We were all sitting at the window table ... four of us and three lookers ... playing Euchre and having a beer when the subject came up. They had some of the same tales as we had way back in Highschool... 'Golden Arm' and like that ... and it was my deal. You need to understand ... we were playing cards during all this ... I just left that out ... unless you want a lesson on how to play Euchre. I didn't think so.
I don't know if this qualifies as a Halloween Story ... they're supposed to be fiction ... and I swear ... with my hand up ... this is true ... and truly weird.
No, Bill ... not yet. Bill is the bartender.
I have Pixies. It's true.
A house full.
I'm not talking about the furry creatures that have decided to live there ... the cats don't like the Pixies. As far as the cats are concerned, the milk and cookies aren't for the little people ... the milk and cookies are worth fighting for ... in the dead of night.
Just in case you're wondering ... the cats usually lost ... badly. At first we thought it must be fleas but the cats never go outside ... they don't like that very much ... not one little bit ... but ... we have an ALL pets leash law and the cats hate the leash worse than they hate the Pixies.
The ONE time Nang, the deep brown cat ... I swear he's NOT black ... he's just a really dark brown ... the time he snuck by me ... he got arrested and it cost One Hundred Forty-Four dollars to bail him out ... and it was ME that had to go to court!! A hundred forty four dollars would have bought me Two Russian Mosin rifles and a hundred rounds of ammo!! Today, I'd much rather have the rifles ... the Zombies are coming!
So anyway ... I have a history with ghosts and dragons and now Pixies.
The first ghost I can remember, attacked my first cat ... lemmesee... 1966 ... yeah, 1966. First wife ... uh huh. We lived in a small house on US 27 just down the road from the Hill Top Tavern. Alward Lake Road ... south of that. You can see where it used to be on Google ... no ... ya can't ... it's gone. Shoot, there's a big pond where Uncle Jess used to keep his horses.
I'll bet that was fun digging out ... Jess used to bury the dead horses back there. Anyway ... the house is gone and there's a fucking Country Club across the road ... Shit fire ... that'll chap your ass. Seems like some damn developer is always tearing down the good old things and putting up crap.
This little house had a bedroom to the north, it had French pane doors and a small living room south of that, west of the living room was a dining room and west of that was the kitchen. The whole damn thing was $50 bucks a month and there were a couple of rooms we didn't go in ... padlocks. It wasn't worth the fifty without the other rooms but we paid it. It kept the wife close to her sisters.
The house to the north was Uncle Jess's home for Wayward Horses and Blonds. The house to the south was boarded up and had 'Police Crime Scene' posted all around it. The signs were pretty old and tattered and the house itself was posted.
Not that that bothered the teenagers in the area..."Let's go look in the Murder House."
They had parties there most weekends during highschool football season. Some wife had had enough and shot her husband ... or boyfriend ... fourteen times with a 1911 ... they only hold seven so she had to use a second magazine or reload the empty ... She might have got away with it if she hadn't reloaded.
But that's NOT what I'm talking about...
You gonna spring for another round or what? My stories ain't free. You gotta pay for the truth these days. Thanks, Bill.
So ... you see the sketch I doodled on the napkin? Ok...
The wife and I were cuddled up in bed after a long slow one and the orange tabby was warming our feet in the morning. I remember it was Friday Night ... Football party night next door ... so this would be Saturday morning.
I hadda pee and while I was up, the wife said, start breakfast. I fired up the stove and tossed the skillet on the burner and sliced off three four rounds of that good country sausage we used to get north of St. Johns ... shit fuzzy ... that'll tickle ya ... even that's gone ... so's the Drive-in theater that was across the road. Best damn sausage ... so...
I've got the sausage on medium so I don't burn it. Jo comes out scratching her cooter and heads for the john. When the sausage is just turning nice and brown, I chopped it up ... sliced some green onions, green and red pepper, and sprinkled some of that good salsa you used to could get from the Mexican restaurant that used to be just before the tracks on Grand River east of Larch ... it ain't there no more...
What? ... my round? Bill ... set 'em up here.
Anyway I scrambled up some Farmers Market farm eggs and poured a little heavy cream in the jar and shook it up pretty good ... that's my secret to smoothing out the eggs and if you shake it real good ... the eggs fluff in the frypan. I poured...
minute ... I gotta pay for this round ... here ya go, Bill...
