At first glance, my friend Riley seems normal. He lives in a normal neighborhood. His wife and two children seem normal enough. But if you spend more than fifteen minutes with him, you would notice something wasn't quite right.
One day I asked to borrow his weedeater. He grimaced so strongly I reached for my cell phone to call 911. But after a pause, though his grimace never quite left, he said, "Look, my weedeater isn't really a weedeater."
"But I saw you using it to eat weeds last week."
"That was a cover."
"Cover for what?"
"Can I trust you?" His eyes darted to his garage and back at me.
"I'm pretty sure I can handle a basic weedeater."
"That's what I'm telling you." He leaned closer to me and raised a finger to make his point. He whispered, "My weedeater is more than what it seems. Can I trust you to not say anything to anyone?"
"About your weedeater?"
"Listen, my weedeater is really an antenna so I can talk to the space station."
"Right. I hook it up to my tool box."
"No, really. I'm dead serious." He poked me in the gut with his finger.
"I think there are only Russians up there now," I said.
"Trotski bulloski monotrilutski."
"That was Russian?"
"Don't tell anyone."
"Does this mean I can't use your weedeater?"