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...Shirley Temple

By CarmenJimersonCross-SafieddinePublished 2 months ago 10 min read
Photo by Jez Timms on Unsplash

The night ended with a threat, "I will cut yer fuckin dick off... come near me!" I meant it and he felt that, and I staggered back out into the cool October air. I was not interested and had been saying that for days.

I was scheduled for an MRI, CAT SCAN and EKG at the closest Veteran's Hospital for an injury that occured on their time. The injury that could allow one of two seated in the front end of a hauler to slide free as it pulled the other under bent metal along a graveled asphalt and concrete shoulder across sheared metal sign posts and four lanes of concrete pavement. Lucky ditch, in that it veered across oncoming northbound traffic, away from the abrupt dropped some two thousand feet into a limestone pit at the east side of the road. The appointment had been set between two facilities over three hundred miles apart. The driver dead and gone... DOA, my survival brought the mystery in question centered around a broadening redness at the upper temple in my hairline... the hairline that was left after the drag and skid along a thousand plus angle of departure that closed at the opposite side of a twenty four foot wide median and one lane of oncoming traffic headed south. The emergency room attending physician staff had brushed surface dirt and gravel grit from my face and hairline, sprayed antiseptic, x-rayed my extremities and sent me back out of the hospital with the military sargent who had escorted the ambulance that brought me there. The appointment was set as an inquiry into the expanding redness, the complaint of extreme head pain and frequent dizziness since the date of the accident. As the package to be delivered to the closest hospital, I was instead, driven around the city of Chicago and introduced as "a handicapper" given a "greensheet" and other horse race betting paraphenalia by the mayor's friend who was supposed to have taken me to the Veteran's Hospital appointment. I was toured through at least four auto dealerships where deals were struck for new car purchases for his "friends" and at least two business start-ups put in operation from an inspiring bank loan meeting. I never saw the hospital. I was shown where his "wife was living... up there on the somethingth floor of a senior's high rise" and driven back and forth to his partner's home for his discussions with his friend's household. I was picked up day after day but never made it to that medical building somewhere in Chicago, well north of the area of my youth. After a near midnight stop on the edge of town, after a clandestine discussion of shredding equipment operation, funding and delivery site, we ended up at the bar. Four men assembled, one brought me a drink in response to my... "no alcohol please" insistence. "I got these pills..." That was good enough for them, "She's got her own..." they got into a muddle of conversation that I never heard the ghist of. I looked up and around the darkness in the pink red room to see a lone stranger posed at the bar. I recognized him right away... the tall brown haired, light complected man I would have married. When I noticed him... sitting under the dull light reflecting history of a much distant past from my own life, from my own youth interspersed with onsets of on and off dates and yes... no relationship; will and won't marry decisions. I smiled subtly inside. The constant jibber jabber of the men at the table slowed when they stood to step back outside to deal where, "she won't hear." They stood, walked out and I steadied my mind then rose to stand and walk over to the man at the bar. His head dropped closer to his drink as I neared him, obviously glancing through what would have been the top of his head if the dim light in the room had not revealed his roving eyes. I tapped his jacket with a forefinger and began to speak, whispering his name in front of, "Hello... hi, I..." He flinched, barely looking up at me, shaking his head rapidly suggesting not to say anything and gesturing for me to go back... go away from him." He nodded in the direction of the men who had stepped outside and hand gestured his suggestion for me to go back to my seat. I left him sitting there and went back to the perch I had been place upon by the strange men in the darkness of the night. My medicine was as heavy as when I had taken it. It was not wearing thin and the daze of the day remained as it was and had been. After a moment they returned, paid for the drinks and I was taken out of the bar. They loaded back into their respective cars... a blue Lincoln Continental, the white Spyder picked up a few days before the meeting and another car not seen for the distance and darkness surrounding the parking lot. My pink dress barely shown in the light permitted as I was escorted back into the white car and the others pulled out of the lot. When the ignition was switched on and doors closed he spoke, "I'm gonna get us a room." I said nothing but formed an unprompted furrow at my forehead. He went on, I'm gonna get you a car tommorow from the dealership... I got friends that... they know me." With that, he drove off and away into the night. He hadn't simmered down from the several rounds of drinks shared with his friends during the "Hebrew Meeting" to do God knows what with his men friends. He hadn't noticed my venture over to the man at the bar and the barside stranger did had not confronted him nor either of the others tending their plan for the night. He sped away into the night with me and my prescription of hallucenation causing medication to quell the pain and dizziness from a job meant to protect the American public... the gentile civilians "we are signed to" as enlistees to be AMERICA's FINEST... first responders to chaos in our communities. He parked in front of a hotel and dashed inside to make his arrangements as I sat wondring what the issue was. There was no romance... I barely knew his name... didn't know his friends with whom the past few days ventures had taken me from our neighborhood well past Chicago's boundary at the north and west sides. I had no idea of what he needed me at his side to watch him sign document after document in car dealerships for his friends and then that one on the white car... the "SPYDER" for himself. I was not interested in his wife way up on the high floor of the senior citizen building. He returned and reparked the car in front of a room at the hotel then gestured for me to "come on." He cane around to the passenger side of the car, opened the door and pulled me up and out of the seat escorting me to the door and inside after turning the hotel door key to reveal a one room habilitation bought for the night. At the door and then inside the room, he went into discussion of how the "Hebrew men" in the plan for business with the shredder were going to turn things around. His friend over in my hometown area... and the mayor, also his friend, were going to sign on and ..." I didn't hear the rest of his plan, Instead I sat in the chair at a small table in the room wondering who the hell he was. My mother knew "of him" as did my eldest remaining aunt. He was someone from some past political administration, not particularly respected but known by the older people of our home community. His friend had permed my hair and "done it up" to a point where my brain was lit on fire by the hair chemicals she'd used to make "her favorite style." It was one she, "put on her own daughter who had succombed to drug life and was out of state now." I had watched her as she talked and wound my hair to her favorite position before taking money and escorting me out of her door. The meetings in Chicago with the "Hebrew men" included me for the necessity of visual cue and to "sign the forms" sometime later. The mayor had nodded and suggested the "...continuation along that path." I sat in the chair as he pulled the sheets on the bed down and tipped into the bathroom only to return momentarily in his underwear. I watched him slide underneath the sheets with a sneering smile on his face obviously expecting me to slide in as well. I wondered who this man was. The elders in the community... most well known as parents of my elementary through hig school classmates or neighbors or relatives alert to my personality trait. I wondered at the man left mentally limp at the bar... defenseless of word, mentality and action as to what was really going on. He hadn't tried to intervene. Would he have been the same way if we had gotten married so long ago? The sneering man in the sheets... tall thin and dark in contrast to the light in the room and glaring white bedcovers had to be some form of ancient crazy. "What do you want?" I looked at him more indepth now, asking again, "What do you want with me?" He smiled... or grinned at me and started some explanation that I would not hear. The keys were on the table. I did not hear what he said but stood, picked up the keys and headed for the door. He smiled and did some form of protest, but I did not hear him. He dropped his hold on my arm after I responded to his quest with, "If you don't leave me alone... I'm gonna cut yer fuckin dick off," and I backed out of the room, shut the door, got into his car and drove away to my mother's house.

