Man-Size (man_size) wrote,

How much?

I spoke to my brother on Friday. His health is a little bit better. Something about recent medication dehydrated him so the doctors prescribed him another drug that fills his legs up heavy with fluid, making it very difficult to walk. He hardly reveals hardship. He accepts that his life is extra hard. So, when he mentioned that he wished he was working off the books again so he could have food, I looked at my phone for a scattered moment. He never complains. I asked him what that meant. He said he had no food in his refrigerator. That he was eating cereal the past three days. Due to his screwed health, my brother lives off food stamps, so I know it ain't Kellogg cereal he's talking about. His cereal most likely comes from a white box with bold black letters. You gotta pay extra for the splashy logo and funny cartoon character. I stared at all my DVDs and my CDs and my comix and told him I'd cut him a $100 check for some Chinese take-out. He said I didn't have to do that. I told him I already knew that but I wanted him to have food. I knew he was good pals with Ramen Noodles but I wanted him to splurge. He thanked me. So, I wrote him a $200 check and dropped it in the mail.

Pekar's script had me drawing fisticuffs later than usual into Friday night while zegas held up his end of the studio lettering a 4pp comic I wrote for him to illustrate called "Broken." We listened to DMX and early RUN-DMC while drinking booze and making comix. Got a random call from my old ex-Russian girlfriend Julia, inviting us out to a birthday party at a bar called ORCHID. Ames picked us up in his car where he gave me a copy of a new book he advance blurbed called JACK FISH by J Milligan, and we motored to the lower east side.

Driving reminded Ames of when he was recently in Florida [or some other state, I forget], where he would pull up in his car to old men on street corners and ask "How much?" as a joke. This would confuse and sometimes anger the bums as Ames pulled away before getting a walking cane or a bottle of Night Train crashing through his windshield. So, of course, a couple of opportune moments had us sitting idle on a street corner, waiting for the red to turn green, when Ames would roll down the window and zegas would take the bait and shout "How much?" to pedestrians. I yelled at the both of 'em to cut it out. I knew if static were to ensue, I'd be the one rolling up sleeves.

I don't do trendy bars nor can I hang with a bouncer parked at the front door. Bouncers usually mean trouble and trouble usually costs ten bucks per whiskey on the rocks. Which is a New York crime. Plus, I hate to show my I.D. I've got white hair in my beard. Get a clue, lunkhead. And, I'm just no good in a place for kids learning to get their drink on. So, we hung out with the Russians while the bar filled up with clean shaven brokers a decade younger than me. It was nice to briefly catch up with Julia but her attention was occupied by budding romance and so I got to sip expensive Makers Mark and ogle zegas get Rico Suave on a girl [I knew all those hours of erasing my pages and filling in those blacks would pay off]. The voyeurism got boring quick and a third wheel I'm not. Not wanting to party poop, I suggested we skedaddle back to Smith street in Brooklyn whereupon I depleted both The Zombie Hut and Brooklyn Social's whiskey cabinets.

"Last night, I put a thief in my mouth and it stole my brain."

I think my brother's empty icebox depressed me enough to drown in alcoholic toxin many times over. And boy howdy did I ever pay for it on Saturday. I didn't start my hangover until the sun went down and so I had no spark to take the evening by storm. Instead, I invited Ames and zegas [and his roommate Jason] over for some Horror Movies 101, and schooled the boys in the 25-year difference between HALLOWEEN and FREDDY VS. JASON. I'd never heard Ames scream so loud. Michael Myers rules supreme.

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