Monday, June 04, 2007

Love Thy Neighbor(hood)

It's going to be a long hot summer, and I may become a cat on a hot tin roof.

After a sober Saturday night (my date? meet? non-date? fell through due to a mysteriously reoccurring flat tire on her car), I awoke refreshed on Sunday and actually made it to the part-time job ON TIME (to much noting and joking by crew and management alike). The day flew by quickly with low sales and high traffic. I left tired yet slightly upbeat, and made it home fully intending on only checking emails, YIMing Flat Tire Woman, and reading old issues of The New Yorker to the sound of classical music.

I started out on track, and then the track exploded.

I made the mistake of cracking open an Old Style which quickly led to a second and 3rd as my neighbor and the HHUN (Hot Hispanic Upstairs Neighbor) started a verbal throw-down outside my kitchen door. I've mentioned before the neighbor woman has the volume capacity of 100 Marshall Amp Full Stacks turned to Eleven, but I think I failed to mention the HHUN equals, nay, nearly rivals this quality...with a Puerto Rican linguistic twist (you should hear how she verbally bullies her beautiful ginger dog).

So, anyway, I think I've informed you about my theory of the Marshall Amp woman's dealing in The Weed (if she don't deal, she sure as hell smokes it! You can nearly taste that greenish swampy sweet shit coming up the sidewalk to the gate most evenings). Well the HHUN smokes up a lot, too; usually in her biggass banana hummer outside my kitchen window on sunny days. And they hangout together a lot; I can hear them laughing and swearing through the kitchen window and facing two front doors. And both their buzzers ring like 20 times a day/night people popping in for 10 minutes and then leave. Or sometimes I hear HHUN yell into Marshall's window "hello" or "unlock your door" various type things.

But tonight, HHUN and Marshal Amp re-enacted an Urban Hatfield and McCoys on the stoop.

But let me back up:
So, I crack a beer and glance out the living room window to see what appears to be a group of 10 Birchwood/Wollcott Boys sprinting and yelling down the street in their requisite white t-shirts and blue jeans. I go to the window in time to see five Mexican men and two Mexican women chasing the guys, swinging fucking baseball bats and bike chains!

Um, WTF?

The Mexicans stop on the corner by my bedroom window, shouting at the white T-shirts disappearing toward Howard, calling on their cell phones "policia!" or yelling "get tu carro, whey!" A couple of cars pull up, and a few of the guys get in and they peel off after the black guys while the rest mill around the intersection or head past my kitchen window in serious Seek and Destroy mode. A guy carrying a brick walks down the middle of the street, shifting on slightly to the side as the 2 cop cruisers and one paddy wagon are now sweeping through the neighborhood (again, again, again) trying to triangulate the Birchwood/Wolcott Boys into a trap. I stand at the kitchen window, sipping a beer (nothing good on TV tonight anyway) and listen to Marshall Amp and her boys friends talk about what's going on. Turns out the B/W Boys jumped and beat up the Mexican corn pushcart vendor at the park, thinking he was a Latin King, and they were giving payback for one of their own getting beat down last week. We learn this from one of the Mexicans (the nephew of the victim) who came into the gate and was chilling on the porch with Marshall Amp's group; he didn't want to get in trouble with the patrolling cops since he was carrying the aluminum bat and all.

It quiets down again. The Mexican goes back on the search with his friends, and some of the guys hanging out go for a walk. I go back to the computer to finish deleting spam.

"Fuck you, bitch! Don't go yelling into my window like that! This may be the motherfucking ghetto, but you ain't got to act motherfucking ghetto, bitch!"

And thus begins the aforementioned Feuding Neighbors. Soon there is a group of boys hanging out on the porch and outside the gate to watch the Rogers Park Smack Down.

