I never paid much attention to bottle caps before I met Lauren. When I was growing up, my mother purchased six packs of bottled soda and hid them in the laundry room. The bottle caps were faded, scuffed, and seemingly recycled -- in other words, nothing much to look at. I went to college in St. Louis, a decidedly Budweiser town. Most parties revolved around coolers packed with canned Bud Lights. Again, bottle caps were either absent or an afterthought.
How times have changed. Now, I scrutinize, seek out, and admire bottle caps weekly with Lauren. I scan the aisles of bodegas and grocery stores, request caps at bars, and even scan street corners for stray crowns. It's gotten to the point where the other night, I had my first dream of bottle caps. I was walking to the subway on my way to work, and right there, next to the subway steps, I spotted the largest bottle cap I'd ever seen. It was red, undented, and as round as a dinner plate. The top read simply, in the same font as a Coke crown: "Large Bottle Cap." After retrieving it, I asked someone if he knew what it was for, and he told me that Fritos now came in capped bottles. I was so eager to tell Lauren about my new chip-bottle cap that I skipped the subway and headed back to the apartment. Unfortunately, as happens in many dreams, I was diverted somewhere along the way and somehow ended up in my hometown.
So, what's the point of this story? There might not be one, really, except perhaps that bottle caps have thoroughly penetrated my subconscious. Anyway, I might not have been able to give Lauren the large chip bottle cap from my dream, but I recently took a work trip to Washington DC, and snagged her a pirate-themed bottle cap from Heavy Seas beer. As you can see, the bartender badly mangled it. Normally, I'd toss it, but who wouldn't want a skull-and-crossbones crown, even a dented one?
P.S. Lauren here! I couldn't let this post go by without telling my absolute favorite pirate joke. (It's terrible. Just go with it.)
"I just found out that there is a new pirate movie coming out. I don't know much about it, except that it's rated Arrrrrr!"