Angry Sam's Rants & Raves
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This afternoon I'm a drunk lizard. My eyes act independent of each other while watching t.v.'s hung at opposite ends of the bar. Staring straight ahead, I flick my long reptile tongue at the green reflection of myself in a wall length mirror. I'm in an old L.A. bar hidden on Western between stucco fingernail shops and generic convenience stores. My strong claws grip a full glass and a cigarette. Burn, sip, gulp, smoooth. Know what I mean? Power to the people and I am their King. Dinosaur horns run down my back. Jazz pounds the juke box. Drums warm my blood with a 4/4 beat. Piano keys sweeten a dead man's sax. New York sweat and brick basement yells. The beat drives me toward life. Do you know how many animals I've loved for less?

Lucky I'm alone except for an ancient barmaid playing solitaire scratch off games. Without moving my head, I watch the daily freeway car chase develop on the t.v. screens. Some unlucky son of a bitch stole a Toyota pick up and is heading south accompanied by a squad of cop cars. Fluid lane changes and staccato brake pedals. The cruisers shadow the driver's every move. Go baby, go! Talk about a jazz rift driven by pure adrenaline. Man, you can't help thinking faster, faster, you fool, you fool! Take me to where there is no rule. Speed further than the law, and finish for freedom. The guts, the balls, the desperation to wake up and decide that today is the day. Invent a passage that has never had play. Fuck the helicopter lighting your way. Twist and turn, bop and pop to your own chorus. You've made it to prime time so let's milk your last dime. Just like Thelonius discovering new chords from thin air, this fugitive's going to where nobody will dare. I'm excited, I'm tense, I'm hoppin' a mile a minute. God! Doesn't anyone else hear the tempo of the engine's tune? Run for all you're worth cause in the end you're gonna get caught. Skid row marks and rubber smokes the bass player's fingers. The juke box hops right to Miles creating sidewalk heel prints on the top of his instrument. He knows the pain of a male's fruitless attempts at creation. The indignation of lonely joy rides. He plays, wails and cries that he is alive despite knowing the song must one day die. I'm always sad at the end of beauty.

I need another drink and quick. Head can't stop nodding and heart can't stop pumping. Do you understand the thrill of jazz, of stealing a car, of out running the cops? Even if it's for a brief moment? Because in the whole show we pray we aren't only the warm up act. Just like I sit here pretending to be a lizard, just like that driver pretends his gas tank's gonna stay full, we both know we're simply stupid guys looking for an instant of recognition. To have one person say that we're special and that everyone else should shut the fuck up and listen.

The last song ends and the bar is painfully quiet. I'm out of money and the cops have cornered my hero. Guns replace horns. Arms raised high allow the curtain to drop. A moment of smiles and Miles before the final pop. Slumped and bleeding I look into the mirror. The lizard is gone. Before me is a reflection of the reality of who I am. A man who is tired, spent and returned from his dream. A man who creates because he has no choice. A man who prays of finding his voice. A man who would go, a man…who…would…go… Mex…i…co.


Crazy as it sounds, I find myself batting clean up in the bottom of the ninth inning in the 2010 World Series. Goose bumps cover my body and I'm pretty sure it's from the excitement more than the long line of Mark McGuire endorsed legal steroids I just inhaled in the dugout. Buzzing my brains out, I look up at the stadium inhabited solely by corporate luxury sky boxes paid for with public funds. Recorded crowd noise cheers wildly as I salute thousands of drunken CEOs doing tequila shots from the between the breasts of waitresses paid for by public funds. Next, I give the finger to television cameras in tribute to the host city's barefooted school children, tap the synthetic dirt from my free pair of two thousand-dollar cleats and get to hit my team's fortieth home run of the game to win the series. Standing at the plate I find it hard to focus. I can't help watching the sixty year old, wheezing relief pitcher take a deep whiff off his oxygen tank. I'd feel pity for him if it weren't for the fact that he came out of retirement to earn another 20 million dollars after the league expanded to 300 teams. I remember this guy pitching before baseball allowed sponsors' ads to cover uniforms like an auto racer's jumpsuit. He throws his first pitch, which blends with a white condom advertising patch on his cap. STRIKE ONE! The stadium's computer programmed fans ROAR! I dig in for the next pitch, exchanging e-trade stock advice with the catcher and glare toward the pitcher's mound. A league mandated nurse injects the pitcher with pure monkey gland adrenaline and advises him to throw a fastball before the effects of the drug dissipate. The pitcher nods off for a second, nods again to the nurse and heaves a 200mph hummer right past me. I wait to hear the umpire's call. He checks with his union rep and together they decide that in order to avoid litigation the pitch will be negated on the grounds of insufficient evidence. The piped-in crowd murmurs. The count is now one strike, no balls and one hung jury.

