daily archive: 11/28/2008
levi from queens and his friend with a bird name go to jail
My friend with a bird name has been (presumably) catting about with a boyfriend in Washington. She and I hitch back to JAX together. A boy and a girl work well together hitching, The girl signals harmlessness, and the boy signals not to mess with them. I hitched thousands of miles with my friend with a bird name.
Richmond always loomed as an obstacle with its tolled interstate highways which provided little opportunity for hitchers—most people stopping and few going through..Somebody let us off in Henrico County, the next county north of Richmond. We try to hitch on the access ramps, but my friend becomes impatient and leads me down to I- 95 where we are quickly picked up by a cop.
We go to the jailhouse where the cops chemically analyze the dirt in my pockets and discover dirt instead of hashish. My friend with a bird name must sit at the police station until we can pay the fine for being pedestrians upon an interstate highway.
The jailhouse has two rows of cells split by a concrete aisle. The cops take all of the dozen prisoners but one and put them in the right-hand cell-row. They then put me and the other in the left-hand row. I remain grateful to the cops that they tried to protect me, a young blonde fine-featured curly-haired prettyboy from rape.
The man with whom I am left to converse has high intelligence but poor connection with reality. I do not recall his offense. He had massive scars on his wrists where he had previously attempted to slash his wrists. We ate baloney and tomato sandwiches together. He told me that he prayed to God for help but that God told him to go away. He talked for hours. After about six hours, my little brother (Springsky’s father) wires sufficient cash to free us.
My friend with a bird name later (not that day) said that she had a far harder time of it than I had in the concrete and steel, being chirpy and charming in a police station for six hours with every cop who walked through. Walking back through life and being a boy and therefore somewhat devoid of understanding, I feel at this point that as hard as that cell was that she has a point. In contra-defense to the cops, prettyboy that I was, I would have made an awesome ruckus if some person presumed liberties upon my person. Cops dislike ruckuses.
We are let out of jail.
Our next ride is in a sportscar (probably a vette) from a large Black man (a spade in the vernacular of those days). He has a cup of Southern Comfort on his dashboard which he generously shared with us. He also has a lit rolled joint which he also shared. He took us only a short ways --probably only to the southside of Richmond, but I remain grateful for his southern comfort. We met the Ace of Spades.
Our next ride is with a gang of criminals. These were really old guys, probably even over 30. Every so often, they would throw up the windows and shriek obscenities at old ladies on the sidewalks. While I and my friend with a bird name would have ordinarily found such behavior unseemly, at this time and on this day, it was uproarious. One of the criminals told us a story where he had knocked over the vending machines at Motel 50 on Rte. 50 in Arlington, Va (my hometown) just short of Key Bridge. He had collected all of the coins and put them in the back seat of his car. He then had passed out from drunkenness where the cops found him in the parkinglot of the motel. He tried to tell the judge that he had all of the coins because he drove a lot of toll roads.
My friend with a bird name and I really liked the criminals.
We arrive back at Jax at dawn, much bedraggled, 12 hours later than we had planned. Jail will slow you down.
We are sitting at an underpass beneath the interstate and I snake my arm around my friend with a bird name. She throws my arm off and snarls—I don’t need comforting. I snarl back (I was at least as bedraggled as she) “I wasn’t trying to comfort you; I was trying to comfort me.”
I do not recall what happened next, and I do not know if you understand how madly in love I was with my friend with a bird name. In the best of all possible worlds, she would have draped my arm around her shoulder.
As I cannot recall it, that must not have happened. I just squired her to her home and went off exhaustedly to University.
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