The List

Posted: February 11, 2015 in Lit Gems
Tags: , , , , ,


On Saturday evening, Dubs the boxer and I sat at my kitchen table. Drinking cup after cup of Cherry Pepsi and Hennessy. Buzzing. Blitzed. Bored with life on another mundane harbor night. I poured another glass, half Pepsi and half Hen. Dubs carefully watched the bottle, measuring every drop with his beady eyes. He loved his alcohol more than life. We tried to wrap our loose minds around an activity.
What could two men of the bottle do on a cold, weekend night? With no money. With no juice. No Hollywood hook ups. No rich friends to get us by the hard velvet rope.
It was the two of us in the harbor city, getting drunk with no plans. We sat in my beach bungalow on 22nd Street, thinking of a master plan. Suddenly it struck me and like someone’s malicious, morning breath, it crawled into my mind and spouted from my mouth.
“Lets take all the names of our friend and place them in a hat. We pick out someone, stalk and beat them.”
Dubs paused, focusing his eyes on mine, seeking the truth from behind my pink corneas, while wondering if I was serious.
“Okay, lets do this!” He snapped.
I found a sheet of loose leaf, made the list and tore it into little pieces. We wrote the names of our friends. Only the ones we could beat. Not the ones who owned guns or extensive police records. They were purposely left off the list. I don’t know whom he wrote and still don’t to this very day, because the names were cast away after the draw.
I wrote:
and Dubs twice.
I excluded myself. That was the Jersey boy inside of me. Give me an inch and I will take your foot.
We gathered the slips and placed them in Dub’s black ski cap. He tossed them gently, trying his best to mix them up. He held the hat in the air, while I reached in and gently picked a small scrap, then opened it slowly. It read-Dees.
Dees our close mutual friend: a five two, muscular Latino that was very quick with his rock hard manos. He was originally from Tijuana, but came to the U.S with his mother and sisters during his pre-teen days. He sported a baldhead, like the Mexican gang members who stalked the city streets with their violent midnight intentions. Our friend was into basketball, boxing,and never gravitated to the gangster culture.
The small Latino had been Dub’s protégée since he was a fresh mouth teenager: dressing like him, walking like him, and even fighting like him. They shared little inside jokes and left me on the outside of their punch lines. They had special codes and nicknames for each other. People around the city said Dees was in reality a little Dubs.
He was one hell of a guy, good friend, and all around nice person but that Saturday was his unlucky night. On that evening, our buddy was going to get stung, beaten, and bruised. If Idol minds were the Devils workshop, then we were about to open up shop on him. We took the Hen and Pepsi to the head again, bigger shots than before.
It was war!
I could almost feel my fist digging into his ribs. It was euphoric almost orgasmic sensation. To be on the ‘giving side’ of a jump was a powerful sensation. To be on the ‘other side’, not so much. It was a nerve-wracking ordeal to mentally entertain. The only choices a person had at that moment were to fight, run or pray, and sometimes the Lord liked to witness a good one on one (IE David and the Giant) from his cloudy armchair in Heaven. I went into my room and changed into my battle clothes: baggy sweat pants and an over sized, gray hooded sweatshirt.
Oh the pain he was going to feel! Sweet Pain!
I returned to the kitchen, Dubs was already shadow boxing against an imaginary foe: maybe Dees, maybe me. We slid into his car and sped off down the street. He flicked on the high beams as we cut through the narrow, maze-like dark alleys. He turned on his stereo system, which was so loud the techno vibrations shook the interior of the car.
We were getting into beast mode, while an Italian soprano sang about his lover over techno beats and continuous loops. We stopped at a red light and the semi-sloshed driver started a strange Isometric work out routine: stiffly pumping his arms in and out. I joined him, also getting in kidnapping shape.
Green light- Go!
Dubs took Pacific Avenue on route to 3rd Street and made a left, climbing the hill and before I knew it we were behind the alley. I brought the plastic soda bottle filled with the liquor and sipped it slowly, gaining more and more confidence.
“You ready?” He said with a drunken sneer.
Hyperly I replied, “Yeah lets get him!”
He turned off his lights and we crept from the car. We ducked down and felt our way along a high, rough wall that bordered Dees yard. We leapt over a shorter fence, landing inside the back patio.
At that time Dees lived in the garage, where he had created a small living space. We came to a window and peeked inside. He was sitting on his sofa bed shirtless watching TV. Gone was the expression of happiness always gracing his brown, round face. A serious stern look replaced it. He leaned back, as if his mind was a million miles away.
Dubs accidentally kicked a rock that hit the side of the house.

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  1. vivalaViv says:

    Not the kind of story I usually read, but I did enjoy it. It’s entertaining!

  2. johncoyote says:

    Reblogged this on johncoyote and commented:
    A amazing tale by a a talented story writer. Please read and enjoy

  3. Jude Hammer says:

    Thank you Coyote….

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