I must have been daydreaming about the marvelous classic car show I had attended earlier on that sultry last-day of July because I didn’t notice the two young men creep out of the shadows.
I don’t know why these abrasive interludes seem to happen to me. Perhaps because I am a tad vertically challenged. So I don’t appear intimidating. Or simply because I am often embarking on late night walks and unaware of where I have wandered about in Philadelphia while pondering the ideas I pen upon paper.
So there these fellows were: Bigger. Younger. Tougher. Dumber.
They couldn’t have been much past their drinking and voting age, but far past when they are eligible to kill for their country, or otherwise. I am not sure. I am terrible with ages whether it is day or night. And, of course, I am continually confused by the age a woman willingly confides.
Anyway, the one without the knife said something. I didn’t quite understand him. But I am certain it wasn’t words of the English or Russian or Spanish or Hebrew languages I am familiar with.
But I comprehended the sign language of the one with the knife.
It’s amazing how simple and direct communication can be. If only the Democrats and Republicans understood this. You don’t have to shout and shoot. Violence is merely the repartee of the illiterate.
But this wasn’t any political theater. Except for the obvious fact that these gentlemen seemed to have most of their teeth and decent barbering – two of the zillions of free perks our congressmen rapaciously enjoy – their only metaphorical view of politics was no doubt that of the cobra battling the mongoose. They just were too ignorant to know that it was the little rodent size mongoose that usually won.
I have to admit my nerves were percolating and ramping up to speedy pace of a boxer’s jump rope.
My voice remained in a forced, controlled manner, but the tremors were tap dancing in my right hand. No matter how often these difficult situations have presented themselves – in Chicago, in Philadelphia’s Badlands, in West Africa – it didn’t matter. Your nerves declare their independence from the cerebellum and go spastic on a Halloween disco.
Yet two things I have learned: To be more accurate, I have been taught. A hero is no braver than an ordinary man. But he is braver five minutes longer. And to control yourself, you have to control your breathing.
But then the guy with the mumbles said something else that I still couldn’t comprehend.
“I think I need a U.N. interpreter.” I said. And staring into the eyes of the guy with a knife that seemed to grow from 6 inches to a buccaneer’s rapier, I wondered: “Can you translate his Esperanto?… Ebonics?… Ibo?…Body?…”
The knife man almost grinned, knowingly. As if, he too, had no bloody idea what mumbles ever said.
“Give us your pouch you (expletive deleted!),” he commanded.
Hmmmm…..What this gentleman proclaimed was totally politically incorrect. So where are the LGBT police when you need them? I have carried a pouch/handbag for over 30 years around duh world and only American crackers seem to be mentally challenged by it. On a list of 4 million and 16 complaints, it was the last item any of my exes minded.
“For the record,” I said, “I am not gay. I am, however, thin, single and neat.” (My mouth can never find the stifle button.)
At that they glanced at each other with puzzled expressions – even though it is hard to tell on faces that were pretty puzzling to begin with.
And then my notorious giggles hit in machine gun bursts. My nerves have this ridiculous manner of demonstrating themselves with outrageous nervous mirth. This happened in West Africa once and ended up saving a small group of us from being bullet stoppers.
“Oh,” I snorted between the giggles, a laughter that almost made it appear as if I was enjoying this suicide adventure. “You want my money! Well, let me get it right out for you.”
At that I unzipped my pouch and began rummaging and tossing.
Out went some pens. Then some blank paper. A couple of my Romeo y Julieta Porto Real cigars in their metal cylinders. (That really saddened me.) Then my Rocky Patel lighter. A Toni Morrison book.
I was just about to toss my 18 month letter old from that idiotic Assistant District Attorney who finally had to withdraw all those ‘most wanted’ charges against me. It finally dawned on her outer-space brain suffering oxygen deprivation that my ex-wife was a candidate for the nuts and screwy psycho zoo.
