A California man who says he hasn’t been an eyewitness to anything “really interesting or crazy” has complained that he’s never in the right place to give his account.
Brent Pitasek, 34, of Petaluma, California, told a journalist friend that he wishes he could “just one time” be in a position to give his personal take on something newsworthy. “I hang out all over the place, but I’ve got nothing to show for it. I haven’t even gotten mugged.”
“In 34 years, I’ve never been around a life-threatening event, witnessed a shooting or assault, had to Tweet from a dangerous situation,“ Pitasek said. “I’ve never been around when SWAT shows up or been on the road during a high-speed chase or nothing.”
So far, Pitasek believes he has been clipped by fate from ever getting even a portion of his 15 minutes in the glare of public attention. "I can't even get a sound bite," he said.
“Sure, my neighbors wave to me and seem really nice, like you always hear about, but none of them has ever wound up with cadaver dogs sniffing around their yard or shot up a convenience store,” Pitasek said. “I’ve got some great things to say, too. And I bet you anything Jerry Solomon down the street is growing weed in his spare bedroom.”
“I was buying gas one time when I seen a guy hit a fire hydrant not fifteen feet away and run off,” Ptasek said. “But when the news team gets there, what happens? They talk to the lady at the next pump. I step up with my own version of it and all I hear is 'thanks pal, we're covered.' I don’t [expletive] get it.”
Pitasek, who is unemployed, was particularly irked when three Cleveland women were rescued by neighbor Charles Taylor, who was touted as a hero for freeing them from the home where they were held for a decade by kidnapper and deviant Ariel Castro.
“That guy was weird but he had a good way of telling a story,” Pitasek said, pulling from a cigarette. “He’s just eating a hamburger and hears some noise, opens a screen door, and bang, he’s a national hero. That’s dude’s set for life. And don't get me going about that homeless guy with the announcer voice.”
“I sit on my porch and eat McDonald's hamburgers for years and I come up with what? Bupkis.”
“Once, my wife and I found a lost dog, but all everyone went on and on about was how cute he was and how happy his owners were to get him back. It's like I didn't even chase him a hundred blocks with the car door open."
“Even when my mom died my cousin Claire—who nobody in my family even [expletive] likes—was sitting there with her when mom made the most extraordinary, stunningly beautiful and profoundly moving transition from physical form to spirit. Those are Claire’s words. I was in line at CVS.”
Ptasek has lived his life in the third person for so long he feels that even if he did something drastic or heroic, nothing would come of it. “I know I could do it,” he said. “I’ve got all kinds of cool quotes to give, and I can be pretty funny when I want to be.”
“It feels like I’ve just given up a huge chunk of my life.”