Once Upon A Time On 3rd Street

Driving along on any two-wheeled vehicle can be a real ego boost in a gridlocked town like LA. Unless it’s a Segway. Otherwise, you can make a high-speed run along that white line, weaving in and out between the massive SUVs and minivans, darting around the ancient Corolla dragging it’s muffler and packed to the tinted windows with dirty men who have been spending all day standing outside a Home Depot shuffling for day labor, zipping past the ridiculously coiffed Korean club-girl, simultaneously jabbering on her cell phone while applying lipstick and smoking an extra-long cigarette…

I know all about that sort of speed, my friends. It’s like sex done right. And by sex I don’t mean anything that you haven’t done, amigo! You, me, and even our dry-drunk President. But I like that kind of Speed, and can confess to it, unlike George. The adrenaline acts like the accelerator and your Ego just takes off. Sometimes I go so fast I have to pat down my mustache when I get to my destination.

These days my mustache is getting ridiculously long and taking a turn for the old school gunfighter… I look like Sam Elliot’s stunt double after a bender of cheeseburgers and beers, and before he applies the gray dye. This is important, partially because the mustache kept me from noticing a huge hairy wolf spider that had built a nest in it. The goddamn thing bit the holy hell out of my lip while I was combing the ‘stache the other week, and I still talk like Ted Levine as a result… it’s horrible, horrible. The puss that leaks out daily is truly remarkable; I should probably catch some in a vial and ship it to Vivian, who deals with truly toxic chemicals all the goddamned time.

But that is neither here nor there… the wolf spider can’t harm anyone else, thats for sure. And it’s mood has improved since we moved it’s nest, so I doubt we have anything to worry about. I’d bite too if I were to be evicted. Jesus! That’s a horrible thing to worry about, isn’t it? Something evil to dwell on… jackbooted lawyers strong-arming me and my brood out of The Compound? Surely not! Even if rent is due tomorrow, they wouldn’t evict me, would they? A twicely ordained minister and recent father? Husband to a D-list internet celebrity? Struggling screenwriter and highly regarded connoisseur of alcoholic beverages and firearms? Enthusiastic amateur geneticist and expert on the End Of Times?

No, no, I mustn’t dwell on such weird and off-putting thoughts. This is all because of the harpy in the Big Car, I just know it. That must be why I was thinking about driving through LA on two-wheels…

Many know that I drive a Vespa. Her name is Vera. She’s a remarkable little vehicle, with truly outrageous mileage and a simplistic parking strategy. I don’t look like, according to my high-profile friends, a Vespa rider. I somehow lack the hipster-slacker vibe and thrust viciously into some strange nether-realm betwixt cowboy surplus and deep desert survivalist/biker. No doubt. This is because, secretly, despite the extreme safety of driving a Vespa and it’s incredibly low need for repairs… secretly I want a motorcycle. Something with a ridiculously huge cubit engine, whatever that means, and a hair-tuned transmission that knows when I want to drop the hammer and watch the horizon bleed into my peripheral vision. And then East, into the great desert, the Big Nothing, until I hit the Rockies. There I might stop. Who can say? This is a long ways off, my friends. Mayhap after scripts are sold and Compound is safe and secure from jackbooted lawyers and the Wife can hire some foreigner to play with the Boy while she kills young fruit bats on the roof… Yes, yes.

But this is a long ways off, my friends.

Today. I’m surfing up the white line, between the two rows of traffic, when I come to a red light. I’m next to a Big Car, and the driver cannot hear the tiny leaf-blower groan of the 50cc, 2-stroke engine as Vera glides to an elegant halt next to her. Part of this is because of the massive roar of the H2s v8, part of this is because she is blasting a song I recognize; Gold Lion by the Yeah Yeah Yeahs… and the driver is a truly lovely woman. French-Moroccan descent, no doubt. As I pull up, she stares at me and shows her teeth. Her eyes are smoldering behind her over-sized rose-tinted sunglasses. Her nostrils flare slightly. I know this look well; This is the traffic-light mating dance, and I am it’s target. I glare back. I’m stoic. To her I’m a hairy beast in a well-worn leather jacket and a flat-black crash helmet, obviously on two wheels and ready to rape my way through at least three gears while jamming in front of her once the light turns green, flare my brake-lights once or twice so she knows it’s all in good fun, and then lead her to some hellacious little biker dive bar somewhere East of here, on the edge of the desert… the kind of place that has Exile On Main Street on the jukebox and the bartender will sneer at anyone who orders anything that comes in a stemmed glass… you can read this woman’s sexual fantasies on her face and for a moment, maybe, I’m it.

