Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Street Jimmy Incarcerated?

        The consensus seems to be that Street Jimmy is in jail. If he had himself committed to one of the local mental institutions he'd have been released by now; there was an open warrant out for him because he missed his last court date and so if he was picked up for anything it's usually 21 days in County Jail before the paper-work is processed. Also, if he got nailed with a crack pipe that takes about 21 days to check for residue. If you are wondering, like I am, if incarcerating the wild and crazy mischief maker is the best way to spend tax money, I would have to say no. The plus is that he needed to get off the street for a while. When he's really messed up (like he was at the time of his disappearance) he makes even worse decisions than normal, especially when dealing with the cops.

         *

         Last night at the Ale House everyone seemed to be poking fun at Ruben Four Toes fatness. There was some speculation about how many seats he'd have to buy in order to fly on an airplane - certainly two, and then there's the question of would he be able to fit into the washroom on your average airliner.  Ruben, fortunately, says he has no plans to travel anytime soon. 
        When the discussion turned to what would happen to our favorite fat boy in case there was a fire in his building, everyone agreed that Ruben would fry.
           Mitt was sure that no one fireman could possibly carry him, Coach didn't think he'd fit out of his windows, and then the question of whether the ladders would be strong enough to hold him was raised. My solution, as well as Ruben's, was that he simply be rolled out his door and down the stairs. Yes, he'd sustain some bruising, but that would certainly be preferable to getting burned alive. When I told Ruben that if the worst ever happened and he was facing imminent death in a fire he should at least have the decency to toss his cat out the window, the pudgy-faced mass of blubber said, "no, my cat goes if I go. Just like the pharaohs in Egypt."
             Ruben was pleased to announce that his sister had gotten him a new channel changer. As  reported previously the mercurial Mexican mud-slide  had accidentally dropped his old channel changer into his piss bucket , and then while trying to dry it off in his microwave, caused it to explode. 
          "I'm glad she got it for me because I would've gone blind pretty soon from watching the TV so close to my eyes." Ruben had been using a cane to channel change and it was only five-feet long.
          Gracie said Marshall Field had been in the bar hawking his wares numerous times before I got there. One thing he had that piqued my curiosity was a breathalyzer. I had no idea what to do with it so I gave it a pass. 
              
          *

        This morning the sidewalks and cars were covered with over an inch of snow. I found this disheartening. While I was checking the previous days receipts I received a call on my cell phone. It was a recorded voice telling me that my debit card had been suspended and that if I wanted it reactivated to press one. After I pressed one it wanted me to give the digits of my debit card. Now nobody appreciates a clever, well thought out scam more than yours truly, but this was pretty crude. What puzzles me is how the authorities aren't able to catch the scammers. I know when I used to enjoy the wonderful world of credit cards there were no pesky computers to deal with. When asked years later what I would have done had there been computers back in the Sixties and Seventies I said, "there's always going to be an angle," and I've been proven right. There's big money in scamming credit cards with computers. When I told Tobin what had happened she told me to immediately march down to the bank and have my debit card canceled.
           Hawkeye dropped by. He said his daughter killed last night at Davenports. She was very impressive at the Ale House Talent Show and Hawkeye said she just landed a part in Jayne Eyre. In the play she's cast as the housekeeper. Hawkeye said she's a very talented actress. 
           Today is tax day and Hawkeye said he always waits until the last minute to do his taxes. I find this odd, but then when I think about it, everything Hawkeye does is odd. He's constantly trying to rationalize his right-wing impulses and is forever trying to get me to read right-wing columnists. Once again I explained to him that all these right-wingers have to offer is the false equivalency argument. Yes , the Dems are craven assholes, but the Repubs are vile, evil, racist war mongers; in other words, the Repubs are even worse than the Dems. Hawkeye can't seem to come to grips with this reality. 

