Run Forrest Run

[dropcap]R[/dropcap]un Forrest!” the tour guide shouted.

I looked up from my book. Sure enough, I saw him. A man in a red Bubba Gump cap and Nikes – running. He sprinted through Chippewa Square like the Devil was after him. A tour bus of applauding people trailed behind.

“Look,” the tour guide said. “It’s Forrest Gump!”

When Forrest passed me, he bumped my sidewalk table. My hot coffee dumped right into my lap.It scalded me in a particularly sensitive region of my being.

A few minutes later, Forrest wandered back to me with his hat in his hands.

“Gosh,” he said. “I’m sorry, I don’t know what to say.

I stood up and shook his hand.

He sighed. “I’ve been performing this tour two years. That’s never happened before. Can you forgive me?”

Of course I could.

Though my unborn children might not.

Forrest’s real name is Ben. He’s an actor from Atlanta. He’s been playing the part of Forrest Gump for tourists long enough to be sick of it. What Ben really wants is to leave Savannah and break into the Broadway scene. But that’s easier said that done. He’s already tried.

Three times.

“Uh oh.” He looked at his wristwatch. “Another bus is coming. Quick,” he said. “Smile and wave.”

Another tour bus rounded the corner. Ben flashed a smile and gave his best Forest Gump wave.

“Look folks,” the tour guide said. “There’s Forest Gump, he’s chatting with a friend.” The tour guide covered her mouth. “Oh my God, it looks like his friend has…”

“Pardon my friend.” Forrest elbowed me. “He drank too much Dr. Pepper.”

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