RODENT MEWS II
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missed PART ONE? www.flickr.com/photos/maven_imagery/7899346936/
KILLING CRAIG HAMMER
Let’s order a pizza, Craig says wiping vomit from his mouth with his back hand.
You just barfed, man, I say.
That’s why we’re ordering pizza, dude. I’m hungry as fuck. Here, he hands me the iPhone. This guy is a total Apple-freak. Punch in one for speed dial.
I don’t take the phone, the stupid symbol of laziness.
The sun is still shining and birds chirping above in the oak tree.
Let’s walk over there, you lazy pot-head! I raise my voice. Man! It’s just on the corner!
California Pizza Kitchen was less than four hundred feet on Las Palmas and Sunset Boulevard and, this spineless All-American lazy fuck, wants to order pizza on the phone. It was in the yard; after all, this was the Mews, the first shopping mall in America, and probably in the world.
It’s less than four hundred feet, man.
It’s 0.6 miles, dude, he corrects
Thanks for the precise measurement genius. Forgot you’re the map guy. Commo, get up, Surf.
This is so un-American, dude, he starts to whine.
Stop whining, man, I say, standing up.
Nobody walks in LA, dude.
In Europe people walk to the stores, I say. People walk to fucking everywhere. Only in America people drive the four hundred feet distance.
We’re not in Europe, dude. We’re in America. In California…and we’re American.
Lucky you, I say.
And it’s 0.6 miles. I’m not walking, dude. Let’s just order.
You’re gonna walk, Surf.
That’s so un-LA, dude, he keeps whining as he staggers behind me. You’re so un-LA, dude.
That’s why I’m proud of myself.
Yeah, you’re so unique, dude!
I gotta be me.
Marina Egypt, I read the name tag of the olive color face girl behind the counter. That your name or you're in the Art of Identity Protection Program?
No, it’s my real name, she says proudly. Her large deep-brown eyes and her compact shape nose, despite the Arabian cinnamon color of her complexion, are clearly a product of a Western-Middle East descendant.
Well, hello, Marina Egypt. A very unique name.
Thank you, she says, sheepishly.
I turn to Craig, Surf! Say hello to Marina Egypt here.
Craig gives me an annoying oblique look, rolling his eyes goonily and says tiringly, Let’s just order, dude.
It’s this moment when I decide to kill Craig.I can’t explain why that look angered me beyond belief.
Craig has lost belief in manners, I tell Marina Egypt. He’s a minimalist.
The word ‘minimalist’ doesn’t register with Marina Egypt.
And it’s his first day learning to walk, I continue, ignoring the baffled expression on her face. Sorry about that.
It’s okay, she says in a rehearsed, accustomed tone. What can I get you, guys?
I started at the slice of the jerky chicken pizza back at Craig’s place, at number 1586.
You shoulda said hello to Marina Egypt, Surf, I say, chewing slowly.
Sorry, I was rude to that fucking Arab, dude, he says, sniffing and stuffing more than a half of the pizza slice into his mouth.
She wasn’t Arab. She was an American.
She was an Arab, dude, he says, slurping beer noisily from a Heineken bottle as if it was a soup bowl.
A jet engine roars as it descends into Hamburg-prefrontal cortex of my brain.
The sound of his smacking and sucking lips…he won’t stop making that sound. I hate that sound. The jet ascends and descends ascends and descends and…
And you’re a fucking tight cunt, I say. You’re gonna get bruised if you don’t soften and relax, man.
Craig growls mockingly and says, I like it when you talk so bluntly, dude. He won’t shut up. This cunt likes everything and anything but he doesn’t like the name. Her name.
Marina Egypt, dude? Craig goes on, laughing. Seriously? What kinda stupid name is that? He tries to make the name sound more ludicrous.
Craig shovels another half slice and chews hurry-the-fuck up-edly.
This is delicious as fuck, dude, he says, smacking his lips.
What a pizza should be and taste like, I say and stop mid-sentence, because going into details with this dense head would be useless.
The noise of sucking his fingers…he won’t stop making that noise.
I lose my appetite and I stop eating the rest of the pizza slice and put it back in the box.
I take a swig from the Heineken. I'm deep breathing Zen-style, studying his face, eye-mapping the line and shape of his features in HDR, (with the hallmark grungy look of HDR that was not loved by everyone and I know the final product will be garish and gruesome and will be loved by everyone) his marble blue eyes; those fucking vacuous eyes which increases my annoyance with this fucking guy, seals his fate, his death, but not the only reason. Craig met death the minute we met in the laundry room a week or so ago.
Craig sniffs a coke- sniffer habit and wipes a hand across his nose.
The noise of his sniffs…he won’t stop he won’t stop he won’t stop sniffing, making that noise; sniffing and snorting pig noise.
Fucking snorting pig.
The sound of a jumbo jet stifles the small jet and It crashes down into LAX of prefrontal cortex of my brain, a TNT boom thundering in my ears, its spinning engine’s rotors blades, shrapnel and debris slicing the soft tissues in all directions.
It’s this moment when I decide to kill Surf for a second time.
High-low pitch of police sirens come from outside. There is always fucking police sirens in this city.
I rinse my hands impatiently and look at myself in the mirror. I look good. I’m twenty six but I look younger. Smooth skin except for a few damn crow’s feet raying on both sides of my eyes; ok, and slightly bulging pockets under them. I should go easy on the booze, the dope.
Craig’s ankles and wrists are tied to a chair. Why, dude? He asks, writhing.
I check the ropes, the knots.
Tightly. Craig is good to go.
Stay still, I say, pressing the point of the scattering knife against his lower chest. The more you writhe, the tighter the knots will get.
Another high-pitch of police sirens come from outside, suppresses Craig’s voice and I can only hear, “…dude?” and I’m certain it is, Why, dude? Fucking broken record.
Know why they call this place Rodent Mews, Surf? I ask