With nothing else to do and still somewhat pissed at Shonnie for putting us both in a bad situation, I walked over to The Las Vegas Club just across the street from the Union Plaza.
My intent was to pass some time playing a relaxing game of roulette. I have always enjoyed roulette. The pace is slow and generally the game draws a more serene clientele. A quiet casual game of roulette would afford me the opportunity to calm my Shonnie-Generated anger and pleasantly pass some time.
The minimum bet was one dollar, so I bought a hundred bucks worth of two-bit chips and began scattering them about the table. Never really scoring big at roulette, I did not expect anything but a hundred dollars’ worth of entertainment and some free bottom shelf booze.
I had a few wins but mostly losses and as my initial investment evaporated along with about an hour and a half of time, I cashed out the remainder of my stake (about ten bucks which I used to tip the Croupier), drained my glass, stubbed out my Marlboro and headed back to The Plaza.
I discovered Shonnie face down on the bed, hair a mess, legs splayed out all akimbo, a forsaken cigarette burning in the ashtray.
Somehow I saw myself in that cigarette.
I sat down beside her.
“You awake?” I whispered, gently pulling some strands of hair from her cheek.
“Owwwie… Is that you Honey?”
“Yes Dear.” (I was aiming for a sarcastic, pissed off tone—failed—I just loved her too much to sustain my displeasure) “Yeah. It’s me,” I repeated. “You were perhaps expecting someone else? George maybe?”
“Huhhh? Who’s George?
“Never mind. How’d you come out?”
“Won ‘bout four hundred an’ change. Proud of me?”
“No,” I said. “You nearly got me into trouble.”
“Always about you,” she said, turning on her side to face me with suddenly awake and angry blue eyes.
“We did have a plan, you know. What happened?”
“I couldn’t get shed of that moron.”
“You mean ‘George’, yes?”
She sat up abruptly. Sincerely pissed off now. “How th’ hell you know his fuckin’ name? I don’t even know his fuckin’ name and I had to sit next to the asshole for four hours. I tried to run him off! Goddamn it!”
“How hard is it to walk away from a blackjack table?”
She looked down at the bed and added quietly. “I was having fun.”
“You’re drunk,” I said.
“Yeah, I am. Be my hero and light me a smoke.”
“I already did my hero bit tonight when I showed up to rescue you from George and the El Cortez.”
“It would’ve been awkward to just get up and leave with you. The casino dudes might’ve gotten suspicious.”
“Shonnie, they had gone way beyond ‘suspicious’ by then. If you had just accepted my offer of a drink at the bar…”
“I know. I know! I was acting like a little bitch. I wanted to find out if you were willing to fight for me is all.”
“Damn it Shonnie! You know damn well I will fight for you, but only if it is warranted and necessary. You created the situation. You could have ended it. Easily.”
She gave me a sorrowful, pouty look, then softly, sweetly said, “Cig?”
Whatever remained of my anger was melted away by her voice and her look.
I lit two Marlboros and handed her one. She took a long drag and asked for a cold beer. I fished two Bud longnecks out of the cooler, wiped them off on the bedspread and handed her one.
“You gonna be a gentleman an’ open this for me?” she said while aiming the longneck’s neck at my chest.
I took the bottle, twisted off the cap with one deft motion, tossed it at the television and handed her the beer.
She drained about half, belched loudly and said, “Cotton mouth.”
“Charmed, I’m sure.”
“Fuck you. I have a wicked-bad headache.”
She laid her head back on the pillow with a groan.
I kissed her lightly on the forehead and said, “We need to head outta here tomorrow by noon. I have to be back on my boat…”
“Okay! Okay! I got it. What time is it anyway?”
“It’s later than you think.”
She sat back up, drained the rest of her beer, threw her half-smoked cigarette into the ashtray, lay down, rolled over and went immediately to sleep. ‘Just perfect,’ I thought.
I took some minutes to finish my beer and my cigarette, then got undressed, curled up next to her and was soon fast asleep myself.
