Monday, September 1, 2014

September 2014 Edition of BUREAU of ARTS and CULTURE MAGAZINE 200 Plus pages of Photographic Essays +More ...



Welcome to The September 2014 Edition of BUREAU of ARTS and CULTURE MAGAZINE. We are very pleased to bring you a New Slate of PHOTOGRAPHIC ESSAYS: MALIBU SURFING / SAN DIEGO'S LITTLE ITALY / The SANTA BARBARA Scene / The DOCKS of SAN PEDRO Harbor /  SAN FRANCISCO / LOS ANGELES + MORE. We Also bring you ALL Eleven Episodes / New Chapters from The NEW FICTION  Project, " They CALL IT The City of ANGELS " SEASON  TWO. The Entirely  Improvised  Novel from Editor and Writer Joshua TRILIEGI. It started as an Experiment and bloomed into a seriously entertaining & well respected Literature Project that has now been read by thousands of Readers On-Line,  in different languages & talked about everywhere. Our Guest ARTIST is NEW YORK  Fine Art Painter  Mr. David FeBLAND whose Paintings accompany The New Fiction Project Special Thanks to The Artist and The George BILLINGS Gallery in L.A. & in New York City. An Interview with David  FeBLAND has been reprinted in This EDITION.  Over 200  Pages  FREE !

BUREAU of ARTS and CULTURE MAGAZINE SAN FRANCISCO Welcomes The World. San Francisco is a very special City and we welcome everyone to visit us here. We have The Bay, The Golden Gate, The University of Berkeley and The Metropolitan City scape: Chinatown, North beach, The Mission, The Castro, The Haight. A place where legends are made and personalities are discovered. On an everyday level, a very special aspect of The Bay Area are the people. A United Nations populist. Every language, every religion, every culture is somewhere in the city. Many have a district of their own offering events regularly and open arms to those who are culturally curious. Possibly The Best Public transportation city in America. The variety of Music, Cuisine and Culture is astounding. The Landmarks are many. The History is rich. 

The People of The Bay know very well how to 'represent'. It may take a lifetime to get to know this great city, but what a lifetime it would be. This site by no means represents ALL of The Bay Area. But, we DO plan to do just that. Soon you will find links and photo essays representing ALL of The BAY. THE SAN FRANCISCO Community SITE for BUREAU OF ARTS AND CULTURE MAGAZINE is one of several Sites that offer ideas and events celebrating each city with LINKS to The Main BUREAU of ARTS and CULTURE Magazine Site On - Line. The Magazine offers INTERVIEWS with Artists, Writers, Filmmakers, Chefs, Dancers, Designers, Actors, Musicians, Disc Jockey's, Playwrights, Photographers, Surfers and those behind the scenes in The World of ART,  MUSIC, FILM, SURFING, SKATEBOARDING, BIKING, ARCHITECTURE, DESIGN, PHOTOGRAPHY, CUISINE, FASHION and ECOLOGY. We have Sites in New York  City, Los Angeles, Seattle, Santa Barbara, San Diego and an INTERNATIONAL Literary Site with links and Articles regarding Books & The  World  of PUBLISHING for all types of Readers. Thanks for visiting. You will find INTERVIEWS, ARTICLES, PHOTOGRAPHS, REVIEWS with San Francisco Related Artists such as JACK KEROUAC, KEN KESEY, FRANCIS FORD COPPOLA and more recently Artists such as Bay Area Photographer RUBY RAY, Potrero Hill Artist Joan SCHULZE, Lady GAGA, David BOWIE, Andrew WHITMORE and upcoming PHOTOGRAPHIC ESSAYS of The City itself

Each Chapter is Written in a Twenty - Four Hour Period without Notes Published Consecutively

L I G H T  

Louis was beginning to see the light in a whole new way. All  day, things appeared different. Every object in the cafe seemed more colorful, he was seeing details and distance like never before. He stared at the chrome napkin holders, ketchup bottles, mustard containers, forks, knives, spoons and napkins as if they were sacred objects: studied their details, using his new found eye sight to take in the landscape. Why had he waited so long to get the operation ? If Junior hadn't returned, Louis may have never seen the light. He would have just slowly faded into the darkness with old age, maybe eventually seeing nothing but a clouded world of tunnel vision or worse: total blindness. It was Juniors idea to have the cataracts removed, he paid for the operation, Louis thought about all the years the boy had been ignored, all the years and months and days that nobody in the family, neither he, nor Celia or their extended family wrote a letter or visited. When Celia married Chuck, he had became the son, totally replaced Junior. Now that Junior returned, everything seemed to be changing. Louis was grateful to his son in a way that he could not describe. He seemed to care for the man in a way that was different than Celia or Chuck, he cared for the man in a direct way, not as some sort of responsibility, but because he loved him. Louis hadn't been loved since his wife died, really truly loved and cared for, he'd actually forgotten what that was like: to be loved. 