Feeling a bit overconfident, the pitcher waves off his nurse and rolls a gopher ball towards the plate. I golf it into left field past an adolescent rookie sensation outfielder. Obviously annoyed, he puts his agent on hold, pockets his cell phone and hires a ball girl to chase down the ball. She's got a hell of an arm and hits the relay man at second. Suddenly realizing I didn't smack it over the fence, I have to stop performing my newest home run dance for the cameras and hurry toward first. My team's politically correct mascot tosses his Armani jacket to the ground in disgust as I barely beat out the throw for a humiliating single. Feeling completely disrespected by the mascot I kick him square in the nuts. He drops to his knees faster than a starry-eyed baseball groupie in the back of a hotel bar.

Fuming, our manager calls a time out and sprints from the dug out to yell at me. I tell him to shut up and order a double Stoli from the Indian casino located behind the bullpen. I have a vicious hangover and am in no mood to take his shit, so I inform him that I refuse to run to second unless the team renegotiates my contract. Five lawyers and an arbitrator quickly race to the field. We settle on an extra 2.5 million if I agree to sing the Budweiser song while rounding the bases. The umpire yells, "PLAY BALL", just as a healthy Hooters' girl bounces out from the casino with my drink order. Television cameras project her jiggling image on the stadium's scoreboard screen aptly named Jumbotron. The other team's shortstop develops whiplash watching her jog and has to be replaced. I give her a wink, a ten thousand dollar tip and grab my drink. Gulping down the ice-cold vodka, I begin to feel the stress of being a major league ballplayer melt away. I pull out a cigarette as the first baseman snaps open his Zippo and lights me. I know we are supposed to be enemies, but it's hard to hate somebody you've spent two months with in rehab.

Knowing he's in trouble of being traded, the pitcher requests another injection. As the monkey gland extract shoots into his system he rears back and fires a screaming curve ball. Somehow the batter connects and creams the ball off the centerfield wall. With a drink in one hand, a cigarette in the other and singing the Budweiser song, I find it hard to run. Huffing and puffing I drop from extreme exhaustion and crawl underneath the second baseman's sweeping tag. During my dust-off I notice my agent pointing to a lounge chair he's had installed for me at third base. What a great guy. Very inspirational. Maybe I'll have him hired as manager after this series is over.

Tension is so thick I could use another cocktail. I wave to the Hooter's girl who is now mixing Margarita's in our nervous dugout. Even the veteran pitcher seems affected by the drama. His face is twitching like crazy. His arms begin swinging madly. The nurse becomes concerned. She tries to give him a tranquilizer. Too late! He grabs her, tearing at her white uniform yelling something about King Kong monkey love. His teammates rush to the pitcher's mound. My manager calls out for me to steal third since nobody called time out. I hesitate, wondering if I have the stamina to make it. Then for some reason I remember all the little kids watching this fall classic on TV and become overcome with emotion. And I am pretty sure it isn't because I'm coming down from the steroids. I puff out my chest, cough a few times, stamp out my cigarette and take off.

As I lumber towards third, I actually think about trying to make it all the way to score the winning run. The other team has tackled their insane pitcher. They are trying to pry the ball from his stiff hand. With alcohol scented sweat pouring from every orifice in my body I ignore the comfort of the lounge chair and make my turn for home plate. I can already hear the roar of the commercial offers I'll get for being the hero. Oh, no! The third basemen has broken the pitcher's death grip and is throwing the ball to the catcher. It's going to be close.

But wait! The Hooters' girl is trotting out of the dugout with my double vodka. With no time to wave her off, I lower my shoulder as the catcher reaches for the ball just as the Hooters' girl trips and sends the drink flying through the air. The precious vodka splashes the catcher in the eye, blurring his vision. He drops the ball. With my overworked heart about to burst I fall onto home plate. The umpire yells "SAFE!"

