I got on the wrong city bus. My plan was to go to Walmart and buy underwear and socks and perhaps some t-shirts. Afterwards, I was to go to Barnes & Noble to purchase a paperback copy of William Burroughs' Naked Lunch. I already have it in hardcover stashed away in my luggage, but I wanted a copy to carry around and read without fucking up the hardcover. It appears all but one of the bookstores in this town have been closed up. The closest was way on the other side of town and I hadn't the energy to make the extra trip. A ver...
After shopping, I found myself back downtown when an extremely handsome Mexican lad walked up to me holding a huge satchel. He couldn't been more than eighteen. Copper skin, Aztec features, a soccer uniform draped over a wiry frame.
"Hello, sir," He smiled. "Jesus loves you."
"No he doesn't." Was my deadpan reply.
There was a pause. He didn't expect such a verdant answer. He smiled again and continued, "Would you like to buy some chocolate?" The satchel was pregnant with packs of assorted M&M candies.
"That's all you had to ask, young man. I'll take one."
"See," he beamed. "God is looking out for you already."
"I don't want to mock your faith," I said as I fished a dollar from my wallet. "But, I can give you three scientific reasons to contradict any one bible passage you spew forth. Besides, I just wanted some chocolate."
He happily took the bill, handed the candy over, and continued on his way. I lasciviously watched his athletic frame saunter to the nearest traffic light. I bet for twenty dollars I could make him see the light, I thought as he continued across the street.
God, I am so lonely.
I stopped in a Walgreen's to pick up a pack of smokes and a bottle of water. At the checkout line, as the clerk was tallying my total and emitting small talk, this gnarled old hag pushed herself against my back and reaching past me, placed a box of toothpaste on the counter and began rambling to the clerk in Spanish.
I turned to her, raising a palm up to her pinched, embittered face, and said, "Look, lady, I realize you haven't much time left on this planet but can't you wait thirty fucking seconds for me to finish my transaction? I am certain you think your oral hygiene questions supersedes anything that is happening anywhere on earth but if you don't back the fuck up, I'm going to lay you flat."
My retort fell on illiterate ears because she stated with a simple, bewildered, "Que?"
The clerk wasn't going to have any of this shit apparently, quickly finishing and bagging my order. Handing it to me with a smile, he said, "Thank you for shopping Walgreen's. God be with you."
I slumped out thinking, God, will you knock it off. I know you are up there. I know you are looking out for me. Stop badgering me about it. It's like someone whom you were dating for months, you don't have to say I love you every minute of every day, he knows.
I returned to the hotel, washed clothes and prepared for whatever fate...I'm sorry God...hurls at me these coming weeks...