Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Should Girls Wear Protective Cups?

         Yesterday was my kind of hot, sticky summer day. Unfortunately summer will be over much too soon and before you know it the leaves will be falling followed by five-months of discomfort and depression. 
        A disturbing thought struck me on my walk yesterday: Being in a thoughtful mood I was wondering how best to handle bad news from my doctors? I'm naturally depressed when the weather gets cold, especially after January 1, but if I get the worst case medical scenario the last thing I want is to do is give my numerous enemies anymore pleasure than necessary. Hence, I need a doomsday strategy, yet I don't wish to be premature. What to do?
       I've noticed that the red-winged blackbirds are no longer holding sentry along the boardwalk. I wonder where they go and what they are up to now that their babies have left the nest? I was only dive bombed a couple of times this year by the truculent,  shrill, feathered paranoiacs. And I am betraying no secret when I readily admit that I found their suspicious little eyes staring at me for all of Spring and much of the Summer - unsettling.
            I spent most of the afternoon on the first chapters of my sequel to my prequel. It's slow going but progress was made.

             When I got to the bar it was almost seven. Ruben Four Toes was unusually reserved. With his public-toilet problems still unresolved, his Buddha-like solemnity cast a bit of a pall over our normal conviviality.  Gracie continues to be shrill and disagreeable. One doesn't expect such hostility, especially from one's own flesh and blood, but her meanness is well in keeping with past form.
            While we were watching the Chicago little leaguers duke it out with some white Texas kids somebody pointed out that we've collectively watched more little league baseball this week than we've watched either the Cubs or the Sox all year. Small wonder that Major League baseball is in such a rapid state of decline.
           D-Train can't contain his admiration for the thirteen-year old black girl who pitches for the Philadelphia team. "I'm telling you,  Mo'ne is going to be a superstar. She says she's going to play basketball next... she's the first little leaguer to make the cover of sports illustrated."
          Coach added that she was also the youngest athlete to make the cover.
           Caught up in the excitement of our conversation I said, "D-Train, maybe I should do a tribute painting of her. Maybe something a little risqué, but tasteful -" 
            "Stop him someone, he's going to take us down into the sewer." When D-Train said this, his tone was far from flattering.
             "A mostly naked portrait of her doing her windup - ."
             "You could go to jail just for suggesting such a thing, you animal."
               "You could hang it in the privacy of your own apartment. Someday it would be worth a fortune. Louis Carroll used to take photos of pre-pubescent girls and he's universally revered - "
               D-Train was now holding his hands against his ears defiantly.
              Ruben wanted to know if girl baseball players have to wear protective cups like the boy players do?
              Gracie was sure that they did but Coach was of the opinion that only girl catchers would be required to wear cups.
              I was a catcher in Little League and I only wore a  cup during the first game but abandoned it for the rest of the season, "it was so big and cumbersome I could barely walk."
              Mierka made a rare  appearance. She said she's been in Cincinnati. When I asked her if she'd given my script of Cavity Search to Michael she smiled sheepishly and said she kept just missing him. I'm extremely disappointed in Mierka. Extremely, extremely disappointed !
           

     *     

            This morning Street Jimmy had the sneezes. He makes little or no effort to either cover up his sneezes or direct them away from innocent bystanders. When I pointed this out to him he listened thoughtfully and then preceded to sneeze almost in my face. When I swore at him he said, "I had my hand over my mouth. Don' tell me you never  sneezes 'cause you sneezes all the time."
            Jimmy said he slept on the steps of the church last night.
             

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

The Return Of Hawkeye

          It was a stroke of luck for the Ale House when Anthony got his new show on CNN. It appears that his fan base has at least quadrupled (probably that's conservative) and as a result a bunch of his new fans are watching his old shows on the Travel Channel. This is golden because for the last two weeks we've been getting a lot of customers who saw  us on a rerun of his Chicago show. I especially enjoy the hot chicks that are Anthony fans. Anthony said at the time that the Travel Channel execs were being assholes about his leaving but I imagine after checking their new ratings for his old shows they are probably somewhat mollified. I especially liked the two cuties from Arlington Virginia that were in Sunday. 
           
        Ruben Four Toes has been feeling under the weather of late. His intestines are going through seismic changes and yesterday the culprit was a cheeseburger. When he had two legs and was somewhat mobile this would not have been a problem and he'd simply lock himself in the mens  room until the volcanic ash stopped spewing, but now that he's no longer able to pull himself up from a modern toilet without handicapped bars his options are severely limited.