Monday, April 14, 2014

A Day Of Flooding

            Yesterday morning while we were getting the bar ready Hawkeye showed up. His Sunday routine entails going to Starbucks, purloining a copy of Sunday NY Times, drinking his coffee and then coming to the Ale House. At some point during the day he has to take a nap because he works the door Sunday nights until four a. m. . He was incensed about my denigrating his theory of strength being connected to brain circuitry in my previous blog. I knew he would be and sat back and enjoyed his rant. After five-minutes of explaining his position in detail I shrugged him  off in a very cavalier manner which only made him angrier. 
           "Hawkeye, you are full of shit. No matter how my brain is wired for success, I can't power lift three-hundred pounds."
           "That's not what I'm saying." He was unable to hide his frustration at this point. "The reason you can still hit a  golf ball a long ways is that your brain has given you muscle memory."
           "Horseshit, there are plenty of guys my age that could hit the ball farther than me twenty-five years ago, and now I can hit it farther than them and they have muscle memory." 
           "Bruce, all I'm trying to get you to do is be a reasonable human being, but I guess that's asking too much."
           Just then Faggypants let out a series of shrieks. Water was pouring from the ceiling at the south end of the bar. It is not uncommon for Faggypants to panic when something goes wrong , but this was extreme even for him. The first thing I did was to go down in the basement and turn the water off for the entire building. Once the water was off I told Faggypants to stop shrieking. Hawkeye, wanting nothing to do with our predicament, made a hasty exit. I then crawled up into the loft to see where the water was coming from. At first it looked like a large pipe had broken but then on further inspection it was clear it was coming from the condo above us. 
            I then instructed Faggypants to find the key to the neighbors stairway. As soon as I banged on the upstairs neighbors door he opened it. "It's them," he said pointing upward . No sooner did he point his accusatory finger than a young Asian girls head appeared from the top of the stairs, "it was our washing machine," she said guiltily.
          "Is it fixed?"
          "Yes."
            The neighbor said his ceiling was ruined and I told him that a bunch of our stuff that we kept stored in the loft had also been damaged.
           No sooner had we cleaned up most of the mess made by the neighbors washing machine than Tobin called and said that the sink in our condo was fucked up and there was water all over the kitchen floor. The plumbing in our reasonably new building is a joke. I wonder how much the contractor paid off the city inspector to approve his crappy work?  So now we would need to get our plumber, J.R. to rod out the pipes again. The reason this keeps happening is because of the people upstairs garbage disposal. Unfortunately J.R. goes to visit his family every weekend in Wisconsin and so he wouldn't be available until Monday morning.
          In my old ambulance chasing days we would meet every Thursday night at Doc Mc Cabes building which was located on Ashland just north of Lakeview High School. Doc had a large waiting room, and we'd have snacks and beer and wine; there would always be some lawyers, adjusters, cops, fireman, a pharmacist (Doc was paralyzed and reduced to being a script doctor) a judge or two, high school football coaches, drug addict priests and so on. A lot of money changed hands (personal injury cases being settled) and there'd be some low stakes gambling. One of the regulars was a city restaurant inspector named D'mato. One night I asked D'mato how many restaurants he had to close a week?
           "Bruce," he said picking up the set of red dice being used in the crap game, "I guess I've just been lucky but I've never had to close a joint in my twenty-five years on the job."
           This amazed me. How did he get away with it? I don't care how much they're bribing you, you 'd think you'd have to close one of the rodent and roach infested joints at least once in a while. Same goes for building inspectors, but I guess in Chicago money talks louder than roaches and bad plumbing.         
      
         *

 Last night at the Ale House Ruben Four Toes was complaining about the lady Pace driver that picked him up the previous night, "the bitch had real long finger nails and she could hardly strap me in and I said, 'why the hell do you have such long finger nails and she said that's how she liked them and I said then maybe you should get another fucking job. The bitch had a real attitude." Ruben has had a series of weird bus rides lately. The night before he had to share the van with a blind man. "At least the blind guy knew enough to get out of the van so I could get in."
          "Amigo, if you get any fatter nobody's going to be able to ride with you."
            "Fuck them, I don't like ride-sharing. Dumb fucks drive people all the way to Evanston and the double back for me and I've got to take a raging piss."
             Ruben is amused by the spate of shootings and murders that took place once the weather warmed up. "The dumb fuck police Superintendent and the Mayor are bragging about how much lower the crime rate is and then as soon as the weather gets warm every motherfucker in the city goes out and shoots someone. Who do they think they're kidding with their bullshit? They're just cooking the books. Bitch gets shot with her hands tied up and they say it's an accidental death. Motherfuckers! 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Wind Shifts

            After I finished up at the bar this morning I decided to take a walk in the park; the weatherman had predicted that it would get colder this afternoon and so I thought I'd take advantage of the mild temperature. I met Nick from the hardware store in front of the bar and as we were discussing the best way to handle Chief in the future the wind shifted out of the East and the temperature dropped twenty-degrees in less than a minute. So much for my walk. Instead I went back into the bar and got my hoody and went home. While I was walking down North Avenue I was reminded of the day some twenty-years ago when I was getting ready to play golf at Jackson Park; the wind also had shifted off of the lake and the temperature dropped from the middle eighties to the low forties in half an hour. Lucky for me I hadn't teed off yet and so I was able to get some warm clothes out of my car. The players on the course were not so lucky and as I made my way around the course a lot of the players in shorts and short sleeved shirts appeared to be turning various shades of blue.

