Get Your Kicks On Route 66 


I was still rummy from a night of drugged sleep achieved with the aid of a load of booze and an assortment of sleeping pills. All I wanted to do was drink a cup of coffee, and read the newspaper so I could find out about the progress of my fellow citizens in this land of the free, and to know what laws had been passed by the politicians to protect me from the obscure shadow forces I knew were gaining on me but to get that information I had to wade through a bunch of stories about murder and a lot of other violent bullshit.
How, oh how, could all these terrible things happen and just overnight to boot, I thought, as I looked at a picture of a couple of bodies, with bug eyed people watching from the side lines, in a Macdonalds parking lot on the front page. Could this be the fault of the prevailing violence on television or the easy accessibility of guns and drugs or the lack of moral fortitude in the general public; or the collapse of christianity; or the failure of education, mommy and daddy: or the fall of Western Democracy, of course not, I told myself. It happened just like that, overnight, without a bit of warning-- whatsoever. Those terrible things were not, I repeat, the fault of the bad example set by some of our highest religious and political leaders.
Repeat after me, "The guy that did the Double Decker at Mcdonalds was a lone nut." The newspaper assured me the cops had capture the criminal: a lone nut they called the guy and told me everything was alright. The public is safe again. Nothing to worry about they said.
I put the newly oiled 347 magnum under a newspaper on the seat and left for my daily forty minute drive via a freeway packed to the gun ports with cars driven by people I suspected had escaped from a mental institution or a Georgia chain gang.
I was wondering why everyone was violent. One never knows when a bad person will appear. The problem is that these days you couldn't tell the bad from the beautiful. That's what I liked about the good old days identification was sometimes possible. Now days the bad guy could be a fellow worker who was always talking about God, and doing good favors without being asked. How generous. Or a guy that was so polite and naive that his friends ended up borrowing money from him and taking advantage of his generosity or God forbid, a doctor in the next lane in a brand new car that gave off aura of respectability and worth. You just didn't know if it would be this or that guy that would pay you back in spades for something someone else did to him. 
So you always had to be careful and never be dependable so no one would trust you enough to make you responsible for something you didn't do. So that when a gun was pointed you could always say I didn't do nothing and you would be right asrain--as you took the slug. The one mistake you made was thinking that the guy was hunting for someone, some special someone, when in fact he was just hunting for a victim, and anyone would do. Then suddenly you became the center of attention, a star is born, in the trauma room of your local corporate owned hospital looking up at the hair in the attending physicians nostrils as you lay vertical with a load of morphine in your brain.
The gun had a nice heft to it. I did my Robert Deniro part from Taxi Driver in front of the mirror before I left, and cruised out on the freeway on the way to my wonderful job and my wonderful boss--with my gun on the seat under a newspaper. The glove compartment was to far away. I needed to feel safe. I began thinking about all of my troubles and was sure that nobody ever showed me any respect--never not in my whole life. You would think a guy with my money and position would not have this kind of trouble but your wrong. Dead wrong.
I worked up a head of steam. Raw hatred boiled in my brain.  I was sure everyone on the highway that day was there for only one reason: to screw me over. Sure enough, like it was just waiting for me to come along, a car with a guy in smokes, looking like an executive, talking into a phone fast like he is closing a defense contract deal for hundreds of millions of dollars, swerved in front of me without regards for my safety. I lost my cool. "Mother------r! Son-of-a------!! ----sucker!!!" He sneered at me, and gave me the finger. That was his fatal mistake.
I was enraged because here I am a man of peace, a regular church goer, being provoked by this ******. "I'll kill you," I screamed, my face contorted with rage and went for the gun, loaded with dumb dumb bullets, on the eat. It came up in my hand along with a overload of exhilarating hatred, and the emotional makeup of a mad dog, and a pattern of paranoia that I had been laboring under for years despite the full pot, full wallet and living in the wonderful land of the free. It seems I had everything and nothing.
Nobody loves me my brain screeched. The hate exploded. I fired several rounds. The thought never occurred to me that I would be doing life or that this guy had a lovely wife, two charming children and probably several guns for protection but lucky for me on that day was not carrying a piece and had everything to live for, including the big week end game on television. He had a case of beer in the fridge to tide him over until the game was over. He had everything to live for. To bad. Toot Toot Tootsie goodby. 
After the gun bucked in my hand I watched through the rearview mirror as his car swerve off the highway, and seen the cops red light go on and siren go off, as I sped away. There was a high speed chase, weaving in and out of traffic, without regards for human life. They finally had to crash a patrol car into me. I bailed out and I did a Jesse Owens through a residential neightbor hood before three cops brought me to the turf, and as I laid sprawled, on my face, handcuff on the hot tarmac of a Wendys (MacDonalds competition) parking lot I knew that I was lucky because if I would have been black they might have found a very good reason to kill me.
The guy lived and I told the judge I was sorry and he gave me fifteen years. That's the best he could do. The judge asked me, after the sentencing, if I had learned anything. "Yea," I said, "Never carry a gun because you might use it."
a1234poem a1234poem
41-45, M
1 Response Jul 27, 2010

It was fun writting it. I do things just for the fun of it. i respon to kindness like a puppy.