Andrew, my twenty-something Hipster rock and roller worker, rolled up to the Safe Cracking party in a wheelchair.
“You’re late,” I said.
“I just got here,” he said standing up. “Can we please talk about something else.”
“Exactly, you were supposed to be here an hour ago.”
“Don’t be a drag, my arms are killing me.”
“Your arms?… Well, get the fuck out of the wheelchair and get to work.”
“Don’t be a grouch, Santa… Dude, I need a ten dollar advance for coffee.”
Around us Sonny was jackhammering a safe open. He had flipped the safe around and was drilling through the concrete on the underside.
Other guys were still milling about, but there was alot of noise and so I just handed Andrew the ten bucks.”
“Ten bucks for coffee?”
“Either give me ten bucks or don’t, but don’t hassle me. Everybody spends ten dollars for coffee and a croissant.”
“You could just go across the street and get a cup at Frank’s for fifty cents.”
“That coffee has no luster.”
Andrew spun the wheelchair around and got back in it. I held the back of the wheelchair,”What’s with the big wheels?” I asked.
“These shoes are killing my feet.”
I looked at the pointy old ratty black roach killers on his feet,”I told you that shit was going to screw up your feet. They are too small and why are you still wearing them.”
“I’m still trying to break them in. Can you let me get my nourishment please.”
I pushed his wheelchair into the street. A car honked his horn.
“I’m rolling here,” he yelled at the car.
Mike the Fag came over to me,”What are you thinking about doing with Chucky?”
“What says you?”
“I think he’s not on drugs and that he didn’t rob the safes. I think he got them legitimately.”
“You know something about those safes. I know you don’t like Chucky and you must want to buy into the safes for a reason.”
“I don’t call myself “Mike the Fag” for nothing.”
I went over to Sonny who was about to crack open the first safe. I stopped him, and called over Manny, Ritchie the Cop, and Dee J.J. into a huddle with “Mike The Fag.”
Mike said, “We should let Chucky in to the festivities.”
Sonny said,”He’s a Junky.”
Mike said,”As if you don’t know what it’s like to be a Junky.”
Dee J.J. said,”Except for Manny and Lenny, we have all been Junkies… Mike why do you want this Junky in…
Mike the Fag said,”I’m the real Junky here. As you know, I am Mike the Fag because it sounds better than “Mike the Junky” or “Mike the Degenerate Gambler.”
We all shook our heads. We were like a married family here, hearing each other’s stories over and over.
“As you know, I’ve made three million dollars in my life. I shot one million into this arm, one million into this arm, and I gambled the other million away… Chucky’s safe’s are loaded. My arms are rattling like crazy. Those safes he has are loaded. Maybe we can all go in together and buy them off of him. He has to let us go in with him to open them here and now.”
Everybody looked at the old man. Manny nodded yes, “If Mike the Fag says it’s loaded, those safes are loaded. Mike is the best gambler of Junk I’ve ever witnessed.”
Nobody was going to fight the old man.
Sonny said,”that shit better not be stolen. I am not doing time for that prick.” He walked back to the safe he was about to crack.
Andrew wheeled himself sucking on some large Starbucks beverage. He was using his feet to move the wheelchair.”
“Andrew, when your finished your drink, unload the three safes from Chucky’s van.”
“Give me a break, I just got here.”
“I’m gonna step on your feet.”
“O.K. o.k. which Santa is Chucky?”
“The one in the Satan outfit.”
“He’s not going to eat me up, is he.”
“No, life is.”