Blackhumouristpress's Blog

May 27, 2015

The Gauntlet Through Suburbia or It’s Kinda Like Dutch

Filed under: belgium,humor,humour,Short Story,suburbia — blackhumouristpress @ 8:51 pm
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Margot totally forgot about the block party as she came around the corner to find two barricades blocking the entrance to her driveway. It took a few seconds for the whole thing to register- The busybody fucks put together a block party and put the fun house/trampoline squarely in front of her driveway. She would have to park her car on the side street and face the gauntlet of neighbors on her way to her door. There at the table was the neighborhood old nosey woman with her mentally challenged adult son with the underbite. He is a Bagger at the neighborhood grocery store and it takes longer for him to bag the groceries than to go up and down the aisles to shop. His mother landed him the job. Ted is harmless unless you’re a deviled egg. Ted sat next to his mother and poked each and every one of the deviled eggs and then licked what stuck to his hands as he smiled at his own fingers. Next to Gladys and her son was Susan and her husband George who had gastric bypass surgery, right after they became born again Christians. They have two adult sons who work doing delivery at a pizza restaurant. They make under minimum wage and have nice late-model Chrysler cars. One has a Challenger and the other a Charger. They blast ghetto Rap and wear sagging pants and crooked ball caps delivering food to hungry homogeneous consumers nestled in a really safe community. Margot thinks the boys are dealing dope and they are. Susan and George have two younger daughters after a ten-year sabbatical on spawning. They are twins but not fraternal. One is thin and tall and the other is grotesquely obese and tall. Margot wanted to wire up her backyard so that the chubby one would get a shock much the way a dog does with invisible fences. The heavy-set girl was forever picking flowers and kicking soccer balls into Margret’s plants.

Next two at the table were the neighborhood lesbians that looked like two ugly Dutch men with Dutch boy haircuts. They both played on several lesbian softball teams and treated their Pug named Schotzie like their baby. The larger of the two large women was the daddy and the smaller but rotund one was the mommy and they called each other that. The daddy seemed to always sweat even when there was not a good reason such as cold weather or inactivity and she smelled slightly like a skunk. Perspiring, unwashed skin against more perspiring unwashed skin tends to give off a scent after while. They glared at Margot. They were no longer friends because Margot changed her mind and decided that she really did not want the Pamper Chef stuff that the mommy was peddling as part of her stay at home employment so that she could keep an eye on the dog who had a slipped disc.

The lesbian’s dog Schotzie kept growling at the judge’s well-behaved German Sheppard that sat unleashed at his side. The judge looked like Joseph Goebbels with his legs crossed and his concentration camp dog at his side. His wife had an Eva Braun look to her. She had a nervous thing she did where she kept straightening a strand of hair that was already straight. Margret suspected that the judge’s wife was trained to be obedient and submissive like their dog. The judge never spoke and his wife only commented on the weather. At the far end of the table were the wife swappers. Margot didn’t know for certain that this was going on but felt that the spouses of each couple was far too chummy. Margot was right. The couples would order a pizza delivered by the hip hop looking pizza boy neighbors, have a few drinks and take turns with each other’s spouse and then critique each other’s performance.

The thought often came to Margot- wouldn’t it have been better to stay in the city where the sounds of leaf blowers did not cut through the morning air each and every quiet morning, where busy  with mentally challenged sons would not watch her from their windows, where dysfunctional next door neighbors would not ignore their son’s dope dealing and allow their overfed daughter to destroy her garden, where Nazi look a likes and lumpy lesbians with dogs never would feel at ease to hold a gun to her head to get her to buy unnecessary stuff that she didn’t want or need? No. The city was cold and distant. There were no block parties and you had to lock your car doors and dead bolt your front doors and watch your purse. People in the city never said hello to each other unless they were about to panhandle.

The neighbors were all intrigued by Margot.  Why did she buy a house in the suburbs? Was she ever married? Did she have kids? Why is there no man around or a woman for that matter? Is she happy? Is she sad? Is she content? Is she hiding something? Is she really American? They all wanted to know. It’s the suburbs and everyone sticks their noses up each other’s asses like dogs at a dog park. Gladys asked Margot to stay for a drink, the born-agains asked her to stay, the lesbians, Nazis and wife swappers all took their turns. Margot felt she had no choice. Like a gun to her head, she sat and waited for the questioning at the yearly block party while she sipped a Pinot Grigio out of a plastic cup.