I don't know how long I was trapped under the pile of celebrating teammates. I may have even passed out. But, I do remember thinking I could hear a real crowd cheering for me. At that moment I smiled understanding for the first time the true meaning of athletic competition and why baseball will always be America's favorite pastime.


The morning news update ends with the usual light note quipped by a clown CNN anchor person reminding us it's safe to stay tuned because she won't bog down our lives with any pesky, heavy thoughts or world events. Her cheery face is replaced by a CNN fun factoid. Did you know that 44% of American school children think being a serial killer is a good career choice? The perfectly coifed anchor returns to report that JonBenet Ramsey, the murdered beauty queen, is still dead and despite spending three years and millions of dollars to investigate this heinous crime a special jury is completely baffled. The concerned governor of Colorado is now naming a team of advisors to decide what kind of committee to form in order to get to the bottom of this mystery. What action! What conviction! What a caring soul this governor must be to desire justice one dead child at a time. I'd call to congratulate him, but I am sure he's going to be pretty busy considering there are over 100 million unsolved murders of innocent children around the world. Sure, not all of them are cute, blond and rich, but hey, I can tell this governor must be a truly focused individual. I have to believe that, I really do.

CLICK, CLICK, CLICK, let's see what else is on the tube. Oh good, Al Gore is still running for President. He also looks mighty concerned, sort of like that great action figure of a governor from Colorado. I better turn up the volume. Oh, yeah, that's better. Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah vanilla ice cream for all my friends, blah, blah, blah. Gore has already spent two billion dollars campaigning a year before the election and I have no fucking idea what he is selling.

CLICK, CLICK, CLICK, I've been traveling so long through the Midwest that I have no idea where I am. I know I am somewhere in the heartland of America holed up in a cookie cutter hotel room with a free copy of USA Today on my lap. It was left silently at my door while I was sleeping. Clean, neat, no suspects. Damn, this paper tells me nothing, just like JonBenet's killer. I could be anywhere. I look up at the television. SHIT! A super cool sports guy is shouting about super cool millionaire football players whining about the freshness of their brie on ESPN. This is the same story I watched on ESPN last night in another city in another state on another TV. I'm so confused I feel like Alice in the Twilight Zone tweaking on bad mushrooms. Becoming frantic, I call room service and get a machine. A recorded voice as sweet as apple pie says, "Hi, welcome to the Sheraton. Please press one for a cup of Starbucks coffee, press two for a McDonalds Happy Meal, press three for a bullet in the head.." I slam down the receiver, race over to the window, pull open the drapes and see a huge Nike logo swooping across the billboard blotting out the rising sun.

Suddenly I feel like William Shattner under attack by the vicious mind suckers from Planet Hollywood. I,...must,..., get,....away,....,from,....,ahhhh! The voices inside my head are getting louder and louder. It's, it's Puff Daddy disguised as Michael Jackson singing We Are The World with Celine Dion! My face contorts, I scream and drop to the carpet. My brain turns to Jell-O instant pudding mush. The last thing I remember is Bill Cosby singing a Jimi Hendrix song about buying a brand new Lexus SUV.

Minutes, hours, days later I wake up in an airport. At least I think it's an airport. Lots of white people rushing back and forth like worker ants dressed in Gap t-shirts talking on cell phones. I look down and notice I am holding a plastic cup half full of a brown liquid. I take a sip. It's whisky. I down the rest of the cup allowing the wet flames to burn my throat. Oh baby, there ya go. Now I am feeling better. I shake the cobwebs from my aching head. There is a copy of USA Today on my lap. I'd really like to know who keeps giving me this paper and why nobody charges me anything for it. There's a pie chart in the bottom left corner of the paper. It's shows five different sized slices of pie to compare various ways Americans die from unnatural causes. Seems like a waste of time to me. I mean, when is dying ever natural? Anyway, the unnatural cause represented by the biggest slice of pie is death from mass shooting. Beat out airplane crashes by at least two healthy servings. I look up at the paper's lead headline and it reads, "Twenty-eight killed in hotel shooting spree!" Man does this paper know it's pie charts or what? Needing another gallon or two of whisky, I stand and check my pockets for cash. Damnit! All I can find are more empty machine gun clips. Oh well, I sit back down, open the USA Today and try and figure out where to go next.


