Man-Size (man_size) wrote,

Hand over fist

"I wouldn't wipe my ass with that shit!" trader #273 yelled at me across the metal barricade. I was trying to sell him a copy of R. Walker & Josh Neufeld's comic book TITANS OF FINANCE, true life tales about the rise & fall of Corporate CEO's []. Like how R. Crumb did in 1968 on Haight & Ashbury in San Francisco, hawking ZAP #1 from a baby carriage, JMRN and I were trying to do the same in 2002 with ToF on Wall & Broad in New York City, taking advantage of the Ralph Nader "Crackdown on Corporate Crime" Rally, taking place on the steps of Federal Hall facing the NY Stock Exchange. Dressed in a cheap suit and funny tie from his college days, JMRN wore a sandwich board advertising ToF while waving the comic books in the air shouting "Stop Corporate Greed! Read Titans of Finance!" Cops and activists didn't know what to make of it. And, honestly, neither could we.

It was a strange gamble to storm the rally to try to sell, what seemed to us, a tailor made comic book for left-wing/Green Party activists. A surly bunch, some were interested in the politics and speeches while others wanted their 15-minutes in the overcast spotlight. Every other person was an amateur reporter digitally recording the event and interviewing anybody who could rub two syllables together. JMRN was asked by a European woman what "greed" meant to him and he answered "when you want more than what you need." She tried to pursue JMRN's answer by asking if this was how the Western hemisphere felt and I stopped her dead in her tracks by stating JMRN was representing nobody's opinions but his own. Europeans tend to pride themselves in representing their country's culture & politics and assume that all Americans do the same, whereas native New Yorker's tend to represent only themselves. I should know. I corrected her prejudiced assumption when an uber-rally clad-lady chimed in suggesting that "freedom" was the "right to pursue truth, justice, and the American way." JMRN and I looked at each other and wondered what that had to do with anything, much less the question of "greed?" Seems that people just wanted to say something, anything out loud, never addressing actual questions.

This was the first political rally I had ever been to and it was creepy. The threatening rain didn't help as we stepped on each others toes and got too close to some seriously ugly people. I can't stand angry, ugly people. Once in a while I'd catch a nice ass or a sexy rack matched with a pretty face, and sigh with relief. I helped pull their interests towards JMRN as he dealt with potential sales and clinched them. Phil Donahue, Patti Smith, Mark Green, politicians, and yoho's I never heard of, and Ralph Nader barked on the mic while a tall blonde woman named Pot Whore in her latter 30s wore a G-string and B-cup bra hawking her right to run for mayor, or whatever the hell it was she wanted, on the sidelines with a handful of fric-and-fracs promoting their 2-cents. I kept my poker face and found spots for JMRN to rally ToF. When it was all said and done, JMRN snagged a final sale at the steps of Federal Hall while wearing a rainbow afro and I took snapshots. Hungry, we walked towards my locked bike when JMRN stopped suddenly and, like the perfect gentleman that he is, said "May I give you a copy of my comic book, TITANS OF FINANCE, Mr. Nader?" With out missing a beat, Nader grabbed the book and kept walking. I noticed that Nader was intrigued, studying the contents of the odd comic book while his assistant kept them moving steadfast in conversation. JMRN got ToF inside the chamber. Chalk one up for ToF!

JMRN would walk away, hand-over-fist with $100, and 40-less ToF's. We sat on the stretched out steps of an adjacent building where a few of Picasso's linear sculptures broke the corporate landscape. JMRN bought us a three-dollar box of popcorn chicken and soda from a truck, and we sat there chewing on fried skin having made our dent in the day. And it was only 2PM. I scooted off on my bike and made it to the middle of the Brooklyn Bridge when the clouds coughed, giggled, spat a loogey, and opened up. It began to pour.

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