So nope. Can’t toss that. My lawyer said I gotta keep that. Forever. Because the city’s finest will naturally screw up again when they stop me for spitting on the sidewalk. And the ADA, who undoubtedly graduated last in her class of ‘Goofies’ will forget that she screwed up the first time, so let’s be stupid and do it again.
And then as I found what I really was searching for, the knifeman kneeled down to apparently grab my black bag. At that I dropped it, pushed the switch button on a knife I found three weeks ago, popped out its 4-inch silver blade and poked it painfully — about a quarter inch– into the knifeman’s jugular area.
I may not know what I am talking about most times, but then again I don’t have to. Because, here I was doing it. Putting my money where my mouth is.
Frightened. Nearly out of control. My body excreting something that didn’t smell sweaty kosher.Trying to control my breathing. But resolved. No matter what the personal consequences, I had decided long ago, I ain’t taking this stuff from nobody, nowhere.
Some of us gonna live. Some gonna die. But remember, evil succeeds when good men do nothing.
At the same time I grabbed the wrist of the evil man’s knife hand. Told him I may kill him anyway. But drop the knife just in case I have a religious moment!
It’s never what you say, but how you say it.
I would like to say that ‘mumbles’ finally said something coherent. But it was not to be. So ‘mumbles’ took off and kept accelerating.
I studied my would-be assailant with the point of the knife uncomfortably applying pressure.
“Now who’s the faggot?” I bellowed, in a most disturbing stentorian screech. Calming myself, I hissed in a raspy whisper: “You’re not worth the bloody mess you’d make on the street.”
I didn’t know what to say to this vermin, this highwayman that has plagued our world forever since they began blaming everybody else but themselves for their problems. We are what we make of ourselves – nothing more, nothing less.
And before I did what I really wanted to, I told him to flee.
Quickly. Before I forgot I’d given him a ‘get-home-free’ card. And flushed him away like the excrement he is.
You are probably wondering why I didn’t kill the pusillanimous peace of spermatozoa whose better part no doubt ran down his old man’s leg.
It’s not always as easy, as you might imagine, to kill. I have never killed with a knife before. Things have transpired with other instruments in other dangerous places in self defense.
But when I was sticking that knife point into his neck, knowing that one swipe and his jugular would be pumping blood down the sewer, I realized if I’m going to do any killing this isn’t the scumbag I should be hacking away at with a machete, or an elephant gun.
Democrats, Republicans, Tea Party, Libertarians. You name it. They got us fighting over crumbs in the hinterlands while they steal billions of our dollars. Then they print more money and steal that too. We elected them because our party system is a fatal disease.
No, I let him live, first because I was simply too damn scared to know what I really should do. After that the cops are too damn mentally overtaxed to ever figure out what happened and I’d be blamed for something. And then I’d have to answer all those inane questions from some transgendered ADA on power trip of legality instead of seeking justice.
Only G-d and Moses may save us from our criminal, criminal injustice system.
I guess I figured the knifeman is going to run into his mortality soon enough. And maybe I’ll be lucky enough to run into one of my congressmen or women on a night like that. Now wouldn’t that be a fortuitous dilemma.
I am only reflecting the anger that is already in America. Mine just may be more focused and pronounced due to recent circumstances.
As I was studying my knifeless nemesis escape into the night I tossed his knife somewhere up and away. Then I snapped my own knife closed. Unfortunately I clamped the razor’s edge right down on my pinkie finger, inflicting well over an inch-long, deep cut. The blood started streaming immediately, dripping onto the pavement.
What a bloody mess. Except for the pain that was beginning to register I really didn’t give a damn. We all need to spill some blood to clean up this bloody disaster the likes of ‘W’ Bush and Dick and all those Sodomites got us into.
A little revolution and a big protest are good for the soul and spirit of America now and then. Spilling the blood of patriots and tyrants fertilizes the tree of liberty. That was said by Jefferson. He spoke five languages. Most of us here barely speak one, including ‘body’. No doubt why we barely understand one another.
So, what have we got to lose, besides our spare change.
And dats yDrewIS on DIS penal colony.