At 33 minutes after midnight I look left then right down the alley. I can see a man pissing one block South and a woman squatting clumsily for the relief one block North.
I draw up my hood and watch my breath move on a furtive Westerly breeze. On Yesler clumps of club goers move in determined, drunken platoons from one thumping hole to the next.
I grab a sandwich at Jimmy Johns. A Vito. I shoulda told ’em no onions, damn.
Two young ladies drag each other by the hair into the street. Each woman hold the other by the scalp with one hand and flails wild, hopeful, pinwheeling blows with the other. If I squint it looks like two birds in a furious mating dance.
They stop traffic with their violence.
I lean against a stop sign, chew my sandwich and watch their respective friends pry them apart. A squat man sidles up to me and says, “Weed?”
“No, it’s a sandwich, Jimmy Johns.”
Some erupts several black South and the sound pinballs from brick building to brick building. BLAAAAAAAM! The sound is a timpani of no goodness. Baseball bats on empty trashcans. Mortar shells on baby carriages. I didn’t sound like a gunshot, it was, of course.
Police race past me, fishtail on the wet road and block the entrance to my alley on both ends. 3 cop cars race South, lights, no sirens.
I step past the car, enter my alley and toss a slimy tendril of onion in the direction of the scampering warf rats.