“Well, I came from the city but am originally from Belgium…”

Nobody said anything and then the son of Gladys with an underbite and deviled egg residue on his fingers, looked at Margot and asked a profound question that nobody expected or thought to ask Margot. Ted watched geography shows on public television constantly but nobody knew that. They all thought they were in the presence of a savant. “Did you speak French or Flemish in Belgium?”

Margret answered that she spoke Flemish. Nobody knew what that was. Nothing was said for a nervous ten seconds until the judge’s wife commented while straightening her hair.

“Well we certainly picked a beautiful day to have this block party, didn’t we?”

Yes

September 19, 2009

Love in Detroit

Filed under: Uncategorized — blackhumouristpress @ 10:17 am
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            A name like Boyd Floyd in the books of most people, as the saying goes, would be a cruel choice.  Bobby, Timmy, Joey and so on, would have been better first names that would have fit nicely with the last name of Floyd. 

Boyd’s people left the Deep South in the late 1920’s.  Word got around that in the City of Detroit, in the state of Michigan, a man by the name of Henry Ford, needed help building automobiles and so they traversed their way up north and settled off what would become the Edsel Ford Freeway in Detroit or just plain old interstate 94.  Boyd inherited the modest brick home that belonged to his parents off of Van Dyke in Detroit near the Detroit City Airport, not far from the Plymouth plant belonging to Chrysler Motors.

 Boyd had everything going for him with Chrysler until they decided to close the Plymouth plant and along with it, the Plymouth brand.  Since graduating high school in 1988, Boyd had worked at the Plymouth plant.  His job eight hours a day was to put bench seats in the back of Plymouth Voyager minivans.  Each minivan got two bench seats each.  Twice back in the early days, Boyd got to meet and shake hands with Lee Iacocca.  Mr. Iacocca saved Chrysler from certain death in the late 1970’s and with the development of the K car and minivan, Chrysler was once again productive and viable.  Boyd made a good living and supported a family the way his dad did and his grandfather before him.  That was until they canned Plymouth.

Now Boyd’s wife left him around the time their two children grew up and went on with their own lives.  At the age of 39, on the cusp of 40, Boyd wondered what it was that he was going to do with the rest of his life.  He had no job, no wife, no kids and no future to speak of.  One day while things looked truly bleak for him and he was pumping gas into his light blue Plymouth Voyager minivan at the corner of Livernois and Michigan Avenues, two young black men put a gun to his head and riffled through his pockets.  Boyd had just sold some World War II mementos that belonged to his father who had fought in the Pacific.  Boyd received $250.00 for a Japanese issued revolver.  The two young thugs took that from him, hopped in his minivan and drove off.  It was that day and that moment that Boyd decided to start a life of crime.

It started with small stick ups near the casinos in and around Detroit.  There was the Greektown Casino, the MGM Casino and the Motor City Casino.  People would go into the Casinos and get all liquored up and leave at odd hours.  Boyd would usually try to find the rich cats that pulled up in foreign cars.  People who drove foreign cars really burned him up.  Boyd once went to Disneyland in California when his children were young and was amazed to find that most cars were foreign on the streets.  In fact the foreign car that he was issued at LAX was a Toyota.  When Boyd saw the car parked in the space, he went back in and demanded a domestic vehicle.  He wound up in a Chevy Suburban that cost him twice with the compact car would have cost him and so it goes.  Manufacturer plates on Mercedes was always a sure bet that he was hitting an executive at Chrysler who was probably some German born snob who hated living in Detroit but was sent by Daimler in Germany to make something of their American holding.  The robbing business was hit and miss but it kept food on the table for himself and his cat.

Like most people who opt to rob others for their means to an end, they eventually get caught and Boyd was no exception.  Boyd was charged with a string of armed robberies and was jailed in the state prison near Jackson, Michigan. 