Winter is coming. It should be time to get a driver's window for the Plymouth Valiant. Somebody smashed it 6 weeks ago outside the Good Luck Bar. Sure I was pissed. Not so much about the window. I live in LA, I expect to be a victim of crime. Being surrounded by lowlifes, car thieves, gangs and the LAPD, I accept occasional acts of violence. The thing that pissed me off was that anyone was stupid enough to try and steal my car. The hood is dented from an old hit and run and has to be chained to the bumper, the passenger door won't open due to a new hit and run and the radio was stolen while in a Culver City impound lot. Hell's the car's such a piece of shit, I never registered it after I bought it from some crack head Motley Crue wannabe in North Hollywood for 500 bucks. The poor fucker listed the car in The Recycler under an ad that read "Musician in need of serious money. If wife answers, hang up". Selling the car to me probably didn't solve his cash flow problem for too long. After I bought the car, he asked me to take him to his "producer's" apartment. I dropped him off at a street corner where he met some skinny black dude smoking little white fuzzies picked off his carpet.

As I pulled away from the curb, I watched a drug deal go down in my newly acquired rea rview mirror. I smiled knowing the dealer, the musician and myself were all wonderful Americans. We were budding Capitalists helping to grease the economic engine. Not that any of us were directly linked to the Dow Jones. In fact, I 'm sure our local police enforcement agencies would have been very interested in our little transaction if they weren't busy posing as giggly girls in pervert chat rooms trying to entrap horny Disney execs. Do you realize how many times most online pick up rooms are loaded with nothing but cops talking dirty to each other? Which brings up an interesting thought about our country's law enforcement officers.

Without straying to far from my point, I guess I'm trying to explain how our commerce system works. It's very simple and based on the ancient principles of warfare. In battle, the winner does not overpower the looser as much as exploit the other's weaknesses. Get the best deal you can by taking advantage of some poor bastard. Buy low, sell high. Which in the musicians case was an extreme example. Believe me, I am not proud of what I did, but I needed a car cheap. And of course, I knew that one day Karma would catch up to me.

See, I spent my last dollar buying the Valiant and couldn't afford insurance. Which instantly made me a member of the very nervous club, the D.W.P. No, not the Department of Water and Power. I am talking about the millions of us guilty of Driving Without Papers. To get the full effect of how I felt sliding into my car, try shouting in a Nazi accent, "PAPERS? VER ARE YOUR PAPERS?" Every time a cop pulled up behind me I'd have to take the first immediate right turn and hope to God he didn't notice the expired registration sticker on my plate. For three years I drove in constant fear and dread. The amazing stress I felt driving was worse than the internal conflict endured by a Christian pro-lifer standing in an abortion clinic with his pregnant, sexually ignorant daughter.

Which brings me back to why I am not buying a new window for the Valiant. A few weeks ago, I went over to a friends house, drank a bottle of Jack and made the first big mistake of the night. No, not drinking the Jack. I gave into an urge and opened up one of those new, ultra-hip magazines with say-nothing articles sandwiched between dot-com ads and stick figure girls wearing padded bras and collagen pouts (Gear). With one eye shut, I started reading a story about why MTV was great. The writer wrote how cool it was that the world wide cable access was making the earth a smaller place. Basically he was saying that acne riddled geeks spanning the globe would now have a chance to spend their lunch money on over-produced singers like Brittany Spears. He though this was a very healthy way to add to our nation's GNP. Even though this asshole was confirming my beliefs regarding Capitalism, my own random moral boundaries had been surpassed. Personally, I vehemently oppose the fucking with the minds of lonely school kids jerking off behind closed drapes while Brittany squats for a zoom lens.

The second mistake I made that night was getting behind the wheel of my car hammered out of my seething mind. I was already D.W.P and now I was D.W.I. Needless to say, my clever series of defensive right turns finally failed. I was pulled over, cherry lights flashed in my rear view mirror as I swore at MTV and anybody who ever dared contort my own Capitalist theory of need versus want. The cop busted my ass, threw me in jail and now I have court date set with a judge blind to my drastic economic situation. My only hope is to sell the Valiant and raise enough money to skip bail and head for Mexico. Yesterday I put an ad in The Recycler. It reads "Writer in need of serious money, If my attorney answers, hang up."

