Archive for October, 2011

Blog 37 – New York or BUST Part II…

Posted in beer, college, Family, family battles, friends, grandmothers, relationships, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , on October 24, 2011 by tenaciousbitch

After Morgan dropped his heart-crushing news that he was moving in with Delilah, I rushed out onto the busy New York street, suddenly confused by the rush of people and the headlights from passing cars bouncing upon the horizon, I walked for a block or so and hailed a cab.

“Where to, Miss?” asked the cabbie in a thick African or Arabic accent, given the fact that his name was Mohammad, and his last name had like 17 letters.

“I…need, the airport,” I said while sobbing and counting the cash in my wallet.

“Which one?”

I took a deep breath. “LaGuardia. I have 19 dollars and some change. Is that enough?” I wailed, totally CURSING myself for giving Morgan $50 for gas, the bastard.  My remaining cash was in my suitcase in Morgan’s van. And I CERTAINLY was not going back to Ripley’s to ask him or Ryan for ANYTHING.

With a look of concern I noted in the cabbie’s eyes in the rearview mirror, the he said, “Yes, enough. You okay?”

“I’m fine,” I said sniveling. At which point, I started babbling about my dickhead, now ex-boyfriend. Aside from the fact that I was devastated by our bizarre break-up, I was pretty much blind drunk. We’d been guzzling beer and wine all day long.

And the cabbie just kept saying, “Oh, and such a pretty girl.” I know he didn’t understand one word I said. My speech was thickened and throttled by the current level of alcohol bashing about my veins and my brain, but I didn’t care. I just needed to let the pain spew forth.

When we reached the ramp for the BQE*, I noticed the meter was already over $20. I sighed, knowing I could’ve just wasted my last cent and then some, and I didn’t know if I could catch a flight to WV at LaGuardia or not, but I wasn’t exactly thinking clearly. “Would you let me out at the nearest subway station?” I asked digging for change in the bottom of my purse, “I’ve already racked up more-”

“No, it okay. Pretty girl not ride the subway in the night by herself. Not safe.”

I was flabbergasted. I’d always heard that New Yorkers were cold, mean-assed people, but this guy was a sweetheart! “Really, it’s okay, I don’t mind, I-”

“No, in my country, my father teach us respect, protect women. I not letting you take the subway for a couple dollars. It’s not far now.”

The sincerity in this man’s voice ignited the waterworks again. “Thank you, sir,” I said, taking a deep breath to stifle the bawling, “That’s very kind. Where are you from?”

“A small village near Kenya.”

I paid the saintly cabbie when we arrived at LaGuardia and stepped back out into the frigid New York air.

I half-stumbled my way to the US Air desk, since that airline and Delta were the ONLY ones that fly in to WV. Amazingly, they had a flight out the next morning around 9:00, which cost me $120. And THANK GOD back then, everyone took checks. I did, indeed, have my checkbook with me, just in case. Doing so bludgeoned my budget for my month, but I couldn’t worry about that now.

The whole experience at the airport was colored by my hazy beer vision, but the hefty woman at the US Air desk didn’t seem to notice my lack of sobriety.

“No luggage, Miss?” asked the hefty woman.

“No,” I said, awkwardly, avoiding eye contact with her. These days that fact might cause red flags to SPROUT upon their computer system, but back in the day, not so much.

When I asked about nearby hotels, she directed me to the area where hotels had free shuttles that picked up their weary travelers just outside baggage claim. Then, I slogged my way to a phone booth. I scanned the long listing of hotels in the Yellow Pages.

Days Inn was the cheapest at $70/night. Luckily, my mother had gotten a MasterCard issued in my name when I first started college for “emergencies”, and having no clue where the hotel was that Morgan had reserved nor any way to GET there, it was either charge a hotel room or sleep in the airport. And knowing my mother, my slumbering on a plastic chair in a public place would not be HER choice for me.

And speaking of Mom, I took a deep breath dreading my conversation with her. I needed a ride home from the airport in the morning. I picked up the receiver and dialed her collect.

