Chapter 32

Car Bombs

Sun Aug 24, 2003 at 05:31:23 PM EST


 
Sorry there was no diary for the last week or three.
I've had stomach troubles, coupled with the blues. Why the blues?
Well, there are the obvious reasons. My broken van got repossessed a week ago Friday night. I got foreclosure papers served Saturday. I'm in the middle of divorce proceedings and will be filing for bankruptcy.
And if that isn't enough, I'm trying to get off the Paxil. I feel like the guy in the movie Airplane, “Sure picked a lousy week to quit [insert name of substance here]”. Maybe I should go back up to a full dose... but I'm on my last bottle, and I have to see the doctor to get them refilled again. And doctors are the primary reason for my bankruptcy, besides X having left me in debt and overdrawn last year.
At any rate, I think what's got me the bluest is the fact that even though I got rid of the nerd glasses and got my hair cut, and even gained a few pounds, I still can't get a date!
People who aren't lonely can't seem to understand loneliness. “But your daughter's living there...” Well yeah, I have friends, too. But offspring and friends are no cure for the need for companionship.
I fear I'll never hold a woman again...

 

 

 



Last weekend I had stomach trouble, and stayed home all weekend, mostly sleeping. Except Friday, when I had an uneventful night at Dempsey's, and returned to find the van, not unexpectedly, gone. Repossessed by the bank.
Monday morning I had the liquid shits. I called the boss lady and told her I'd be in as soon as I could get off the pot. “That's too much information! We'll see you when you get in.”
I got there about 9:00... and went back home at 10:00. Boss lady said I looked like hell, that I should go back home and get some sleep.
Married Lady is working full time now, so she spent the rest of the week prick teasing. I don't know if she realized she was or not.
Friday night I had some bills to pay. I took care of one, then drove to the north part of town to pay the other one. The asshole doctor, a really nice lady.
Oh, I'm sorry, that last statement might have been a bit confusing considering the previous context. I should have said she's a proctologist. A good looking one, too, and skilled. And of course, when someone's cutting me a new asshole I prefer skill to beauty.
The ass doctor closed up long before I got there.
It was hot as the car had no AC, and Dempsey's was on the way home so I stopped for a beer. Joe Frew was tending bar. “Hey, we don't want your type in here!”
“Hi Joe, howarya?”
“Good, you want a Rolling Rock?”
The sign said Bush was a buck fifty. I got a Busch.
“Any music tonight?” I asked. “Yeah,” he said, “I'm playing.”
“Well, I'll have to come back,” I said.
“It's my old band. We don't play much anymore.”
I drank my beer and drove home. I watched the sunset, drank another beer, listened to random MP3s and enjoyed the solitude. My daughter was spending the night at her mother's. X was somewhere in the Ozarks with “Faggot,” as Patty calls him, and she was supposed to be keeping an eye on her autistic older sister.
At nine thirty or so I started walking up to Dempsey's. As I walked toward it, Joe and his band were walking around the corner from the alley. “How much did I miss?” I asked.
Joe laughed. “You missed everything.” They went in as I stood outside and talked to Levi.
“My band's playing here tomorrow,” he said. I promised I'd be back the next day.
Joe's old band was good, and sounded better the more I drank. I lost track of time, and didn't hit on a single woman. Of course, there weren't many in there anyway, even though people were coming and going all night
A young thin blond fellow with a short dark goatee, whose picture would have fit the K5 photo page well, bellied up to the bar next to me. “Oil 'ave a blow job,” he said with a hint of a Dublin accent.
I laughed. “Dying to find out just what one is, eh?” I said. He laughed.
“They have car bombs, too,” I added.
He looked at me. "Yeer oirish.”
“Well, most of my ancestors were.” He stuck out his hand, and I shook it. “I'm Steve.”
“Oim Steve, too,” he replied. “Ow 'bout that, two oirishmen and both named Steve! 'ave a drink with me?” he asked. “Sure,” I answered. He ordered two car bombs.
I'd never had a car bomb.