           In todays Sun Times there is a long article about the former boss of the 47th Ward, Ed Kelly. It was by a hack journalist named Neil Steinberg. Kelly is now ninety and it's a shame that Steinberg is such a pussy because Kelly is a very interesting guy but apparently Steinberg either didn't do his homework or else he was too chicken-shit to ask the tough questions. 
           Kelly grew up on the North West Side and worked in the parks and was a good soldier for the old Daley Machine. He was rewarded by being made alderman and later head of the Chicago Park District which was a cushy job rich in patronage. I knew him slightly through a 47th Ward script doctor who was a paraplegic. In those days I was an ambulance chaser and so I used the doctor a lot. When Kelly became the head honcho of the Park District one of his lieutenants  asked me to do a favor and the favor was to talk to Kelly about something I happened to know. I'll never forget Kelly's cool office. It was connected to the old Soldier Field, and it had a spectacular view of the late. He was wearing a thousand dollar suit and he had an odd bump on his forehead which I found distracting. He was not a  good listener and insisted on telling me how tight he was with Mayor Daley.
         In those days there were two types of patronage jobs in the city: the kind you had to report to, and the kind you didn't. Kelly doled out a lot of both kinds of these jobs and it  was not surprising that the only well taken care of parks in the city were the ones in his ward and the ones along the lake. (I'm sure Daley's 11th Ward parks were also manicured.) In those days I played a lot of golf on the city courses and they were maintained by savages. Kelly was a Chicago guy and he understood favors and loyalty. He was a tough guy and he loved boxers and he took care of Tony Zale, Leroy Murphy and Johnny Lira just to name a few of the most famous ones. 
          His half brother Bobby was a serious bad ass and I don't know if he was an Outfit guy or a freelancer, but whatever he was he was no one to fuck with. One of Kelly's kids was a serious fuck up and future Police Superintendent Leroy Martin made a  murder beef go away for the kid. The kid was actually running the County golf courses for a while which helps explain the mess they were in. 
         Kelly was clever just like his mentor, Richard J. Daley, and was never indicted although everyone around him went down. He must have made a ton of dough on the harbors, and every harbor master he appointed went to jail. 
        I lost all respect for him when he turned Republican. This was racial politics at it's worst. It was interesting that in the Steinberg article he acknowledged that Harold Washington was a pretty smart guy. He refused to talk about Richie Daley (Daley's intellectually challenged kid) and really let Rahm Emanuel have it. He said Rahm was essentially a suburban punk, had no street-cred and was in way over his head being mayor of Chicago.
         The last time I saw Ed Kelly was at Johnny Lira's  funeral. The guy looks amazingly fit for a guy his age and it's a  shame that someone who knows Chicago political history doesn't interview him because he's probably the only guy that's left from the old Machine that knows where all the bodies are buried.

    *

          I got to the bar a little late this  morning. Street Jimmy and Buzz Kill both arrived shortly after I did. Jimmy was not as garrulous this morning as he was yesterday. Faggypants said that he saw a sci-fi movie with Merle Streep and Jeff Bridges. He said it was real good even though it got bad reviews. From his description of the movie it sounded like the worst movie every made. 
          Hawkeye just got back from Scotland and looked a little worse for ware. Unlike when we were there last year he said the weather was pretty miserable. Mrs. Hawkeye was with him and he said her injured foot held up reasonably well. 
        He's serious about wanting to escort a pub crawl to Edinburgh with Liz the Pub Tour Guide next year. When he asked me if I'd be interested in going I told him that until September 15th and my C-scan results, I'm not interested in making any plans. I really don't find a pub crawl theme appealing and  now that I know the lay of the land going to Scotland solo is fine with me. On second thought, if he could sign D-Train up I just might want to rethink participating in that  pub tour.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Street Jimmy Demands Justice!

