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However, his rapid fire, Kerouac-esque method of writing in huge multi-page paragraphs got on my nerves after a while. When I first read it as a teenager, I blew through it in a couple of days, thanks to hilarious observations like this:.
Today at school we had our annual Thanksgiving fast for the benefit of the poor and hungry blacks we hear of scattered throughout the South. Anyone who sympathizes with the injustice of poverty in the South does not eat his meal as a symbol of this injustice. Frankly, I was too embarrassed to be the only cat in the school to eat his meal so I snuck down to the corner and copped a cheeseburger.
Symbolic gestures are certainly self-satisfying but they are not too nourishing for anyone anywhere. Somebody is conning everyone else and themselves with plain dumb ideas as performed here today. What happens to the food they prepared today? When we were about an hour from the city, everyone started to blow up the scumbags and send them out the window.
At an ice cream stand we gave a few blown up rubbers to a little girl, in fact. New Jersey, housewife fucker. Winter I've been hanging around lately, with all the other heads in this dreary neighborhood, at this place called "Headquarters," which is actually just the apt.
It's an amazing place where there are usually anywhere between ten and thirty locals hanging them- selves out either laughing insanely from grass giggle fits or simply on the nod fi-om smack.
I've lived here from time to time when my parents give me the toss and woke up here this moming, in fact, after a huge hash goof last night. There were about twelve other dudes fell out on the floor when we got each other up for early bird cartoons and the remainder of the hash. Sloppy Eddie wandered in with a case of milk and 36 loaves of bread that he and Willie Appleears clipped fi-om the Grand Union down the block before they opened.
Too bad they don't leave out a couple of pounds of baloney too because we had to go download that at the all night deli for our moming sandwiches. We plan a big day Brian and I of going up to i68th St. After siiiy hash goofs with other loony heads Brian and I spht and taxi to i68th for the junk juice, but to no avail be- cause the place we hit tums us down because the man's been bugging him about selling it to minors you're supposed to be 21 to cop this stuff.
After two more tumaways we almost give up hope when Brian decides to give a cali to oid Johnny Murry, whose been drinking six bottles a day since he was We hit rd and see the place he described right in the shadows of the ballroom where Mal- colm X was gunned down not too long ago. We wait outside and discuss the fake names we're gonna use in the book you got to sign when you download this stuff. Brian goes in first and signs the book "James Bond" as he's paying his 2 dollars, then he exits and gives me the o.
I enter calmly, "One bottle of Robetussin, piease He got die stuff right next to him on the shelf, in fact. I sign the book, "Abe Lincob," and give the guy two beans but he holds on to the bottle. I figured I blew with my super fake John Jay, but in- stead he looks at me and says, "No good, I'm afraid Abe al- ready got a bottle this moming," and he points it out to me that some other medicine head already fiiied that one.
We decide that two botties is nicer then one so Brian enters again and signs it "George Washington. What a strange little old man. I reaiiy tiiink that he tiiinks we're on the ievei.
But at the rate he's going, he'ii be retired soon just on medicine saies. There were six cats heading toward that store when we left and they aii gave us the cute "I can dig it" face as they passed us and saw our httie bags. We caught a bus back down to Headquarters, got ten beers at the deii because they enhance the head with medicine, and we picked a quiet comer in the iiving room and dovmed the syrup that was going to put us stacked right over the iittie day to day hassies of our post puberty years.
It has a thick taste and all, but you can bear it because you know what's coming after it. Actually, everyone else has spUt the apt. Nothing worse then a loud mouth grass head when you're trying for a nice codeine head.
The Classic About Growing Up Hip on New York’s Mean Streets
We wait for the stuff to iiit and Brian teiis me about the iittie oid man and woman down the biock that iiave been drinidng tiiis stuff ever since they ran out of the oid sex drive a few years back. Haif an hour gone past now and Brian asks if it's iiitting. We had about six hours more of good soiid nods and then sat around and rapped siowiy about aii our iittie visual dreams tiiat passed in our heads dear as movies.
Spring Being a big time basketbail star and aii around iiip mother- fucker at a private schooi, I get to meet a iot of out of sight private schooi chicks, all of them action and plenty rich to boot. I went to visit my current girlfriend, Hedi Hunter, to- day because it's Friday and every Friday her parents go out for big night on the town leaving the apt. She lives over on Sutton Place overlooking the East River in about an eighteen room penthouse.
The Basketball Diaries
Her old man is a big wheel at MGM or something and her old lady owns mucho racehorses and stuff like that. I wouldn't mind putting a little make on her moms as a matter of fact, she's early forties but still in great shape.
