Thursday, November 19, 2015

Glen and the accidental robbery



This is a work of Faction. 

A little FACT, a little FICTION, a lot of booze.

Every time Glen sat next to me at the bar I knew it was either going to be an afternoon of deflecting his boring stories or a night I would never forget.

There was no in between.

One night it was three hours of hearing how he ran into problems returning a toaster at Montgomery Ward’s and you just sat there eyeing the exits, hoping he would eventually tire out and go home. On another night he saddled up next to you and whispered “This reminds me of the time me and Efrain drove to TJ and the border patrol stripped out my ‘74 Dodge Dart and didn’t find anything except our dirty underwear. The coke was safe.”

Tonight was one of those underwear stories.

I walked into Franks 21 club on the corner of Turk & Taylor in San Francisco.
Not “The City” and definitely not “Frisco”.

Those were names tourist gave San Francisco trying to sound cool. Like when people from somewhere else say “Cali” and try to pretend they’ve been to the Golden State, not just seen it on a music video.

21 Club was a place where on any given night you can see a tranny hooker sitting next to a couple on the way to the opera, Robin Williams behind the bar, and a drunk cop in uniform sippin’ on a double bourbon.

In other words, Franks 21 Club was my kinda place.

On this night, with $29 playing on the juke box, Glen said “Hey, buy me a 10-4 and I’ll tell you about the time I accidently robbed a liquor store.”

A 10-4 was what Glen called a 7-7. In Frank’s it was 10 parts Seagram’s 7, 4 parts 7-Up.
A little stiff, and hurt until the 2nd time.

Much like the tranny hooker at the end of the bar.

Glen then proceeded to tell me about the time in ‘81 when he and a few friends went out to Modesto for Cruise Night- an homage to George Lucas’s “American Graffiti”  where hundreds of hot rodders & reluctant adults cruised up and down McHenry Avenue.

On the way out from Glens then home of Castro Valley, a few pals piled into his ‘75 Chevy Malibu, fueled up on equal parts of Marlboro Reds, cheap Canadian whiskey, teen age angst, and black beauties. 
Bryan O’Connor’s older brother Mickey tagged along, not because anybody liked him, but because he had a reputation of being able to get beer and loose girls. Not necessarily in that order.

On the way out to Modesto, according to Glen anyway, Mickey said he needed to stop for some smokes & a sixer of beer. So Glen pulled over to the Union 76 Station outside of Livermore.

Mickey walked in but ran out yelling “Hit it!” tossing a brown paper bag containing 1 pack of Marlboro’s, a 40 oz of Schlitz, and $73 in small bills.

As Glen sped away, tires throwing gravel & Mickey screaming out the back window flipping off some unseen enemy in the distance, Glen realized Mickey had robbed the store and, in turn, so had Glen.

So it just goes to show- when someone sits down and asks you to buy them a 10-4, do it. 

You might end up hearing a great story.


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