Thursday, May 25, 2017
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C H A P T E R   T W O ::

I  N   T H I S   C O R N E R


Fightey-Town, noun. Def.: A violent place in either an actual physical location or simply a violent headspace. EXAMPLE "If you keep pushing my buttons, we are going to take the train to Fightey- Town together.” OR "Even now, when I see Bush on TV my stomach roils and my attitude goes straight to Fightey-Town." OR "At first blush, it looked like a tranquil 1970s Chicagoland bedroom community...but the large population of Irish made it a dangerous Fightey-Town for the children who lived there."


First of all, what kind of a-hole would write a book about all of his stupid fistfights? Good question. The short answer is: This a-hole. I have been paid [a little] to write about a lot of things, mainly humor, but I GOT TO thinking that the fights, while certainly one of the most asinine topics ever, make fairly interesting stories.  Well, at least I have repeated them verbally ad nauseum, as any of my friends will tell you. Plus, I remember them all very clearly. Plus, they say a lot about me...good and bad...maybe even about our world in general, but probably not. Hey, at least this tale is going to be ACTION! PACKED!


I have had about 40 fistfights or more. That’s about the same amount as a family of Oakie white supremacist crank dealers. And I don't look like a fighter. Sometimes I look like one of those 40- year-old cologne commercial guys stepping off of a yacht. You know, chiseled features, ascot riffling in the breeze: a gray fox with too much to lose to fight. Ha! Nothing could be farther from the truth. I am a semi-starving artist/ carpenter without a bank account who just happens to LOOK pretty good because I stay in shape...for my next fight! I kid. I play a lot of sports where I live in sunny Los Angeles and I am a good carpenter with a surviving small business and an aspiring...well, still everything. One of my friend’s ongoing jokes is that a gang whose member I beat up would show my acting headshot around to his boys to organize my beatdown...and everyone would laugh-'THAT'S THE GUY WHO BEAT YOU UP?!??’ 

Read more: Chapter 2

C H A P T E R   F O U R :

J A M I E   T A T E

B I G   M O U T H   S T R I K E S   A G A I N


“Sweetness, sweetness, I was only joking when I said I’d like to smash every tooth in your head…”

  -“Big Mouth Strikes Again” by Morrissey


“Jamie is a jerk [guitar riff]

Got gum on his shirt [guitar riff]

Tried to get off with his hands

And got it all over his paaaa-aaants”

  -“The Jamie Song” by Dan Wentz


Jamie Tate was not a popular child.  He was ver-r-y annoying.  He made dumb jokes and had an irritating laugh.  But if you tried to fight him, he would run away and taunt you from a distance.  In fifth grade, in our lovely suburban bedroom community, Jamie was having a very difficult time making friends.  This was made obvious by the fact that Jamie had to be let out of school 10 minutes early by the teachers so he could run home to avoid getting his ass kicked by the posse assembled after school.  What kind of animals were we?! What would happen if we caught him? Were we going to tear him limb from limb like a pack of hyenas, or eat his flesh like piranhas?!  Was some kid going to smash his head in with a rock like a caveman?!  Egad. 


And What The Hell were the teachers doing letting Jamie out of class early instead of trying to stop the bloodshed and violence?  How about a little effort, like maybe talking some children out of murdering another 9 year old? I told you my neighborhood was weird, sick and violent. 


Anyway, I lived about a block and a half from Jamie, so I enjoyed the company of some sadistic and horrible children running with me home, in a fruitless pursuit of Jamie with his teacher-sanctioned insurmountable head start, instead of the long, lonesome walk.  I don’t remember a ski mask covered in frozen snot on my face and nobody was wearing a snowsuit, so it had to be either May or September.


That particular day we missed Jamie, so we just milled around in front of his house for a few moments like a mob intent on burning Frankenstein or something and then peaceably dispersed.  I mean, there was always tomorrow.  Dare to dream. I went home to an empty house.


I remember kicking it on a brown leather loveseat, eating an after school bowl of Quisp, my reward for enduring another insufferable day of grade school and hunting Jamie down like an animal, when the phone rang.


"Hello, Patrick?" an adult voice, this meant I was in some kind of trouble as usual.


Read more: Chapter 4

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