Monday, November 07, 2005

November 7th, 2005, Upload 2, Chapter 10 (15,752 words out of 50,000)


There was a guy I used to know named Rick. I knew him since elementary school, the dude was in the first grade with me straight through to sixth grade. He ended up going to the same junior high school, different high school and he never made it to college. This fucking guy had the flattest head imaginable. We would have field day at our school, we’d all get together and play games only kids played and compete for certificates and medals that were going to be handed out at the final assembly. Popcorn Parachute, water balloon toss, relay races – shit like that. One game was this block-race kind of thing. You had to pt a block on your head, go across the school yard as fast as you can and then come back. If the block ever fell off you had to start over again – it was the worst game ever invented and the teachers only made us play it so they can pay us back for torturing them, watching us go back to the starting line over and over and fucking over because the block kept falling off our heads, watching our parents laugh as if we were amusing little shits. This kid Rick though, he would fucking sprint. He had this Teen Wolf looking haircut that required excessive amounts of hairspray; I suppose that combined with his ridiculously flat head made him the greatest block race champion of all time. In six years of elementary school I never one seen him drop that fucking block – he always made it to the finish line before the eventual second-place opponent made it halfway to the halfway point, the quarter-point if you want to get all fucking math about it.

The shit you remember about people.

I saw him after I finished college, about seven years back. He was peddling dope and coke to fuckers in Battery Park, making a bit of a name for himself but ultimately he was nothing but a one-man show and it was freaking him out. You might be able to pull that kind of shit in Brooklyn, distributing narcotics to sixteen-year-old rich white fucks home from boarding school but if you were a one-man show in Manhattan you were a fucking target. I’d get my dope from him because he always had some high-class shit and he made house calls, there’s no way in fuck I’d go slumming for my sticky-icky. He’d come over, I’d buy some dope off of him, he’d share a bowl with me and we’d reminiscent about elementary school because we never had anything else to talk about – field day always came up, obviously, and I would always talk to him about how amazing he was in the fucking block race and he would just fucking beam – it must have been the dudes moment, you know, his one shit that he’ll always be able to look back on and never the question the fact that when it came to block-races there was no-one in the city who was better than him. He couldn’t make a living off of it, it didn’t belong in a resume or help him in any college interviews he may or may not have taken but it was still fucking his.

I guess because I was the only dude who talked about those block-races as if Rick was our school’s version of Michael Fucking Jordan he’d usually give me my dope at cost, he was just glad to hang with me and shoot the shit about elementary school – it’s fucking sad, really, but I always figured I’d let him find that shit out on his own.

The stress of Battery Park starting getting to him, obviously, and he started tasting his llallo along with his dope, it started making him crazy. Eventually he got so burned out that he stopped dealing all-together, he got too careless and as a result he got run right out of the neighborhood, took a bullet to the shoulder and compensated by doing enough coke to reclassify himself as a junkie. After that I just stopped talking to him, I let him drift away – he’d track me down occasionally and ask for money but I never really had the patience for that type of shit – the way I saw it the dude wasn’t dealing ever again and block-racing glory only gets you so fucking far. I haven’t seen him in years.

But a name like Rick Desa catches your eye, I guess, and I guess I have an inexplicable thing for reading off funeral signs. You get inside so many peoples lives, get your hands in their shit so often, that it’s impossible not to know the person written on the signs, the plastic white letters changing daily and letting me know I need to find a new mechanic or a fucking housecleaner. But this time I’m sitting here, remembering all about block-races and dope deals and the real question is, if I’m the only person here and soliloquizing in my head, why the fuck don’t I get up front and send this cat off right? And I guess the second question is, why the fuck am I here at all?


Greg said...

In the first paragraph you call Rick "Philip." It's disconcerting!

Fun stuff. I'm trying to keep up!

4:51 PM  
Jason said...

Good catch - thanks!

12:11 AM  

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