The Cafe was busy, the strike in the harbor was over, trucks were moving in and out, waitresses were working double shifts, when they asked if Louis could stay on a few more hours, he agreed. He had always agreed when his employers had asked for this, asked for that: How had he become so damn compliant through the years ? As a young man, he had fire in his gut, even a sort of bravado, a keen sense of rebellion. But that was long ago and when they asked, he did as he had done for the past twenty- five - something years, he answered, "Yes". Besides all the usual conversations like, "Louis, they need water on table seven." and his reply, "I Got It" or "Clear off the corner booth honey, I got a family of five waiting' out front" and his reply, "You got it." There wasn't a whole lot of talk in his daily routine. So, whenever somebody actually took the time to stop and converse with Louis, it was often a memorable experience that he would think about after the fact, at the end of the day or some time later. As things settled down that late afternoon, Louis was clearing a table along the windowed booths. Ma Fritters was a mid century establishment with big red booths along the front window and a counter to the rear with tables strewn all across the center and sporadically along the walls. A television was mounted above the counter, though it usually was turned off, on this day, due to the recent controversial decision in a high profile legal case and the controversy surrounding the decision by an all white jury, the TV was on, the volume was turned down. The Cafe was located just between the Harbor City Hall and adjacent to the truck stop port authority, so all types of people frequented the place. Gum shoe private detectives, lawyers, bailiffs, cops, an occasional snitch, or the recently paroled, or those who were proven innocent and plenty who were proven guilty and done their time accordingly. 

A familiar face sitting in a booth next to the table Louis was clearing sat and watched the silent television, a now, iconic image of a man being beaten by a circle of cops played on the screen, followed by images of four men in suits walking down a long row of steps, followed by angry groups of people screaming at the camera, then shots of helicopters and angry protestors who seemed to be standing in the middle of the streets, running wild. It's a shame whats going on down there, ain't it Louis ? He was referring to the television. Louis looked up at the TV expecting to see a football, basketball or baseball game of some sort. As he glanced at the screen, the shot of a man fleeing a pawn shop with a musical instrument, a red electric bass guitar flashed across the screen, followed by a group of people, smashing the windows of a liquor store, prying open the accordion metal gates and ransacking the place. Louis never payed attention to current events and hadn't been following the case very closely, so he was surprised to see the footage of what looked to be the beginning of a full on riot. He figured it was happening in another country or city, "Wheres that ? " he asked the customer, "Thats Downtown." Louis looked again. They watched a news reporter on the street, stores were going up in smoke. The sun was setting now and the color orange permeated the harbor. "Well, thats what happens when you got an abuse of power, at least thats what happens, some times."  The man gestured for Louis to sit down, Louis looked around, the place was empty, so he put down his white rag and bucket and sat with the man. "I heard Junior finally got out, hows he doing ?"  "Very well, he's doing good" he replied The man continued, " Its a god damn shame what happened to that boy, god damn shame." Louis noticed that the man was a little stoned, maybe drunk."That boy had everything going for him, he was handsome, smart, had a great little girlfriend, I remember that boy very well, very, very well."  Louis looked at that man, really looked at him, stared at his face, his eyes, listened to the voice and something began to click, something in the man's voice was suddenly quite familiar. " It was too bad that nobody had found out about that other kids car. You remember that other boy that night ? He was a good kid too, but the law is the law, and Junior would have never done time if only someone had reported the facts." Louis couldn't entirely understand just what the man was trying to say. "Ya see, the regulation on those cars are very specific, that boy was hot rod crazy, he had all kinds of unregulated gear on that vehicle. Now, it is  not illegal to have say, dual manifolds or even dual carburators, but if a car flips over due to the height of a vehicles unregulated distance from surface to passenger weight capacity and entry position than it is a fact of science and it can't be refuted. Did you know that in Juniors case the other boys car was three and a half inches higher than the regulated stock car height ? Furthermore  …", 