    *

        After my nap yesterday I decided to take advantage of the first seventy-degree day of the year and take a long walk. The doctors have been stressing to me that I need to get as much exercise as I can manage. Unfortunately it was very windy; normally when it is this windy I'll hop the El and go either north or south depending on the wind, and then get off somewhere and walk back home with the wind at my back.  Not so yesterday; instead I thought I'd walk away from the park and use the buildings as  wind shields.
         As I was walking past St. Michael's Church I heard Scotland The Brave being played inside the church on a bag pipe. This intrigued me and so I stood outside the church and watched the kilt clad piper emerge from the church. He was soon followed by over a dozen bridesmaids all dressed in blue and white and waving blue pom pom's . It was a Scottish wedding and the piper was quite good.
          Almost all of the bridesmaids were hot which is rather unusual. 
            When I got home I watched the Masters Golf Tournament on  TV. The KKK shitkickers that run the tournament really have created a spectacular event. The weather is usually great; Spring is always early down South and the dogwoods and azaleas look spectacular. For years the plantation mentality of the late Bobby Jones and his racist pal, Clifford Roberts,  that ran the course had managed to prevent any black players from participating. When black player Pete Brown won a PGA tournament and therefore finally qualified for the Masters the rules committee simply changed the rules. It had to kill them when Tiger won their racist tournament.  
           Lee Trevino, who is a Mexican, was treated so badly that he wouldn't even go in the locker room and instead changed into his golf shoes in the parking lot. Up until around twenty-years ago the pros were forced to take Masters caddies, all of whom were black. Finally, when the pro's were paying their caddies six-figure salaries, they pressured the plantation masters to let them bring their own caddies. Of course the KKK boys still had a card up their sheets, and so to this day these often wealthy caddies still have to wear primitive white plantation style coveralls no matter how hot it gets. 
           For years, in spite of a lot of bad ink,  the plantation bosses ran their tournament with an iron fist. Eventually the pressure on the TV sponsors grew too much, and grudgingly the plantation bosses were finally forced to let a black member in around ten-years ago. He was some Atlanta black businessman. As luck would have it this black businessman got caught charging people to play the course as his guests. In desperation, after kicking out their lone black member,  the plantation masters decided to kill two birds with one golf ball and invited Condolezza Rice to join their ultra-exclusive club. A rather homely black women war criminal instantly filled their quotas both sexually and racially. Yes, up until Rice's membership they had a no women policy. 
          Winning the Masters is huge; golf company sponsors can run an entire summer ad campaign on a player. By the time you get to the PGA tournament in late summer, there's not enough time to market players effectively. 
           Of all the majors the Masters has the weakest field. Past winners are allowed to play, even when they are no longer competitive. They have a lot of amateur spots, too, so a number of really good pros can't get into the tournament.  Pro golfers tend to be spoiled brats, and when I was a  caddy they were almost all universally cheap. Tiger is a legendary cheap skate, while Phil Mickleson is not only a degenerate gambler, but surprisingly, a big  tipper.  When I was a caddy Jimmy Demaret and Phil Rogers were the best tippers. I heard from the other caddies at the time that the other pros really resented the good tippers as it made them look bad.

