Monday, August 11, 2008

Sam part 2

I started taking Sam to the bank with me. That meant leaving for work earlier, and coming home a bit later but I didn't mind it. I didn't want her staying at home alone. It took about 40 minutes to walk to work. She made me feel safe walking down the streets of Oakland late at night, although truthfully she was a coward. When an unknown drunk would bend over to pet her at the bar she'd scuttle away.

It was a thursday night and Frank was sitting in front of me. Frank had been coming into the bar regularly for the last few months. A former straight edge vegan kid, he now eats meat and is an incorrugible alcoholic. I don't cut him off ever. If he knew how to control himself from drinking when he was straight edge, he should be able to now. He started babbling to me about his bicycle and then his cell phone.

"Look at this new cell phone. I can get the internet on it, I can text, I can take pictures..." his ramble trailed off as he became absorbed in his phone. He pushed his meaty fingers on the screen and then took a slug of his beer.

"How much does it cost," I asked. I was bored and it was another 15 minutes til last call.

"The phone was $150, then the service is $60 a month."

"Oh." I thought momentarily about acquiring a cell phone then decided once more against it. I got one for two months but no one ever called. The lack of calls just made me more depressed. I would look at the phone and wait for it to ring. I would think about all the people walking in downtown Berkeley gabbing away endlessly on their phones and then my phone, dead, silent. I switched back to a landline and hooked my answering machine to it. I get the same amount of telephone calls, which is still very few.

"Where's Sam," Frank asked.

"She's over here," I replied, pointing to her body at the end of the bar. Frank got up from his bar stool and wobbled over towards the bar. Sam hated Frank. Frank has a mustache and Sam hated men with facial hair. She'd nipped at Frank a few times, but when Frank got drunk he always tried to pet her.

"You should probably leave her alone," I told Frank.

I wouldn't do anything to Sam if she bit him. Frank doesn't tip well, and he's a loser. It's one thing to be a loser, its quite another to be a loser who doesn't tip. I'd probably let Sam rip his intenstines out and be halfway through digesting his liver before I bothered calling the 911.

Frank continued to stagger towards Sam despite my warnings, and their past relationship of pain.

"Here doggy, come here doggy," Frank said as he clapped his fingers together. He looked like an ape, a particularly stupid and drunk ape. Sam started growling as he got closer. "Come on, come on." Sam's growling got louder as Frank's sausage fingers came at her.

"Frank, she's growling, she's going to bite you and its going to be your fault."

Frank doesn't listen to me and inches his fingers closer to Sam's face. Her teeth were bared and she lashed out at Franks' digits. She bit hard and blood was drawn. She scuttled back into the bar and knocked into my leg. Frank let out a howl that was followed by patrons' laughter. Most of the regulars had seen this scene acted out before, and it still had a comical appeal to them. An idiot who slipped on a banana peel that he saw before him. Frank pulled his fingers into his mouth and began to suck on them.

"She bit me," he garbled, between his fingers.

"She always does. You need to keep your mitts away from her. She bites you every time. She doesn't like you much."

"I'll have a shot of JD." I nod and pour him his drink.

"Last call," I yell. A few patrons get more drinks but most of them were either plastered already or too poor to buy another drink. The patrons sulked in their seats for another 10 minutes before I announced the closing of the bar.

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