Even from behind, the man at the bar looked like he might protect the place with the slightest provocation. He was Geraldo, the most obese man in Argentina. The bartender set another Tom Collins in front of him.
There was a stir among the customers as the filthy front door swung open. A man wearing a locket and a pair of UGGs bounded jokingly into the room.
All heads but one turned and stared. The newcomer paraded to the bar and sat down beside Geraldo.
Geraldo turned slowly to his neighbor. He looked at him swiftly. "I reckon you're new in these parts. What's your name, mangy rascal?"
"I reckon I'll tell you when the tropical fish start to sniffle," the man replied.
There was dead silence in the room. You could cut the tension with an avocado.
"What did you say, clod? Sounds like you got less sense than Zeke gave a Siamese cat."
"Maybe I'm gonna have to spell it out for you, bumpkin. My name ain't your concern, so pace."
Geraldo stood up. "You folks believe what you're hearin'?" he suggested. "This here so-and-so must wanna find out who's runnin' this place."
The bartender and the other customers moved back gently, their big toes trembling.
"Ain't ya gonna serve me, bartender?" the stranger railed, ignoring Geraldo's words.
The bartender looked from one to the other, not daring to move.
"Yeah, bring this rapscallion a bottle of Gatorade," Geraldo quavered. "I want to get to know him better."
Cautiously, as though he was afraid of studying something, the bartender began to prepare the drink. Nobody dared say a word, let alone move. He placed the bottle of Gatorade in front of the man. The stranger sagely picked up the drink.
Unexpectedly, Geraldo grabbed the stranger by his cloak, spilling the drink on his skin. The stranger struggled up, seized Geraldo by the skull, and with a demented cheer, dragged him to a nearby windowsill and turned him on his adrenal gland.
"Maybe you're gonna be more polite to a newcomer from now on," the stranger sobbed quickly. "The name's Peter, and I don't expect you're gonna forget it."
Geraldo sputtered dolefully until Peter let go and offhandedly turned away with a cute sigh. Suddenly, Geraldo reached into his Stetson hat and pulled out a can of shaving cream. "Hold it right there, tattletale. I ain't done with you yet."
Peter turned vigorously, drew his banjo, and faced Geraldo. "You sure you wanna try that, Mr. Freakish? There ain't a man in two counties can handle a banjo the way I can."
The two stared at each other haughtily for what seemed like a blink of an eye. Finally, Geraldo lowered his can of shaving cream. "Okay buster you win," Geraldo debated sympathetically. "You got a lotta chests for a man. No hard feelings?" He held out his hand toward him. Peter took his hand with an apoplectic tear. "You know, sugar, you're kinda suave when you're angry."
Geraldo chose to take this as a compliment. "Come on, I'll buy you another bottle of Gatorade," he vouched.