The man stopped for a minute and chewed his sandwich, Louis now realized that this guy was a lawyer of some sort, but he couldn't exactly pinpoint why he seemed familiar.  "Furthermore, it was noted on the legal evidence and recognized by all the officers and District Attorney's office that the boy who died drove a vehicle that was not street legal and may have had everything to do with the cause of those kids death. Why was that not brought up in the case ? Why ? You wanna know why?"  Louis looked at the man and nodded, "Cause I am, well, I was once, one of the best damn prosecuting lawyers in this port and I made damn sure that that little fact was not brought to the juries attention. But that was my job, thats what I was payed to do. Juniors lawyer should have done better, Juniors lawyer took a dive, they rail roaded that kid and all they had to do was mention the deregulated vehicle inspection forms and case closed, over, done with, end of the story. Every single cop on the scene knew that kid's car was not street legal, all of 'em. If people had known, they'd be doing exactly what there doing now, out there on the streets, they'd have been rioting for your kid."  Louis just looked at the man. The waitress brought over the check and refilled the man's coffee cup, Louis looked up at her but did not move from his seat, he turned back to the man. Now he realized who this man was, this was the rat bastard son of a bitch that prosecuted his only son. Threw him away, tossed him in the trashcan of life, the sewer for fifteen years. 'Cabron', he thought to himself. He stared at the man one last time, looked at his face, his cheap polyester suit, his wrinkled tie, his unshaven face, he smelled the cheap cologne, the years of unwashed bull shit that had surrounded the man's very aura and simply stood up, grabbed his rag and bucket from the table next to him, placed the plastic tray along side the edge of the man's table and cleared it entirely, except the coffee cup, in one complete gesture. The man blinked. Louis didn't say a word. He was not an important man in town, he wasn't worldly, he didn't speak the best english, he was one of millions of little men who worked hard every day of his life so that his kids and grandkids could have a better life: all of that was true. But this little man knew what trash looked like, this little man knew when the meal was over and this little man cleaned that table, wiped it down and walked away from that man's table like a professional and never once looked back. 

Junior had been told to get out of town and take a breather, no one expected him to leave the country. He hadn't been to The Ranch in decades & needed to see his home land. It had been his grand fathers farm back when Juniors father Louis was born there and his fathers before that and so on and so forth and on down the line. Louis had been renting it in a partnership deal that hadn't paid off in the past decade, he himself had not been to the ranch in over ten years, simply stopped visiting ever since his wife had passed away. It hurt too much to see that land. Originally, he had rented the plot to a man and his family who were simple farmers, the lease came with a dozen cows, an orchard of about 100 mango trees, a handful of goats, chickens, sheep, pigs and a couple old dogs. When Junior was a boy, every Summer from the time he was five to the time he was fifteen, he would learn things from  locals. He had learned to bullfight, he had learned to dismantle a cow, he had learned to irrigate, plant and even skin a pig. Junior loved the traditions of his heritage:  simply had farming in his blood and related to it deeply. At the end of each Summer, the boy would sit high atop a mountain just to the North of the property, they called it The Mesa, because it was shaped like a table top and he would cry. He did not ever want to return to America. McDonalds and Bugs Bunny and Coca Cola held no sway with his spirit. He was an Indiano Puro! He would tell his parents, "I want to stay here with grandpa, he needs my help, let me stay  please, please, the boy pleaded with his parents. But returned he did, every year. It was always a painful transition. He would dress his room in blankets, ropes, artifacts he had found on the ranch or nearby. Once he had been given a sacred bowl by a local Indian that had bears carved all along the sides. He would bring mangoes, a chicken, some corn to the Indian every day and eventually, the Indian repaid him with the sacred bowl. Recently, while digging through the garage, he found a box of things that belonged to him from the Summer of 1976, the year he had been sent away. Nestled in the center of the box was the Bear medicine bowl. Also in the box was an eight track cassette player with a bunch of the family music they had once listened to: Greatest Hits of 1976, Freddie Fender, Pedro Infante, Santana, Ritmo Latino, Novenas De Amore, Recuerdos Romantico, someone in the family had even taped the skits and early films of Cantinflas. They would load up the car and drive to The Ranch every Summer until the Summer of 1976, when everything had drastically splintered their lives into nothing at all. Junior installed the eight track player into his car. Loaded up the car with pillows to sleep along the way. He hadn't said a word to anyone about the trip and suddenly realized that he didn't want to go alone. Junior packed up a few of his fathers regular items from back then, his old wooden guitar, a foldable wooden lawn chair, a hammock, his fishing poles and a big straw hat as well as the Indian Bear Bowl. 

