Tuesday, December 19, 2006

The longest undefended border in the world 7

John; here’s how it went down. I followed Anthony’s directions and I’ve got to tell you, it wasn’t pleasant. The place I arrived at wasn’t just on the wrong side of the tracks. Even the tracks were on the wrong side of the tracks. To say it was run-down would be an insult to all the places that are actually merely run-down. The front “yard” was covered with broken glass, broken cars and broken dogs. As regards the house itself what it really needed was tearing down, rebuilding and then tearing down again.

Well, I figured to myself, no guts no glory so I carefully began to pick my way through the debris. The closer I got to the house, the more ear-splitting the noise (AKA: rap “music”) from the inside became. All I could hear was the bass-heavy thump of some “gangsta” rapper ranting about gosh knows what and as I reached the hanging tarp that passed for a front door I took some rapid breaths to prepare myself for what I was about to see (as a pre-incursion prep I had forced myself to watch a TV show where some rap guys walk a camera through their “crib”, saying stuff like, “yo”, “s’up” and “it’s all good” way too much. It was not a pleasant half hour.)

This was worse than I had expected. I certainly don’t want to offend anyone but I’m sure that some of the lower and less kempt levels of Hell are kept neater than the inside of this place was, and would have been less noisy as well. The stereo had to be cranked to ‘nuclear blast’ level but I figured that was okay since nobody would hear me sneak in this way.

Just inside the front entrance there was a small mud-room (apparently for the application not the removal of mud), then another door into the main room of the place. This is where the action was taking place. Or had taken place, I should say since everybody in there was seemed to have driven themselves into some sort of intoxicated stupor. The air was ripe (or stale) with a bewildering blend of odors, the main one of which reminded me of burnt peanut butter. Hmmm, I wondered, was this the scent of that dread marijuana I was smelling? I figured I had better step it up before I got a “contact high” and developed a case of the “munchies” and started to crave a crate of Cheezies© or something.

As I peered through the murk I could see that in the center of the roomful of debauchees there was a raised platform with a huge stuffed chair on it. The biggest, greasiest, longest hairedest, shirtlessest, tattoedest, goober of the bunch was slouched unconscious in the chair, a half chewed baseball bat clutched in one dirty hand, and on a small table beside the chair was my camera still in it’s case. Wicked, I thought as I began to weave my way through the tangle, this would be easy.

I made it to the platform and slowly reached out towards my camera. Then, just as my hand touched it I was interrupted by the sharp tip of a knife’s blade pushing into the back of my hand. I looked up into the bloodshot and crazy eyes of the chair-bound goober and thought, pretty good reaction time for a reefer addict. He reared his head back and let loose with a loud cry of “BWAAAAA!”, then he looked back at me and said, “You trying to get my present? You trying to take my gift? You trying to steal my precious? The boys are going to slice and dice you. It’s gonna be ugly and I’m looking forward to it.”

“The boys,” I snorted. “Open your eyes, reefer-king. Your boys are laid out all over the place and they’re in no condition.”

All at once the music shut down and I could feel my neck hairs curl as they were blasted with the toxic tequila breath of the reefer-king’s boys as they crowded around behind me. I couldn’t help but notice that the floor was now drug-abuser free and John, things had a real nasty feel to them. Ominous even.

“BWAAAAAA!” commented the reefer-king. “I’m thinking that the boys are in fine shape, fuzz-head,” he said. “Slice and dice time.” Instantly a plan formed in my head, which I thought was pretty good considering the whole ‘about to diedness’ of the situation here, crazy tattooed shirtless guy included. “S’up dawg, yo. That’s whack,” I said and everybody drew back.

“What’d you say?” reefer-king asked and I replied, “I said it’s all good, yo. But I need the camera to phot your tats.”

“Why?” he asked. A surprisingly lucid question, all things considered.

“For the tat-rag Sleeves, yo. Dawg, I phoned like last week and told that guy over there,” I pointed at some guy at random, “that I’d be here. You got the message, right?” I had sort of hoped to cause some dissension amongst the druggies but it looked like I had miscalculated when it came down to their own understanding of their short-term memory issues. “I dunno,” reefer-king muttered, “might’ve. Sleeves, eh?” Everybody in the room was nodding in apparent satisfaction. “You made it, man. Way to go,” someone commented. Reefer-king nodded. “Yeah. Go ahead. Take your pictures.”

I pulled my camera from it’s case and tried to turn it on but the batteries were dead, so I just pretended to take pictures, warning, “Look our for the flash!” then saying, “Click!” All the druggies would close their eyes to avoid the flash as I pretended to take about twenty pictures or so. “I think I’ve got what I need,” I said, “and I’ve got to tell you, I’m sensing cover story here. We’ll send you a complimentary copy of course. For your collection.”

“Yo,” answered the reefer-king, and then “BWAAA!” he said in dismissal. “BWAAAAA!” I answered to be polite and then I got out. When I was back by the Jeep I changed out the worn batteries, got a quick picture of the place then booted on out of there. Case closed.

That was a hairy one, John, but it turned out well. I’m going to see what the druggies took pictures of (there are a few more on the counter that there were when my camera was taken, plus the batteries were dead) and all in all, the whole thing turned out to be a terrorist-free exercise. A slight diversion before getting back to the serious work at hand. I’ll keep you posted.

Anyway… Humouroceros

The home of the reefer-king

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