         The Ale House has traditionally been a place where one not only finds jest, jollity and mad cap merriment, but stimulating conversations and brilliant insights covering virtually any subject.
Last night was no exception and Ale House wit and wisdom was on full display. Among the most interesting information gleaned was from Street Jimmy: For years we have all wondered why the crack dealer refuses to accept change and insists on only paper money. Finally Jimmy explained clearly and unambiguously - "if the police be chasin' him the money jingles and if it be dark he easy to find, and if he runnin' long the change weighs your ass down." From the mouth of a crack-head! And of course it makes complete sense. 
          D-Train, although semi-comatose (four day weekend vacations for the rest of August) wanted to talk about the thirteen-year old phenom girl pitcher currently playing in the Little League World Series. "She's amazing, have you seen her pitch?"
          "Yes," I lied, "she's very good."
           "She's better than very good. There's no reason she can't make it to the Major Leagues. "
             This caught the attention of everyone sitting in the corner and Gracie led the onslaught of abusive attacks that followed. No matter what was said D-Train insisted that there was no significant differences between the musculature of men and women, "just you wait, she's going to make it."
            "She's a thirteen year old girl, shit eyes, some kids mature faster than others."
               "Her body will completely change by the time she's sixteen, fuck-wad."
               "Why haven't there been any girls in the Mayor Leagues in any other sport, turd brian?"
                   These were just a few of the arguments directed at D-Train.
                When he persisted I asked him the following: "D-Train, women have pretty much the same access to resources in profession golf and tennis as men have. They have the best equipment, instruction and places to play and yet no women has ever been able to compete at the highest levels with men - why?"
                 D-Train, rising to a point of order -  pulled out his trump card, "are you telling me that Serena Williams couldn't beat most men at tennis!"
               "Beat them at what? Possibly in a street fight, but not professional tennis. The top one-hundred NCAA men tennis players could probably beat her. Billy Gene King even admitted as much you stupid, shit for brains retard!"
              With an impish grin D-Train said, "well, I bet she could fuck you to death."
                We all agreed that if you had to choose a specific way of dying, having  Serena fuck you to death would be hard to top.
              D-Train's face had now assumed an ecstatic trance: "can you imagine what it would be like to have Serena wrap those powerful thighs around your face - "
              "Yes," I concurred, "especially after she just played three hard sets in the boiling sun."
                 D-Train was now swooning, "oh my God, yeah, I could die a happy man!"
                   
                 Gracie says that the reason I reacted so violently to the Pot Belly chili I ate yesterday was because they make it with brown sugar and molasses. "You can't eat sugar and you're just going to have to ask the waiters in restaurants what they put in the food you order."
               There's no question that I have to be careful about avoiding certain foods and drinks, and it's clear that anything with even a hint of refined sugar in it will immediately cause me to have difficulty chewing and talking. ( While we were discussing my eating problems Gracie's mother was kind enough to drop off a delicious white fish dinner and I had no difficulty chewing or swallowing.) When Gracie persisted in counseling me about how to talk to restaurant wait-staf  I said, "Grace, while I'm asking the waiter or waitress all of the chef's secrets why don't I also ask him if he washed his hands after he went to the bathroom, and if by any chance somebody dropped my food on the floor. Maybe I could ask to see his medical history and demand to know if he's had all of  his vaccinations? "

       *

          This morning Street Jimmy was unhappy. "When I was sleepin' in the park las' night those big birds started makin' real strange ass noises an' one of 'em crept up on me an' when I throwed a stick at it it didn't run away so I moved over closer to the street so's I could get some rest."
          I think the birds Jimmy's talking about are night herons. Perhaps they get their name for how they behave at night, because they scarcely move at all during the day.
           "Jimmy, were you sleeping near the lagoon?"
           "Yeah."
            "And the herons were making a weird noise?"
           "Real strange."
              "Are you sure they were not crows?"
              "I knows crows, these were those big-assed birds."
              The night herons were not Jimmy's only concern:
              "Bruce, I want's you to put it in your log tha' the big fat lady at MacDonald's put me out for good."
              "Why?"
                "They made her the manager an' she don' know how to manage shit. I always gets along good with everyone tha' works there except for her an' so now she say I can't come back nomore."
                "What exactly did she say you did?"
               Jimmy paused resolutely, and I could see by the look on his face that he had been the victim of an injustice: "I pressed the wrong button on the pop machine."
              Faggypants, who was mopping looked up, "were you trying to press the water ?"
             "Yeah."
             "Well, the waters not a button, you push down on the water -"
           I then asked him how much pop he poured himself?
            " 'Bout half a cup. I already buyed a cheeseburger an' fries."
             "So," Faggypants said, " you thought you could just pour yourself some free pop?"
             "I eats there all the time. She's a big ugly bitch an' she gots it in for me, tha's why I want Bruce to put it in his log.  She want peoples to look up to her. I wants  them to get a new manager...I'm a long time customer an' now I can't go in there nomore an' I can't use the bathroom 'cause she be a big fat slob."
             Not only was Jimmy pissed of at the night herons and the fat MacDonald's manager, but at religious people in general.
             "They all in it for the money. They don' wanna help folks."
             Jimmy's been barred from both St. Michael's and Moody Bible. 
             Buzz Kill , who just finished eight-straight  ten-hour work days on a Chrystal Lake school, found Jimmy's frustration with organized religion amusing. 
               When I asked Buzz Kill how he felt he said, "my legs are killing me but I made some money and I feel great."
         

