MILWAUKEE, WI–Raymond Adebayo is an eager, welcoming, and gracious host. He frequently holds game nights, dinner parties, brunches, sleepovers, bible studies, and various other events at his luxury condo in the city. Raymond’s guests over the years have ranged everything from college friends to family members, work buddies, girlfriends, plumbers, and Mormons. All in all, his warmth has been met with equally respectful behavior from his guests.
Last month, a woman named Fay moved into the condo next door. Raymond had met her in passing, even helping her move a few boxes inside, and he meant to follow up with her ever since. Life got in the way, and it wasn’t until this past weekend that Raymond finally hosted Fay for dinner and to welcome her into the neighborhood. Things started friendly and fun as Raymond learned that she was from Oregon, and the two bonded over a shared interest in watching The Office and using the Internet. What are the chances they would have so much in common?
However, as Raymond prepared dinner, Fay overstepped her welcome. While looking for silverware to help set the dinner table, she carelessly opened Raymond’s special drawer. It was a struggle at first because the drawer was jammed full, but Fay eventually managed to jostle it open after a few attempts. She clicked her tongue with surprise as she found the drawer filled to capacity with old packets of hot sauce, ketchup, mayonnaise, honey mustard, Chick-fil-A sauce, and various other fast food condiments. Distracted by his cooking, Raymond didn’t notice at first, but when he did, he screamed out, “whoa, whoa, those are collector’s items!” He shoved Fay out of the way and gingerly closed the drawer. She was confused and offended by Raymond’s reaction, but the two carried on with dinner amicably, neither making mention of the incident. They discussed politics, religion, and the troops over stir fry, though both had the hostile encounter burning a hole on the back of their brains.
By the time dinner ended, Raymond had finally simmered down. He decided he owed Fay an explanation, so he invited her to sit on the couch while he retrieved something from his special drawer. Raymond sat down next to Fay and held out a 2002 Taco Bell Fire Sauce packet. Misreading the gesture, Fay slowly reached for the packet, though Raymond abruptly refused her advances, “no touchy.” Keeping a cooler head this time around, Raymond took a deep breath and continued, “that’s a mint condition, first edition Taco Bell Fire Sauce. I bought it after I found out my sister was actually my mom. So, it holds a lot of sentimental value, too.” Fay immediately understood and offered her apology. He forgave her.
With everything out in the open, Raymond spent the next three hours breaking down his investment strategy with the packets. The plan is to keep collecting over the next five years, then stow away the condiments for several decades, allowing their value to appreciate. Then, Raymond will sell them all and retire in Hawaii. Fay was quite impressed, and the two grew very close during the evening. Raymond had never opened up to anyone about his condiments, and he couldn’t help but feel a weight lifted off his shoulders.
As Fay readied herself to leave, they made plans to hang out again next weekend. Until Fay accidentally stepped on a McDonald’s ranch dressing, breaking the seal and smashing it beyond repair. Raymond chewed her out and refused to let her leave without giving him $20.