Next day we managed to check out of our room and hit the road by about twelve-thirty. I stopped for gas and a six-pack at Whiskey Pete’s, or as I prefer to call it,
“The Last Dance Texaco”
Fun Fact: Rickie Lee bears an eerily striking resemblance to Shonnie, though No Where near as beautiful as Shonnie, At least she can sing. Shonnie can’t sing. So there’s that. But, I’ll still take Shonnie any day. And every day. And in every way.
Whiskey Pete’s almost straddles the Nevada State Line. It’s the first, or last, depending upon one’s direction of travel, opportunity to make a charitable contribution to the Casino Industry’s Good Cause(s).
“Hey Baby, we got some time. Wanna see something really cool while we’re here?”
“I cannot look at another blackjack table for a while.”
“C’mon. This is different.”
I parked the car and led her into Whiskey Pete’s and straight to the Bonnie and Clyde car exhibit.
“Look at that! Isn’t that cool?”
“It’s just a car all shot fulla holes. I’ve seen a few already.”
“Baby, this ain’t just any car. This is the legit ‘Bonnie and Clyde Death Car’.”
Sometimes even my very best efforts to impress my girl fall flat.
Other times, I don’t even have to try.
If I could just manage someday to find the key, my life would be so much easier.
And devoid of magic.
Nope, I’ll keep my mysterious, mystifying, disconcerting, and sometimes infuriating Shonnie over any predictable plastic boring version.
The Joni song below is about seventy-five percent perfect in illuminating the very complex relationship Shonnie and I shared.
“You know the times you impress me most
Are the times when you don’t try
When you don’t even try”
Credit for Video Montage: DJ Bayonic
We reverse-road-tripped westward toward San Diego, arriving about six in the evening. I dropped Shonnie at her mom’s and headed back to the Callaghan. I hit my rack and slept like the dead.
I had duty the next day, so I could not leave the ship. On Tuesday at sixteen hundred after liberty call I donned my civvies and hit the beach. Found a pay phone on the pier and called her up.
“Hiya Baby. How Y’all doin’?”
“Why didn’t you call me yesterday?” She sounded pissed.
“You know damn well I had ‘the duty’ yesterday,” I shot back.
“Oh… Yeah. Sorry. I forgot.”
“Where do you wanna meet up?” I asked.
“Seaport Village. In the back of the parking lot. In thirty minutes. And don’t make me wait.”
“Make you wait?! That’s rich Shonnie, very rich, given our recent ‘make me wait’ experience. Make it forty-five and we’ve got a bona-fide rendezvous.”
“Okay!” Loud click in my ear as she not-so-gently ‘placed’ her receiver back in the phone cradle.
I laughed out loud as I gently returned my receiver to the pay phone.
‘Lance can be a ‘button-pushing’ little bitch too.’
I pulled into the parking lot at Seaport Village around five p.m. No sign of Shonnie. I killed the Toranado but left the stereo playing (Tom Waits: “Warm Beer and Cold Women…I just don’t fit in.”)
Pulling from a pint of Jim Beam, I lit a cigarette and watched some seagulls diving on scraps in San Diego Bay.
A haze-gray-and-underway-piece-of-shit was heading out to sea, black-shoe-sailors were manning the rails wearing dress whites.
Young happy couples were walking hand-in-hand heading toward the boardwalk. I began allowing myself to entertain some second thoughts about my relationship with Shonnie:
Was it going anywhere?
Was it worth the risk? Was she fun? Was she great in the sack?
Was she not beautiful?
Didn’t I truly love her?
My mindless debate was abruptly and noisily ended as she pulled up alongside me, screeching tires and slinging gravel.
She exited her ‘La Bomba’ and walked toward my vehicle.
She looked absolutely
California Texas Stunning.
She was sporting tight faded blue jeans with some holes in them, à la Dwight Yoakam ‘cowboy hip’ style, a halter top, cowgirl boots, cowgirl hat, and carrying a fifth of whiskey and an attitude. She ‘runway’ sashayed over to my window and inquired,
“Hey Sailor, New in town?”