Sunday, August 17, 2014

The Return Of Gary Giggles?

              Yesterday after I finished getting the bar ready I thought I'd take my walk before it rained. As it turned out it never did rain. Hundreds of thousands of people were assembling in the park for the Chicago Air and Water Show. There were a series of parachutists executing clever maneuvers as I entered the park. After the parachutists finished a group of old fashioned double winged prop planes did some loop-de-loops.  As I made my way through the park I discovered that a very good place to view the show is from Chicago's version of Grants tomb. Its high enough that you can see the water and there weren't that many people cluttering up the area. I can't imagine ever wanting to spend four hours watching airplanes but it can't hurt to know what to do in case I ever do get the urge. I understand people with limited budgets, especially when they have kids, would want to take advantage of this kind of free entertainment.
           When I got home I worked on my prequel for five-hours. Eventually my eyes start burning and I have to quit. When I got to the bar there wasn't too much happening. There's a new white guy working at the hardware store and he looked vaguely familiar. It turned out to be Butkovich's nephew, Ethan. He never told me who he was and I only found out who he was after he left. 
      I felt like having a nice meal but it was Saturday evening and I knew all of  my favorite restaurants would be packed and so I went to Pot Belly and ordered a bowl of chili. Bad idea. There's definitely something in their chili that immediately causes my myasthenia gravis symptoms to appear.  I've noticed that certain other foods also have this effect on me and so I'm going to start keeping a list. 
           After I finished the chili I thought I'd take another walk. Only a few stragglers were still coming from the park and it was quite pleasant as I walked along the Inner Drive. Although the little park in the middle of the Viagra Triangle was packed I found a seat. It's a perfect place to people watch. 
       As I was heading back to Old Town I encountered Marshall Field. We engaged in some small talk until we got to Wells Street. It seemed clear that he was heading to Sedgwick Street. I felt like telling him "hugs, not drugs," but he already knows that.
          When I got to the bar Lee was arguing with Doorman Dan about concealed carry gun laws. Lee is passionate about not wanting every fuck-wad in town carrying a loaded weapon and my favorite line of his was , "paranoia will destroya." Eventually Doorman Dan agreed to a truce. It seemed to hold better than the one between Israel and Hamas and comity and good will was quickly restored. 
          Hardware Nick encouraged me to reprise my Gary Giggles stand up comedy act now that Robin Williams is longer around to steal my material. This might be difficult because I'm no longer a kid and a lot of my material was very physical. Also, I relied a lot on my celebrity imitations and my myasthenia gravis has effected my voice. Still, it's a  tempting idea.
           Ruben had an unpleasant look on his blubbery face. 
           "I was an asshole. I smoked a cigarette and now I feel like shit."
           "You are a remarkably self-destructive stupid person."
           "I know."
  
            Before I went to bed I read a delightful message from Hawkeye which I have published at the end of yesterdays blog. When we were in Edinburgh last August he took us all to a  great bar called the Hebrides where we met a lot of zany Scotsman. One of the zaniest was a fellow named Stuart. He must be a regular because he was there when Hawkeye and Mrs. Hawkeye came in. He only remembered the "jewess" (The Defense Attorney) from our group.
         When I returned from Scotland last August after my wonderful vacation I was beset by all manner of shitty luck. Hopefully this bad luck streak is close to ending.
  

