Sunday, February 22, 2015

Quid pro quo

People for Less Unrest in Marriage (PLUM) -- a completely imaginary think tank developed and contained within the folds of my mind – launched its first semi-actual civic organization, The Train Robber Identification Posse (heretofore known as TRIP).

TRIP held its inaugural meeting last week at a local dining establishment a few towns over, down by the train tracks. Two founding members were present.

Drinks and appetizers were called to order at around 7:45. Parking issues related to three-foot snow banks caused a 15-minute delay in the projected official start time. No officers were elected. However, it was agreed that all dues should be split equitably between the members.

The origin of TRIP was spontaneous and in direct response to its members' significant others' membership in the completely real (if not somewhat unbelievable) civic organization, The Society for the Detection of Horse Thieves, which, for the past 182 years has met annually for the purpose of hobnobbing, eating crustless sandwiches and drinking Manhattans and only incidentally talking about matters of equine importance.

The fact that the Society has not been called upon to track down an actual horse thief in 88 years is beside the point. The fact that members of the Society might spend as many as 10 hours, on a perfectly good Saturday, engaging in frivolity with people who have no impact on their laundry piles, not to mention the perceived lack of quid pro quo … well, that is the point.

What?! We're not proud. We're in need of a timeout and a reason to wear mascara.

Not that TRIP will ever have much in the way of new business.

Turns out most U.S. train robberies reported to authorities since the 1930s were probably fraternity pranks.

And although the restaurant was located within at least 500 yards of fully operational train tracks, not a single train passed the entire length of the confab.

The majority of TRIP's inaugural meeting – which spanned one bottle of Prosecco, a series of appetizers, and two delicious entrees – was spent in the discussion of Old Business, which was held in Executive Session, the minutes of which are not matter of public record). Future meeting options and the prospect of increasing membership were also discussed.

A change of venue was suggested midway through the meeting (at the same time waitstaff began stacking chairs and mopping under tables), seconded and voted unanimously in the affirmative.

The meeting moved to a public house nearby, wherein entertainments might have included a gas fire, a game of checkers, locally brewed craft beers and a mature band performing a lively selection of tracks from the John Hughes classic, “The Breakfast Club.”

Or maybe not … We plan to be liberal with our use of Executive Session.

The next meeting of the Train Robber Identification Posse will likely take place within the next a lunar cycle. Topics open for discussion include: the inclusion of a Train Robbery Movie Trivia round robin, the discussion of any interactions with famous people who played famous train robbers (including Butch Cassidy or the Sundance Kid), and the adoption of an official libation.

The “Train Wreck” sounds like a likely candidate.

All those in favor say, “Ay.”

All opposed? Just you hold your horses.

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