Angry Sam

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I hate waking up on somebody's floor and this morning was no different. It was the fucking birds outside. I wanted to grab a chain saw and cut down every damned tree in sight. I would have except the thought of listening to a chain saw made my ears bleed. So I laid there, my cheek stuck to the floor by some semi-hard liquid. Smelt like tequila.

RING! RING! RING! Shit. The phone was ringing and ringing. This wasn't my house, so I wasn't going to answer it even if I could stand up. Finally I heard movement, from the couch, that is, if I was in the living room. I still couldn't open my eyes. With a snort, cough and pained moan I heard Tom answer the phone.

"Somebody better be dead." He paused, coughed and then replied. "Damn right, there you go, fucking alcohol. Me neither, I'm never drinking again. Damn I was stupid last night. I can't believe I lit the yard on fire. I don't even want to look outside. Shit. That's it, never again. Man, I was totally insane."

Laying with my back to Tom, I could picture him, hair smashed to one side of his head, twisted boxer shorts with his balls hangin out and a cigarette dangling from his ash tray mouth. He laughed, and with a painful inhale of smoke, he continued, "I'll bet nobody ever forgets this party. There you go. That's why I drink, you know, to loosen up. to have fun. to be fun. To beee the life of the party. Right. Chicks, women, pussy, it's all about getting laid. If it weren't for women, men would live in a cabin in the woods. We'd chop wood, make fires, hunt for dinner, do cool guy stuff. No stress, no jobs, no business suits, just man and nature. We'd all have really long beards and wear the same clothes for like, a month. Who'd care if we stank? Back in the old days everyone stank like shit. They all wore heavy wool clothes. Imagine what Independence Hall smelled like when they were writing the Declaration of Independence. I'll bet it smelled worse than a men's locker room. But did that keep them from making history? NO! Cause there were no chicks there."

Tom hacked out a chuckle. He was always a cynical philosophical bastard when he was hung over, and by the sound of this morning's rhetoric, he was in horrid pain.

"Now", he continued, " we spend half our lives trying so hard not to stink we end up smelling like a fucking fruit salad. Strawberry-guava shampoo, essence of lavender conditioner, pine scented deodorant, peppermint toothpaste, Irish Spring soap......what the fuck does an Irish Spring smell like and why do I wanna smell like one? 'Hi, Tom, I'm Stephanie and I'd like to fuck you cause you smell like an Irish Spring.' Oh shit, I just remembered something. I can't believe I told Lisa I hated watching football and wasn't afraid to cry. Man, I can be an idiot when I am trying to get laid. I gotta quit drinking."

Another reason Tom is so cynical is he never gets women. Listening to him talk, I'm surprised he hasn't been arrested. He has some deep rooted hatred I'm not sure a good fuck would cure. I heard him scratch himself as he stood up and paced the house.

"Noon?" Already? No, I'm just getting up. The place is a wreck. Oh, damn, damn freaks. could you tell me why somebody painted my toilet red? Oh, right. I did it. I made a communist toilet. Only communists could piss in it. You should see the bathroom. There are like a million red footprints covering the floor. I guess having to pee is more important than political convictions. My landlord is gonna kill me. Fuck. Half the house has red footprints. Why are there footprints on the dining room ceiling. No shit, really, oh right, I think I remember. That's right, Billy had her upside down on top of the piano. Damn are they gonna be sore today. What? No thanks, I'm not into watching the Olympics. Not even if you got a keg of Heineken. That's right, I quit. I gotta dry out for a while. Besides I'm not that into the Olympics anymore. TV money ruined them. You know what I'm saying? In the old days it was simple. Whoever threw the furthest, lifted the heaviest or finished first won the gold. Now you got all these chick events to sell commercials. Yeah, right, there you go. You know what I am talking about. Anything with judges. figure skating, gymnastics, synchronized swimming. It's not sport if you're leaping around in a dress to the theme from West Side Story. Yeah, me too. I find it a bit disturbing getting all horned up watching twelve year old gymnasts doing splits on top of a long piece of wood. I don't even wanna go there."