Or maybe she’s truly twisted -who can say?-and is hoping to chance across a One-Percenter who will drag her to an abandoned quarry filled with smelly bikers and they’ll run a train on her… some sexual fantasies are too dirty to dip into, but we’ll never know, will we?

As soon as the light changed, and Vera jerked forward… I could feel her hot animal lust turn into ice-capped disdain, as filthy and grim as New York snow half an hour after it touches down. Her sexy sneer went sideways, like the rain does in Newcastle. It was a terrible, demeaning moment. I felt my spine shrivel and sag sideways and I drove on, horrified.

Sooner than I’d like, she is again besides me… furious, hideous in her disapointment. “You looked like a Walrus-Man, but you aren’! You aren’t even a Biker… you…. sissy!!” she hisses at me, the huge faux-Humvee weaving back and forth over the center line. I gaze over at her, still stoic. I’ve told no lies, I cannot help my radiant appearance. “Madame B don’t truck with no… no sissies” she eleborates. Her eyes are red-tinged with hate, I can see this even through her oversized novelty shades.

“You ought to try, Madam Bitchface, it might do you some good.” I told her as gently as possible while holding a steady course through Koreatown traffic. “Besides, just because you want a wild & hairy biker up your ass doesn’t make you a degenerate, I won’t pass judgement, I won’t turn you over to the cops. It isn’t like you are a Furry, or one of those creatures that writes underage slash-fiction on Livejournal.”

She shrieked suddenly, like Margaret Hamilton meeting a bucket of water, and wrenched the wheel of the Hsomething hard, trying to run me down like a cockroach… I hit the front brake, essentially hurling the entire Vespa up on the front wheel and twisting Vera and my body on the yoke, out of the way, like something out of The Matrix, as the oversized Civilian vehicle shot past me and SLAMMED into a panel truck filled with Pinatas. The foul bitch was covered with pieces of paper mache and fake fur was stuck in her teeth. Cheap candy was spread all over 3rd street, and the children had stopped traffic in their locust-like descent upon this scavanged bounty. My enemy shrieked again and I Knew I had discovered her secret. By the time the cops showed up, she was dry humping the empty carcass of one of the Pinatas while East Indian housewifes stood around pointing and jabbering, and little old Korean women walked over and prodded her with their clear plastic umbrellas.

I saw my young rookie friend, Officer Mason, reaching for his gun.

“No-no!” I shouted, holding up my hands as his blue-clad brethren began to throw down on me. “I am a minister! This woman is under a strange and evil influence! Don’t shoot!” Officer Mason recognized me, and holstered his pistol. “It’s all right, men” he assured them. “This is a Good Man, he is One of Ours.”

“You can’t arrest me!” shrieked the harridan. “I’ve never touched anyone who didn’t want me to touch them! I only write about Things Beyond your Understanding, like that disgusting creature who calls himself a minister! He writes about sex all the time! Beat on him!” Officer Mason shook his head. “He writes about the kind of sex our Presidents understand!” he winked at me. But something about the way the harpie was still writhing with the fake animal struck a chord with my rookie friend.

He yanked out his billy-club and went to work on the degenerate foreigner, still desperately trying to sate her weird and unfunny lust. I tried to pull him off, but got a face-full of pepper-spray and stumbled back to the Vespa, weeping. The bystanders laughed at me, and pelted me with pieces of cheap candy. I drove back to the Compound, and applied various medications.

“Let this be a lesson to you!” scorned my Wife, pulling a piece of Circus Peanut out of my ear. Indeed, it was. Never underestimate the weird power of a sexual degenerate, convinced of their own strength and power. She thought the law would be on her side, but she was Stupid and Wrong. Bad things happen to the Stupid and Wrong in todays LA, my friends. And the Cops don’t always worry about who gets hurt, as long as they look foreign and act like degenerates.

This is why I thank the Gods I can pass. Remember: he who fucks with a Wolf Spider, fucks with his own future.

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