender character.) He also took me to the gym and I didn’t break into a cold sweat or hyperventilate when I touched a weight. Plus, he’s hilarious. It’s his naïveté – and these silly little catch phrases, “Where did I come up with these?” and, “Don’t be ridiculous” – that people laugh at, but so what, he’s a riot.

August 13 1986

I’M IN LOVE. I saw her at the gym this morning. She’s straight out of a Jane Fonda workout tape. From the tights to the perm to the hot bod. I don’t think she spotted me though. It’s probably because I was so busy sculpting my glutes. Anyway, I was planning on talking to her, but the only thing I could come up with was my laundry list, so I let it go.

August 19 1986

I’ve upped my workout regime to 5 days a week in hopes of catching another glimpse of the future Mrs. Appleton but she has yet to return. Maybe she’s got the flu. There’s a lot of that going around right now. Not that I would ever wish illness upon her, but I hope that’s the case as opposed to my bigger fear that she started dated the handsome guy who’s always hanging around the water fountain. I hope she knows he rarely works out; that he’s just here to pick up, nay, prey on women. I should probably say something to him. Although it would be safer if I just reported him to the manager.

August 23 1986

I woke up today and found Balki naked. Again. This cannot keep happening. He is one hairy S.O.B. And that package is intimidating.

August 26 1986

GREATEST. DAY. EVER. The Jane Fonda Goddess lives in my building. We rode together on the elevator and she asked me what floor I live on then pushed the button for me. I wanted to ask her why she hadn’t been to gym lately but she doesn’t know I know we belong to the same gym, and I didn’t want to come across as a perv. So I just stared at the floor. She got off two floors below me and said, “Have a nice evening.” She has the voice of an angel. I jizzed in my pants.

Sept. 1 1986

Somehow Balki and I ended up across the hall at the redhead’s Labor Day party. We’ve never spoken but she and Balki seem pretty chummy. She was laughing at everything he said, and his hands were all over her. Maybe it was the booze. I know I had like three wine spritzers. And there were all these people asking me if I wanted to do a rail, whatever that is. Anyway, I guess the wine went to my head because Balki told me I passed out in the kitchen. He was also kind enough to tell me Jane Fonda showed up to find me like that. Real smooth Lawerence. Real smooth.

Sept. 2 1986

Balki wasn’t here when I woke up but I ran into him as I was leaving for work COMING OUT OF THE REDHEAD’S APARTMENT. That dog. How does he do it? His English is passable at best. And that nose. You could play hide and seek under it. It must be that package. Oh well. At least someone’s getting some around here.

Sept. 13 1986

She came into the store today but I couldn’t face her after the incident at the party so I ran to the back and pretended I was doing inventory. Balki says I have to stop being such a “cat” and just “talk at her already”. So I’ve decided to hang out in the lobby tomorrow and wait for another chance to ride the elevator with her. In case I go blank again, Balki gave me a list of conversation starters.

To be continued…

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5 Responses to “Perfect Strangers: Selections from the diary of Larry Appleton”

  1. Mike Says:

    I remember that show!

    Sort of.

    I was very young.

    Anyways, I still enjoyed this.

  2. unfinished rambler Says:

    I remember this too, Mr. Chowner, but I actually (gasp) enjoyed the show too. 😉

  3. John J Savo, the Authoring Auctioneer Says:

    Funny thing, Chowner. Balki lives here in Northeast, PA now. He does commercials for local banks. In fact, he was just on the local news because he’s fighting with the historical society over moving a gazebo they erected on a piece of his property… LOL

    Stumbled, because this was good. I watched that show religiously.

    BTW, you won the caption contest.

  4. chowner Says:

    Balki is hilarious. He rocked the house as Serge in Beverly Hills Cop, then made an ass of himself on The Surreal Life. I’m glad to hear he’s still up to no good.

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