After being in prison for a good long time and witnessing some of the worst things men were capable of doing to one another, Boyd came up with a plan to get himself free.  Every time it was necessary to appear in court on yet another charge for robbery, the deputies that transported him were always quite lax about the whole thing.  How it would work was that one would drive and one would sit next to Boyd.  Now what nobody could have possibly known about Boyd was that he was double jointed.  It was quite easy and possible for Boyd to flip his arms from behind him while cuffed to in front of himself in just over one second.  Boyd practiced this in his prison cell with his cell mate.  His cell mate would take a shoe laces and bind his arms together and watch in awe as Boyd contorted his shoulders and arms in ways that was not possible for most people.  Boyd’s cell mate had no idea why Boyd practiced doing the move over and over again until he watched the local Detroit news about an escaped convict who was on the loose somewhere near Ann Arbor.  The guys who recognized Boyd cheered wildly when they heard that one of their own had over taken not one but two deputies, disarmed them and left them handcuffed to each other around a tree off of a remote country road thirty miles west of Ann Arbor.  Boyd drove the state vehicle for a while until he carjacked a young couple who drove a Dodge Charger.  Boyd saw that the car had a souped up Hemi engine that would make the playing field even for him in the event of a police chase.  Boyd loved the car but hated Michael Bolton CD’s and so those he threw out of the window while driving along route 14 that had a large sign letting drivers know that they were on their way to Plymouth.  How ironic.

Boyd robbed people at gun point in an around Detroit for days and hid out in abandon houses and knew that it would be nearly impossible to find him due to the fact that there were so many abandon homes strewn all over Detroit.  The final plan was to hit the Comerica branch bank in the beautiful posh suburb of Royal Oak.  It was there that Boyd fell in love.

Everyone was face down on the floor of the bank, hoping that the man with the gun would not opt to use it.  A young man of Indian descent, stuffed big bills into a Detroit Tigers pillow case as Boyd unwrapped one of the lollypops in a dish left out for mostly crying children.  Lying on the floor in a skirt was a beautiful young woman with the face of an angel and blond hair.  Boyd ordered her to get up.  He held the gun to her head as he spoke to everyone in the bank.

“I’m walking out this door right now with this young lady…  I will have news radio on and if I hear on the radio that I robbed this bank and took this woman with me, I will blow her brains out…  If any of you squeal, she dies… Am I clear?”

The young woman went by the name of Amber and she lived Southfield with her husband who happened to be a police officer.  Amber had loved her husband dearly for the longest time but had grown to hate him in the last year or so of their seven year marriage.  It wasn’t clear if Amber or her husband was incapable of having children.  They both just quit trying to have children and pretty much quit the act of love making all together.  Amber slept in their big bed alone under a picture of herself on her wedding day in front of the old Tiger’s Stadium with the entire wedding party.  She looked so beautiful in her white gown and all the men and women looked so smart in their attire with the Bengal tiger symbol behind them.  Amber was absolutely terrified of the escaped convict but was absolutely attracted to the attractive man.  Nothing was being said as Boyd drove off in her car while pointing the revolver at her with his left hand which rested on his lap.

“Can I ask you not to point that at me?  I’m not going anywhere and I’m not going to fight you…  If you want to rape me you can but please don’t shoot me or beat me up,” said Amber in a soft sweet voice.

“I’m not gonna hurt you, Miss.  I just needed to get outta the bank…  I’m actually sorry to do this to you,” said Boyd softly.

As time went on, they spoke to each other as humans and as two people who were genuinely interested in each other.  Boyd learned about Amber’s hopeless home life and Boyd told her about he came to become a criminal.  Amber listened to Boyd’s plan to escape into Canada and disappear into some Canadian city and try to start over.

“I could go with you…  I could help you start over and you could help me,” said Amber to Boyd’s surprise.

“Why would you want to attach yourself to a convict on the run?”  Asked Boyd.

“Because I believe that god meant for us to meet,” said Amber.

Whether you believe that god has the time to take small meaningless creatures on one particular planet in the universe who happen to live on Earth, in the northern hemisphere, in a country called the United States in a state called Michigan on the north west side of Detroit, then you can understand where Amber was coming from.  Boyd was her gift from god. 

            Amber went and bought some horned rim glasses and blond hair dye for Boyd as he waited at the Marriott Hotel in Troy off of Big Beaver Road at exit 69 off of interstate 75.  You think I’m making those two things up but I’m not.  Exit 69 at Big Beaver Road is where Boyd was hiding out.  Boyd put his faith in a stranger who he was attracted to and felt that there was some sort of bond growing between them.  Boyd showered and shaved and when he finished, Amber came back with new clothes, hair dye and glasses.  In a matter of a half hour, Boyd was reinvented.  The clothes were stylish and Boyd actually had a European look to him with blond hair.