     *

          When I got to the bar last night Chief was there. It's not that Chief is unlikable, it's just that he's a pain in the ass when he's drinking which is the only time that we see him. 
           Anya was wearing her hair in a bun and both Ruben Four Toes and I complimented her on her look.
          Ruben said his two nephews were at his house yesterday, "they worked for two-hours but they couldn't program a new channel changers for me. I told the dumb fucks, at least hang some pictures on the wall - do something useful for me."
            "Did they know you burned the channel changer in the microwave?"
             "Of course, it was in the garbage. They said, 'uncle Ruby, you can't put your channel changer in the microwave, ' and I said, 'thanks for telling me, assholes."
            "It's nice that you don't spoil your nephews just because they're trying to help you."
           "I keep them in line."
            When Chief walked over to where we were talking he immediately started kissing our bald heads. Chief either has a bald head fetish, or he still harbors some kind of Indian gene that controls the scalping impulse. He can be excruciatingly boring and last night was no exception. He said that Clown hasn't had a drink in over three-months. He is, however, still pissed at Corcoran's because after they barred Clown, they told Chief he wasn't welcome either. "It's guilt by association. Just because I was with Clown when he fucked up, they want to bar me."
            Luckily Chief struck up a conversation with Matt Z. and eventually they left the bar together.
           Ruben let out a sigh of relief when Chief was finally gone. He said that his nephews had brought over a cat harness. "My sister used to use it for her cat, but when we tried to put it on my cat my cats too fucking fat for the harness."
             Touhy and Miss Jones came in. They had been across the street at Second City watching somebody's kid in a show. I was shocked when Miss Jones , who  reads my blog, took exception to my criticism of W Bush's "paintings." Now it's no secret that Miss Jones and Touhy are not known to frequent the Art Institute, nor do they make the rounds of the local art galleries,  so it's safe to assume they don't really share a  passion for fine arts; nevertheless, anytime you hear someone with an IQ over one-hundred praising something as insipid as W Bush's grotesque efforts at portraiture, it gives you pause. 
            Touhy is excited about his upcoming eightieth birthday party. Little Michaela is tossing the party for him at the Billy Goat on Ogden Avenue. This could be a lot of fun because quite a few old-timers should show up for this major event.
            Touhy is one of those rare bar room giants that has been non-stop drinking in the local establishments for almost sixty years. Ruben said Touhy should be an inspiration to us all. From what I can see there is no reason why Touhy can't continue his prodigious imbibing for many more years to come.          
         

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Ruben Four Toes Takes Another Tumble