I briefly explained where I was and who I was with, and…

“What the hell’s going on, Kennedy? I’ve been worried sick.”

“Why?” YES, I was confused because I assumed she didn’t even know I’d left town. And I’d only been gone a few days.

“Jenny and Haden’s wedding, remember?” Jenny was a girl from church… “Your father and I went over to pick you up yesterday, and you weren’t home. You didn’t answer the phone, and no one knew where you were, not even Shauna! I thought you’d been kidnapped or worse!”

“Oh, God, Mom, I’m sorry. I forgot all about the wedding.”

“And did it NOT occur to you to tell SOMEONE you were leaving town, so you wouldn’t give your mother a heart attack?”

I winced, closing my eyes, as the guilt wrenched my gut. I laid my head on my hand…which was on top of the phone.  “I’m so sorry. It was a spur of the moment thing. We just got here this morning. I’d planned to call you once we…got settled.”

“I see,” she said, a frosty chill to her tone.

We chatted for a few more minutes, and I gave her my flight information. She wasn’t quite as peeved when we hung up, thank god.

My room at the Days Inn was plain and small but comfortable. I plopped down on the bed and called information. Unfortunately, Ripley’s wasn’t listed. I wanted to call and let Morgan know I was okay if he was still there, and/or maybe, to plead with him NOT to move in with Delilah. On the way to New York, he’d said that he was going to stay with Nigel, a friend who lived on the Upper East side. But Nigel was out of town for a few days, which is why he’d booked a hotel room somewhere near Ripley’s.

I cried myself to sleep with my clothes on. I woke up feeling like a cat had shit in my mouth even though I had used the “complimentary” toothbrush and toothpaste I’d acquired at check-in.  Courtesy of the hangover, my head was pounding when I ordered bacon, eggs, toast and a LARGE glass of milk, which I charged to the room. Since my mother was always a FANATIC about eating breakfast, I knew she wouldn’t care about the $16 for my morning meal, that I’d added to the mounting MasterCard bill.

Smiling as though I was returning from a leisurely trip abroad, my mother stood in her long white coat at our tiny regional airport (that has only three gates) when I arrived the next morning.

Mom and I talked little on the way home after I explained that I did NOT want to talk about Morgan.

“Weren’t you nervous?” Mom asked.

“About what?” I asked, surprised.

“Driving through there. Did you have to go through any ghettos?” Mom asked, anxiously, drama dripping from her tone.

“Yes,” I replied, “We came into the city through the South Bronx, and that wasn’t exactly Ritter Park,” I answered, recalling the miles of decrepit buildings and graffiti rolling along, the backdrop for dozens of homeless people with shopping carts.

Ritter Park was one of the ritziest areas in my hometown. “But no one bothered us,” I continued. “Although, some homeless guy wouldn’t stop washing the windows of Morgan’s van until Morgan gave him a dollar. That kinda bothered me. But Manhattan was beautiful. The architecture is stunning.”

About a week later, Ryan showed up at the Monarch. “You know, you really freaked me out leaving like that,” he said, sitting on a bar stool beside me where I was loading drinks onto a tray.

“I’m sorry,” I said. “I tried to call Ripley’s, but they weren’t listed, and I couldn’t remember the name of the hotel where you were staying.”

Ryan nodded. “I figured you’d just taken a walk to calm down, and you’d come back in an hour or so.”

“Again, my apologies.”

“It’s okay. I’m just glad you’re all right.”

A couple hours later when I took a break, Ryan and I strolled back to the parking lot behind the bar. He handed me my suitcase from the back of the van.

“Why’d he break up with me like that, Ryan? I thought he was moving in with Nigel?”

Ryan looked away. “He’s scared, Kennedy. None of that was planned. He didn’t know that Delilah would be there that night, and…”

“And what?”

“Staying with Nigel wasn’t, well, for certain. He knew he could stay there a few nights, but he wasn’t sure about moving in there.”

“And Delilah offered after she found out about his legal troubles?”

“Yeah.”

My eyes pulsed anger, I’m sure.

“He really does love you.”

