One beautiful Baltiless morning, I was walking from one building to another on my employer's campus. On a tray, I was carrying a styrofoam cooler with a test tube rack sticking out of the top, some pipets and some vials of liquid. In short, it looked pretty much exactly like a science experiment, which it was, and pretty much nothing like something to eat, which it was not.
A disheveled elderly man was walking towards me down the sidewalk. His face was red, his gray hair yellowed and sticking up in all directions. His massive grin displayed most of his remaining teeth. As I approached, he began to grin even more widely and slowed from an amble to a slow wander. Soon he had stopped walking entirely and stood directly in front of me, looking me full in the face with an ecstatic grin. What could I do? I paused too.
He cheerfully announced "I watch that show, Ace of Cakes!"
I answer "Oh really?", attempting to convey surprise, dismay, profound disinterest and l'esprit du please-leave-me-alone while also making him aware that he was breaching social etiquette, all in just two words. It didn't seem to work.
"Yeah! Do you?" he asked. I was forced to admit that I did not. "Well, I watch that show" he explained enthusiastically, "and I thought you was carryin' one-a them fancy cakes, but now I see you ain't." The excitement was palpable.
I acknowledged that I ain't and started walking again. He remained in place as I passed and turned to watch me go, carrying my fancy cake.