Private Eye: Eugene Leftowicz

 

 

2 December 2013

 

“Good morning Chuck! Hi Goldie!” I bent down and she licked my nose. “How was your weekend?”

“In some ways it was okay, but in another way, it was the shits. It’s something I can’t talk about.”

“That’s okay, Chuck. I don’t want to pry into your personal affairs.”

“No, I mean I can’t tell anybody, not for the next five months, anyway.”

“After five months, will things be better?”

“I don’t know. All I know is that sometimes I’d rather not be alive.”

“I’ve felt that way, Chuck. I’ve even attempted suicide.”

“I have to get my money problems in order. Then I can look after other things.”

“Do you have any plans for Christmas?”

“I don’t know. I suppose something will come up.

“I haven’t seen that crazy lady around. You know, the one who is always picking up trash. She hasn’t been around for a couple of months now. She’s so skinny anything could have happened.  I used to watch her. People would give her food. She didn’t trust any of it. One time a woman gave her a sandwich. She broke it into pieces and fed it to the pigeons. Another time someone gave her a meal in a box. She threw that in the trash. Occasionally, she’d ask me for a dollar or two to make a phone call. I don’t know what it costs to use a payphone these days. Anyway, this happened a couple of times. The last time I gave her some money she bent down and kissed me. She said she wanted to marry me. Imagine that!” Chuck laughed. “I was quite flattered, actually.” It was good to see the change in his mood.

“Have you seen Joy, or heard about whether Big Jake is out of prison?”

“I only saw her the once, last week. I’m not sure I know this Jake — you say he’s in a wheelchair.”

“He wasn’t in a wheelchair before. He’s the one who beat Joy and has served three years in prison. He’s a big guy, about six feet four, probably about three hundred pounds. They used to call him Mountain. Since he’s been in prison, he’s developed arthritis and has to have his hip replaced.”

“I guess I was thinking about another guy. It was when I was with my wife and three kids. We heard an awful racket coming from the apartment next door. This big guy was kicking the shit out of his wife and eleven-year-old daughter. Can you imagine a grown man putting the boots to an eleven-year-old girl? It’s disgusting. He went to prison. The guys in there didn’t take kindly to someone beating a girl. They broke his legs. He hasn’t walked since. Serves him right.

“Did you hear about the guy who cut his dog’s ears off, so it would look more vicious.  He served six months. When he was inside,  a bunch of guys held him down and bit his ear off.

“I had a friend who worked for the prison system. One of the questions they asked him during his interview was, ‘If you saw two inmates making out, what would you do?’  My friend said, ‘Well, I’d wait for them to finish, then I’d ask to take my turn.’ He was just kidding. They knew that.”

I said, “I knew a person who worked in the prison system. They asked her opinion on capital punishment. She said, ‘I’m in favor, as long as it’s not too severe.’ They thought that was funny.”

“As far as capital punishment is concerned, I’m all in favor.”

I said, “As long as they convict the right person. There are a lot of people who’ve served time in prison, then are found to be innocent.”

Chuck said, “All this talk about DNA.  It’s accurate, as long as it’s fresh, but after fifteen years it can’t be relied on. I remember in the park, a few years back, a guy was attacked, and murdered,  just because they thought he was homosexual. Those guys that attacked him should have had a rope put around their necks and hanged until dead.”

 

~~~

 

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