            “How do you think I look?”  Asked Boyd.

            Amber did not answer him but rather ripped at his clothes and hers until they were without a lick of clothes on either of them and were making passionate love to one another.  It had been so long for both of them that the love making almost appeared to be angry.  There was no anger though.  It would be like giving a steak dinner to a starving person.  They devoured each other over the course of hours.  Boyd woke up suddenly and the room was dark and he could not see a clock anywhere.  Lying on his chest drooling was Amber.  She was sleeping soundly after making love several times over the course of two or so hours.

            “I’ve got to go,” said Boyd as he sat up.

            “Just come back to bed…  We can get up early and head over to the tunnel or the Ambassador Bridge and be in Canada in minutes.  This time of night they are definitely on the look out for people crossing the border,” said Amber.

            Boyd thought about it as he looked out of the window that overlooked the interstate that was mostly quiet except for trucks and a few cars.

            “Yeah… Maybe you’re right,” said Boyd. 

            With that he climbed back into bed and held the warm fit body against his once again.  He kissed her neck and ear and she ran her fingers through his hair as she pressed herself against Boyd.  They made love for a fourth time and fell back asleep unaware that swat teams, local police, state police all were moving into place.  Rather than using cash, Amber used her credit card.  They found that within the span of an hour, she bought food at a Coney Island, clothes, glasses and hair dye as well as a room for the two of them at the Marriott in Troy at exit 69 and Big Beaver.  For a few short hours on one day in Detroit, two trapped people found heaven.  Where was it?  Exit 69 and Big Beaver Road.  It honestly exists.

July 30, 2009

Midlife Chrysler

Filed under: Auto Industry,Chrysler Deathwatch,Short Story — blackhumouristpress @ 2:27 am
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Midlife Chrysler
Joe pulled into the lot of the beach front night club in Malibu, California at such a fast speed that the carhops jumped out of the way. Joe slammed on the breaks of his jet black Dodge Viper as the car screeched to a stop.

“You fucking kids… What you think, you fucking kids? I’m gonna hurt you? Eh? Take care my prize… I love that fucking car more than life.”
Joe’s name was actually Shlomo and Joe was Jewish not Italian. Joe never told anyone that he was Italian but it was implied. He walked in the club with a cigar in his mouth, wearing a burnt orange suit and shiny black shoes with his hair greased back. Joe was bird’s nest bald in the back but hid it well by combing his hair straight back. The bangs rarely get cut. Joe hugged the owner of the club an Italian man from New York who went by the name of Willy. Willy escorted Joe arm in arm to a table near the dance floor that had a VIP card on it and a velvet rope had a reserved sign in front of it. Joe pretended to talk on his cell20phone to a business associate as he panned around the room. A pretty raven haired girl with pouting hips, sat at the bar with a few other girls that were just days over the age of twenty one. Joe sent over a bottle of champaign to the girls as a few regulars stopped by his table to chat with him. Joe sent over another bottle to the girls and told the waiter to have them join him at his booth. The young women giggled at first but mustered up the bravery since there were four of them in all. Joe kissed all of their hands as they individually extended their hands. They got a good look at Joe’s expensive Cartier watch, gold bracelet and pinky ring. The girls all thought Joe was a gangster and he played it up to the hilt.
“So where you girls from?”
“We are all students from Spain,” said the stunningly beautiful raven haired young woman, in a heavy accent.
“Spain… I love Spain. Seville, Barcelona, Madrid… Love it there,” said Joe.
The other girls had difficulty speaking English the way the raven haired Marina could. Marina worked in a hotel in Spain where mostly British tourists would come for holiday. Joe was totally smitten with the angel faced young woman with a perfect body. Her silver dress contoured her body li ke a glove. It was nearly impossible for Joe to pull his eyes off of Marina. Joe sipped his scotch slowly as marina drank down the champaign at nearly a glass every fifteen minutes. Marina got bold and sent her friends home without her. Joe had no way of knowing since Marina commanded her friends in Spanish. Joe was hers and there was no disputing this. After four generous glasses of champaign, Marina sat close to Joe and listened to his every word intently.
“Tell me all about you, Joey… I want to know everything about such a handsome specimen of man,” said Marina, into Joe’s ear while brushing her lips gently against his earlobe.
“Well I was married once and now I’m happy… That was a little joke there,”
“So what do you do, Joey? You must be an important man.”
“I don’t like to discuss what I do so much, babe. I do what I do and I do it well and it makes me rich and that’s all you gotta know.”
Marina kissed Joe on the lips. Her soft lips and thin neck smelled of a light flowery perfume. Joe kissed Marina on the neck and posed a question he had posed nearly every time he found himself in a similar situation with a young impressionable woman.

