Leaf Lady was seriously raking leaves in the midst of a thirty-knot wind across the street from my house. Every time she managed to accumulate a pile the wind would sweep them away. (Leaf Lady looks almost exactly like ‘Granny’ from the Beverly Hillbillies–and probably about the same age)
“Goddamn Mother-Fuck!” she would scream as she shook her rake at the sky not unlike Scarlett-I’ll-never-be-hungry-again O’Hara.
Roberta and I drove upon this scene one Sunday morning.
Leaf Lady was no stranger to us, so we just ignored her and went about our business.
We parked in my ample driveway all the way forward so as to be closer to my back door.
We walked up to the steps and could still hear Leaf Lady screeching at the sky cussing about ‘People fucking up her yard!”
We made our way past my laundry cubicle and entered the kitchen. Our mission was to liberate some cookbooks of mine for ‘Roberta Purposes.’
I grabbed a stack of books from a shelf, placed them on the counter and asked, “Baby, will these do?”
“Oh, I NEED these,” she said, as she grabbed “Barbeque Bible” and “White Trash Cooking” from the stack.
As we were attempting to load up her Jag with these wonderful books, a station wagon came screeching into my driveway, stopping just short of ramming into ‘Berta’s Jag.
Out jumped Kenny K. Most likely drunk.
“Hey! What Y’all doin’?” He exclaimed as he made his unsteady way through my gate and up to the steps.
“Hiya Kenny” Roberta answered. “What brings you about this Sunday Morning?”
“I saw your Jag and thought I’d just drop in.”
“Well come on in; we’re having Mimosas.”
(Roberta had brought a jug of Mimosas, just in case our book expedition took too long)
Kenny said, “Great” and we all retired back to the kitchen to consume more Mimosas.
We consumed about three quarters of the jug when suddenly Kenny decided there was some other place he was supposed to be.
As Roberta and I were gathering up the prized cook books and schlepping them to the car, we heard a loud, very loud ‘screech.”
And then a louder ‘crash.’
I had just caught a fleeting glimpse of Kenny reversing at a high rate of speed into Leaf Lady’s yard and almost destroying her prized pecan sapling. Tree bark flying all over.
Shit got real at this point.
Kenny Immediately fled (seems he was under some kind of Court Injunction Fun-Shun—something ‘bout DUI—or something. Probation, I suppose. Anyhow, he fled the scene.)
So, this left me and Roberta to placate Leaf Lady and try to forestall her calling the Police.
Leaf Lady was, at this point livid. (As you may well imagine)
“That Mother-Fucker has killed my tree!”
(Gotta love Leaf Lady by now. I’d bet she was never in the Navy, but she should have been)
Roberta tried to calm her:
“Look, your tree is OK. Just some bark, barked off… It will be fine.”
“Bullshit!” Leaf Lady retorted.
Roberta pulled a fifty-dollar bill from her purse and handed it to Leaf Lady.
This calmed her some.
I did same and handed her another fifty (which I could not afford)
This calmed her further.
We just left her there, counting her good fortune.
This bought us (me and Roberta) enough time to return to my house and retrieve and load up the cookbooks into the Jag.
In her haste, Roberta threw the cook books into the floorboard of her Jag.
We boarded the Jag and sped away, listening to Leaf Lady screaming, “I want that Mother-Fucker in Jail!’
We sped away, laughing at the reminisce of Leaf Lady.
Drove the three blocks to Robert’s house.
She sped into the driveway as she had done about ten thousand times before.
And applied the brakes.
‘Cept they did not apply.
(The cookbooks had fucked her—blocking her brakes—no way)
We crashed through some metal garden furniture and then a half-high brick wall, destroying it.
The Jag was determined to keep on keeping on, but I threw her into drive and killed the engine.
Once the car had stopped its forward progress, ‘Berta jumped out and did her best impersonation of Leaf Lady:
She (Roberta) freaked the fuck out!
“Oh my Gawd! Oh My Gawd! Oh My GAWD!
I got out of the passenger side and assessed the ‘damage.’
Weren’t none. (Jags are the shit)
There was just a little bit of white paint on the hood of the Jag.
Of course the garden party furniture was destroyed, as was the brick half wall, but other than that, no nada.
I tried to point this out to Roberta.
She having none of it.
“Look what you have made me do!”
“Look at this!”
“Look at what? Precisely?”
“This wall is a mess! The garden furniture is a wreck!”
“Three or four Meskins can fix this in two hours. You have the money. Sort it out manana.”
Wrong answer, Marine.
I finally calmed her and we went into the house and got very, very drunk.