Jim Trainer

Too Skinny, Too Small by Don Bajema Chapter 4

In Uncategorized on October 21, 2013 at 12:45 pm

I got up, ducked around Manny’s girth and levitated over the floor to my sleeping slot up by my vanish map. Grabbed my bag, looked around where I’d dropped the book I read as I fell asleep to the sound of the television and men burping and laughing in the kitchen/dining area/front room/ television center.
“Mind if I use the crapper?” Manny said.
Manny was sliding his back and gut on the trailers two walls. I stopped as he slid the door to the bathroom. I fought off the image of his ass drooped over each side of the toilet seat like bread rising in an oven.
“Sixteen and ‘Oh’.” Dad said quietly, citing my winning streak.
He stopped me by the door, and said for about the hundredth time,
“You know, Eddie, you hit something under eleven flat in Junior High you might get some kind of look from a real school.”
He meant a private school or one out of our district where the schools are more like day care centers with wire mesh fences around empty playgrounds glittering in the sun with broken glass, with metal detectors, school monitors standing around leaving anyone tough alone and trying to score on the girls. The teachers, those that even try to teach are shouted down and their classes disrupted at the least sign of expectation. I just sit in my chair, push back the jerks if I have to, read whatever subject the class around me is supposed to be learning and boom-straight A’s just because I can answer the rudiments of the subject. History I actually like, and English. Algebra is alright-just follow the steps. Science is boring, there’s nothing to do, no experiments or anything-the school administration thought it best not to provide any information regarding chemistry to students living in the meth capital of California-so we draw the solar system two or three times a year.
‘I’ll see you later, Dad.”
I’d already run a ten-eight a month earlier and did again that afternoon. But I didn’t tell dad because I was afraid he’d take me down to the bar to celebrate and I’d lose a couple days at school.
Oddly enough, he never asked my times. All he ever said was,
“Didja win?”
Lois Warner was waiting by the big neon Apache we have over our grand entrance to the trailer park. He’s up there over a tom-tom, kind of a magic being, shorts out and won’t move for a few days, then out of nowhere buzzes, crackles, lights up and starts pounding a crazy beat on his drum like there’s no tomorrow.

Brother Don

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