Waiting for Godot is an absurdist play by Samuel Beckett in which two characters wait endlessly for the arrival of some guy named Godot who never shows.
I have never seen this play as I’m fearful I may have to wait for the plot to start too.
However, I can relate to the mania associated with the concept of an extended (perhaps futile) wait. In my case, I’ve spent over two years since I moved to Naples, Florida waiting for an encounter with part-time Naples resident, Judge Judy Sheindlin.
I’ll admit it—I am obsessed with my Naples, Florida neighbor, Judge Judy: the brains, the wit, the sharp tongue, the lace collar, and yes, the humanity.
In this case, the “two characters” involved in my (to date) fruitless wait for Judge Judy are me and my friend, Kim Hagan, who shares my obsession with her royal judgeship.
Though Kim and I have been told Judge Judy frequents HomeGoods on Tamiami Trail, there’s actually a limit to the number of hours they will allow one to wait for an unlikely Judge Judy appearance. As much as I love me some HomeGoods, they are pretty much forced to ask you to leave eventually. Besides, how many decorative vases and throw rugs do Judge Judy (or I) really need anyway?
My friend Ellen suggested Kim and I try spending more time searching for Judy at iHOP, but I think Ellen only said that because she knows I’m happiest when surrounded by multiple platters of breakfast food making my “Judicious” wait time a touch more bearable.
I’m also not sure if it’s possible for me to actually rack up more hours at iHOP than I already do.
It was also suggested that Kim and I try to bump into Judge Judy by going food shopping at Fresh Market.
Two problems, I don’t cook and that would cut into my iHOP time. Next!
Most of the reported Judy sightings in Naples seem to have taken place at an assortment of eating establishments. Yes, a very useful search tip as I eat too, but what kind of budget would it require for Kim and I to gobble our way through a cacophony of Naples eateries in hopes of finding Judge Judy nibbling on fresh calamari? I must confess to having some serious monetary concerns over the successful execution of this (otherwise brilliant) plan.
Kim and I briefly considered concocting a story whereby Kim would sue me over some sort of trailer-rent/baby-daddy issue but, at 50, both Kim and I are fearful that the ever-meticulous Judy would force us to produce an actual BABY and that ain’t gonna happen.
Some people I know were quite surprised I chose to celebrate Judge Judy as part of my professional courtesy initiative, rediscovercourtesy.org, but I stand firm behind that decision. It’s not like Judy is subtle about displaying her real feelings on her show. After all, there’s a fine line between honesty and courtesy and if you’re not telling Judge Judy Sheindlin the truth, God help you. Besides, how many times have I gazed into Judy’s televised eyes and seen that exasperated look that essentially says: “so you’re really going to ruin a 20-year-friendship over $268 and ownership of a lawn-mover bag?”
Based on some of the plaintiffs and defendants I have seen enter her courtroom, I’m not actually sure how Judge Judy manages to remain as polite as she does. When one’s desire to be on TV trumps their need to be a human being, I say they deserve what’s coming to them. Like Judge Judy, I do not suffer fools well and yet, as my Attack Bunnies columns have proven, I frequently play the fool in my own life. Gotta love irony.
Besides, I love a ballsy woman—well, a woman who tells it like it is and, at the same time, remains a lady. Yes, I still find it admirable when a woman chooses to maintain a ladylike disposition, as Judy does, just as I attempt to be a gentleman as much as possible. To be fair, there are those who would be quick to site my failings in the gentlemanly behavior department—I have an x-wife, after all.
And though I realize I have an ever-so-slight tendency to prattle on and on (and on) when I get excited and this predisposition could land me in a metaphorical “Judyjail” should we meet in person, it’s worth the risk. Even if I say something that results in a severe admonishment by J.J., I would be grateful for the tongue lashing as long as it came from beloved Judy.
Though many people may have desperately wanted to throw their hands up in the air and scream at me to be quiet, Judge Judy Sheindlin could easily pull off this enviable task. Regardless of her choice of words to fire in my direction, I would still stand there with a smile so bright it could be used as a substitute power source for both Cape Coral and Estero, Florida.
Judy, if you’re reading this (and why on earth would be you be), please look me up. A middle-aged, ovulating Kim just called and told me it was time to seriously consider the baby-daddy option.
Marketing guru, business humorist, professional-courtesy advocate, branded-content writer, creative-development consultant, and entertaining motivational speaker Randall Kenneth Jones is the creator of RediscoverCourtesy.org and the president of MindZoo, a marketing communications firm in Naples, Florida.