“Whatever,” I said, walking away.

“Kennedy,” Ryan called after me. I turned around. “He…had limited options, you know? And…”

“What?”

“Before Delilah showed up, he was going to ask you to stay, but, honestly, he didn’t know where or whatever, you know?”

“So, why did he CHOOSE her over me?”

“She’s a paralegal. She makes good money and-”

“Great. I got traded in for a sugar mama.”

Ryan looked at me a moment with a very stalwart expression, then just looked away.

Annoyed, I started to walk away again, but I looked back at him instead. “So, how well does he know this girl?”

“They’ve been out three or four times.”

“Jesus, freaking, Christ. She could be an ax murderer for all he knows or a complete BITCH.”

Ryan laughed, “Despite what you see in the movies, most people in New York are decent human beings.”

With a nod, that was that. My broken heart was wrapped up in a neat little package and served up with a plate of cold, hard truth. And I just wanted to go home, crawl into my bathtub and cry my way through a gallon of chocolate ice cream and a couple dozen beers. But I didn’t because I was broke. I went back to work, not knowing that Morgan would walk back into my life again a few years later…

Over and out from my Stop and Smell the Crazy life

TenaciousB and company…

*Brooklyn Queens Expressway

Blog 36 – NEW YORK or BUST…

Posted in beer, college, friends, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 12, 2011 by tenaciousbitch

A couple days AFTER my 20th birthday (Circa 1986), I started dating a guy named Morgan. With a smile that would charm the devil, better than Brad Pitt blue eyes,  and 12-pack abs from working construction, Morgan was a 22-year-old HOTTIE.

That said, one very busy Thursday night in February when I was working at a jazz club, the Monarch Cafe, Morgan swaggered in, wrapped his arms around me and whispered, “Wanna go to New York?”

I laughed and said, “Absolutely. We can get breakfast…” but the dark glint of worry in his eyes gave me pause. “You can’t be serious?”

He nodded. “Tonight. I’m…I’m in trouble, serious trouble,” he said somberly.

“What’s going on?”

“I’ll explain later, okay?”

I nodded. However, the word “trouble,” only created a minor BLIP on my anxiety barometer, like being late on his rent or pissing off a crazy neighbor who came at him with a shotgun for keeping him up all night partying or something.

“I have to work tomorrow, and I’ve got class on Monday.”

“So, do I,” Morgan said, sarcastically as if WORK/school were of no consequence. “I love you, Kennedy, please?”

I just stared at him. This was the FIRST time he’d sputtered any allusion to “LOVE” in the 30 days we’ve known each other – except to say how much he LOVED my 38D’s.

“I love you too, but…”

Like a beer fried 20-year-old, I thought about it for a moment, but the possibility of unbridled/entertaining madness with my “new love” QUASHED all sense of logic. So, I said, “Okay, okay. After last call.”

He nodded, smiling, and said, “Thank you! You won’t regret it. I promise!” And he grabbed me and planted the MOST passionate kiss upon my lips that I had EVER tasted.

After work, I rushed out to Morgan’s dark blue, rather battered Chevy van parked out front.  Morgan’s best friend, Ryan, hopped out of the front seat, so I could slide in beside Morgan.

Ryan was a good-looking, sophisticated fellow with a jagged smile, courtesy of a chipped tooth. Ryan was studying art history, and I assume he wanted to get his Ph.D. and teach.

“What happened?” I asked, gesturing to the radio now playing THE CURE, while hanging in midair from its cubby hole by a jugular of green and yellow wires.

“I walked out this morning, and someone had smashed the window,” he answered tilting his head toward the driver’s side window framed in jagged shards of glass where he’d haphazardly taped a thick wad of butcher paper. “They scarfed all my cassettes, but let go of the radio once they saw me and -”

At which point, as if ON CUE, I heard barking. I looked back, and there was Caesar, Morgan’s 45-pound dog, a beautiful blond mutt in the back of the van on a dirty mattress, wildly wagging his tail.

“You’re bringing Caesar?” I asked.