I was saying ... I poured the eggs in with the sausage and fixins' and slipped in a little water and covered it ... on low a'course ... don't want to burn my darling's breakfast.
I heated up the tortilla press and used it to warm up six or eight flour tortillas and put some sharp cheddar and sour cream in the tortillas. I pulled off the lid on the skillet ... timing is everything ... scooped them eggs on to the plates ... just as Jo came out of the bathroom ... Well, I'll have you know that's mighty fine eating ... mighty fine and the eggs were good too ... just a second ... I gotta spit ... I know ... outside but out back ... some goody two shoes might put her dainty foot in it and have a hissy fit. Fucking Soccer Moms!
As I was saying ... You can't get anything like that nowadays. Everything has to be 'sanitary'. Sanitary's ass! Took all the flavor out is what they did! Just a second ... I need to let some of what I've been taking in out.
Who's got a cigarette. Damn it, Bill. I know I can't smoke in here ... and That's another thing!!! Can't smoke near a school, or downtown, or in a bar or tavern ... the next thing you know they'll be banning Euchre. I don't really want one, Johnny ... I just wanted to see which of you assholes are still smoking ... it'll kill you some day. You know I quit February 18th 1972...
Oh ... I see I might have mention that fact before.
So ... where was I ... oh yes ... we're sitting at the dining table and the cat yowls from the bedroom door ... he's a good cat ... goes outside ... no litter box in MY house ... So I hollered ... I'm coming ... and I opened the front door. Well ... the little bastard ... he's looking behind him and suddenly ... any of you honyacks ever tried for a pet slipper? Kick one in the ass so hard your foot just slides on in? Harold ... the look on your face!!! You either done it or know what I'm talking about ... I ain't saying I ever did and I ain't saying I never, but there's a contortion when a cat gets kicked in the ass.
His butt slides nearly under his chin and he elevates a good one. Three four feet in the air with his tail wiping his nose ... and some distance to it too. Well, Ginger ... that's what we called that cat ... Ginger gets that bowed up shape and just sails out of the french doors into the living room. I swear ... with my hand up...
No, Bill ... there's still beer in my glass ... I was taking an oath.
He hits the floor running ... left deep scratches getting traction...
From that day til he played in heavy traffic, he would stand in the dining room doorway and yowl at us until we got out of bed and HAND CARRIED that fat bastard into the bedroom. I'm here to tell you ... carrying that cat across the living room floor always gave me icicles running up and down my spine ... and he wouldn't step ONE foot in the living room or get off the bed at night. I could walk across that floor and never feel a thing, but if I had that cat ... shivers.
Now Bill ... your round, Harold.
Well, after that it was like I had an infinity ... affinity for them spine tingling fellas. I remember one time I was driving down Central ... by Broadway ... you know ... by the carper store ... it has those big windows ... there was a cute girl walking ... skipping really.
She must have been going to a halloween party because she was dressed up like a 1920's flapper. She'd even gone so far as to cut her hair in that straight bob they wore ... and that little cap ... you fellas know what I mean ... all over rhinestones and black stranded pearls ... and dancing slippers. She was real cute ... fell in lust for a minute ... until I noticed I could see the reflection of my pickup ... and me ... in the plate glass window of the carpet store ... but she wasn't in the reflection ... she's prancing down the sidewalk ... plain as day ... but she's got no reflection. I mentioned her to the wife...
I never saw a woman like my wife before ... she never noticed ANYTHING ... until ... she damn near got killed because she wouldn't check traffic on her side ... maybe an inch between her and the reaper.
So I get her to look ... and she sees the girl ... finally I said ... do you see her reflection in the window?
She gives a little screech and ups with NO! ... she can't be there and she looks away. If it don't fit in her beliefs it ain't happening.
So ... the flapper chick turns the corner onto Broadway ... and I signal and turn to check her out ... she's GONE. You guys all know none of those old businesses are open ... boarded up and closed ... there was no place she could have gone ... but she was ... gone, I mean. There's no gaps between the buildings ... no indents for doors ... it's all flush with the sidewalk ... she's just gone.