Black BMW 750 in parking lot
credit: nakhon100 I Flickr

PREVIOUSLY, Black Fields heard a Chuck Brown tune playing from someone’s car and recalled what it was like to grow up going to the go-go. He remembered the friends he lost along the away, and mused over the cultural shift that has taken place since…. 

“I wish I were dead,” grimaced Black. He spit, then stomped his right foot to accent his statement.  

The obstacles that stood in his way seemed insurmountable. He was broke: no job, no girl, no family, no friends. The hole he had dug for himself was so deep that he saw no way of getting out. He had no employable skills, bad credit and a terrible attitude problem. 

He watched a black BMW 750 pull into the parking lot of the 7-Eleven. This was his dream car. He felt pangs of jealousy when he felt the glow the driver exuded. He couldn’t help but to hate. “ #$%@! that &#%$!. How that $#%&[email protected]%#* get a 750 and I’m out here cold and hungry?” 

The Geto Boys track “Mind Playing Tricks on Me” was blasting out the speakers.  It was a total irony that at this very moment, these lyrics had Black’s full sympathies. “….Day by day it’s more impossible to cope, I feel like I’m the one that’s doing dope…” rapped Mr. Scarface, as the tune cascaded across the parking lot.  

Black had a beef with society and wanted to escape this earth. He didn’t necessarily want to die, but he hated the world he was forced to exist upon. He always wished that there was some type of existence he could escape to that fell in between life and death. The closest thing he had found to that in this world was jail. In his opinion, death might be a better option than sitting in D.C. Jail eating goulash and bologna sandwiches. 

“…I often drift when I drive, havin’ fatal thoughts of suicide…” huffed Mr. Scarface from the speakers. 

Many prominent figures had sentiments that matched his, Black thought. Ernest Hemingway, Vincent Van Gogh, Don Cornelius, Chris Benoit, Robin Williams, Verne Troyer, Kurt Cobain, Junior Seau, Anne Sexton, Anthony Bourdain, Dana Plato, Kate Spade, Virginia Woolf, and many, many, many more.  

If those people found life to be a curse, how could he possibly ever see it as a blessing?  

The occupant of the BMW jumped out and headed for the 7-Eleven entrance. Black saw it was a young Metro bus driver that he frequently encountered. “What’s good champion! Let a good man hold something?” pandered Black. 

The bus driver stopped abruptly and gave a scowl. “GET A JOB you @#$&-%$&#-#@%$-##^%!!!” reverberated from the bus driver’s lips throughout the parking lot. 

Black began to respond, but out his peripheral he could see the Popeye’s manager peeping out the window. A verbal dispute could wreak havoc on his plans, so he humbled himself. He didn’t want the manager to ask him to leave, so he swallowed his pride and fell back. 

Mr. Scarface continued rapping, “…bang and get it over with, then I’m worry free. That’s bull$%^&!…” 

Black felt hopeless and distraught. Just one conversation with a compassionate and like-minded person could possibly ease his mind.  

He pulled out his “Obama-phone” and scrolled through his contacts. He decided to call Tim, a so-called friend, who could only be found when he needed something or wanted to get high. Tim wasn’t the most genuine, but Black could be totally candid, without shame, with other like-minded slime. The phone rang only a brief second before Black heard, “You have reached the voicemail of 202-555…” This was no surprise. 

He decided to call Jaheem, Red, Geno, Kareem and Mika; all individuals he considered to be fair-weather friends. He doubted that they would answer in his time of need, but he decided to try anyway. Each one sent him to voicemail in two rings or less. “Why do I #&@% with these people?” he asked himself. 

So he decided to call the one person that he could depend on about one third of the time, his mother. The phone rang twice, and to his surprise, she answered. “Hello Black! What’s up?” 

“Well…” he stumbled. Then he took a deep breath and began to speak “I’m not feeling well…” 

She abruptly cut in, “Baby, your mama getting her hair done now. Then I gotta go to Giant, Walmart, and over to Big Shirley’s. Something’s going on with her. She say her ankles swole, ‘n she can’t walk. I’ll call you back when I finish.” [click]  

He asked himself, “Why was Shirley’s swollen ankles more important than his life?” 

Mr. Scarface continued as the tunes of Houston’s finest filled the atmosphere. “…now I’m feeling lonely-My mind’s playing tricks on me…”  

“Life sucks!” Blac exclaimed while pounding his fist in his palm. He saw red as he perused the horizon.  

“Ain’t no such thing as family and friends in this world,” he said to himself. 

 

To be continued. This abridged short story is taken from the work, “The Black Fields Chronicles: THE HOBO,” by Duane Foster.