So anyway, I tool in and nod to the doorman who knows me by now and lets me right up without the usual C. The elevator cat is a ull spade who used to play semi-pro ball so we rap a lot until I reach the top, get out, give a ring, flip my beret to Harry, the butler, and get greeted by Hedi, all sexy in her great dress. We eat a little Italian food in the dining room then go up to her room which pans right out over the river with its slow barges and ugly boroughs that surround it.
I whip out a little hash and she tosses me her excellent pipe and in ten minutes the view is an awftil lot more pleasing outside.
Construction is some heavy stuff over in Long Island City, all those huge girders just sticking up in that old sky like air knives.
But enough for the view and we wrap up for some great nooky and muff away for an hour or so. I never get tired of this scene though I've been coming here for the last two months. The rest of the night we just sit around on Hedi's big bed naked and watch goofy Peter Seller's movies on big color t.
The Basketball Diaries
I show her action shot of me in the Times while scoring forty against McBumey yesterday. She beams and we fuck again. It's a goof, all this stuff. I'm gonna bring all the dirt heads firom old Madison Square Boys' Club up here some night; they'll freak out in one second.
Finally I realize that I got to meet some friends uptown soon so I split about midnight af- ter checking out what pills I can rob out of her old man's medicine cabinet.
I give Hedi the big kiss, munch on a pear and cut out. Winter Got up early this Sat. It wasn't any hassle slipping away the books off the table and into the cut-away inner lining of my coat while Al rapped some shit to the guy about how rude the raffle sellers that came to his building were and that he was here to issue a complaint.
We started selhng around Sherman Ave. The donkey Irish around here would download anything in the name of God's Holy Legion so this, you see, is easy bread for crooks hke us on any given gloomy Sat. So our luck began to dwindle a bit as we hit the Jewish section of the neighborhood up the hill in ritzy Overlook Terrace, but, still, within an hour or two we were both down to one book each and anxious to get rid of them so we could go get high somewhere.
So we're working this building back down on th St. He raps on a door and out comes this piece of twat older woman in a tiny little frilly nightgown, oh my lord, what a pair of tits has she! I could have choked on the spot. Yes, and we go right in and sit right over on the couch as we wait for her to come back with two tall screwdrivers, sitting right be- tween the two of us.
Call me Oedipus if you will, but I was piping, older ladies really tum me on and by now we knew she was for real and not some crazy old lady in Grand Central Station or something that gets the thrill out of leading you JIM CARROLL into some abandoned part of the station and then yelhng for the National Guard when you come near her. So halfway through the drinks she reaches her hand down our pants and twiddles away to our things, tuga-tug tuga. Zippers down I won't describe too much There's nothing like unexpected sex, especially when selling raffles for the American Legion, so we both came in a matter of minutes, she licking her fingers off and zipper- ing back up our pants just like in the dirty books I used to hide under my rug a few years before.
Actually I think they're still there. But that was that, and out the door we went, invited back anytime. Nice lady, and you would be surprised at the number of women like her. Some just hke to tease you by answering the door in skimpie outfits and all, but others ac- tually invite you in and follow up.
Any salesman knows this is true, not just a story in the movies, and you can bet I got her apt. But Al still has one book to go and here he is still trying to get rid of it.
Finally he loses control and when some old lady don't answer the door, he starts yelling like crazy otto or something and saying how- she hates the church and how doomed she is in the name of the Lord and pounding away all along.
Then she opens up the peekhole on her door and tells Al tliat he better be cool or else she's gonna call the man on him. Al goes right up to the peek- hole instead and surts making incredible faces at the old bug- ger and, dig this, she pokes a giant pencil right into Al's mug, drawing blood from all over the lip. I had to laugh my nuts apart at the genius of tliis lady, but Al seemed to fail to get the joke and after spitting a giant goober all over the old bag s door, he ran out of the house and into the street, raging like some insane monk.
With Al's Hp pouring with blood, we decided to fuck the last book and pool our eamings for a spoon of cocaine.
And that's exactly what we did and for the rest of the day we ran around rapping with that great cocaine buzz and tinge and feeling just fine. They found him dead on a park bench right across the street from the Bucket Of Blood, the only bar in the whoie of Manhattan that wouid stiii give him credit. It was a sad end of an era in a way. WiUie was famous for going on the wagon for one month or so and then freaking onto a four or five month binge that would mean almost 2 qts. He drank Hke a fish.
Lots of taste too. He'd think nothing of going drinking on the park benches with us when we were sdil too young to drink in the bars and he couid rap right aiong without sounding like a shithead boring drunk. He hved in the park, as a matter of fact, in one ofthe pretdest secdons, where he wouid refer to a huge green fieid as his living room and a bench right beside it as his bedroom.