          *

               This morning Street Jimmy seemed surprisingly alert. He said he slept "damn good in the park."
              "Nobody woke you up?"
              "Nobody. I slept my ass off."
               After Jimmy concluded sweeping he said he'd go out and "smoke a square until Danny gets here."
               When Faggypants arrived I told him to feed Jimmy first so we could be done with the crack addicted rascal.
               Faggypants told me that he had another phenomenal day at the Air Show. "I met all kinds of great people and some cute kids were doing dives off the cement and so I said what the hell and I did a flip , and I did it perfectly, and I dared them to try it and they wouldn't do it."
           When Faggypants got done laughing I asked him how he kept his valuables dry?
            "I took them out of  my pocket and laid them on the cement."
              "Isn't that dangerous?"
              "The kids were nice, they watched my stuff for me. When I got to Brando's they gave a rag with ammonia on it so I could wipe myself off."
              "Why did you have to wipe yourself off with ammonia?"
             "Because the lake water makes you stink."

              I'm going to get going right now on my prequel. I can't tell you what a sense of accomplishment it is going to be when I finish today. It's a historical literary achievement and I'm pretty sure I've avoided all the legal and structural pitfalls that befell me with  "Last Night At The Old Town Ale House."
             
            

Saturday, August 16, 2014

The Giraffes Were Scared

         This morning Street Jimmy said the cops woke him up in the park early, "'cause of the air show. They was cool, they jus' said a lotta peoples are coming to the park." Jimmy said he watched some of the air show yesterday , "it dangerous as hell, I wouldn't get in one of those dumb ass planes..."
         "The chances of you getting a knife in the gut sleeping in the park are a lot higher than crashing a plane."
           "Yeah, but I can run... if you be in a plane an' it crashes you can't run."
            "You can't run if you have a knife in your gut."
             Jimmy took a bus to Compton California when he was young, "I was with my girl an' she wouldn't let me ask no one for nothin' , not even a cigarette."
            "Is she the one that pulled the gun on you?"
             "It was a shotgun."
              "And refresh my memory, why did she pull a shotgun on you?"
               "'Cause I hit her."
               "You're not supposed to hit girls, you're lucky she didn't blow your head off."
                "I didn' hit her tha' hard. I said, 'baby, please don' pull the trigger.' She be cool. She stayed out there. I was young when I hit her an' I didn' know any better..."
                "You weren't young when you hit China."
                "Yeah, but she be fuckin' aroun' on me."
                  "Oh."
                  Jimmy said that the previous night he went to the hospital. "I needed some clean clothes an' a shower an' the lady gots an attitude an' she talkin' real loud, an' she say, ' Mr. C., you say you gots bugs an' I tol' her not to talk so loud 'cause then peoples are gonna think I really gots bugs, an' she say 'can you see 'em an' I say, no I can't see 'em, but I feels 'em.' All I wants is a shower an' some clothes an' then while I'm sittin' there waitin' a bunch of peoples comes in 'cause there was a bus accident an' they gots in front of me. I wish to hell I was on the bus 'cause then I could sue an' make some good money. So I had to wait a long time. I hadda good long shower. I needed clothes 'cause when I went to Catholic Charities they didn' have none, an' I thought they be lyin' on me but the lady took me inside an' showed me an' they was all out. She said I could have some food but I don' have no place to cook."
               When Faggypants arrived he was wearing a black and white striped sleeveless T shirt and white shorts and white tennis shoes. He said he spent most of the afternoon at the Air and Water Show, "and I went to the zoo, too, and the planes were scaring the animals, you could tell how scared the giraffes were."
              He said he's going back to the Air Show today. "There were so many cute guys there. They have so much energy."
             "There young, you had energy too when you were a kid."
              "Yeah, I did."
              He said his mom bought him a new bed, "it was really comfortable and I slept great."

              *

                Last night there weren't too many people in the bar when I arrived. Motor Mouth was being shunned which I find amusing. Whenever he'd say something everyone would look away from him. Ruben was drinking beer at an especially fast rate and he wised off to the Pace driver that came to pick him up. Hopefully when he gets home he won't fall out of his lazy boy because he'll need the fire department to get him off of the floor when he's this sloshed. 
          Lynn and Coach came in together.  They'd been watching the air show and drinking on Lynn and Mitt's boat. Coach's face was so red his skin looked like it was about to burst into flames. Lynn said that she was surprised that I beat everyone in golf. She then went on to question me about my life decisions. I think her point was that had I chosen another path I could have become a successful businessman or professional person.
             "No Lynn, I couldn't. I'm work phobic. I could never have held a straight job. "
              She then asked me some blunt questions about my inability to maintain a lasting relationship, "have you ever been in love?"
             "Many times."
              "What happened?"
              "It never lasts."
                She said Mitt stayed on the boat with some other people. 
                 

