By: Alan Berger
Terrence McNeil could not catch a break in his whole life, so he thought, except for the break his balls, break his back, and ass, and heart kind of breaks.
The last was first and will always be, he so though.
Like we all think when the dust of desire turns into your feet in the fire
So, his mantra soon became, “Fuck this”.
Terrence was a nice guy.
Too nice, if you ask me.
He wrote poetry, what does that say?
I want to un-fold a new revelation
One that like the Hoola-Hoop that will sweep the nation
I tell you without reservation or hesitation
That the new sensation
Is our old friend hyper-ventilation
Always an unexpected surprise and wonderful for exercise
See what I mean?
I mean he was not a barrel of laughs to begin with, but a very sweet guy.
So one day, after he broke the third Mr. Coffee he bought, he broke down, and went to Mr. Starbucks, and he sat outside in the sun.
A girl came whizzing by in a wheelchair with the coolest red lipstick, and smiled at Terrence before she went in.
Terrence hoped she would come back with her beverage of choice, and maybe one day, she would call him Terry.
And she did come out, and she parked with her beverage close to Terrence, as his name was still at this point, in the sun.
Terrence started to mini hyper-ventilate a little bit.
Terrence, with his peripheral, watched her sip.
He promised himself he would not gush all over this one if anything comes of this whatever this is right beside him, being at this point nothing more than proximity.
He then started writing as he usually does when he gets nervous on a pad in longhand..
His” teachings” he would call satirically call them.
“What are you writing”?
Jesus Christ Terrence thought. Nobody ever asked about his stuff.
Let alone a stranger that he hoped was alone.
Like him. Like us all.
He showed her the wonderful poem you read a bit ago, and she winds up laughing.
A nice laugh at that, Terrence thought.
Then they had a wonderful chat about this and that and later they walked and rolled to her specially fitted mini-van and she offered to drop Terrence at his place and he accepted.
He admired her control and independence.
He waved bye as he thought of himself just being dropped off from a hot date, and he hoped some of the other losers in the building like him were watching.
He felt his stock went up.
They talked on the phone that night and made plans to go to a museum.
He had mentioned in that call that he would be proofing some poetry that night and she said bring it, and when we stop for coffee I’ll proof it she said.
Wonderful, he thought.
She picked him up the very next day and off to the museum they went, and when they had lunch she looked at his teachings, and paid more attention, and passion for his words than what she saw on the walls of the museum and even less for her food that she forgot was there.
She even liked this one.
Let’s first have us
A marathon of like and sex
And if there is anything left
We could figure that out next
He liked that one too, but now, even more.
After lunch they went to her house and made a happy meal of each other.
The navigations were easy.
It was set up that way.
It was more than nice.
For the next four days Terrence had a long forgotten spring in his step.
So noticeable it was that the manager of his building asked him if he won the lottery, and
Terrence McNeil said he did at that.
But it wasn’t fun at all.
For an appetizer, she was a convicted felon.
Bu you can’t have one without the other. And there were others.
An oxy-moron and he was the moron.
So he thought.
Medical insurance fraud.
He thought of a thought he once wrote that said, don’t realize until it’s too late, how happy you were a second ago. A lifetime ago.
He dug deeper.
She did have a great credit score.
The human animal.
Searching for the dirt.
Searching for a way to fuck it all up.
Dig, and thee will find, and a lot.
He again thought of something he himself wrote that went something like if you’re going to get up in the morning and look around and really see what this world is about, and who is in it, might as well slit your wrists, and stay in bed.
So what does she want out of me he thought?
He had nothing.
He thought maybe he should figure out what he wanted out of this in the first and last place.
The sun did not come up for him the nice way it had been coming up, on this day.
Terrence McNeil came up with a plan.
A real stupid plan.
Planning was not his strong suit, or even his sports coat. He had neither. In his closet or in his wheelhouse.
It was such a dumb idea that soon even he thought so.
Imagine paying a guy money to yell fire and see if see gets up?
He stalled for time until he realized, why the fuck not just bring it up?
Put it to her, as they say, Terrence thought.
He also said to himself, there I go thinking again.
They went to a night baseball game.
Maybe between the strikes and the balls he would have the balls to bring it up somehow.
Maybe something about like life is always starting over each day like going up to bat or something.
She got them good seats.
They were almost on the dugout roof of the home team.
While he was trying to come up with ways to talk to her about what came up on her background check she said, Terry, I’m glad we met and I’m glad it’s still going.
That was the first time she called him Terry.
As it does with them two, time went by quick during the living, and laughing, and soon it was time for The Seventh Inning Stretch .
Terry stood up like all the rest except for the girl who just called him Terry.
He looked down at her while she looked up at him, and one by one, he pulled on her limbs, and told her, as he stretched her, that he was also glad they were there, together.
Then, out of everywhere, the sounds of a giant pop-corn machine went off.
Terry thought that it was a promotion, soon there would be free pop-corn for everyone.
But, it was not to be, because nothing is free.
Except for the bullets of a madman at a Dodger game.
Terrence McNeil felt a bit of a sting on the back of his Irish left thigh, up almost ass high.
He felt something fluid running down and wondered if it was blood or some ones Dr. Pepper.
It wasn’t Dr. Pepper.
He needed a real doctor.
When he stood, he fell, and could not get up
Everyone was running for cover, the home team and the visiting team vanished.
Now, how the fuck was he supposed to get his love out of there.
He thought for an instant that he should take his shirt off, kick the wheelchair away, and carry her in his arms thru the bullets and the obstacles, like Bruce Willis would.
Since he could not run, the best thing he could do was, was to get her out of her wheelchair, and cover her sweet body, with his bleeding body.
The pop-corn machine was still running, like everyone in the stadium except Terry and his baseball date.
It was just them by the dugout.
Alone now, they were laying and sitting ducks.
His own rapid fire repeating thoughts went thru his one track mind.
It said, I believe in everything I believe in no one I believe in everything I believe in no one I believe in everything I believe in no one.
He got ready to pull her down, and cover her up.
Until, she got up from her wheelchair, which was a wheelchair no more, but a now useless prop.
Until, she used it as a shield for the both of them, and it was her that was between his back, and the metal shield of the chair.
They felt a couple, or maybe three pings hit the chair tenting them.
After that all they heard were sirens.
Lots of them.
Don’t be afraid she said.
The Calvary is coming.
Then, Terry passed out.
Terrence McNeil was waiting his turn on a gurney inside an emergency room.
Ahead of him were two that were worse off and older than him, and since they popped him with morphine right away as far as he was concerned, they could take their time, and besides, he could only think of her.
She, was waiting outside.
Standing by the emergency room door.
He came out in a wheelchair.
At the same time the mob of reporters came charging towards Terrence McNeil, a nurse gave him a dandy pair of crutches, and then took away his wheelchair as they needed it for the less unfortunate.
She wrapped her arms around him and guided him out to the handicapped parking space her special equipped mini-van was.
She said now that you know the truth, do you want me to get you an Uber to take you home? Or do you want me to take you to my place and I’ll take care of you, or I can take you to your place and take care of you there, or? And were you shocked when I got up and saved your life?
Terry said he was not that surprised since he told her about the background check he did on her.
I see, she said.
She then said, did you notice my credit score is a million times more than yours? I checked you too, I did.
Yes I did, said he, very admirable.
Well, she said, this is what I do, so?
Terry pretended to actually look like he was thinking it over.
Terry nodded to her mini-van, and she then helped him in, and as she did, she said they were going to do very well after they were thru suing Dodger Stadium.