If anybody was ever caught on that bench, he would attack them right off it, then sit around and weep that people had no respect invading a person's bedroom like that. He knew the Cloisters inside out, and he had theo- ries on the reflecdons of varying sociai and polidcal condidons as an influence on French sciJpture from one century to an- other.
These theories, I hate to say, were compietely wrong, as I pointed out to him one day, and he wouldn't speak to me for a week.
Everyone at Headquarters chipped in tonight to get liim a wreath, though it's doubtful anyone will be able to get up the bread for a wake for the poor guy. Haven't eaten except for three carrots and two Nesde's firuit and nut bars and both my forearms sore as shit widi all the little specks of caked blood covering diem.
Totaiiy zonked, and all the dope scraped or sniffed clean from the tiny celiophane bags. Four days of temporary death gone by, no more bread, with its hundreds of nods and casuai theories, soaky nostalgia I couid have got that for free waiking aiong Fifth Ave.
In one nod I dreamt I was in a zoo, inside a fence where, down from a steep stone incline, was a green pond filied with aiiigators. It seemed at one point I was about to be attacked. About ten gators surfaced and headed siowiy up the inciine, staring directly at me. But just when I seemed pinned against the fence, instead of lunging at me they just opened their huge jaws in slow motion and yelled, "Popcom.
I ducked out tiirough the hoie that suddeniy appeared in the fence.
The basketball diaries
Zonked, but I've been siugging away at orange juice all aiong, anyway, for vitamin C and dry mouth. I just crawl out of the bed at first; don't even attempt my human posture. Tiiink about my conversation with Brian: "Ever notice how a junide nodding begins to look like a fetus after a while? Jimmy Dantone comes running in and grabs me, "Those guys that we soid the phoney acid to the other day are after our asses if they don't get back tiie bread.
He spiits. A wasted peek into the mirror, I'm aii tiiin as a wafer of concentrated rye. I wish I had some now with a iittie Cheez Whiz on it. I can feei the window hght hurting my eyes; it's iike shooting pickie juice. We wasted no time in making it to the nearest hiding spot, knowing that guy would be up after us any second.
We got to the other side of the boat and did a quick Steve MacQueen act, over the rail and down to the lowest deck. Then we ducked into the bathroom and into the last toilet stall, locking the door and sweating our balls off. We hung on in there, reading the little penciled-in obscenities until the boat docked. After about ten minutes more waiting, we sent Yogi out to see if the coast was clear.
He came back and signaled us out and we ran our asses off the boat, through the terminal and onto the nearest bus. We came to a nice park somewhere in the middle of the island and played ball with the local weaklings all day, taking on everyone, even guys as old as 16 or so.
Fall They finally took away old Mrs. McNulty today.
She was the incredibly nutty lady who lived right across the alley from our window in the building. She had a very scary habit of going to her sink every night in her bra and panties and offering Mass over it as if it were her altar. Man, she really let fly some nights, yelling so that everyone in the building almost could hear her.
When I told some friends about her, a lot of them wanted to come over to see her, thinking the scene was really sexy or something. But she was an old lady, about 65 or so, so the sight of her dressed like that and freaking like she did was too much disgust, I always had to tum away. I guess someone complained once too often lately and I saw her being tucked into an ambulance, very calm about it, while I was coming back from school today.
That is, there were these lines of water crammed with shit along the surface about five feet long that would come by about once every forty seconds. So you had to time your jump in between the lines just like those jitterbugs down in Acapulco got to time their jumps so they hit the water just as the wave is beginning its break.
It was also a big thrill and a standard joke whenever a really giant scumbag floated by.
Man, did we see some whoppers; the people in this sewer district sure have big dicks.It has a series of minor cliffs to jump off, and they grad- ually get higher until you reach the top, about 85'. He knew the Cloisters inside out, and he had theo- ries on the reflecdons of varying sociai and polidcal condidons as an influence on French sciJpture from one century to an- other.
His nose bleeding, he gets up and whimpers off, probably to squeak to some teacher. It would have been interesting to point out that there are a lot of hungry dudes walking down Columbus Ave.
I had to laugh my nuts apart at the genius of tliis lady, but Al seemed to fail to get the joke and after spitting a giant goober all over the old bag s door, he ran out of the house and into the street, raging like some insane monk. We sat tense, waiting for the sightseeing boat. Then I swam to shore to meet the others and we tumed, pulled down our shorts and flashed our moons to the old sightseeing buggers as the boat pulled away and headed for the Hudson. It was within this surreal playground that a fourteen year old basketball phenom decided to record his thoughts as his life slowly unraveled because of heroin.