Friday, August 15, 2014

Revisiting Jackson Park Golf Course

             Thanks to Gracie for filling in yesterday. It's a shame she isn't motivated to write  more, she has talent. The temperamental diva is not known for thoughtful listening. Yesterday the cooler in the basement wasn't working, therefore the beer wouldn't pour properly. Ruben Four Toes was not pleased about having to drink bottled beer and by the time Johnny Ale reported for duty we had to stop selling draft beer. I had instructed Gracie to call our cooler guy but she balked. 
        "Have Butkovich look at it first." 
         "Call Randy, if we solve the problem we can cancel Randy, but it's important to get him before he leaves town or makes other arrangements."
          To make matters worse Butkovich had just sat down with two very old friends and was engaged in a conversation. It was not surprising that Butkovich couldn't solve the cooler problem and valuable time was lost before I could get Gracie's mother on the case. Luckily Randy, who was in Wisconsin, sent a colleague named Fidel to fix the cooler at seven-thirty this morning. Fidel is a very personable Hispanic gentleman and after he filled the cooler with freon he told us to call him if we have any more problems today. It would have been nice if Randy had sent Fidel last night.
            The friends Butkovich was talking to were Jennifer and Patsy. Patsy is the ex-wife of the last owner of the legendary O'Rourkes Pub which used to be just down the street from the Ale House. Jennifer is Patsy's daughter and it was fascinating listening to Jennifer discussing what living in Old Town in the Seventies was like for the kids. The parents were mostly nuts as were the parents friends, and from what Jennifer had to say the kids were every bit as nuts if not nuttier than the parents. 
           Jennifer is now living on a small farm she inherited in S. Carolina. She has pet donkeys and seems to enjoy her life of rustic simplicity. While we were talking a large guy in a business suit introduced himself. He was with a smaller man who he said was a "Ukrainian, until a couple of months ago, but now he's Russian." The Ukrainian-Russian man smiled. He didn't speak any English and just nodded amiably while his "brother in law" talked to us. Patsy, who'd been putting the booze away just like old times stared blankly at the guy and said, "I don't know what the fuck you're talking about." I had to agree with Patsy, and whatever it was he was talking about it wasn't worth arguing about.

        *

        Wednesday night the Defense Attorney was in high spirits. She'd just won another tough murder trial. She is going to be getting an award next month and I promised to attend the gala ceremony. She was being especially bossy and my hats off to the Inventor - his stoicism is remarkable. The Defense Attorney was not happy when she learned that Hawkeye, who is currently in Scotland, is once again angry with me.
           "But Defense Attorney, remember how pissed off he was at you last August when we were in Scotland together?"
             "He wasn't that mad," she said smiling.
             "Oh yes he was - lucky I was there or blood might have flowed."
               Speaking of Scotland, the weather was nicer in Scotland and England last August than it is in Chicago this August.
              The Defense Attorney went on to say that she loves Hawkeye. "He did such a magnificent job guiding us around Scotland."
            After I again congratulated her on her big win she said: "If there is injustice in the air, I want to fuck it up!"