“Do you believe in fate?”

“Fate? What is fate?”
“Do you believe that gawd meant for us to meet tonight? I tell you why… I was going to go home and go to bed. I stepped out on the balcony of my place and watched the moon shine on the waves and said to myself, there’s got to be something special waiting for me on such a beautiful night. I found myself coming here for a reason I did not know… I know now though. After seeing you, talking to you, I now know that gawd had a purpose for me tonight. It was to meet someone really special… This is like winning the lottery…”
“Tell me one thing Joey; Do you have good insurance?”
Marina was visiting on student visa and was attending Pepperdine University. Her goal was to find an American man who really wanted to be married. She then would get her citizenship and vanish to some other area of the country like possibly Miami.
Marina woke up to the sound of seagulls screaming over head and waves crashing on the beach. A note on the table from Joe. This is what it said:
Swee t Marina,
A lot was said last night and I meant all of what came out of my mouth. I look forward to getting to know you and sharing my life with you. I believe in fate and feel that you do too. You have my cell number now. Call me later. We can meet for dinner.
Love Joey
During the day, Joe was Shlomo and his job was to manage a shopping center in the San Fernando Valley that was owned by his wife who was a trust fund baby. Yerhuda inherited money and property from her father who bought land all over the country. Yerhuda’s job was to collect checks from companies that managed her properties in various cities. Shlomo’s job once a year was to visit all the holdings and give his wife a report. The rest of the time, Shlomo worked out with a personal trainer, played golf and tennis and ran around in his various sports cars.
Yerhuda was known as a Jewish ten; a five with money. Lots of money. Shlomo was able to convince Yerhuda that what he felt was true love. Yerhuda bought it and they went on to have five children over the course of eighteen years. All the children were stout, chubby and spoiled rotten. Shlomo hated to come home most days when the children were home. They yelled, cried, fought with one another and whined for things that they didn’t need but received anyway.
When Shlomo was not at the country club, he could be found sleeping in office inside the mall which was owned by his wife. Shlomo had a Murphy Bed installed in his office. A Murphy Bed is one that comes out of the wall and is disguised as a book shelf. Shlomo would usually be hung over from running around all night. Yerhuda took sleeping pills to sleep and rarely knew that Shlomo was out carousing.
“Honey, the agency sent over the new au pair,” said Yerhuda, while eating a bowl of blueberries in her jogging suit in their spotless kitchen.
“Well she seems nice enough… A student and all just like the others… Okay, Captain Bill will bring the yacht to the marina at three, don’t be late… Huh… I just had a thought. Sort of coincidence… Well whatever. Hurry home. Love you.”
Shlomo joe parked his Dodge Viper in the large circular driveway. His eldest son was playing basketball in their tennis court with a neighbor and never acknowledged his father’s presence. Joe opened the front door and set his keys down on the antique table just inside the foyer. Yerhuda was in the sunroom giving instructions to the au pair.
“Ariel cannot drink milk. He is lactose intolerant. Rebecca will not eat pasta with sauce. It has to be butter. Ziv can stay up until ten and then he must go to sleep. We’re just going to our place in Cabo for a few days but you can reach us on my husband’s cell phone anytime… Oh here he is now. Marina, this is my husband Shlomo.”
Shlomo was as stiff as a soldier and pushed his wife to get her things and leave forthwith. Yerhuda asked Shlomo what was wrong and why it was that he looked so pale. Shlomo blamed it on the lox from the deli in Santa Monica. Shlomo kept waiting for the young girl to do what young girls do; get angry and drop the dime. It never happened. Shlomo was intrigued as to what was going through Marina’s mind. After a half day passed, Shlomo sent Marina a text message.
“I don’t know what to say other than I’m sorry.”
Marina responded ten minutes later.
“Call it fate… Don’t worry, Joey. We’re going to work out the terms… It’s like a gift from god. Just like winning the lottery. Kiss her for me 🙂 ____ Marina”

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