I had to agree with Tom on that one. Sports aren't what they used to be. Nobody just plays a game anymore. I've been to corporate meetings that were more fun. I was thinking of getting up mainly because I was starting to worry about whatever substance my face was stuck to. Tom was dumping empty beer bottles in a trash bag as he talked.

"They do spend too much time showing them sappy stories in between the sports. Did you see the one that other day where they interviewed the Swedish skating chick? Her parents were eaten by bears and now she works as a bear trainer with the circus. Talk about one messed up babe. Right, exactly, like the one where they did the story on the first gay bobsled team from Greece. I was rooting for them to win. Only I wished they had painted their bobsled solid pink. Oh, oh, and what about that Christian snowboarding dude? They spent like an hour on how he wanted to win the gold for God and then he wipes out on the first run. Yeah what the hell kinda of message does that send to today's youth? If he had spent less time praying and more time practicing he would've won. No, man, I'm not drinking for a month."

RRRIP!!!!. I had to sit up. It was dried puddle of beer. I could taste it on my cheek. Tom was busy talking and collecting beer bottles. His place looked like a hurricane hit it. I wanted to go home and die, but I didn't drive and I was in no mood to walk home. Tom, turned and waved to me.

"HA!, Sam just got up. Man does he look like hell. Yeah, he came with Tony, that's right, I forgot about him showing up. The idiot got thrown out of the army cause they caught him selling dope. I could never understand how he got in. He's been a dope head, like from the womb. I think we got into a huge argument about war. I was giving him shit that war today was for pussies. Man, did he wanna kick my ass. I remember saying that if someone attacked my country I'd fuck all those Geneva rules they have about civilians and poison gas. IF the U.S. started bombing the shit outta me, I'd do anything to win. Right? I mean Christ, it's war! I'd put some nasty germ in their water, bomb airports, you know, whatever i took. If you're smaller and losing the fight, is there anything wrong with kicking the other guy in the nuts? Fuck the rules. War is hell and hell's not about playing fair."

Tom sat down, scratched his head and looked at me. he said, "hey buddy how about a little hair of the dog? Jason's on the phone and he's got a kegger of Heiney!"

I shrugged and said, "sure, why not?"


It was a ball busting week at work. I was producing a movie being filmed all night, you know where the whole crew turns into zombie vampires from hell. So, I planned to get away for a long weekend with my assistant, Gina. She's this hot mulatto chick with the greatest tattoo in the history of body ink. I noticed it the day I hired her. It's wrapped around her left bicep and says: GOD SPELLED SIDEWAYS IS BITCH. How could I not love her? Another reason is cause she has a great drug connection. No muss, no fuss. Just one phone call and within minutes a black Maxima with chrome rims and tinted windows pulls up with the delivery. Sort of an underground Pink Dot. I had her score an eight ball for a camping trip to Joshua Tree. Nothing like frying the brain circuits by mixing a surreal landscape with teeth-grinding decadence.

The instant the AD called wrap, we jumped in Gina's Mustang and drove faster than Kurt Russell leaving New York. Made it to the desert in an hour. We would have made it sooner except I made her slow down every time I cut lines on an Etch-a-Sketch. Talk about perverting a childhood memory. By the time we found the camp site, we were so wired all I cared about was sex. Screw the tent, screw the camp fire, drop your fucking pants. Coke makes me insanely kinky. I dream of doing shit to women I'd never think of in a thousand years. Only problem is that tons of blow makes me limp as an overcooked noodle. Yeah, what horrible irony. Have Alanis Morrisette put that in her pipe and sing it.

Once Gina finished cursing my useless dick, we opened a bottle of Jack, chained a carton of butts and freaked out at cactus shadows. That was about the time Edward showed up. He appeared from the pitch black nothingness with a drunken swagger and a piss stain running the length of his ripped jeans. he laughed his fool head off as our eyes popped out of our heads. Without another though, he sat down Indian style, grabbed our whisky, took a deep swig and started talking. He sounded like a billy goat with a throat ripped apart by rusty tin cans.

