The Brockoli: Chronicles

Brockoli

Giving you “unfiltered” and “uncensored” looks at the “real” underbelly of your local community, Brockoli Chronicles tell the story you won’t find anywhere else (because they won’t print it, anywhere else).

Waiting in lines is a part of life. For food, clothes or entertainment, you can always find hordes of people standing in single file. Most people carry on without thinking twice, wasting the precious minutes of their lives staring at the back of others’ heads, shuffling their feet little by little towards their old age. But Chad Booler, a 28-year-old St. Catharines native believes that waiting in lines, much like eating vegetables and using an indoor voice, is for suckers.

Booler is a type of unicorn by today’s standards. Thousands of years of our society making practice of linear queuing made absolutely no impression on his logical processes, with the very concept of forming a lineup making about as much sense to him as trying to count to green. I decided to tag along with Booler on an average day, to experience the freedoms of his lineless lifestyle.

I met Booler outside of his apartment on Glenridge Ave at 9:00 a.m., suggesting that we go grab a couple coffees to start the day. As I was driving, he remarked that he missed being able to drive around, and that he used to love cars.

“What happened?” I asked.

“I realized one day that all this traffic was just one big lineup on the road,” he said. “So I decided to go around it. I honestly didn’t see anything wrong with it, but the people kept yelling and screaming about their backyards. Buncha uptights took my license away.”

The morning rush was in full swing at Tim Horton’s as we pulled into the parking lot. I headed towards the front door when Booler grabbed my arm, leading me towards the back of the building instead. He could undoubtedly see the confused look on my face, as he offered up an answer to clear any misconceptions about what was going on.

“Don’t worry, I’ve got a guy.”

He knocked on the unmarked back door three times and almost immediately, a slovenly looking young man poked his head out holding up a tray with two drinks.

“Thanks, Lane.”

I barely had time to react before we were off to our next stop, a dentist appointment. I figured I would park at the back of the building, as I was sensing a theme to the day, but Booler calmly and confusingly walked to the front of the building towards the door. He stopped and looked up.

“Give me a boost, will ya?” he said to me.

“Are you serious?” I asked, feeling like a criminal.

“Oh yes. Come on now.”

He climbed into the open second floor window and pulled me up after him, leaving us standing in the middle of a dentist’s office. Within seconds, the doctor came in smiling and asking how Chad was. I was baffled. My preprogrammed genetics were misfiring with the thought of bypassing lines, and here he was making practice of it.

Post-dentist, Booler directed me to our last stop of the day, a Wal-Mart where he needed to purchase a toothbrush and peanut butter.

“At least there isn’t a line here to get in,” I said.

“Doesn’t matter,” Booler said. “Come with me, I got a guy.”

“But I don’t think we really need-“

Booler interrupted me with the piercingly loud “caw-caw” call of a crow, as a small rope ladder was thrown down from the roof. I watched Booler expertly climb up and, bewildered, I followed. He nodded at the woman on the roof in tacit understanding and motioned for me to join him in sliding down an open air-vent, which I learned would empty us out into the children’s clothing section of Wal-Mart.

“I haven’t waited in a line in five years,” he bellowed across the store with uncontainable pride.

Booler does what any sane person wants to do, but couldn’t bring themselves to do. Booler is free. He takes the generally accepted rules and agreements that society has worked towards building and spits on them, laughing at their inability to control him. While the rest of us waste away in linear formation, Chad Booler lives the lineless life.

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