Archive for the ‘Urban Life’ Category

Please. No more Balloons!

He was laying face down in front of the laundry mat. Face obscured in his hoody he was COMPLETELY passed out. A young man in his early 20’s I would guess, he was COMPLETELY thrashed. His bare feet scraped and bloody with large rotted brown overgrown toenails on his big toes like claws. He was so completely thrashed that he seemed to have melted into the concrete with his face somehow completely hidden. He might be dead. There is no visible movement.  He was on display like a collapsed statue.  Absolutely defeated.  Utterly collapsed and limp.

I feel fortunate not to be him. This guy had definitely hit ROCK bottom.
There was no further down he could go. Things could not get any worse for this young man. Corpses in coffins looked much much healthier.

People walk by to do their laundy trying not to look. He may have been beaten in a gang initiation or he may have drank himself unconscious or he may have been murdered, but there he was, his underwear half showing above his pants. Filthy would be an understatement, just as “thrashed” would be an understatement. Had he just crossed the border from Mexico? What travails had befallen him? I looked to see if he was breathing since nobody else was, and he did seem to show some signs of life. I think people were scared to even look. Load the washer, load the dryer, don’t look. Keep walking.  People made wide sweeping arcs to walk as far away as possible when they turned the corner there.

Don’t care. Don’t care.

I left him a flower, some balloons and a hallmark card from the minimart next door.

“Get well soon!” it said.

When I drove by an hour later, he was covered completely in flower arrangements and balloons.
You could only see his feet poking out, gnarled and thrashed.

I put out a collection plate for him so he could build up some equity, capitalize on his new found
social presence and develop a revenue stream.

The sign read, “Please, no more balloons!”

Shopping Carts Roam the Streets Downtown (rattle rattle)

Some days when I hear a shopping cart rattling I try to cross the street and AVOID the cart
by timing my walk exactly right, other downtowners have confided in me that they sometimes also do this.

Hey, I’m, tired, its been a LONG day, I’ve already handed out every bit of change I have
during the course of the day and I’ve been hit up 3 dozen times in one day already…no, I don’t have a dollar!

rattle rattle

there’s ANOTHER ONE damn!

I”m going to run up and TRIP this shopping cart…cause I’ve HAD it with these rattling
SQUEEKING shopping carts, who do these people think they ARE anyway just rattling around
here like that…willy nilly…wheels squeeking like that…how about a little CART MAINTENANCE, its so dreary to hear these things rattling around like this.  They’re like ghosts moaning in the attic.  Will no one HELP these people, what about the CARTS, what about the CARTS?

THAT does it

I’ll just…sneak around this car here and…strrrrrech my leg out, just like that…

HA

I’ll surprise this one and trip his cart

The nerve, just plonking around here with squeeky loud wheels like that, what exactly would it take,  I mean, how much effort to fix this…I mean, what exactly would be involved, couldn’t someone fix this easily somehow…I think to myself.

rattle rattle

I really don’t know but it seems to me some WD-40 would at least help, is that such a crazy thought?

I”m going to buy a HUGE can of WD-40 for 99 cents and run up and spray every fucking shopping cart I see downtown, maybe I’ll wear a lone ranger mask.

TOUCHE, HAVE AT YOU!

run up yelling… HERE I come to save the DAYY and I’ll sprint up in pointy shoes, maybe wear a cape too, and suddenly squat and produce this gigantic can of WD-40.

POWWW

and carefully spray just the right amount in each wheel….mm hmm….mm hmm…
ok, ok, that should do er…

TRY IT NOW GOOD CITIZEN !

Maybe I’ll have a holster for the WD-40

Or I could run up in a vintage antique  priests robe, genuflecting with the WD-40 can…

BE HEALED SQUEEK !!

I can just see the startled faces now…”oh, wow man, thanks, I”ve been meaning to spray some WD-40 on…that”

rattle rattle

leg is in position…long strrretched out leg is in position, about 6 feet in length now
I am STRETCH!!!

SHHHHH

rattle rattle

I wonder if he noticed my 6 foot leg jutting out here…because I”m going to TRIP this shopping cart !!!

no, I can’t do it , I just can’t do it, that would just be MEAN. I Put my head in my hands.
I can not.

but its a really bad squeek listen…I don’t really have to trip the cart…it would really only take
a tiny squirt of the  amazing miraculous and most holy WD-40.  I know, I’ve used it, it works great!

I’ll just hide behind this car here….and SPRING FORTH and when he passes by
I shall SALLY FORTH, finger on the nozzle…and I shall… LAUNCH a probe.
Launch a squirt of WD from behind this car here!

I think I can hit each wheel from a distance , I’m a pretty good shot really.
I practice with it, and usually I can hit the target from 12-16 paces no problem but…

Would suck if I missed and hit the bum in the eye or something because THAT might sting,
and send me STRAIGHT to hell.  A well intentioned deed gone terribly awry.

He’d SQWUAWK

Hell, you would too!!!  “hey! what the HELL?!?  Did you just MACE ME??” he might say.

And really, there’s not much I could say then  “Wow, OUCH, sorry man, fuck.  You know I was aiming for the WHEEL right?  I mean, you KNOW that right? fuck, I’m sorry, I’m sorry man…fuck”

What if he started screaming terribly.  Oh man I’d be in deep shit…
I’d have to spray myself in the eye too, you know, eye for an eye.  Then we’d be cool.

“I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry man, see, I sprayed MYSELF in the eye too, I feel so shitty about this see, I sprayed myself again….damn! OUCH, that DOES sting, OUCHHHH

and we’d both be writhing around in the street in agony.

No, that would just be sad.

Think of the HEADLINES!!!  The terrible guilt if I missed with the spray.

Ok, better to make a very public announcement about it on a milk crate somewhere
better not to sneak up maybe.

HARK!

Let us commence with the holy ritual of the sacred WD…

Then make some weird chanting ohming noises for while.  Just keep ohming actually
for a really long time first, to really set the tone.

Ok,  we’re ready to go,  are you ready to be delivered??

He’d say something like “uh…ok…I guesssss”

You’re a believer born again and yet you hear voices and your wheels squeek?

He’d say something like “huh?”

You’re a virtuous man, and yet you hear voices and your cart is possessed…

He’d say “well, I don’t know about all that I…”

Then I get real intense, “I BANG ye with chains of iron and I SPRAY ye with WD.
Like a cat, that isn’t fixed, I SPRAY ye, with the most holy SPRAY

LOOOOOOOOSEN your hold and come OUTTTT squeek !!

OUT !

OUT in Jesus name, OUT destruction, OUT grief, OUT squeek!”

And he’d look at me really weird in my antique vintage 1920’s Priests robe and stuff, I’d also be sprinkling  holy water on the cart itself too (of course), but the holy holster for the WD, would really be official looking, with a City of LA symbol embossed.

“Oh, hey man, can you cool it with the damn holy water on my cart though, all my STUFF is in there, seriously man..” he might say.

“OK, test er now.”

Gingerly at first, he’d try it.

“Oh hey, wow, that sure did work, holy mackerel.”

“Yes, mackerel INDEED,” I’d say because you can talk all weird when you’re dressed in an antique priests robe from the 1920’s, wearing a lone ranger mask, with a custom embossed WD-40 holster and a gigantic can of WD-40.