Monday, November 20, 2017


The pristine towers of downtown San Diego swallowed me up. Clean people in neatly pressed clothes darted past, purposefully making a wide berth as if not to catch any virus or the chance the occasional tick would leap off my ratty form and nestle in their expensive attire.
I made no attempt at eye contact. How I loathed these assholes who held a job, an apartment, friends, loves. My hatred rooted in their false conformity. What kind of existence was there in forcing oneself to get up every morning at 5:30am, forced to shit, shower, and shave then scuffle to a job where not only did you have to pretend to enjoy it, but constantly remark on the fact of how pleased you were to be employed every time your asshole of a manager was within earshot. If I was ever required to attain employment, I would purposely do the minimum amount required and constantly complain on how bitter I was. And why not? Why drudge through a damn job which paid next to nothing only to make others rich?
Bitterly, I continued my way down a side street. To my far right lay the shimmering skyscrapers of downtown where the rich frolicked and sipped their over-priced cappuccinos and walked their well-groomed dogs, caring only on sports figures and social standing. Not on this street, though. The sidewalks were cracked, the houses sagged and covered in faded graffiti with bars on the windows and doors. Garbage and dried feces mingled with bums who lay propped against light posts next to shopping carts over-filled with malicious memories and disoriented hopes.
The desolate angels of skid row howled and moaned towards the unforgiving Californian sky. The reek of stale piss and unwashed linens overpowered the chilled breeze which blew in from the nearby sea giving the putrid smell a salty tang. A bloated woman scavenged through an over-flowing trash can as a black man faced a wall rapidly masturbating under discolored sweat pants.
I arrived at God’s Extended Hand for tepid coffee and stale donuts. Outside, lined along its peeling, stucco walls, loitered a hundred men and women smoking, sniffing, and hacking phlegm onto the already snot plastered sidewalk. Most stood somber and vacant, gaping out into a life of maudlin bring downs and disappointments while a few chatted or complained or outright cursed into the deaf world. Hip blacks congregated in knots slinging dope and drinking from brown paper bags as their women cackled and screeched sexual innuendos toward one another. Mexicans stood silent, red eyes glaring from sad coffee colored faces and glanced towards bearded, white hobos who guffawed and leaned, smoking rolled cigarettes.
I took my place at the end of the sinuous line. Wheezing and grunting, feeling my age, as I propped myself against the wall, the high was wearing off and the discomfort creeped across my already scowling face.
“Fuck it.” I mumbled to myself or was it someone else? “Boxcar selling some weak shit. That motherfucker better step up his game.” I paused, pursed my gummy lips. “Shit, I gotta take a shit.”
I glanced over to a graffiti splattered, blue port-a-potty stationed at the side of the building. I turned to a wizened, old coot who stood directly behind me.
“Hey, man, can you hold my place? I gotta use the shitter.” I stated with open palm, jerking my head toward the portable toilet, “I’ll be just a minute.”
The ashen, old hobo glanced at me and grunted, exhaling a plume of gray smoke from a rolled cigarette. “Yeah. Go on, I'll watch yer spot.”
I made my way to the toilet. The scuffed door read occupied, so silently I stood in the gravel next to a foul smelling dumpster cascading with tattered trash bags. The smell of rotting garbage and the stink from the toilet made it unbearable. I glanced at the line, back at the door - my insides felt as if they were going to burst. I arrogantly kicked the plastic door to the booth.
“Hurry the fuck up! There're people waitin'!” I hollered.
A muffled female voice stated from within, “Hold your fucking horses!”
“Hurry the fuck up! I gotta take a motherfuckin' shit!” I spat.
The door flung open and a squat woman burst out. Hispanic with black hair teased into a high rats nest. Worry lines creased a face heavily made up. She wore a dirty blue halter top and yellow, spandex stirrups. Her chaffed feet were adorned in frayed sandals exposing cracked and molded toenails painted a vivid red. Though she was in her mid-twenties, her face and lumpy body made her appear older. Much older.
“Fucking asshole.” She glared at me with crimson eyes as she exited the toilet. “I should kick your white ass in front of all these...” She halted when she recognized who was standing there. Her inebriated mind snapped back to this dimension’s frequency. Her volumous red lips parted into a smile of large, yellowed teeth. “Oh...hey, how you doin' this morning?”
I glanced down onto the oil blackened gravel. Shifting uncomfortably in my sneakers. “Hey, Gracie. I'm good. Just need to use the toilet.”
She smiled at me, “Look, baby-doll, why don't you meet me up at Balboa Park this afternoon? We can have some drinks, maybe fuck a little?”
I flushed crimson and mumbled, “Maybe. I might have other things to do.”
She stepped up to me and laid a dirty, brown palm on my chest, “I'll ride the gay right out of you, baby boy. Make that dick feel all kinda good in this juicy, wet pussy.” Her breath smelled like rancid smegma.
I began stepping into the toilet, a muted voice surfaced in my head and spat “I got an STD just hearing that shit!”
Gracie whirled and screeched into the open door, “Fuck you, you worthless piece of shit! My ass is cleaner than your whole cracker body!
Bored with this dialog, I quickly stepped into the toilet, slamming the door shut.
The inside of the port-a-potty was a biological hazard. Shit stained toilet paper lay scattered around the urine soaked floor. In the cramped space, I made the mistake of glancing into the toilet hole. Mounds of discolored feces, soda cans, toilet paper, and cigarette butts piled up almost to the rim of the seat. In the morning humidity, flies buzzed and the wafting aroma almost caused me to projectile vomit.
I yanked down my pants. The voices remained silent amid the fetid stench of my tortured grunting and raspy farting. The dankness of the toilet booth had become mind-dizzyingly unbearable.
I reached into my pocket and removed a small plastic baggie of bluish, powdery methamphetamine. With thumb and forefinger, I took a pinch of the dope and placed it casually into a small opening at the bulbous end of the pipe. The remaining film of meth left on my finger I slid across my red gums.
C'mon, boy, light that shit up!” Voices pleaded in annoyed frustration.
I chuckled, “Gimme a minute, you fucking junkies.” I placed the stem end of the pipe up to my chapped and discolored lips.
Fuck you!” The voices snapped as I hungrily sucked on the stem as if it were a cock.
I stepped out of the port-a-potty and noticed the line of bums had already entered the soup kitchen and the entrance firmly shut. I wasn't hungry, anyway. I muttered under my breath and stepped to the side of the building toward the opening to an alley.
As others nonchalantly passed to go about their daily drudgery, I flicked a lighter under the already charred bulb and slowly rotated it. The crystals inside melted into a mercury-like consistency as the gray smoke swirled around the bulb and into the stem. I inhaled greedily, twitching and fidgeting in robotic spasms of addiction. My very cells tingled in anticipation. I glanced across the alley. There was a lone drag queen squatting against the brick wall. Smeared in vomit and urine, the drag held a look of utter desperation on his makeup streaked face.
“Hey, sweetie, can I have a hit?” The drag queen croaked in a voice roughened from years of cigarette smoke.
“Naw!” I spat. “I ain't got enough for you faggoty-ass mooches!”
The drag queen clopped away muttering obscenities under his breath leaving a coiling effluvia of foul smells in his wake.
My bloodshot and crusted eyes lit up. I threw his head back and exhaled a great plume of smoke up into the bright, blue sky.

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