Chapter 6 read by Jackson
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I was still moving to the rhythm of my intestines when the wine finally hit me.


I closed my eyes and heard a horrible sound that turned my head like C3PO surrounded by lacerated otters.


I sure knew how to charm my self. And damned if I couldnÕt see in three dimensions.


The murk was getting murkier. It was black and it was fake and it existed only in direct contradiction to my Irene Cara record collection.


I was on the lookout for red-eyed, cab-driving terriers. The murk was definitely back, and it was so horrible that the only way to describe it was by the calming effect it wasnÕt having on me. I was doubling over and it wasnÕt because I was laughing at a photo of a giraffe. It was more like an Oscar De La Hoya glamour shot.


My head looked like it had come off and then had tried to re-attach itself. It was always sneering, and even throwing roses at it was no help.


I was definitely gripping. I was allowing my equilibrium to push me onto the escalator like it was Frank Sinatra and I was Harpo Marx.


The air was only allowing me one gulp per second. Even insects get seven gulps per second. All I wanted was two gulps per second. All right, two gulps per second and a car.


-ĄIs this car enough? -It was Carly and she was holding up a caramel cream pie pointed right at my kisser. I put up my hand but it was too late.


With a quick fury, she tossed the pie at me. Every house on the block watched as it hit me right in the sitar. Well, more or less in the sitar. Actually, it hit me in the face and then ran down my Zapatista pajamas. I knew I was turning red because pies in the face have that effect on me. ĄOr was it affect on moi?


-ĄWho gives two shits how you spell ŅabodaboÓ? -Carly asked me as if she meant it.


-My grandmother. -The part of me that went limp was the party in my pajamas.


-ĄDoes anyone even care that we still donÕt measure time in meters?


Carly looked at me with the caring eyes of an ass-gasket.


-ĄWhy donÕt you drop dead? ĄWhat sign are you anyways?


I knew my sign and it was a cab-driving terrier dancing to techno-pop.


-I donÕt know -I said-. I spit and vomit in your general direction, though.


Carly moved just as the sputum started techno-popping to the tune of ŅTrans-Europe ExpressÓ - Ąor was it ŅPlanet RockÓ?


I could see that no matter how hard she tried, she couldnÕt stop me now. A prize poodle couldnÕt stop me now. And even a prize poodle takes off its hat in the house.


A little later I would see the sound of Prize Poodle paws on the escalator.


LetÕs take off our pants. ItÕs late. I had to wake up and present my self at work tomorrow anyway. I couldnÕt just go to sleep in the middle of an explosion.


Immediately I lifted my middle finger and prayed to the enormous paper m‰chˇ in the sky.


ĄHad I just prayed to a ghost?




I was just being stupid like my sister.


And murky just like everyone else.


And suspicious. Deceptive. Like a dirigible hiding behind a door. Like trying to put on my Zapatista pajamas one sweat hog at a time.



But when IÕm in the middle of peeing my pants I see everything clearly. Like a golden rabbit shower. Like I could part the sea.


Like I was a metallic ray of light from the Moon.


I walked around as sad as Timothy McVeigh in a VisineØ commercial.


I couldnÕt see Sir Thomas in any direction and I was never going to until I pulled my head out of my ass.


I shook my head, wiggled my butt, and closed my eyes.




I couldnÕt believe it.


ĄWas it true?


That question made me question what was true. I was used to pronouncing ŅextremismÓ EXtremism. I decided to use my own idiom. And that totally surprised me.


It surprised me like when I find carrion or contraband in the middle of my bald spot.


My heart starts pounding like the Calavaras County Cost of Living.


I kicked in my neighborÕs front door and then quickly turned around to see if Sir Thomas had done it.


But if he was there then there was no there there.


I placed salt on my large suspicion that I would light the house on fire and then escape via the escalator.


Instead I went inside and spread salt all over the kitchen, invoking the gods of the silvery moon. Then I went out the window and started sifting through the splendor of their trash.


The light of the silvery moon reluctantly cast an enormous shadow over everything. Everything having been pared down to cold goo and Bob Trumpy. Everyone was playing a card game made of kung fu fighting. There were bones and cole slaw and dentists on salt-free diets.


There were dentists on hamburger-free diets. There were hamburgers on soy-free diets.


But it seemed like no one was on an ŅEvitaÓ-free diet. That gave me a chill.


Control your self, I told my self. YouÕre not fat, youÕre portly. And youÕre not coming, youÕre going. YouÕre not one stupid excuse for an integer - youÕre three. This is the Museum of Misery and Hysteria, Ąright? This is your house, Ąright? Well... your basement. So, Ąwho just hit me over the head with a ten spot?


No one responded. That limited the amount of trust I had that I had said all of that out loud.


Even the salads had more attitude than I did.


ĄOh, yeah?


I played the tape back and it was the voice of Count Dracula... No, it was the re-recorded voice of Count Chocula that had been not only re-recorded, but hung upside-down and rendered ridiculous.



I wasnÕt prepared to make any sense. ĄHow can you be prepared when your own mommy wonÕt talk to you?


I looked every bit as good as Charlie. I just didnÕt always look every bit as good as Charlie. Sometimes my eyes crossed. Sometimes the mirror talked back to me in the voice of my mother. Sometimes, when IÕm really tired, I look like IÕve been coming in from the cold. I start talking with my fingers and all I can sign are the words Ņcold gooÓ.


So pinch me and pass the Carol Channing chapeau.


I was running a little light in the backstage magic that forced me to think in yellow.


But that was then and this is right in the middle of sometime later.


My head began to sprout vultures. And they were spitting out hot dogs.


I needed some air. That was the ticket.


I ran outside and immediately started crying because I saw my mommy. Then I looked at my self in the MuseumÕs salad bowl mirrors. And then at the bathroom door. Then I decided to toss the salad bowl mirrors and piss on the bathroom doors.


Cold air. All I had needed was cold air.


The bathroom doors hadnÕt been painted well because if they had been they wouldnÕt be doubled-over in laughter now. I stopped pissing long enough to throw cold goo at them. They didnÕt appreciate that and opened themselves wide like a pair of enormous trousers. At that point I took the bathroom key and hid it behind my back.


The doors didnÕt know which way was up.


But they were intent on finding out. They were also intent on making sure that anyone who had pissed on them would pay.


Not if I had anything to say about it. If I had anything to say about it, these fucking bathroom doors wouldnÕt move a goddamn centimeter.


I took the key and tossed it into the backyard when the doors werenÕt looking. I didnÕt need any interruptions if I was going to teach these motherfuckers a lesson. What I needed was my impression of Moammar Kadafi doing The Vegetable Fandango.




The space aliens were after my cerebral cortex, as was Gargantua. That was the fate of a space cowboy like me.


And it wasnÕt my habit, but IÕd cold-cock any doors that tried to get in my way.


I threw my self against the bathroom doors in a desperate attempt to piss on them again. But I didnÕt piss much. And I couldnÕt move my bowels.


I was trapped.

      -- on to chapter 7   or   back to Cab Driving --