Car bombs are a terrorist drink, invented by the Irish Republican Army during “the troubles”, according to Steve.
The bartender poured two glasses of Guinness, and two shots of something brown and foamy from a mixing jar.
“Yeer supposed to drink the whole thing at once, now,” he said, and raised his shot glass in a toast. We clinked glasses and dropped them in the Guiness, and downed them.
“Tastes a bit like a chocolate shake,” I opined, and washed it down with the rest of my Busch.
“Ye oar Oirish!” he exclaimed. “Ya only hesitated a little in the middle, I was watchin'.”
Levi seemed equally impressed with my drinking.
“I've been drinking all night,” I said. “My first,” Steve said. Ro, the bartender, called last call. I got another beer.
“Where's more booze?” Steve asked.
“The Station's playing at the top of the Hilton,” Levi said. We all finished our drinks and wandered outside. Even though the Hilton is only a few blocks, everyone got into cars. Levi offered me a ride, and I was much too drunk to worry about how drunk he was.
“I wish I had some pot,” Levi mused.
He had gotten me stoned a few times, and I'd never once gotten him high. And I had a couple of joints worth stashed at home since forever, waiting for when I could lure a female human into my lair.
“I have a little bit at home,” I said.
“How do we get there?” he asked.
As we pulled up he asked “Is that a house or an apartment?”
“House,” I told him.
“Wow, big.”
He spied the guitars, the clarinet cases, the sax in its case, the piano... “Wow, nice piano,” he said as he opened the keyboard and started playing. “Kinda out of tune though...”
We smoked the joints, and went back downtown to the Hilton.
The place was packed. It took half an hour to get beers, and by the time I got back to the table where everyone was sitting, my beer was empty. I went home.
I’d planned on traveling to Columbia to see Mike the next day. I woke up with a hangover, and took a Paxil, and aspirin, and a vitamin with a couple glasses of water. I drank a couple cups of coffee, and found a couple of roaches and some pot I had drunkenly spilled on the table the night before.
It's a good thing I was so drunk that I'd spill that, because pot is a great hangover cure. I scraped up the spilled reefer and the roaches and rolled a doob.
I called my cell phone, and Patty said she didn't have a ride home. I told her I needed the phone, and I would drop by. I had her give me directions there. I'd only been at X's trailer once, and that was at night.
I drank another cup of coffee, and drove up to the gas station. I filled the car, put transmission fluid and steering fluid in it, and cleaned the windshield. I bought more tranny and steering fluid, a six pack, and some pastry for breakfast.
Yes, I know I should edit that sentence for clarity, but the vision of beer and tranny fluid for breakfast is an amusing one, and you know what I mean.
I went home, and ate my pastry and drank some more coffee. I poured the rest into my thermos, and started out to X's trailer.
The car wasn't running quite right.
I took the Chatham exit and went down the road. The engine started running even worse.
I smelled gasoline, and started looking for a good place to check things out. As I started eyeing the shoulder, a “WOOMP!!” sound came out from under the hood, along with thick black smoke. The engine died at the same time, and I wrestled the car to the side of the road.
Power steering and power brakes are great... until you have no power.
There were flames licking around the hood, and I tossed the thermos out and got an old coat from the trunk to try and beat the flames out. I pulled the hood release, and it came out by a foot. I ran around to the front and started beating at the flames with the old coat.
A guy stopped, and had a fire extinguisher. I emptied it as he called 911 which, the policeman later noted, were the last three digits of my vehicle identification number.
As I was losing hope of salvaging the car, I heard a siren. The fire department!
Nope, a cop. Chatham has a volunteer fire department, and it was Saturday.
By the time a fire truck got there, the car was completely engulfed in flame.
So much for visiting Mike.

 

 


Chapter 31
Index
Chapter 33

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