Gina and I looked helplessly at each other as Edward began, "hey there folks, don't be ah-scared ah me. I ain't dangerous. Don't carry a gun, never will. Ya wanna know why? Huh? Well I'll tell ya why. I don't carry no gun on account ah I know that during a wicked drunk I'd end up shootin somebody cause it seemed like the thing to do at the time. Then the cops would show up and I be standin there, tryin' ta explain. And fer some reason, no matter how lawgical I sounded, they wouldn't unnerstand why anybody deserved ta be shot. Hell, I know plenty ah low lifers and horse thieves I could shoot jes as easy as spit on, but then I'd end up gettin' my ass thrown in jail. Now, I don't mind three squares a day, but the thought ah gettin' raped ain't very invitin'. I think that's why the screws let it happen. If it weren't fer gang rapes in the shower, more people like me wouldn't mind goin' ta jail. So don't worry your pretty lil heads off 'bout me or my temper, where was I? Oh yeah, ya'll from Los Angeles, right? Yeah, thought so. I was in the city of angels back aways visitin' with my rich asshole brother and his girlfriend. Boy oh boy, was she somethin' ta look at. She's one ah them hood ornament women, always complainin' that he be-hind is too fat and her thighs look like two sticks ah melted butter. I stood right up there in their hospital clean livin' room and told her I knows plenty ah men out in the desert who wouldn't mind bein' her own personal piece ah toast. God dang, I could ah spread the long legs like jar ah Skippy. I knowed what her problem was, and I told her. I says, she's too used ta all them fancy dressed men in the Gucci underwear treatin her like some sooped up sports car. Yeah, yeah, here she is, great lil number, goes from zero ta sixty in unner four seconds, feel the tires, all original equipment.....which I rekin is a big thang out there where recaps is ah way of life. I told her to quit bitchin 'bout her looks cause she could go into any bar she wanted and walk out with any man she de-sired. Ya know, if women had less morals, there's be alot more humpin going on and a lot less bullshit. Whoooo weee, ya shoulda seen how paintin's on the walls that look like something a wino'd puke up after ah bad batch of hooch. I insulted her, he says, so I gotta ah-pologize. I'm thinkin who in the hell is he ta ask me to ah-pologize fer anything. Cause truth be told, I could take his chicken bone neck and squeeze it so hard his tongue'd pop outta his head like a sailor tryin to retrieve his weddin ring outta ah ten dollar whore."

By this point of Edward's diatribe, Gina and I were dying for another snort of old white, but both of us were too afraid to move a muscle. Besides the fact that neither of us were quite sure if he really existed with the moon rays distorting the shape of his face. One minute he looked as sweet as my fifth grade teacher and the next, he took on features of a demon so nasty the devil himself would scream in terror. Edward's voice was crackling like an arsonist's fire. I don't think the entire time he was talking he took his eyes off Gina's small taunt breasts held tight under her sweat soaked T-shirt. Sure, I wanted to tell him not to stare, but I kept hoping her nipples were hypnotizing him like music soothing a savage beast. It was a long shot and I felt really shitty about not sticking up for her, but basically I'm a wimp when it comes to confronting a psychopath.

Edward continued talking and actually seemed like he was winding down. At the time, I didn't know if that was good or bad.

"Hey there!" He yelled as he scratched his beard. "Get it?!!" A ten dollar whore! I had ah few ah them in ma life. So where, oh yeah, my phony brother wuz wantin me ta ah-pologize. Well, don't ya know, I got up, grabbed two bottles of high-priced Frenchy wine, stashed them under ma jacket and asked how anything I said could insult them. I mean ta say, they live ina land growed on dope fiends and fakers. And I'll be damned if I'll let them act all uppity ta me. I don't give a rat's ass if they live in ah silk covered penthouse or not. I ain't never lied in my life except ta the cops or ah juiced up woman I wuz tryin ta lay. Ima honest man and don't say nothin less I mean it. How many ah their perfumed friends could say the same thing? None. That's right. I live by my wits and use only what I need. So I told them I didn't need none of their smelly money and left."

With that, Edward stood up, staggered, smiled and asked me what I did for a living. With a straight face I told him I was a garbage collector. . Edward paused, stared me right in the eye, laughed, smacked me twice on the back, grabbed our bottle of whisky and disappeared into the darkness.

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