There is part of my illustrious past which i have alluded to but never really stated, of course this won't help and of course it's really not that hard to figure. I frequented a little corner bar, one of those places seen in every city neighborhood, some less shady than others but there nonetheless just like the rats and the roaches. The booze is cheap and it's easy to score things and every now and then there's a fight or a hook-up or you're the only person in the bar besides the bartender and you sit and laconically chirp out answers to Jeopardy. This was the place i worked and drank at and so did many of my friends. The bartenders loved me because i quadrupled their tips every time i walked through the door and they in turn protected me from anything or anyone suspicious. The bonus was for awhile they even had a foosball table.
One night when i wasn't there a couple of friends of mine were drinking and playing pool and plying the jukebox with money. Also there was one of the local lowlifes who liked sporting a these fucked up wet look curls that were halfway between the Hassidic Jew look or a jheri-curl, he hung out often and had a temper and was one of those twentysomething's who still lived at home and spent most of his money on fly gear when not sitting on his mom's couch watching the cable she paid for, see somehow one of my friends managed to anger Jheri White-Boy and though there were times i wanted to punch said friend when he was drunk apparently what angered Jheri was the music selection and the fact my friend was having a bit of a piss by playing some funny shit, needless to say it ended with Jheri giving my friend a nice shiner before being pulled off by my other friend because he needed to assert his manhood and hear some Master P or some such shit... I saw my friend and he relayed the story, i was around 30 or 31 at the time and worked in a plumbing supply warehouse lugging fucking boxed filled with metal all day before i came home and started my real job, needless to say i was in good shape and i listened and nodded and said, hmmm, a sound my friend didn't like as he begged me not to retaliate, i of course said i wouldn't think of it....
A week or so i later as i sat in the little corner bar and drank on my own. It was a rare night off, seeing as business was slow and everyone was on time i got shit done and decided to relax, i was conversing with Frida the bartender, a hawk nosed woman with couple of grown kids and penchant for blow and glancing at a meaningless college football game when in walked Jheri White-Boy, he smelled of expensive cologne and his gold glittered prettily in the x-mas lights that hung all year round, I was a known face and even if you didn't know me directly you probably knew someone who did, he sat down a few seats away and it didn't take long before he started revelling in his glorious one punch that knocked some pussy down and how if his little buddy hadn't dragged him off he would of kicked the shit out of him, i smiled and Frida lit a cigarette, i think at this point she had put together the two guys in the bar and where she had seen them before and suddenly i think she would've liked to close the place, really i smiled, one punch huh?
Jheri was much impressed with himself and as he sat there grinning i looked at his shoulder to see if could see any slime dripping off his head, it amazed me how the boy kept his hair looking so wet, i wondered if it was raining outside and then i said very slowly so he understood, that guy you sucker punched last week was a friend of mine, now of course i wasn't smiling anymore, he looked at me and shrugged said didn't have nothing to do with you man, now let me state that Jheri was probably around 5'9 and looked like mom may have bought him a weight set at some point cuz it wasn't as if he was slight but being 6'4 sure fucking helps and i stood up from my stool and made him an offer, i said why don't you try and punch me and see what happens you fucking little pussy, try that, but be real careful cuz if you miss i'm gonna hit back real fast and real hard, he stood up and offered up his very best fuck you and i stepped towards him and Frida ran out from behind the bar and said, Jheri get out, you're done, tossed, now fuck off out of here. Jheri was stunned, he stood stammering and hiccuping and finally blurted but i didn't do anything, he fucking started it and whined like the little bitch he was, i on the other hand stood with a shit eating grin on my face and tossed in a, have a nice night. Jheri didn't say a word he just headed towards the door where he once again began to plead his case. I went back to my beer and bought another and told Frida to get herself a shot. Jheri's pleas fell on deaf ears and as he turned around he spat, better watch your ass tonight buddy. I looked at him expressionless and told him i'd be leaving around midnight if he and his girlfriends wanted a shot at the title but i reminded him that i also had some friends, some he may have heard of, the big black and pipe toting variety and they really liked me cuz i was a righteous white boy, needless to say it was a slow night but if the moron knew the size of the bankroll in my pocket he would have at least tried, not to mention salvage some of his wounded pride... but i walked home unscathed.
You know sometimes it dawns on me that a college educated white boy from the suburbs of Cleveland should have been more of an adult at age 30 but as my father once stated i was the Perfect Barbarian, he also stated he didn't know what i did and didn't want to and being in another city kinda helped that... and thus began my third decade on the planet... and that was just a Tuesday night.
I am a little man of sorts and not a fireplug Italian, and I'm rather predisposed to worrying about my health insurance deductible and inclined to give up a little bit of masculinity in exchange for non-physical compromise, though Lord knows in certain circumstances I will hit a guy in the back of his head or in the neck or in the balls and draw blood with my teeth if possible (hopefully not from the balls).
So I admire this talent because you seem to be able to do it so coolly. Maybe in the next life for me.
i know this bar well... and your description of Jheri? he's mistakenly wandered in once or twice.
love the way you tell these tales, kono. love it.
...and that was just a Tuesday night.
Love the story!
Well, I can probably kick your ass at foosball, so there's that. :)
(Seriously - we have a table in our basement. I love the game, even though I don't play too often, considering it's in the basement.)
Sounds like the bar we used to frequent- there's a Jheri at all of them, unfortunately.
Tuesdays often harbour more excitement than they let on...
JMH- it's strange, i don't really condone or like violence it's just sometimes a necessary evil, at this point in my life it was bad for business as well, attention was the last thing i needed, i've found though that when i make that decision i become eerily calm and i've thought about it alot and yes it sometimes frightens me.
Daisy- you know this bar well? now why doesn't that surprise me?
Fuzzarelly- gracias as always.
Sybil- Did you just throw down the foosball gauntlet? You are a brave woman.
Twin- Tuesdays and Thursdays have always been my favorite nights of the week, don't ask me why.
Not long now captain greybeard. What did you do for your thirtieth? Oh, errr...
30th? i dunno, went to London, got drunk, saw Palace play twice, took drugs, stayed up late singing, almost got you evicted, scored on Cold Harbour Lane, hmmm i think i'm forgetting something.
It's not that I have a penchant for violence or anything, but I love bar-fights. Love them.
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