         Before I went to the Ale House last night I took a long walk along the lake. It wasn't short sleeve weather, at least not for the Genius, but it was close. There were a number of deceased ducks scattered along Oak Street Beach. This is unattractive and the park lads might want to do something about this dead duck situation. I always thoughts ducks headed South for the winter but maybe some of them are adapting like their cousins, the Canadian Geese, to stick around all year. If this is the case I would like to suggest to all of my duck friends  that they abort this idea. 
        I have been seeing a lot of the Communistic blue bikes cruising around lately and yesterday was no exception. I read somewhere that the guys that owned the rental bike concession went belly-up, but if that is the case, why are all the blue bikes still going up and down the lake?
          I walked all the way to Navy Pier and only had to sit down once. When I was in Scotland and England last year I did miles of walking everyday and didn't have a knot in my back so I'm hoping I can walk my way out of the back problem that forces me to occasionally sit. I did sit down in order to people-watch at the little park across from the Viagra Triangle. I love this little park and you don't have to buy anything from the concession stand to sit there. The Lounge Lizards that work at as well as frequent these joints always hold my interest. Pricey, semi-flashy suits, expensive haircuts, and curious body types are the order of the day. Also, the Alpha Romeo's and other penile cars that cruise the area present a vaudevillian aspect to the proceedings. 
        On my way back to the bar as I was walking down Wells Street there was an older black bum standing across the street from the Pour House. As I got closer I noticed his trousers were down to his knees. When I pointed this out to him he laughed loudly and twirled his dick at me. This struck me as highly unusual even for a street bum. After I went another twenty-feet I turned around and watched him do this again to a young couple. I couldn't believe that somebody from the Pour House didn't call the cops on the guy.
            When I went into the Ale House it was past six. Ruben Four Toes informed me that Fatal Attraction had been in with a bumpkin friend who is the sister of one of Buzz Kills old girlfriends. This would mark the first Fatal Attraction appearance since the night she went nuts and tossed her purse in the street and tried to punch Mitt. I told the bartenders that when she came back she'd be fucked up and not to serve her. 
           Connie the Crack Whore came in and started kissing and fondling Ruben. He didn't discourage Connie's caresses nor did he seem to mind them in the least. Connie has requested that I re-hang her portrait. I grudgingly said I would and last night she upped the ante and said she wanted it hung above the front window. Ruben shot this down immediately, "bitch, he took it down from behind the TV and now you want a prime location?"
            When Connie continued to argue I said in no uncertain terms that it would go along the south-east wall and that there would be no more discussion on the matter. After Connie left (nobody offered to buy her a drink) Ruben told me that the fire department had made another visit to his apartment early in the morning.  It was an interesting story and I will attempt to do justice to it:
           "I woke up around four, and so I turned my TV on. While I was channel searching for my shows I accidentally dropped the channel changer into my piss bucket (because Ruben is confined to a wheel chair he pisses in a bucket and then when it gets full flushes it down the toilet) . So after I got my channel changer out of my piss bucket I washed it off in the sink. So now I needed to dry it off because I didn't want to fuck up the batteries so I wrapped it in a towel and put it in the microwave _ "
             "Microwave!"
             "Yeah, microwave, shmooo, for only three-seconds. But that was even too long because I heard it fucking explode. So now I didn't have my channel changer and so I took the broom and was changing channels with my broom only I had to lean forward and and so I fell out of my wheel chair and so I was fucked. While I was waiting for the fire men I played with my cat. She loves it when I'm on the floor, she rolls over on her belly and meows and stuff like that. She's a  real tramp."
            "How many firemen did it take to lift you up?"
            "Only three."
            "Did they use the chair method this time?"
              "No, they used straps. The fireman all have different methods. So now I need a new channel changer."
            "Why not move your lazy boy close enough to your TV so you can change the channels by hand?"
            "I don't want to go blind, asshole."
              I told Ruben that there was a way of adapting a new channel changer to his TV but that I didn't know how.
               "I'll ask my asshole nephew." 
              The previous day a goofy looking guy named T.... was in. I hadn't seen the guy for a couple of years and he was talking to Ruben. Although he never looked particularly good, he seemed unusually emaciated. He claims to own a second hand store somewhere on the North-West side and he's always trying to scam people. Ruben knows some guys he was in prison with. I told Ruben that the last time T.... was in here he was with some guy that looked like he'd just gotten out of the joint, "you know the type, seven-mile stare, prison tats, punchy..."
            "Yeah, you can spot them a mile a way."
            "Yeah, so T... is up in the window making out with the guy."
            "No shit," Ruben was laughing, " so he came out of the closet."
             "These were two ugly guys open mouth kissing..."
            "Did you say anything?"
            "No. Hell, if you let broads make out I guess you have to allow even ugly guys like T... So anyway, when they are leaving the guy with T.... tries to take out his beer and so I grabbed it from him and he gives me this prison look and says, "if you ever grab anything out of my hand again I'll....' And so I say, 'you'll what cocksucker and so T.... just grabs him and takes him out."
           "No shit?"
            Anya always gets a chuckle out of Alphonso when he starts drinking tequila. Grace is convinced that even though Alphonso can't speak any English, he can understand it. For some reason he started kidding around with Ruben in Spanish. Whatever he was saying irritated Ruben and the more he insulted Alphonso in Spanish, the more the diminutive Alphonso laughed.

     *

         This morning, although overcast, it was still pleasant. There have been no reports of Street Jimmy sightings for the last four or five days. Faggypants is sure he's in jail while I lean toward the nut house.  Hawkeye showed up as did Erica and Jeager the Husky. When Faggypants was describing to Hawkeye how far the two of us were hitting the ball yesterday at the driving range Hawkeye said it had nothing to do with physical strength, "your brain just sent the proper messages to your body, it doesn't make any difference how old you are or how skinny."
           This seemed too insane to even argue with.
  

Friday, April 11, 2014

A Beautiful Day In Chicago

          Gracie has gone the last few days without shrieking, at least in my presence. Shrieking appears to be the only way she seems to know how to make a point. Hopefully she's become tired of her abrasive ways and is at long last matured into a thoughtful adult. 
           Faggypants loved Captain America and gives it three and a half stars. He also corrected me when I said he saw a movie called Virgin, "not Virgin, Divergent." My apologies to all the movie fans out there. He said that his mom thought he looked good when he went to his sister in laws fathers wake the other day. At first she insisted he wear a suit. Faggpants said the widow, although 88, looked remarkably nice. "She had the most amazing skin."  His old high school golf coach was there, "he seems to always date hot young chicks." Faggypants is very fond of his old coach.
            Street Jimmy has been missing for two and a half days. Whatever the reason for his absence, getting off the street for a while has to be a good thing. 

