“words—
lonely written words—are all you’ve got”

—Virginia Shea

“communication happens when I know you know what I know”

—Me

This is so politically incorrect

My co-worker Robert has a brilliantly fast and accurate mind, which makes him perfect for his job as a software developer. I can ask in the most obscure UNIX question and he can answer me with exactly what I need. He has this uncanny ability to begin a story about something, diverge to other subjects for five minutes and somehow regain his train of thought and relate everything together.

While we were having lunch Wednesday I saw him getting distracted while telling one of his stories and then his eyes started to water a little as he struggled keep talking.

I could tell he was looking at something. He was facing the counter at the restaurant and I was facing him with my back to the counter. His speech started slowing and then he sort of cocked his head to the right as if he were solving a problem. He processes information so fast that for him to have to take time to solve a problem is very, very unusual.

“What are you looking at?”

“Waaait for it,” he said. That’s a common phrase for him. Then he said, “OK, turn around.”

I turned around and looked at the counter. I saw what had made him completely derail from what he had been saying. Then I turned back toward him.

“Is that a Halloween costume or does that person have two heads?”

“Those are Siamese twins,” he said and he was still flummoxed. I had had a brief glance but he had been able to see and study much more. “There’s something you don’t see everyday!” That’s another one of Robert’s quips.

Later, I went to wash my hands and as I headed toward the restroom I passed the table with the twins. Sure enough, I saw what appeared to be two teenage girls sharing a body.

At the office we told our story and Jennifer knew exactly who we had seen. They are two girls, Abby & Brittany Hensel, who had just graduated high school nearby and are fairly well-known in Minnesota. Jennifer also corrected us: not Siamese Twins but rather conjoined twins. Noted.

A little bit of research later and I found this YouTube video online. They are very sweet girls and incredibly well-natured.

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