“Of course,” Morgan said, starting the van. “There’s no one to take care of him.”

I nodded, but I was worried about the furry addition to our manifest. Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE dogs, but with less than 500 bucks between us, another consumer seemed unwise. The animal shelter seemed like a better choice, but it wasn’t my call.

First stop after going to my apartment to pack a few things – was Jackson’s carryout. Morgan bought two cases of Budweiser. I would’ve bought Natty Light** to save money, but, again not MY CALL… Ryan opened three beers and passed them around, then held up his bottle and said, “Let the games begin.”

To-wit, we ALL laughed.

Long about the Pennsylvania state line, a wicked GUST of wind ripped the paper off the lower quadrant of the metal window frame. And the butcher paper began flapping wildly in rhythm to the FULL VOLUME, glass-battering WHISTLE…and the blistering COLD hit us like nobody’s business.

Morgan’s saddened eyes met mine. And I’m sure my gaze conveyed the woe my ears and my FLASH-frozen skin were experiencing.

“Shit,” Morgan said, chuckling.

“Should I sing to drown it out?” Ryan asked.

“If it’ll raise the temperature,” I said laughing through chattering teeth.

“No,” Morgan replied. “I don’t want Caesar diving over the side to 86 the screeching of your vocal chords.”

“That’s harsh,” Ryan said good-naturedly, as his laughter blended into mine.

A truck stop snaked its way onto the horizon, and Morgan said, “Let there be food!” Again, we laughed. Caesar then barked several times in complaint after jumping into the driver’s seat just as Morgan was shutting the door, but we had to ignore him.

We sat in a large booth in the crowded diner/truckstop. We all ordered burgers and fries from the double-wide waitress, who had two ink pens parked in her large tornado of gray hair atop her large head.

“I think you two should get married,” Ryan suddenly blurted out for apparently NO REASON.

“What?” I said, laughing.

Morgan gave Ryan an UGLY SCOWL.

“I told you I was going to tell her,” Ryan replied with a devilish grin.

“What the hell’re you talking about?”

“Nothing. Ryan had a stupid dream, and we-”

“You love her, don’t you?” Ryan asked.

“You know I do,” Morgan said, his eyes not wavering from Ryan’s somber face.

“Excuse me, but I’m RIGHT here, guys!” I retorted.

“Then, don’t be a coward,” Ryan said.

And that statement RANKLED my innards! 🙂

“Can we talk about this later?” Morgan asked.

I nodded.

“Okay, but it’s your funeral,” Ryan said.

Which made ABSOLUTELY no sense, especially considering what happened when we ARRIVED…

FINALLY, after slogging through 10 inches of new SNOW and 20-mile an hour traffic throughout PA and southern New Jersey, followed by getting stuck for THREE hours on I-95 behind a truck that had spilled gasoline in the wake of its WRECK, finally 18 hours or so later, we traversed the Holland Tunnel, crossing into the blessed LAND of Manhattan – at 11 a.m.

First stop, a tavern, of course, by the name of RIPLEY’S on the lower East side. We ordered some breakfast and a round of Mimosas.

We wandered about lower Manhattan and Midtown all day, trekking in and out of bookstores, swanky-ish shops and various watering holes until around 8 p.m. when we ducked back into Ripley’s. Not FIVE minutes after Morgan ordered a Tequila shooter for himself and a Heineken for me, a girl named Delilah joined us.

Delilah was a very pretty redhead, and I just ASSUMED she was with Ryan. I knew that Morgan and Ryan had spent many weekends here in the last couple of years, so I didn’t suspect anything unseemingly  was going on until Morgan turned to me around midnight and said, “I’m sorry, but I can’t stay with you tonight.”

“What? What do you mean?”

“I need somewhere to stay.”

“You have a warm bed WAITING for you at our hotel  -!”

“I can’t go back to West Virginia.”

“I know that, but why-?”

“Here. Read this,” he said, handing me a very wrinkled document from his pocket.

I glanced at the legal SLOP on the document as he continued, “I stole $2800 from First Savings when I was a teller there. I’m moving in with Delilah.”