        *

         D-Train was a real chatter-box last night. When he cleaned his glasses several people commented.  D-Train always seems to have dirty glasses and people often wonder how he can see out of them. 
          He's developed two new unpleasant habits: 
          (1) He slaps and punches your shoulder when making a point.
           (2) He likes to pull your hat down over your eyes as a gesture of affection.
             Buzz Kill is upset about Stephen Colbert leaving the Comedy Channel and filling Letterman's spot. I don't understand his position. If Colbert is a failure he can always go back to his old show. Who cares?  Colbert occasionally used to come in the Ale House back in the early Nineties. 
           Anita and The Defense Attorney seemed to be engrossed in some serious girl-talk. Alphonso lives to kiss Anita good night. You can practically hear his love-stick go boing when he's lucky enough to kiss her. Ruben and Buzz Kill both drool over Anita, too.
           When D-Train wouldn't shut up Coach said, "Lee (who was sitting next to D-Train) is stuck in D-Train land."  D-Train was now ranting about what he claimed was a  conflict by elements of Hitlers Brown Shirts and the SS. When we scoffed at some of the things he was saying Michael , who was working the door, said D-Train was in fact correct. When I apologized for scoffing D-Train was ungracious, "why do you need Mike to confirm what I'm saying."
          Hank Oetinger's granddaughter was in with her family. She bought the bar a drink. Hank was an iconic figure in the Ale House, the old O'Rourke's and The Billy Goat for many years. He managed to get drunk on a nightly basis up until his earl nineties. His son was a gynecologist in Grand Rapids and adopted numerous kids from all over the world, although I think this particular grand daughter was one of the blood grandchildren. 
            The Defense Attorney was even more aggressive than usual  and directed several cutting remarks at Mitt. When I told her that she was a cruel , insensitive shrew she denied it. She did, however, offer Mitt a half-hearted apology.
             I was channel flipping when I got home and happened to see Mike Shannon playing General Zod in Superman. I watched about three-quarters of it. Mike was excellent, however, the movie was shit. I hate action hero movies, in fact I hate all  special effect movies so it was not surprising I didn't like this Superman. It made no dramatic sense to me. 

       * 

        Today was the nicest day of the year so far. Faggypants and I went to the Jackson Park Driving Range and hit balls for an hour. The first two drives he hit were perfect.
         "Danny, just think, from this point on everything you do will start to go down hill." I was right, although he did hit some more nice shots along with the bad ones. Once again I gave him a chipping and pitching lesson. He has trouble playing pitch shots off his right foot and staying down on the ball. If he'd work on that shot he'd start to score again. 
           I hit the ball remarkably good for the  most part. Faggypants can't believe that I can still outdrive him. If truth be told, neither can I. After we finished hitting balls we went to the golf course and putted. He used one of my long putters and did quite well. When we were finished I dropped him off at Buckingham Fountain, then dropped our clubs off at the bar and went home and took a nap.

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Street Jimmy Is Somewhat Contrite

            This  morning after we got the bar ready I said fuck it, the weather was decent and so I went down in the basement and pulled out the set of off-brand graphite golf clubs that Marshall Field had sold me a couple of months ago for twenty bucks. Faggypants wasn't up to joining me for a visit to the driving range at Jackson Park so after saying goodbye to Buzz Kill and Gracie I hopped in my car and drove to the South Side. The wind was coming hard from the West and so every shot went left to right. This is not good, but what are you going to do? I hadn't hit a ball in probably six-months and so I was pleasantly surprised once my few remaining muscles loosened up. Given my precarious health I think playing golf might be beneficial for me. I'm sure I could shoot my age if I practiced diligently for a month. 
          After I finished hitting balls I stopped by Valoise and had some baked talapia. I know Talapia is some kind of generic name for what ever kind of crappy fish they can scrape up out of those industrial fish farms, but it's hard for me to chew meat these days and so fish it was. I ran into Woody and Art in Valoise. They are friends from my old golfing days and they told me where a few money-games are still being played these day. I think my blog-followers would get a kick out of some of my black golf hustler friends, and so if I can get my game half-way sharp I just might track these gambling dudes down. I know most of the craziest guys are dead or have disappeared but I'm sure Greenfield's gang is still active  somewhere on the South Side.
            My jaw got so tired while I was eating that I put half my Talapia in a take out carton along with my mashed potatoes and corn bread. The broccoli, however, was so good I ate it all before I left. When I got home my jaw had rested enough so that I could finish my meal.

