6.18.2006

The Rock

Back in my first or second week on the job, I got a call to pick up at the Grand Cafe - a popular karaoke (and one night a week, salsa dancing?) bar on Grand that caters to a more mainstream audience. I had a bad feeling about the fare as soon as I pulled up, as there was a young white guy with the dancing eyes I associate with meth or crack, and a middle-aged black man with a look of disgust on his face.

The older man opened the door and said "get him out of here, he needs to get home." He then has to talk the kid into getting in the car. Alarms continue to ring.

The kid finally gets in, and it turns out he's going to Hillsboro. This is a good thing (for me). I ask my new friend how he's doing, and he slouches in the back and says that it's been a horrible night, but won't elaborate. I have a feeling that I started trying to pump him up with my "oh, it'll get better, just try not to feel sorry for yourself" line, but can't remember.

Regardless, when we get to the west foot of the Morrison Bridge, he tells me to take the long way, that he wants to stop at a place in Tualatin to get some weed, and furthermore that he wants to take the back roads. All of a sudden he becomes really talkative, telling me that he's really had a great night, the best of his life in fact, but that he's not stupid so he had to pretend like it was bad.

While he was in Pioneer Square, he says, he found a $30,000 diamond. He then goes on and on about how he knows it's a diamond and how much it's worth, because he was just hanging out with jewelers at the Grand. He's been hiding it under his lip, and needs to get it to a safe place, no matter how much he wants to take some of the fine ladies at the Grand to a place with a hot tub. That's why the guy he was with when I picked him up wanted him to go home - not just so the diamond would be safe, but because the black guy was the bar's owner, and wanted all the good pussy for himself.

Anyway, he steers me to his girlfriend's house along a back road he doesn't know very well, we're literally going through farmland. When we get there, he tells me that he'll be right back, but he isn't, and the meter's around $60. After about ten minutes, I go knock on the door to fetch him.

On the way to his uncle's house, he tells me about how his girlfriend's parents are tweakers, how meth destroys lives and families.

When we finally get to his uncle's, he needs to go inside to get the money. Then he comes back out - no money until the banks open in the morning. I inform him that this is a problem, and ask if he has a card. He goes back inside, and a couple of minutes later a very pissed off looking middle-aged man comes out with his bank card. Total on the meter: $92.70. No tip, though.

About a week later I see the kid downtown by Mary's Club. He doesn't look like he's been living it up with 30k in diamond money. I wave at him, but he walks by with averted eyes.

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