Peregrine flight

Monday, March 21, 2011

Strange Days

The world seems to be getting a little uglier of late, in my little corner and on the big stage at large. Wars and rumors of wars, suicide bombings, giant moons destined to pull apart our tectonic plates and unleash a torrent of earthquakes, tsunamis and famines, all under the averted eye of an uncaring god.

The abuse at the coffee shop started months ago. I needed some gravy for the french dip. "Au jus for the jew" the owner yelled out. It got to be a little family joke with them, but a fairly one sided one. When I walked in the other day and the waitress loudly exclaimed, "I smell a jew in here" it was the final straw. I told her that when her crony did it I hated it and I didn't appreciate it with her either and the other waitress piped up, "Well, it's not like you're jewish or anything" and I got up and said that's it, over.

They stopped the sunday meetings of the Aryan Nations out on the patio a few years ago and I thought that we were headed for better times. But after thirty years of patronage I don't think I will be going back.


Today started out pretty nice before the rain hit. I saw this blue heron in the field down by the mailboxes, an unusual place for a heron, perhaps he was picking out some fat worms for his breakfast.


I had done the normal monday things, quick ineffectual workout, grabbed a danish and a milk at the doughnut shop and squeezed into the little blue plastic chair to try to read the ever thinner newspaper. Saw some folks that I haven't seen in literally thirty years. Dottie's second husband just died at 102. Chatted with the gunsmith and his wife. Left and made a bank deposit at my bank.

I paid the mortgage on the building at the other bank, the other outfit that was missing a necessary apostrophe in its name. "What are you, some kind of writer?" the cashier asked me when I brought it to his attention. Well, some kind, I guess...


I was sitting at my desk this afternoon in my darkened gallery when I looked over my left shoulder and saw a figure at the door. I got up and walked the forty or so feet to the entrance when I saw that a man was actually pissing through my mail slot. A man in his early thirties, white, with slicked back hair and prison tats on his hands and neck. My mind raced. I opened the door. "What the fuck are you doing?" I asked. "You're not going to call the cops are you, I'll clean it up?" I saw a huge puddle of pee both in and outside my door and on a persian carpet. I shut the door and locked it and thought about grabbing my .38 caliber revolver and shooting him. But it wouldn't be worth it. I opened the door. "Who the fuck are you and why would you do something like this?" I asked the man. His breath smelled strongly of booze and he had prison written all over him. "I'm Joey and I met you at a party the other night", he said.
"No", I contradicted him,"I've never seen you before in my life."

Joey or whoever the fuck he was made a crude "fuck you" gesture and went running down the street and around the corner. I stared at the gross pool of violation and wondered about a course of action. I am a bit of a soft target on Main St. with big expensive plate glass windows and I try to step around altercations that can be ultimately even more damaging to my life and property as much as possible. But I had been punked by an insane deviant.

The policewoman came, the same deputy who had taken my information after the Facebook scam. "White, about 170 lbs., early thirties, slicked back hair, black horned rims, heavy tats on his neck and arms, cream colored hoodie, not sure about the pants, don't know if he was armed..." Did I want to press charges? Yes.

I asked her if I should try to take him down if I saw him again and she handed me her card and said to call her instead. She left and I attached the hose to the bib out front and swept away the piss from inside and outside the shop. The rug will now have to be cleaned. I know one of the tattoo guys in the neighborhood, "C" and called his shop but he wasn't there. Seeing if they knew the guy. Could someone else have sent him? Someone with a vendetta? From the coffee shop? Was he armed? The guy on the phone said that C was out but that the guy didn't seem familiar and gave the "inked" a bad name. He said that if he saw him he would punch him in the face for me.

I sat in my chair and tried to write and collect my thoughts when the deputy showed back up about a half hour later. They caught the guy a few blocks away after he stole a car and tried to break into somebody's home. He was shorter and skinnier than I had described but not by much. The tattoos were on his neck and hands, in the split second I made my observation I must have seen hands and assumed arms. They might have been on his arms too, she didn't see them, her partner had picked him up. Didn't think he was from the area, probably wouldn't bother me again, but you know the criminal justice system, she said. She said that this type of perp was just methed out and totally random. It was my lucky day and my shop was the urinal. Lucky me. I feel violated and I think I will get out of here pretty soon and try to enjoy the rest of the afternoon.

The earth is eight feet off it's axis and the inhabitants have totally lost their bearings and there ain't no other place for us to go.


Anonymous said...

Robert- any chance the diner encounter constitutes a hate crime, or does there need to be a physical injury along with it?


Blue Heron said...

More like just a stupid kid.

Anonymous said...


I am sorry that you had such a bad day. I hope that things get better real soon. If there is to be a positive side, at least you know where nnot to get coffee and to change your mailbox type. Doing something positive to counter this abuse seems reasonable. Good luck for a better day soon.

Blue Heron said...

Oh, I know that it was a temporary aberration. Thanks for the kind words anyway.

Sanoguy said...

I think things are more than 8 feet out of whack!!!

Anonymous said...


I have not been reading your posts lately but following it through Tracy. I am not surprised at what is happening. It seems that hard times can bring out the best and worst in people. Respect is hard to find these days. It seems to be a balancing act between wanting to strike back and being the change you want to see in the world. Certainly you did the right thing by finding another coffee shop to patronize. You do not owe toxic people privileged places in your life. Remove the mental midgets. Still it does not feel good to be mentally and physically violated. Be well and know there are people out there who love you and appreciate you and this effort to share life in this blog. Great thing you are doing my friend. RCDC

Anonymous said...

And I thought MY day sucked!

Anonymous said...

on the other hand, you're always goofing on your being Jewish, so maybe they were just playing along, although it sounds like the "joke" went too far on their part... never liked the food there, anyways...

hobo_beans said...

I'd like to know which coffee shop in FB this is that thinks it's so hilarious to joke about 'smelling a Jew'...wouldn't want to accidentally give them any of my $

Anonymous said...

Tagging on your building, derelicts pissing in mail slots, racist coffee shops.
I thought Fallbrook was some layed back California town?

Helen Killeen Bauch McHargue said...

I'm shocked at the racist remarks at the coffee shop. Even if the perpetrator was a just a stupid kid, what bad manners! The peeing in your mail box is just over the top. I'm ashamed of FB.

A lesson I'll take away after thinking about it: Never start a sentence with "I smell a _________". Unless it's food, it's going to be an insult. For instance:I smell a Canadian, I smell a teenager, even - I smell a millionaire. It doesn't come across as funny - just insulting and demeaning.

grumpy said...

i almost had lunch there yesterday, just for the hell of it, then changed my mind, went to the Wayside Cafe instead, which is under new management; tried their Tomato Basil Gongonzola soup and it was wonderful...

Blue Heron said...

It was just the last straw. Felt like I was living in Berlin in 1938.

But I am reminded of Hanlon's Razor - Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.

Just a stupid kid who didn't know that they had crossed the line.