The General’s Need for Knowledge

I’ve mentioned him in passing before

The North Korean General who we turned for his military secrets …

That now purports to work in my office building feigning the occupation as a proprietor of a tailor shop.

We came to the conclusion he is actually a commie General since …

Though it’s his tailor shop,

No one has ever seen him working,

Yet after five years,

He’s still in business.

Instead, it seems he is in the business of collecting information and passing it along,

And he’s good at it.

The person we always go to if we want to know anything about anybody or anything in our little section of downtown.

Actually, he’s a decent guy, not bad at all for a commie General,

Though we are convinced he’s killed people in his past.

Now as part of his information acquiring routine,

He’s always standing outside the building smoking a cigarette, talking with the construction crew building the parking garage next to our building, new art museum (why?? WHY ??? Why do we need a new art museum ??) across the street, or just passer-by’s in general.

He’s not afraid to ask anyone questions,

And does he ever ask the questions !!!

Collecting information … that’s what he does.

If not smoking,

He’s at the coffee shop next door,

Doing the same thing …

Sitting there,

Listening …

Or piping up when he wants to be blunt.

Sometimes he trades for information … “I’ll tell you who he’s sleeping with, but you have to give me some knowledge in return“,

But most of the time he just takes it for free.

On the rare chance he’s in his store,

He’s still not tailoring …

But running through his collection of illegals that he trades in as a side business.

Honest to gawd, each week he has a new “apprentice” tailor …

Always an attractive young woman who does not speak a lick of American,

And never returns the following Monday.

Damn … he has a pretty good life in the witness protection program.

Anyways …

The past several months, he’s been very frustrated about identifying the whereabouts of Joe Hairdy.

It started earlier this year after he and some of the regulars at the coffee shop saw “some attorney with a pony tail” walking into our building.

Who was that?” He asked relentlessly, cornering me often as I was entering our building or demanding an answer furiously each morning when I stopped into the coffee shop for my regular cup o’ joe.

We know they’re a lawyer,” he said, confirming that others in the coffee shop recognized the person as an attorney, “but no one can remember their name.

Hell, I don’t know,” I said probably 2 dozen times over a 4 week period, “I’ll have to ask Shaft if he was working with them.

Near the end, he was simply getting darn right angry with me … I was clearly withholding information he wanted, and we both knew it.

But then I disappeared two months ago …

Ceasing my downtown presence while isolating myself at Dagobah.

Well, early last week, the General cornered Shaft inquiring about my whereabouts.

Where is Joe?” he demanded.

What do you mean, he’s around, he’s just been busy,” Shaft tossed back at him.

No he hasn’t, no one has seen him. Not around here, not getting coffee. Where is he?” He reasserted.

Yeah he has, he’s been around.” Shaft answered, rationalizing it as a non-lie as I had been there … just after hours and on the weekend.

Now obviously, the General is one of the reasons that I’ve been avoiding going into the office …

Because the second he confirms,

It’ll be broadcast around the world.


Within 10 minutes Kim Chong-il will probably be mentioning to someone …

Say, did you hear Joe is having a sex change?

Who is Joe?

I don’t know, but the General just called me with the information.

Well, Thursday of last week, we had some issues going down in the office where it would just be easier if I was there to discuss it with the others (our lease was up and we were in the process of deciding what to do … should we stay or should we go) …

So I felt it would make sense to leave Dagobah and go into the office,

Despite knowing that the General would be on the lookout.

Well, Thursday went well …

I didn’t see him once,

And it was really nice to actually be around Shaft & Co.,

Doing what we normally do …

Argue, mock ourselves, mock others, and laugh,

Not necessarily in that order.

So Friday I figured …

What the heck,

I’ve got one client to meet and I was going to do a housecall for that,

But I could probably just ask them to come down to my office …

And hey, it’d be easier for me.

Well …

Entry into the building during the morning was uneventful,

But then we left for lunch …


Well, that’s a risk situation.

Because you’re exiting the building blind …

Unable to see if the General is standing by his basement entry door looking up to see what was going on at sidewalk level.

And of course,

On Friday afternoon …

He was,

And we made dead-on eye contact.

Now one of the things we learn in girl school (calm down people, I’m just was being facetious about girl school) …

Is how to gracefully, quickly, while conveying disinterest …

Extract oneself from accidental eye contact situations with guys.

Yeah, yeah, yeah …

I know,

You’re saying …

When has Amy ever not struck up a conversation with a guy with whom she’s made accidental eye contact?

Well, granted …

It doesn’t happen often, as I tend to be friendly …

But if the guy is drunk or obviously a jerk,

I have utilized the tactic.

And I did in this encounter with the General …

While proceeding on my way to meet up with Shaft for lunch.

I had no idea if he made any recognition …

But in order to make the whole “graceful, quick, disinterested” move work …

You have to believe in it,

Moving onward without hesitation or a look back.

Too funny …


You gotta love the predictability of the General …

I knew I couldn’t go two days without running into him.

And then,

Later in the afternoon …

As I was leaving for the day,

I exited the building as I always do,

And made the quick glance out of the corner of my eye to see if the General was out smoking again …

Nope, nada …

He wasn’t by his basement door.

So I made my way to the parking garage …

And just as a got to the corner of our building,

Out of the adjacent alley I hear …

ooooeee, ooooooee, ooooooeee

And see the General smiling, waving and walking towards me,

From his alley hiding place.

Oh well, let’s see …

How shall I respond?

I know …

I’ll go with the bluff,

Not respond to the name and just see if I can ignore and walk my way out of this.

So I continued walking down the sidewalk as he made his way towards me.

Moments later,

We intersected at the sidewalk,

With him cutting me off,

Stepping right in front of me.

Moe, Moe, Moe !” He yells as he waves to some guy across the street.

Hehe … sweet.

So I step around the General,

With a bit of attitude because he did rudely cut me off,

And didn’t even say “Excuse me” or “I’m sorry.”

So I tossed out an annoyed eye roll,

With complimentary upper lip sneer,

As I walked between him and his friend Moe on the other side of the street with whom he was attempting to carry on a conversation.


I have no idea if he put 2 and 2 together,

But for the luv of gawd,

He certainly got two really good views of me to make the connection …

One with eye contact,

And one where we actually bumped into one another.

But the way I look at it is …

Either he finally figured it out, or …

I had a leading role in one of his phreaky fantasies that night.

And I for one,

Am more disturbed with the latter ! 🙂

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  1. Funny story Amy-wan….hiding out in the degobah system learning the ways of the force…too funny, you know, after reading this post, the image that springs to mind when I think about the North Korean General is what the bar owner in Good Morning Vietnam looked like….if you’ve seen the movie, you’ll know what I’m talking about.

    I have to agree with Makenna though – you look fab (bitch) 🙂


  2. It sounds like The general is a Garek wannabee – like Garek on “Deep Space Nine”, except Garek could actually tailor clothing.

  3. Early on, we thought our building was haunted, based upon some after hours creepy occurances. Now we know the moaning was just the General’s slave trade in the basement.

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