Aiming for ‘laconic’ I said, “I’m the ’Only’ Sailor for you Little Cowgirl and I’m Fair to mid’lin’. You?”
“Finer-n-frog hair,” she said.
“Don’t be mockin’ a good ol’ Texas Boy,” I said back.
(Yes! I truly did love her of course but even worse, I was In-Love with her: Madly and Beyond Redemption. There never really was any doubt.)
“I have a surprise for you Lover.”
“I’m not particularly fond of surprises” I said.
“You’re gonna love this one, and it’s gonna save you some money too.”
“Okay, go on. What’s the surprise? And please don’t tell me I’ll know when we get there.”
Enthusiastically she announced, “I’m ‘house-sitting’ my aunt’s condo in La Jolla this week. It’s all ours!”
“Your ‘aunt?’ ‘Condo?’ In ‘La Jolla?’ No way!”
“Well, ya know, I’m kinda partial to parking lots and sleazy motel rooms,” I protested.
“Don’t be an asshole and don’t be ridiculous,” she said as she climbed into the shot-gun seat of my Toranado. “Drive. I’ll show you the way.”
So I drove.
(With some anticipation tempered with some trepidation)
“Shonnie The Biker’s Wife. Chapter XIII: La Jolla”
Update: Part XIII is Up.
If you are new here, or a long-lost returning Pilgrim, you may want to begin your Shonnie Journey Below
And then simply “Follow the Yellow Brick Road” i.e., The Lancelot Links:
Comments from the original post:
16 THOUGHTS ON “SHONNIE THE BIKER’S WIFE PART XII: BACK TO THE REAL WORLD”
LAMarcom October 8, 2020 at 04:22 Edit
Thank you John
johncoyote October 3, 2020 at 04:59 Edit
When Vegas, drink and road trip are together. Some hell raising days are coming. I liked the set-up of the story and Shonnie. Is a interesting lady. A very entertaining chapter my friend.
LAMarcom February 16, 2015 at 05:15 Edit
Reblogged this on Texan Tales & Hieroglyphics and commented:
Not sure why, but I thought I’d re-blog this. (Probably ’cause I like Tom Waits)
Oh! And I miss that woman: Shonnie
LAMarcom July 22, 2014 at 19:37 Edit
Yeah, from Day One with Shonnie, I had that same bad foreboding.
Tony Single July 22, 2014 at 18:53 Edit
Where on earth is this going? I’ve got a bad feeling about this…
LAMarcom July 14, 2014 at 16:03 Edit
Shonnie was the one who ‘introduced’ me to Tom Waits and for that, I am eternally in her debt.
Mélanie July 14, 2014 at 15:59 Edit
OMG! Tom Waits – a living legend… 🙂
lauramacky July 14, 2014 at 10:15 Edit
lauramacky July 14, 2014 at 09:42 Edit
LAMarcom July 14, 2014 at 09:22 Edit
I completely agree with you on Roulette. I have ‘experienced’ Roulette all over the world from Europe to Africa to the Far East (and of course Vegas). Love the game and the atmosphere of it.
Exile on Pain Street July 14, 2014 at 06:21 Edit
Roulette really is the most elegant game in the house. You don’t have to concentrate the way you do with craps. And I like the accouterments. The wheel. The ball. The clakity-clack sound.
Lots of smoking in these stories. I get cotton mouth just reading them.
LAMarcom July 13, 2014 at 23:26 Edit
Just a ‘Tale of Two Cities: San Dog and Vegas…’
LAMarcom July 13, 2014 at 16:17 Edit
‘Captivated’ readers are the best!
Thank you for the kind words.
LAMarcom July 13, 2014 at 16:11 Edit
~ Sadie ~ July 13, 2014 at 14:18 Edit
Can’t wait for the next chapter!!! I think this series would make a great short story, or possibly novella 🙂 You definitely have me captivated! 😉
lauramacky July 13, 2014 at 09:18 Edit
You little dickens