A satirical look at a small community
| The morning of February 2, Anthony stared out of the window, wondering if today would be the day his father’s rivals would find and eradicate him. His Uncle Marco’s stupidity already led to two deaths in the family. The first time Marco had gotten married, he drunkenly tried to carry his new bride up the stairs, dropping her, sending her rolling down three flights of stairs, breaking her neck. He blamed it on two hoods from the Graziano family, igniting several incidents that left his brother Jimmy, dead. Marco was the only living brother, as if Fredo had taken over the Corleone family.
But Marco was at least smart enough to know how stupid he was. “I may not have a head fulla marbles, but I’m the one who’s freakin’ alive.” A valid point yes, but Marco never took into account that his stupidity might one day get him killed as well. Anthony had the higher I.Q. of the two by far, but his father had the foresight to make sure Anthony was hidden well in case of his demise. The silver lining of this particular cloud for Anthony was that he could get his business degree or at least part of it while he was in his uncle’s imposed exile.
Anthony watched the street that morning, two hours before class at the community college. He saw a red pickup truck drive by, 17-year old Anna Faulkner behind the wheel. Jeff Boyle, her awkward teen best friend rode shotgun, snapping pictures and scribbling in a notepad. Anna, in her Elvis sunglasses, smoked cigarettes and sang along to the Stooges “I Wanna Be your Dog”, which played in the tape deck. Anna was many things, but most noticeably, she was a fucking knockout. She elicited many tits and ass remarks whenever she walked by any guy. She had short blond hair and long eyelashes, full lips, brown eyes. I could go on forever on what made her so good-looking, but I’ll save the really descriptive parts for her sex scenes. Yep, that’s right, a seventeen year old girl in sex scenes, right here, forthcoming. I know, I know, but that’s life, gramps. It’s a cold sick world.
The reason for Jeff Boyle taking pictures and writing was because he aspired to be a reporter, to tell stories not unlike I’m telling you at this very instant, only his idea of storytelling was to take pictures of people, places, and things and make up stories about them. Anna stopped the truck at the front of the neighborhood to let a family of ducks cross the road. Jeff rifled off some quick snapshots.
“Each with their own story…” he mused.
The pickup truck belonged to Anna’s aunt, who she lived with three houses down from Anthony. Anna was very intelligent, beautiful, and a tinge rebellious. In other words, a newly pubescent boy’s nightmare. They were rather wet nightmares, though. Fantasizing about Anna was like eating cold pizza, not exactly real, not exactly warm, but still kinda good. It is this writer’s opinion that every young boy has a close friend whom he’d rather fuck than share his intimate secrets with. But, as time and puberty move on, that’s exactly what that unfortunate boy does. He is trapped behind those impenetrable steel walls known as friendship. He can’t break free. He can’t even get a maybe. He can’t even get an “I’ve loved you all my life, since I was old enough to pronounce the word” from her. That shit doesn’t happen outside of fiction or television. If you think I’m lying, call up someone you’ve been friends with for years, tell her how much you’ve always been in love with her, and watch how fast she never calls your pathetic ass again.
This was Jeff’s current position, and he resented it. But on his list of resentments, a list quite long for an awkward looking teenaged boy, it ranked fairly low. On a basis consistent with his newly discovered hormones and photojournalistic lack of integrity daily tried to get Anna to bare her breasts for the camera.
“It’s for a story about women’s rights. Many women would consider nudity liberating.” He would say.
“Go jerk off.” She would reply, and he would, wish he were staring at naked pictures of his best friend while he did it.
Angel’s Pass didn’t exist under a pretense of good will or neighborly love; it was just a community of humans who mostly didn’t pay attention to or care about their neighbors. The lives were different, but their coffee smelled the same. Now this is under the assumption that everyone drank the same brand of coffee, which would be presumptuous of me. You know what, I’m sorry. This whole thing has been overwrought with stereotypes already, why would I just ASSUME that all middle class Americans drink Maxwell House? Let’s explore the kitchens of our citizens, shall we?
Ok, Sharon and Marty Jackson drink Folgers. Folgers is sort of the lazy choice. It doesn’t take a lot of premeditation. Just open the pack, and one wet, sticky sweet mess later, you have coffee. Anthony drinks Mills Brothers coffee. That’ll put you out about nine bucks at the grocery store, so he kind of gives a shit. You don’t want to waste too much and have to shell out almost ten bucks for another bag just because you were too lazy to spoon it out the right way. That brings us to Rasheed and Jimmy who, depending on who bought the sodas for the house that day, drank Coke or Pepsi. Anna’s aunt, Kelly, did in fact drink Maxwell House, decaf, the green can. See, I wasn’t totally out of line. Although I do take exception to people who drink decaffeinated coffee. What, I ask you, is the point?
Sharon Jackson stubbed out her cigarette with her big toe and went inside to get ready for her husband to leave. Anthony sipped his coffee, wondering how old the girl in the pickup truck was. Rasheed and Jimmy fought over the remote. Jeff and Anna went to school so they could further learn how to be like the adults in their neighborhood. That morning, three construction workers would go without breakfast.
It was a tragedy, really.
When the sun set on Angel’s Pass (finally!) on the evening
of February 2, its resident’s lives hadn’t changed much, but, hey, I gotta start somewhere, give the reader a little taste of where things started to go awry for some average folks. Some might say these poor motherfuckers started their downward spirals at birth, but this ain’t War and Peace, and you ain’t discussing this at a book club. It’s just an account of a populace you should thank your lucky stars you’re not a part of. It would sadden me if you had a story like this, but if you do, come on in. There’s plenty of room and misery to go around.