Chapter 18


Fri Jun 20, 2003 at 06:11:16 PM EST

Monday night I stopped by the gas station in search of Rolling Rock, which is only fifty cents more a six pack than Busch but tastes almost like Heineken. They were out of it.




I got home, and daughter Patty was sitting on the porch swing with some blond kid. You're three minutes late, she demands. So ground me, I reply.
Patty introduces me to Mike, who's driving a little Honda. Patty's cats need food, so I persuaded her friend to give me a ride to get Patty's cats some food. While I'm at the grocery I get some soda (on sale) and a 12 pack of Rolling Rock.
We get back, and Stoner is in the swing. Patty has to go to work at 5:00, I borrow some Anti Flag CDs from Stoner, and start ripping to wav.
Patty says she doesn't know when she's off work.
About 10:30 I walk down to Rally's where she works, and the place is closed. Some fat guy in a Rally's hat tears out of the parking lot.
She's in trouble.
I walk on home and check, maybe I passed her. Nope. So I leave a note and walk down to Duffy's for a beer.
Before I take two drinks, Patty comes in. The place had been closed, she had been in the back cleaning and just got off, the boss gave her a ride home.
She's off the hook.
Tuesday she goes to work at 4:00. Stoner comes by for his CDs, I talk with him for a while while we listen to some Black Sabbath and Budgie, who Metallica roadied for and covered in their Garage, Inc CD. Stoner had never heard Budgie, and couldn't believe the singer's not a girl.
I stubbed my toe. It felt broken. I probably impressed Stoner with my knowledge of vulgar, obscene language, as I cursed for a full ten minutes without repetition or redundancy.
I have Stoner drop me by Dempsey's, it'll be dead there but I can chat with Mandy.
Mandy has Tuesday off. The airheaded chick is working. She has some diamond thing hanging from her belly button. If she had a veil I'd think she was a belly dancer. I compliment her on the jewelry.
I walk around downtown for a while. I walk by Marley's Rock House is playing at Marley's Saturday. They're friends that I haven't seen in a couple of years. Eddie McCann, the singer, used to live down the street from me when I lived on Reservoir; we've both moved. His house was right next door to the crack house that the gangsters who couldn't shoot straight lived in.
Oh, you haven't heard about that... well, ten years ago when it happened, it wasn't the nicest of neighborhoods. Like I said, the house next to Ed was a crack house with Crips living there. Early one evening I hear what sounds like a string of firecrackers going off down the street.
Then I hear sirens. I walk outside to see what's going on, and all the neighbors are outside, also looking around to see what's going on. A police car races down the street doing maybe 90 miles per hour, becoming airborne as it crosses the railroad tracks at 13th street..
There had been a gunfight, with a dozen Crips and a dozen Bloods shooting at each other, outside, in public, in the light of day. A white man who lived across the street from Ed was shot in the back, trying to rush his two small daughters inside. He lived, but it cost him his job, his health, and much more.
Everybody who lived in the crack house was arrested. It mysteriously burned down a few days later. I read in the paper a few months afterward that the shooter who almost killed the innocent bystander was sentenced to two years. If he d been caught with drugs instead of shooting at people he would have been in the pen for ten.
There's something seriously wrong with the laws in this country!
Anyway, Eddie is playing at Marley's Saturday. Rock House Rocks, I'm looking forward to it.
I go back to Dempsey s, and Mandy shows up, but not to work. Talk about committed to one's job! Especially a 2nd job... a beer or two later and it's time to go home. I'd hoped that Heather would show up, but I don't know why I thought she would. I'll probably never see her again.
The next day my foot hurt like hell. I limped in to work, but I stayed home that evening.
Thursday morning there was a note on the table from Patty: Please wake me up before you go to work. Seems her mother is going to take her to get her driver's license.
In the middle of the afternoon, my phone rings. It's my daughter, outside calling from the cell phone, wanting some money. I tell her I don't have any, she says write Mom a check.
So I go outside to face the Evil-X. It's been a few weeks since I've had the displeasure.
The white PT is out there, Patty driving, X in the passenger seat. And oh my GOD! X has gained at least 40 pounds since I saw her last. JESUS the woman has gotten fat!
Hi, I say. I see you've put on a little weight...
Sometimes life is good!


Chapter 17
Chapter 19

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