Lately I’ve blogged on college football and politics. Now I’m sick of both, and reality in general.
A few years ago I wrote a handful of short stories. It’s presumptuous of me to think anyone might be interested. Nevertheless I’ve decided to post one of them. Actually, it’s a short, short story. Or a vignette. It’s called Waking the Dead.
“Marlboro me” Fast Eddie ordered as he sped through the night. When no cigarette was immediately forthcoming, he barked “Marlboro me now!”
“Can’t get this thing to light” Melvin whined. He was flicking the Bic butane furiously, but to no avail.
Eddie began fishing in his pants pocket for a Zippo. “Do I have to do everything myself?” he growled. After a few seconds he found the lighter, then repeated the fishing ritual in his shirt pocket. Initially it produced a broken cigarette. “Shit.”
Melvin finally managed to get the Bic to burn, but not long enough to light the two smokes dangling from his lips. “Damn” he whispered.
“Beer me bitch” Eddie ordered. Melvin reached between his feet into a brown paper sack and produced a sweaty can of Budweiser. He opened it and passed it to Eddie.
They’d been out partying. It’s what they did most every night. There was no work or school to get in the way. There were only the parents who financed their excursions because it was easier than trying to steer them towards adulthood.
“I gotta piss” Fast Eddie said as he veered sharply to his right. Everything and body in the car lurched hard to the left. They were used to being tossed about. Eddie wasn’t much of a driver, even when sober.
Melvin’s eyes grew wide as he realized where they were. “Why we goin in here?” There was more than a hint of desperation in his cracking voice.
“Cause I gotta piss you ass-wipe” Eddie replied. He clicked on the high-beams as he made his way altogether too fast through the old cemetery. When he’d gone half-a-mile from the main road, he pulled to the side. “Let’s go” he said through a sneer.
“I ain’t goin nowhere dude. Let’s just get the hell out of here. Now!” Melvin was the chicken in the bunch. He was also very superstitious.
“Get out you pussy” Eddie ordered as he climbed from the car. “We ain’t leavin till you had yoself a good look around”.
Melvin obeyed, his head turning in every direction as he tried to see through the dark. He followed Eddie from the road, taking extra long strides to shorten the distance between them. “Oh man” he muttered half a loud. “Wait up Eddie”.
Eddie stopped and waited for Melvin. “See, there ain’t nothin to be afraid of.” He unzipped his fly and aimed for a tombstone.
“What you doin man?” Melvin shrieked. He looked down at the headstone where Eddie was preparing to piss. The moon, through a brief break in the clouds, illuminated it for an instant. John Watson: Born 12/13/1903 Died 12/07/1941.
“Man you a crybaby” Eddie said as he began to pee. “Ole Watson here don’t mind none, do ya Watson?”
Melvin was sure something rustled just off in the shadows. “What was that man?” he whispered.
Just then a booming voice roared from the darkness, “I’ll drag you two to hell with me!” Before the last syllable rang out, Fast Eddie and Melvin were in a dead sprint across the grave yard. Screaming like school girls, they made their way into headstones, trees, and bushes. Much of their clothing, and a fair amount of their hides, was left on the barbwire fence that separated the cemetery from a cow pasture. The boys didn’t slow down until they reached a convenience store a couple miles down the road.
Curtis Mathers, caretaker for the cemetery, stepped into the light coming from Eddie’s open door. From a pocket he produced a half pint of cheap bourbon. “Punks” Curtis sneered as he unscrewed the top and took a long pull. “I hope ya breaks somethin” he called into the night. He peered into the car where two cigarettes burned in the ashtray. “Leather” Curtis mumbled as he undid the buttons on the fly to his overalls. As he began relieving himself in Eddie’s seat, he heard a commotion coming from the back.
“What cha doin?” a groggy voice asked from the car’s rear seat. It belonged to Tater Pickens. He’d passed out a couple hours earlier.
“Awe, I’m just pissin in your buddy’s car” Curtis replied.
A couple seconds later Tater howled with laughter. “Me too” the boy roared, just before passing back out in his urine soaked Levi’s.