I rode my bike over to Mangia. It was late. Midnight. Maybe later. I got out of the house for a break. I cut through the alleys and hit Juniata and pedaled against the one way street. It was quiet and I was the only thing on the road. Up ahead, on the north side of the 4200 block I noticed a guy walking on the street side of the cars posting stick up notes on each window. I was unsure what that was all about. I slowed up to get a better look and sort of startled the guy. He looked like he might be a little off. Maybe a bit slow. I coasted past him and took a left on Bent and cut back west through the alley between Arsenal and Juniata. I wanted to see exactly what was going on.
As I redirected back heading east on Juniata and I stopped to see what he was sticking on the car windows. They were blue post it notes with a simple message:
If you have an extra 8 - 12 hours per week and
desire to earn an extra $800 - $1,000 a month,
Contact: Mark At: 314-839-xxxx
Flexible Hours - No Experience Necessary - Will Train
I looked down the street and the guy was already east of Bent. I pedaled down further and rolled back up on this guy. I coasted to a stop and startled the guy again.
"So tell me, how can I earn extra cash?"
He was startled for a second. He looked a bit scared. But he recomposed himself and responded "Well you will have to call and find out?"
Good answer, considering the situation. So I press him.
"So can't you tell me how I am supposed to earn this cash? I want to know now."
He seemed skittish. I think there was something wrong with him. Not bad scary, but he just seemed slow and misguided in his enthusiasm. It was getting closer to becoming sad.
I started coasting away and shook my head and sort of just spoke out.
"That seems awful sketchy. Doesn't sound like on the up and up."
I made it down to the Mange and locked up and settled down at the end of the bar with the newspapers. Clara was bartending and held aside a late night bowl of tasty whole wheat pasta and vegetables. I perused the classifieds section for cars. Paul Stark
came down and we talked about him doing a matinee record spin that would be set up for people to bring their families. I figure I could do it in the afternoon on the weekend.
During this discussion all of a sudden a young man started to belt out some Alice in Chains
. Oh. It was loud. I was having a nice conversation and all of a sudden this booming vocal recreation of "Them Bones". Oh it was bad.
I started to talk again. Then a few minutes later, boom!! This voice. Commanding the room. All I wanted to do was have a conversation. Again it happens.
It was tough. So I asked Clara for a piece of rotten fruit. Someone needed to do something. So she asks me if I am serious. She gets a lemon that had a few strips of lemon rind removed. I hold it.
Then he sings again. That was it. I throw this lemon and I peg this guy from across the bar. Smack, right in his chest, almost his neck. Right on the edge of his T-Shirt that was emblazoned with a Public Enemy logo.
The noise stops. I fixed it. Paul smiles, I smile. Clara laughs. Then Paul looks over across the room. The guy who was singing was giving me a serious stink eye.
I give Paul a look. The guy looked pissed.
I smile, wave and give the guy a peace sign. Then he walks over. Crap.
He looks right at me. He does not look happy.
"Hey my man, sorry about that, but it was the noise! It was driving me crazy! Your vocals were driving me nuts."
He sort of laid into me for a moment.
"Serious man, your singing, it was driving me crazy. I had to make it stop somehow."
He then smiled and laughed. He proceeded to shake my hand. He then wanted to shoot the shit. I wasn't really interested in that. I just wanted to talk to Paul. But I figured I deserved this. He was a relatively pleasant guy and all, but dang, I just don't like hearing Alice in Chains belted out in coversation level discussion.
He then started to sing again right to me. Loud. I deserved every bit of it. I shouldn't throw fruit at people and not expect reciprocity. I put my head down on the bar and covered my ears with the guy standing right next to me singing at the top of his lungs. Finally Paul Smith came over and told the guy to save it for open mic night. Thank you Paul.
The guy wound up shaking my hand and apologizing. Clara said I am the only guy who could throw fruit at someone and they would apologize to me. Yeah, I am just like Cheney that way. But he wasn't being assaulted by a bad rendition of Alice in Chains.
Maybe we should change the bill for the loud cars. The violators should have fruit thrown at them in the city parks on Sunday afternoons. We could have picnics and throw whatever food we didn't eat and perhaps some rotten fruit. That is a law I would get behind. I could live with the consequence of my actions if I were to be in violation.