Can you say WHAT THE FUCK?

The full impact of his statement hit me like an ASTEROID on CRACK! I was COMPLETELY stunned. I stood up and stared at him for a moment. And he had the NERVE to be TEARY-EYED. I wanted to break his goddamned nose, turn those teary eyes BLACK, but instead, I yelled, “Then, why the FUCK did you bring me here?”

His only answer was to LOOK AWAY.

Delilah tossed wicked EYE darts at me, then signaled the waitress for another beer.

“And I blew off my JOB for you!? What was I then, your back up plan?”

At that, Morgan cut his gaze to mine, “I’m sorry, I really-”

“Fuck off, you low-life bastard!” I SCREAMED launching Delilah’s beer bottle against the wall. The CRASH was rather loud. Glass scattering EVERYWHERE, and at least TWO dozen CURIOUS eyes sought me out from across the room, but luckily, the 1/2 ounce of beer wash merely ran down the wall – avoiding any patrons. Thank God!

“What the fuck?” Delilah screamed. “What was that for?”

“You fucking whore!” I shouted.

A comment that brought Delilah to her feet, “What’d you call me, you stupid HICK!?”

“You heard me, SLUT DOG!” I retorted barging my way past her and POUNDING out the door as fast as I could, once again into the BRUTAL cold.

And then..

STAY TUNED NEXT WEEK FOLKS for all the gory DETAILS…

OVER AND OUT FROM FUCKED UP CENTRAL…

TenaciousBITCH and company…

**NATURAL LIGHT for those just joining CRAZYTOWN…

Blog 35 – The birthday ASSAULT/aka the date from HELL Part 2

Posted in college, dating, Family, friends, humor, nonfiction, relationships, true crime, true stories, true stories, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on October 4, 2011 by tenaciousbitch

So, thank GOD/ALLAH/BUDDAH/YODA that Larry turned his attention back to the death knell generated by the chicken frackus* and didn’t notice me slithering out of the crowd behind him. I slipped past the bouncer who nodded, then outside into a wall of cold and almost blinding snow.

I realized that Larry was going to be uber pissed about my disappearance, but I couldn’t care less. The only murdered chicken I want to have ANYTHING to do with will be fried/baked/marinated, and served up with mashed potatoes and gravy.

I put on my gloves and pulled my hood up over my head. Hunkering down, I trudged forward up the street past one unkempt, dark house after another, the wind practically lacerating my face. Must’ve been 10 degrees out that night.

And I had NO idea which way to go. Additionally, knowing the WEST END was more HOOD than neighborhood, from all drug violence and such, I knew that walking too far on these cold streets was not wise.

As luck would have it, a yellow cab pulled up beside me. No finer vehicle than I’d ever seen at THAT moment.

I went to the Mad Hatter. The Hatter was one of Danny’s favorite haunts. I thought, with any luck, he’d still be there and could give me a ride home because I didn’t have enough cash for the 15 miles or so home.

I walked into the artificial dazzle from a disco ball, and the DJ playing a Duran Duran song. I immediately spotted Danny, sitting at the bar with Gage, a blond, semi good-looking friend of his.  I tapped Danny on the shoulder, and he turned around so fast, he sloshed a good bit of beer on the floor, some of it splashing on my boots.

“Ooops, sorry about that,” Danny said, looking down at my shoes, then his eyes met mine. “Hey, Kennedy, Happy Birthday! How ya doin’?”

Gage turned around, gave me a nod and a polite smile, then returned to wooing the petite redhead standing next to him.

“Not so great,” I replied sitting down beside Danny, I relayed my story about Chicken Larry.

“Are you serious?” Danny asked. “Cock fighting?”

I nodded.

“I think you need a drink,” Danny said laughing.  Luckily, it was payday for Danny at Domino’s Pizza, so he had more cash to spare than I did. Danny told George, the bartender, that it was my birthday.

“Then, it’s on the house,” said the hulkish bartender.

“Thanks!”

From this point on, the evening borders on upside down hazy. I remember dancing with a very tall guy with a British accent.