         *

            Yesterday morning Johnny Ale and Mitt arrived at the Ale House with their golf clubs. Although it was on the cool side it was sunny, and there's not a prettier ride in Chicago than along Lake Shore Drive heading South. As we passed the Museum of Science and Industry the traffic became congested. The City was hosting a three on three basketball tournament, and hundreds, probably thousand of mostly black kids were either engaged in playing basketball, or getting ready to play basketball at one of the venues that were taking place on both sides of the Drive. After we passed the throngs of players and spectators we were greeted by the Golden Lady. The Golden Lady's actual name is Statue of the Republic, and it is a replica of the sixty-five foot tall sculpture that was created for the 1893 Worlds Fair held on the sight of what is now Jackson Park. The replica is about a third the size of the original which burned down, and is gilded in bronze and painted in bright gold. It stands directly in front of the golf course pro shop.
          Lemar met us and once again I had to go through what often seemed like an FBI terrorist screening session to purchase our fucking green-fees. When I first started playing golf at Jackson Park I used to play on weekdays for three-bucks. The course is now in the best shape I've ever seen it, but it is not crowded because they've jacked the prices up so high. Billy Casper Management Company took over and I presume that all the computer bullshit you have to subject yourself to before you tee off is to prevent employee theft. In the old days when the city ran the course very little money went into the cash register. In fact the Diversey Driving range was such a money maker that city employees had to pay their sponsors off to get behind the cash register.
          I caddied for Tommy Bolt one time when we were paired with Billy Casper. Casper was one of the most underrated players of his era, and one of the biggest pricks. Bolt told me that he often dreamed of slamming a five iron into Casper's teeth. The day we were paired with Casper I think Bolt shot a sixty-six, and Casper shot a sixty-seven and afterwards when they shook hands Casper said without smiling , "nice putting."
           As far as Bolt was concerned this was the crowning insult. "That fat sunnuvabitch has made his livin' with that flat stick an' he tells me , 'nice puttin'."
        Bolt was right up there with Sneed and Hogan as a shotmaker but was not renowned for his putting.
           When we hit the first tee it was quite pleasant in the bright sunshine. Lemar, who was up all night working the door at the Ale House hit a beautiful drive right down the middle. 
           I had no idea what to expect because I hadn't played in over a year and since then I've been diagnosed with myasthenia gravis and developed a fucked up back. I felt okay and started hitting the ball decently by the second hole. After a double bogey and a triple bogey I settled down on the fifth hole and played the rest of the front nine in even par. 
            I started the back nine off nicely and was even par up until the fifteenth hole. This was when I noticed a twinge in my back. My goal was to break eighty but I had to scramble like hell on the last hole to just to save par and shoot eighty. All in all I felt pretty good and definitely will play some more before the weather gets rotten.
          Mitt plays muscle golf and I gave him a few alignment tips. Johnny Ale is a novice but he has good hands and so I will give him some lessons which should help him immensely. Lemar has a really good swing for a big man but he's got chipping yips. That's really an easy fix and if he wants I'll show him what he's doing wrong. His dad, Bad Bad, Leroy Brown, "baddest man in the whole damn town," was  a very good chipper. 
           When we were finished Lemar looked like he could use a good nap. We caught some Bears traffic on the way back North. You have to be a special asshole to arrive at a football game three hours early to cook steaks on a grill and drink beer.
            We took Johnny home because he had to bar tend. All in all a very pleasant day on the links.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

There's Only So Much A Man Can Take

Gracie here.

Dad asked me to do today's blog because he's playing golf with Mitt, Johnny Ale and Lamar.

The Mexican Motormouth has officially quit his job as the building manager for the O'Douche's. This is very exciting. He will no doubt be returning to Texas in the not so distant future. Since I've returned from Maryland I've successfully driven away Matt Z and Walter the Nazi. Matt Z was mad because I wouldn't change the TV from equestrian horse jumping to the Stanley Cup playoffs after he announced that he would only be drinking water for the day. Walter is still sore because I wouldn't stop bringing up the fact that he projectile pooped all over the men's room and I was the one who had to clean it up. While I can't say I had anything to do directly with the Mexican Motormouth quitting his job, its still a great victory for the Ale House nonetheless. The most fascinating thing about the Motormouths resignation is who the O'Douche's have hired to replace him. None other than Craig the Drunk. It will an entertaining unfolding of events.

Ruben Four Toes keeps getting invited to BBQs that the Mexican Motormouth has been hosting. He went to one a week or two ago and he described it as being held "Mexican style" in the alley. I asked who all was in attendance and he said about 4 Mexicans who also work for the O'Douche's "the bottom of the barrel". Street Jimmy has been sleeping in the alley under the porch of the Motormouths building. He woke up during the middle of one of his BBQs and was invited to hang out and eat tacos with the group.

Yesterday I was recapping a story to Ruben that I found particularly interesting. There's a mixed martial artist fighter named War Machine who beat the shit out of his porn star girlfriend and is now on the run. She's got 19 broken bones, can't speak and a collapsed liver. I told him that a couple months ago War Machine did an interview where he was asked about the large tattoo of the porn stars name across his neck. The interviewer asked what would happen if they broke up and War Machine replied he'd tattoo R.I.P. under it. Ruben's response was:

"She was probably fucking around on him"
"Ruben, she was a porn star. Her job was to fuck around on him"
"There's only so much a man can take"

Update: Dad just called and said the beer cooler was broken. When I asked him a series of questions to better assess the situation he started shouting "Fuck you, fuck you, fuck you" and then hung up. We'll see how he spins this tomorrow.