What I learned in following 30 minutes or so:


  • has had 5 abortions.
  • is a stripper (Must. Find. Out. Where.)
  • stomps around upstairs in 10 inch heels
  • fucks a lot of men
  • these men leave drunk at 8 in the morning (which I actually found out from Marshall Amp yelling at one of the drunk guys outside my bedroom window at 8 in the morning)
  • these "drunk stupid motherfuckers" are always ringing the wrong bell and demand Marshall Amp "let them the fuck in."
  • the two of them had gotten drunk earlier this afternoon.
  • is nineteen (?).
  • likes to Marshall hear her have loud sex in the bedroom above her.

Marshall Amp:

  • is a "dirty ass nigger."
  • is a "broke ass bitch in a one-bedroom with two kids and mom."
  • doesn't have a job (I think she's actually a night nurse).
  • "likes drama."
  • is a Drama Queen who is "always yelling at your kids, the kids across the street, and everyone on the sidewalk 'cause you like motherfucking DRAMA, bitch!"
  • needs to "shut the fuck up!"
  • can't keep her man (husband moved out months ago), can't get a man, and can't please a man.

Finally, most of the crowd dispersed. The cop cars disappeared. And I went inside, slightly buzzed, and in no mood to read a New Yorker.

So I went to Gallagher's (#265); it'd been a long while since I've visited. I stumble across the muddy park, stopping briefly to chat with the paddy wagon set up there still for the Mexican/B/W Boys incident. I tell them what little I know, and that I'm sure they never hear it, but they are appreciated. We wish each other a good night, and I hit Clark Street.

I'm zoning out, thinking about the recent events, and walk past the bar door.

"Hey, Mac, where you going, man?"

It's Dave, one of the bouncers. He's talking on a cell phone, leaning against a car. We shake hands trade hellos etc. He's asks me where I been and tells me it's dead as hell in there, but will get better soon.

I go in and take a seat at the bar. It's just me, two male customers, and the full crew of Bar Girls. Tanya and Bianney aren't working, Nachos brother is manning the bar. I ask Raul about them, and says, "I don't know. Vacation, maybe?"

I spend the most of the night drinking alone at the bar, eyeing Isabella and the not so friendly Bar Girl, who actually smiles and says hi once as she orders her table's Modellos. Later, I switch my view to that one hot looking Latina I see here now and then; the one people say is actually a tranny. I've seen her at The Mark II Lounge (#261) occasionally, Freddie said he thinks she's a man, too. Whatever, she's got a Hot Eye-candy Body, and her friend she's with is especially soft on the eyes, so I let my beer-sodden eyes float over to their table a lot.

I'm remembering why I haven't come here lately: expensive, none of the hotties speak English, and it's a total Sausage Fest. And that's when Melinda (?) sits down next to me. She's one of the more cuter Bar Girls, and, rumor has it, sleeps with Raul. So we chat for a bit, exchange names, I tease her that Raul's her boyfriend ("no, no, no. He's old man."), and, weirdly, she doesn't ask me to buy her a glass of ice-down beer they get served. I get the unnerving vibe that Raul has decided to pimp her out to me, or maybe told her to talk to the lonely-looking geeky white guy, so I don't push anything. I just drink and make small talk. 3;20 rolls around and the announcement is made over the PA, and all the Bar Girls rush for the closet to get coats and leave. I say good-night to Dave, and walk Melinda to her car because Dave said there was a fight going on by it (nothing), then head home.


[update from half and hour ago: Marshall Amp and the HHUN just got into it again on the stoop. This time it escalated to a physical fight "bitch broke my nail!" Apparently, Marshall Amp and her kids were sitting on the stoop when HHUN dumped mop water over the side of the upstairs stoop. No one got hit with the water, but this was enough to set them off. Oh, for the love of God...]


Fresh Talent said...

Wow, dra-ma. Our neighbors feed our cat cold cuts. That's as exciting as it gets. Can't wait to see what our new neighbors are like. Even more quiet where we're moving.

Mac said...

Must be nice: your neighbors serve cold-cuts, mine will cut you cold!

Luck on the move you two (to Chicago, ya yobs!).