         *

       Tuesday night Street Jimmy came in the bar to talk to me. He'd been ducking me ever since the lady upstairs said he'd threatened her. Naturally Jimmy said he was faultless.
        "Is it her doorway?"
          "Yeah."
          "And you were camped out in it?"
           "Yeah, but..."
            "But your ass. So when she told you to leave you told her to go fuck herself?"
            "No," he was now shaking his head, "no, I jus' tol' her to call the cops , see if I cares. See, I knowed she throwed  my backpack in the garbage."
            "So what?"
             "It had all my stuff in it."
              "So what?"
               "Why she do tha'?"
               "I imagine she didn't want your shit in her doorway. If you left your shit in my doorway I'd toss it. Somebody could trip on it. And so what did you say to the cops when they came?"
              "I tol' 'em she tossed my stuff in the garbage."
               "So now we have heat because of you. This is total bullshit. I get blamed now for the shit you do."
              Jimmy assumed his apologetic demeanor, "well, I meant no harm."
              "Of course you meant harm. So now the question is what do we need to do? I guess number one is your never  hanging out in her doorway again; and when you see her apologize; and perhaps not bothering people out in front of the bar. Those might all be good things to do in the future."
          Jimmy agreed to change his ways. This, of course, is unlikely to happen. I told him to show  up in the morning and I'd let him clean as long as I received no further reports about him from irate neighbors.
           Ruben Four Toes seemed cheerful. After chatting with him for a while he became nostalgic. "Ah," he sighed , "I remember the good old days when I had plenty of coke and all the girls used to come to my house (Ruben's house was just a few houses down from the bar) and after they'd get all coked up they'd dance naked."
           "Some of those broads I wouldn't want to see naked."
           "Yeah," Ruben nodded, "they were all pigs."
           In those bygone days Ruben had his fence constructing business and he was known by one and all as a fierce, uncompromising taskmaster. "I had to keep the Mexicans in line. One of the guys that worked for me used to show up in a suit and then get  in his work clothes. He wanted people where he lived to think he was a big shot. " Ruben thought this was hilarious.
            Ruben continues to be concerned about his rapidly expanding ass. "It keeps getting fatter and fatter. The trouble is that the fatter my ass gets the harder it is to get into my lazy boy. It feels like my ass is magnetized to my wheel chair." 
           I commended Ruben on the fact that he manages to do his own laundry, cook his food and do his dishes in spite of his ever expanding girth. "For a fat one-legged guy, that's pretty good."
            Ruben nodded in agreement, "yes, I'm very independent."
            The Defense Attorney is back from Palm Springs. She vacationed with three other chicks and she said that they rented a pickup truck and once they started traveling around in the pickup  truck the guys were all over them. "The pickup truck is a real turn on for guys."
           Just before the Defense Attorney arrived she was at Walgreens where  she bumped into Hawkeye. Hawkeye was buying some antibiotics for Mrs. Hawkeye who has come down with pneumonia. When Hawkeye came in for work he said that the Defense Attorney created a huge ruckus when she claimed that she'd been overcharged for condoms. Now this caught everyone's interest. 
             "Condoms?"
            The Denfense Attorney smiled proudly, "yes, condoms, I was overcharged six-dollars."
            "Why do you need condoms?"
            "Because even at  my age it's still possible to get pregnant."
           While she described how it was still possible for her to conceive the Inventor  stared off into space stoically. 

             *

          This morning Street Jimmy was nowhere to be found. I told Faggypants that he seemed sincere about taking a break from the drugs and going into rehab or the nut house for a week or two. 
        "He knows how bad he looks."
        Faggypants was of the opinion that Jimmy was in jail.

          

