Fulano for real

I’m reading Locos by  Felipe Alfau (a wonderful book I’ll be reviewing and recommending her soon).

It begins with a story about a man named Fulano whom nobody ever notices, no matter how many times or how loudly he introduces himself. Today at the local town swimming pool I met him for real, in the form of a 10 year old boy who insists that everyone is his friend, even though they all ignore him desperately. They boy follows other kids around in the pool as they swim away from him. He speaks in a weird Peter-Lorre-like voice which is startling coming from a pale, freckled red-headed kid. “Do you know my name?” he asks the fleeing swimmers, but they dive under water pretending not to hear him. It’s pathetic, and you feel sorry for him, until he places himself directly in your lane when you’re trying to do laps, and he attempts to introduce himself to you as well. Then the pity ends and you just want the brat to get out of your way.


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