Sunday, April 3, 2016

Nosy people

One of the things someone asked me many, many years ago is if I had done any 'hard work'. He meant had I been some kind of killer. The proper term at the time was actually 'wet work'.

I for the life of me don't have Clue One as to where he got the idea I was some kind of hit person. I'm generally a kind, easygoing type and it generally shows...unless you annoy me. 

Of course, me friend, the Late Great Blaine was sitting next to me and looked at the chick and told her I had recently gotten out of the French Foreign Legion. Blaine was always good for stuff like that.

The little nosy one, a chick gave me an indignant look, turned her nose up at the pair of us and walked off. Another guy that had heard and seen the entire thing commented that with friends like Blaine to run women off that I didn't really need enemies.

"Au Contraire," I replied. "Blaine kept the drama queens and airheads away from me and make my life a LOT easier."

He did, too.

A month or so earlier some little chickie-poo was in the Anchor Bar stirring up things and started in on trying to get Blaine to beat up someone she claimed had insulted her. Blaine wasn't having any of it. He simply said he'd beat her up if she wanted so she'd have something to complain about.

"You'd hit a chick?" she asked, obviously upset.

Blaine pointed to me. "No, but he would. He knocked some mouthy chick cold a couple weeks ago."

Sally the bartender had heard everything and seen enough of this chicks bad act. "Yeah," she butted in. "Pic knocked some silly twit out cold a couple of weeks ago because she was acting like you."

"But I'm a chick!" she protested.

Sally looked at her."That means he won't have to hit you as hard to knock you out," she said. She gave me a sly smirk.

The little chickie-poo left immediately much to the amusement of everyone in the joint. She had been had by a group of professionals.

Of course, the story would make the rounds, her version and then the truth. The truth is what set me free. I kept my reputation for being a nice guy with everyone that mattered and the rest didn't count. In fact my good nature and ability to keep a straight face led me to a lot of interesting social situations from time to time.

It also led me to becoming a part of the Great Non-Bank Robbery of Someplace, Oklahoma.

It was actually a prank we pulled on a summer college girl that had been hired to work at a fisherman/longshoreman bar. She really wasn't the right person for the job but we treated her well because she actually wasn't too bad. She learned fast to let a lot of things ride.

Still, she had a certain innocence about her and we invited her to join us and explained she'd make a hell of a lot more money than she would pouring beer. It took some doing but we sucked her in.

After we had her in we told her that we robbed a different bank every year and lived on the money we had stolen. She instantly got nervous as she realized she was in over her head.

We told her she was to wait next to a phone booth with a stolen car and keep it running because it was the second get-away car. I'd drive the first one, drop two of the three guys off and she'd drive them east. I'd snag the other car and drive my guy west and we'd meet up at 'The Old Place' and pick up a third car provided by "Mister Gagilano"and give him his 10%.

"Mister Gagliano" was supposedly the Oklahoma mob boss and he'd supply a couple of cars and we'd split up and meander back to Kodiak.

I had a friend in a travel agency and she knew what we were up to and handed me a handful of bogus boarding passes, one of which had Connie College's name on it. 

Then we took Connie out and taught her to shoot a revolver. She was as nervous as hell.

Two days later we showed up at the bar and told he she was gonna meet 'The Boss' the next day.

Lieutenant Bennet was one of us and probably one of the scruffiest Alaskans I had ever met. He gave an entirely new meaning to the word scruffy. I was the one responsible for his nickname but that I may tell later. It's a pretty good story.

Anyway, we took Bennet to the Mission (same-same Goodwill store) and bought him a suit and then to the barbershop. I think it was his first trip the the barbershop in ten years.

When we had cleaned him up nobody could recognize him if he kept his mouth shut. He was only recognizable by his snaggle teeth and he knew to keep his mouth shut.

Then we went back to the Anchor and sat down. Connie College took one look at him and paled. Here was a real live Mob guy! Right in front of her in her bar!

Bennett kept his face down and hidden behind a fedora ala movie mob guy in a speakeasy. I handed Connie her bogus airline ticket and she shook even more. She was a terrified mess! 

Louie over in the corner ordered a beer and she spilled it when she served it and she almost dropped a bottle of scotch when she poured a drink for "Mister Gagliano". We let her stew for a while.

When I gave Bennet the high sign he said, "Connie!"

She turned and was treated to the biggest snaggle-toothed grin and wave from Lieutenant Bennet. She broke up laughing the laugh of someone that had just dodged a bullet. 

The whole place knew what was going on and laughed uproariously and much to the credit of Connie College she reached up and rang the bell and bought a round for the entire place.


I gave Lieutenant Bennet his nickname one day when some Lower 48er saw him and asked me about Bennet's family. He was such a scruffy character that newcomers wondered about him.

A woman asked me about his family.

I told her that Bennet had a master's in Law Enforcement and was a medically retired Los Angeles Police department vice officer that had specialized in undercover work. I explained that during Operation Cyclone (a fictitious operation) he had been shot and the department had retired him.

The truth is that I knew nothing about his past. It didn't matter and at the time most of the people I knew were either running from something or looking for something. A man's past was his own business. 

Blaine was next to me when I told the woman the story and the name stuck. He became Lieutenant Bennet for the rest of the time I knew him until he was killed in a fishing accident a few years later.

His death hit me pretty hard.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

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