The next day, after driving into Gary, Indiana he bought a car... a blue Chevy Probe that required my signature on a line; and signaled for me to drive following him. I did... but not to the Veterans Hospital... it was back to my mother's house. Back to our neighborhood where he muttered something to her and departed. Leaving the Probe, he asked me to do him one more favor... he needed help to do an errand downtown. I got into the car once more and he drove to Chicago's downtown police department and went inside. He needed someone to wait outside... there was no place to park a vehicle. He'd lost the white car for having left it running... it was "stolen" he'd said. I waited over an hour and he did not come back out. I took the Probe back to the dealer and explained that his friend had gone to the police department downtown, went inside and not returned. I hadn't seen him again and that he was not going to be paying for the car. I couldn't afford the car note and was returning it... "Three day's right to recision" as my guide. They cancelled the deal. Other details of the ending series of days I don't remember... this darned head injury gets the best of me.

Men do listen... don't they

P.S. Now that I remember, the white car was stolen when he drove to a restaurant someplace and went inside, leaving the car running with the keys in it. He had called me to come pick him up from the restaurant and then asked for the assist to go downtown.


About the Creator


Sharing experiences, proper name? CarmenJimersonCross-Safieddine SHARING LIFE LIVED, things seen, lessons learned, and spreading peace where I can. being MYself.

more at my original page

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