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Al Sharpton - Snitch

         Somebody in the FBI made public the fact that the "Reverend" Al Sharpton had been a snitch for the FBI back in the Eighties. This was not in itself shocking as Al has always been a consummate opportunist. According to yesterdays NY Times he wore a wire against some of NY's biggest Mafia bosses. What is shocking is the fact that he was cozy enough with the Gambino and Columbo crime families to catch them with a wire. The Chin Gigante was not known for his naivete.  Sharpton has always been a curiosity to me; with his pageboy hairdo, and his NY swagger he did a reasonably good job of filling the void left by Harlem's much classier Adam Clayton Powell. And there was no doubt about it, he is sewer-rat smart.
          Just like his rival Jesse Jackson, Sharption was a big fatso when he first appeared on the scene. The pictures of him in overhauls in those early days are every bit as funny as the ones of Jesse Jackson similarly dressed. But Jesse never wore his hair fried, and although he loved nothing more than strutting about in five-hundered-dollar dashiki's, he never wore all the bling that Sharpton used to adorn himself with. I remember sitting on the bench at the thirteenth-hole at Jackson Park Golf Course back in the early Eighties when Jesse and his wife were cutting across the course. They lived a few blocks away and you'd occasionally see him around in those days. I was the only white person in a group of three other players and four young caddies; we were waiting for the players on the green to putt out  and so when Jesse got close enough to us I said, "Jesse, every time I see you dressed in those expensive outfits I think of what Lenny Bruce used to say: 'any preacher that has more than one suit is nothing but a shingle salesman'." Jesse didn't laugh, in fact he sneered at me, but the guys I was playing with all laughed.
         Sharpton always has had the ability to reinvent himself better than Jesse. Jesse is a one-trick pony. Show up where the action is, make a  militant speech, do his photo ops (nobody has ever been better at photo ops) and then go on to the next crisis opportunity.  The people in the Civil Rights movement never forgave Jesse for his bloody-shirt exploitation of Martin Luther Kings assassination. And while he fooled people who were less knowledgeable around the US as well as in other countries, Jesse never fooled the people who knew him best - his fellow Chicagoan's. 
        You have to hand it to him though - in his prime he was ruthless enough to extort Budweiser Beer Company into giving his two good-for-nothing kids their Chicago Budweiser franchise which was worth millions. No sooner had Budweiser done this than Jesse dropped his boycott of Budweiser. It is interesting to note that the Jackson kids never made public their minority hiring practices which was what the boycott had been all about.
          In spite of his growing unpopularity Jesse almost pulled off the biggest political coup in the history of not only Chicago, but Illinois. He'd been grooming his not very bright namesake, Jesse Junior, to become a political star; Junior had married a very hot, articulate chick and she was soon finessed into an aldermanic seat after Junior was elected US representative from my district. Jesse Seniors plan was to get Junior appointed to Barack's old US Senate Seat and then get his daughter in law to run for mayor of Chicago. Had Junior not been such a complete fuck-up he could easily have managed to claim Barack's senate seat, but he was a fuck-up - in fact he was such a huge fuck-up that he got caught incriminating himself on a series of wiretaps and is now doing Federal prison time. The daughter in law was simply greedy and so as soon as Junior gets out of the joint she will be going to prison for a year. 
           So poof, there went Jesse Seniors dream. Now he has nothing.
            Sharpton, on the other hand, has been a  master of reinvention. The fat guy with the long fried hair somehow managed to recover from the Tawana Brawley debacle. For those of you who don't remember, Brawley was a young black girl who didn't want to get punished for coming home late and so she accused some white authority figures of not only raping her, but rubbing her naked body with dog shit. Once you saw her on TV you knew she was lying but Al had foolishly committed himself to her cause and was not going to back down. Eventually it was proved to be a hoax and Al had to lick his  wounds and back-off for a while. 
          The next Sharpton invention after the Brawley disaster was thinner, with a shorter perm and partial to two-thousand dollar suits. His concentration  span was a lot better than Jesse's and he spent a lot of time using his political muscle to make money. Apparently, from the NY Times article, Sharpton was involved in the music business when the music business was controlled by the Mafia. Hence his connection with  the Organized Crime Big Boys in NY. 
        Unlike Jesse, when Chicago upstart Barack Obama (who used to play golf at the aforementioned Jackson Park Golf Course) looked like he had a chance to become Mr. Big in black politics, Sharpton was one of the first national black leaders to jump on board Barack's bandwagon. Jesse, on the other hand,  knew that Barack posed a  grave threat to him and was stupid enough to get taped saying something to the effect that he'd like to "rip Barack's nuts off."
          Somehow, after Barack's election to the presidency,  Sharpton managed to lose a hundred-pounds and land a spot on MSNBC as a pundit. At first he was hard to stomach with his shrillness, but he eventually became less strident and appears to now have a solid niche on the networks lineup. What's going to be interesting is how Al plays down the snitch accusation. I suppose it's possible he's in physical danger, but if Sammy "the Bull" Gravano is still alive after ratting on Gotti, and the guy from Good Fella's managed to die a natural death, maybe the Mafia will also give Sharpton a pass. Personally I think the Mafia has made a big mistake in how they've backed away from their revenge policies. When I was a kid you didn't snitch on the Outfit, at least not in Chicago. If you did you ended up in the trunk of a car. Not so much anymore.