After a couple of songs, he blurted out, “You should come home with me. I’m bloody well awesome in bed.”

I couldn’t help it, I busted out LAUGHING…don’t ask me why. Did I mention I’m weird? Maybe, it was just his unbridled boldness. I don’t know. That, and suddenly, he seemed to look like Kermit the frog.

Angry glare from him as I replied, “I don’t think so,”

“Fucking bitch,” he retorted bitterly.

Normally, that kind of remark would set my blood to boiling, but I said – FUCK IT. I gave him a crooked smile, shrugged and sashayed off the dance floor.

Luckily, the big-headed Brit just wandered away to find a new conquest, and I decided maybe I’d just hang with Danny. I found him playing pool in the back.

After consuming three more bottles of Molson, the Hatter closed.  We trekked out into the cold again. I rode shotgun in Danny’s 8-year-old, rusted out Nissan.  Seconds later, I said, “I need ONE more beer.”

“Okay. How about the Hole in the Wall?”

Five minutes later, we were sitting in the parking lot of Boney’s Hole in the Wall, a landmark saloon in our hometown(Huntington, WV).

The snow had stopped, luckily, as we barged across the parking lot toward the front door of the tavern when a man in blue stepped out of his squad car.

“Excuse me, can I see your i.d.?” asked the shiny-eyed policeman, whose face seemed rubbery through my beer specs.

“Sure,” I said, teetering on my high-heeled boots.

Danny took out his wallet and flashed his driver’s license.

And THAT’S the last thing I remember. Danny had to fill the void from my blackout the next day. He said…

As I reached down into my purse for my wallet, a tornado of nausea walloped my gut, and….yeah, you guessed it. I suddenly threw up right there ON the cop’s shoes!

“Oh, God, I’m so sorry,” I said in a wobbly blob of words.

Joe Officer reached for his handcuffs, but before he could slap them on me, Danny said, “Officer, it’s her birthday. Please, don’t-”

His jaw clenched, as he targeted the nasty stomach ooze on his shoes. Then, he said, “I still need to see that i.d.,” his gaze still fixed on his shoes for several long seconds.

I nodded, and handed him my driver’s license.

Mr. Po Po looked at my driver’s license briefly then handed it back to me. Keep in mind that back THEN, the drinking age in West Virginia was 19.

He stared at us for a moment, Danny said, as if deciding what to do. Since I was of age, I guess he took pity on me. With a sigh, Joe Officer told Danny to take me home. I confessed the whole thing to Father Joe the following week, but there’s still a few kernels of guilt rattling around my psyche to this day.

I mumbled another apology or two, and Danny took me home.

The next thing I was cognizant of was waking up in my apartment around 2:00 (PM) the next day with my silky mauve comforter all askew, the smell of vomit assaulting my senses, My two cats were perched upon my waistline as I lay sideways like two little hip ornaments.

Both were SCREAMING at me for vittles. I remember the revulsion at seeing my lovely gray blazer at my feet, the lapel covered in the stomach muck that I had shared with a certain beat cop, who I’m sure was wishing he’d become an accountant instead when he woke up this morning and had to endure that very same stench unless he decided to toss the shoes, which wouldn’t be a bad idea. Can’t imagine it would be easy to get that aroma out of stiff, faux leather…

Years later, I discovered that my upchucking mishap was actually considered assault…yeah, little old me had committed an act of violence, per se, against a member of the 5-0. I always wished I could’ve sent him a Thank You note or maybe a gift certificate at Sears or something for new shoes…for not hauling my sorry ass off to jail. However, on second thought, that probably wasn’t too kosher. And maybe he just hadn’t wanted to deal with the paperwork or the jazzing from his peers for suffering an assault via vomit.

And that was the most memorable birthday I’ve had to date and the only time I’ve committed assault upon a peacekeeper…or anyone else for that matter…

PEACE OUT from the former JUVY SWAMP/regulator violator! 🙂

~TenaciousBITCH and Company…

 * See Blog #34 for more on the chicken frackus