For a guy who was Chachi, you’d think he’d have some real world skills.
Yet there he stood, directly in front of me at the little “validate your parking ticket kiosk” in the movie theater last night, unshaven and disheveled — attemping over and over again to get his ticket validated. But when he couldn’t see what the machine had done to his card after inserting and removing it — he seemed a little bit confounded.
He looked at me. Looked at my ticket. I brought it close to my chest, protecting it.
He looked back at the machine, looked back at his ticket, and looked back at me.
Scott Baio: This damn thing doesn’t work, does it?
Me: Don’t know. Let me see your ticket.
He shoved it in my face and I looked at it. Indeed, a small bar code had been printed on the outer edge of the ticket (something I didn’t yet have on mine). His ticket was-
Scott Baio: Really? How do you know?
Me: See, here’s mine… And here’s yours. What’s different between the two?
Scott Baio: Look, I’m no idiot. Don’t treat me like one.
His unshaven face combined with his frustration wiped clean the satisfying years of watching the Pre-O.C. wrist-band wearing ladies man do his thang on Happy Days. Now he was just a punk, challenging me to a “parking validation” duel.
Me: Fine. Just let me get in there and validate mine.
Scott Baio: Go ahead.
I stepped past the Baio-ster, held up my ticket in front of him (absent of a special added bar code at the edge), put it inside the machine and removed it. Holding it up, the bar code was now present. Baio looked at his, looked at mine. They were now, identical.
Scott Baio: Well, look at that.
Me: Yeah. Look at that.
I turned around, leaving Charles in Charge of accosting the next validation-movie goer to face his wrath, his unshaven-ness and his confusion. I was free of him, for probably the rest of my life.
Happy Days were here again.