Junior drove into The harbor towards his dads place of work and noticed Chucks Patrol car pulling out of the parking lot as he was pulling in. Junior simply waved his hand and parked the car  right up front. Louis was staring out the window thinking about what the lawyer had said as Chuck drove off. And suddenly, Junior pulled into the driveway "Dad, I've come to take you home". "OK", Louis replied, "Are you hungry ?" "Lets get sandwiches to go." While Louis gathered his things in the back room, Junior walked up to the work schedule that was posted in the hallway and looked for Louis' name, he took out a pencil, and erased Louis' scheduled work days and scheduled in the other two busboys names Franky & Paulo sporadically during the week. When Louis finished gathering the sandwiches Junior was already in the car and the motor was running. When Louis got in, Junior said he had to go use the restroom, he reentered the Cafe, and shouted to the waitress, "Hey sweetheart, make sure someone calls Franky to remind him of the schedule changes." She looked at him kinda funny. He took out a ten dollar bill and thanked her,  "Your Dad don't have to pay for those".  "I know, it's for you babe.", he smiled and headed for the door, "Call Franky and Paulo, good nite." As he turned to the door she put the bill in her apron and headed towards the hallway where the schedule was posted. By the time they pulled out of the lot and up to the stop sign, he could see her pick up the phone. The eight track cassette began to play an old familiar ranchero they had often listened to while driving down South back in the old days. The song started with one of those fast mariachi style riffs with a big oomp-pa-pa base and drum line, a fast fiddle with a quick stop and suddenly the singer would howl like a Rooster at sunrise, "Aaahhhhh - Haaaaaaa - Haaaaaa - Haaaaaaaaaa" and suddenly the song would do double time into a frenzied pace. "Where the hell did you find that ?" Louis asked his son. Junior just smiled and turned the music up, he put the petal to the metal and they roared down the coastline. When they hopped on the freeway instead of the normal route home, Louis, turned down the music and asked, "Where are we going ? ",  "We are going HOME dad, home, our real home, were going to The Ranch. Junior looked at the kid and laughed. "Are you f*%+ing crazy?" He shook his head in disbelief, looked back at this kid of his, this beautiful boy who had endured fifteen years of captivity and simply laughed until the laughter stopped. Then he wiped a tear from his eye, turned the music back up and said, "All right then, Vamalos." 

Louis was thinking hard about what that lawyer had said, he kept stealing glances at Junior and could feel nothing but regrets. He suddenly thought about work, "But what about my job, I am on the schedule all week.", Junior assured him, "I spoke to the waitress back there, she's calling those other busboys right now with a new schedule. I knew if I told you ahead of time, you would never have come with me."  Louis looked at Junior and just shook his head, "Your just like your mother, you know that ?", "Yeah, I know."  Junior reached into the back seat, pulled off the Indian blanket, revealing Louis' things: His hat, fishing poles, chair, clothes, sandals and together they laughed all the way to the border. One of their traditions was to stop and fill up the gas tank as well as several other tanks with the gas on this side of the border and buy water and any other items needed while traveling. Junior decided that he should make a call and let his circuit know where he was going, he used a phone booth and said he was leaving town as directed. When he told them where, he was put on alert, given directions & an assignment while he was visiting. That was exactly what he didn't want to do, just wanted to visit the ranch, see the old property. What Junior didn't know was that every thing had changed and some surprises were up ahead, if he played his cards right on this one, there would be some serious rewards, if he did not, the results could be devastating or worse. They told him that when he got to the ranch, not to be surprised by any of the changes and wear a long sleeve shirt, buttoned from top to bottom. They had been trying to put the squeeze on the people who had been partners with the family that rented the ranch, they would toss Junior and his dad a serious bone if everything went well  He was also directed to be at the border exiting and reentering at a particular time and place, it was very important that he be there on that exact date and at that exact time, no matter what. They asked him if he understood and he did. Then they said he was to stop in at a particular spot with a very specific address and have his upholstery redone. When he told them that he already had leather seats in perfect condition, they told him that it was strictly business and he would be rewarded later. Junior agreed and understood what he needed to do, he listened intently as they explained in detail what was happening and what he needed to do to make sure that nobody was hurt and that they ended up with the profitable side of the exchange. By the time they hung up the phone Junior was completely sobered by the conversation. He also called his sister Celia explaining that he and dad were going fishing for a few days. When he got back into the car, Louis noticed his composure, "Is every thing all right ?", "Yeah, everything is cool. I just forgot to call Celia and let them know that we would be out of town for a few days and I wanted to make sure everything was o.k.",  "Well, is it?" Louis asked again. "Yes, every thing is going to work out fine." As they drove up over the border, they both noticed how different everything was. What was once a gateway with tiny wood kiosks strewn across an invisible line in the sand was now a chrome plated machine that looked like a giant row of appliances, the border had changed and so had they. They looked at one another and drove on in. Entering in the old days meant simply driving across, now they were asking questions and asking for identification sporadically, Junior grabbed a long sleeve shirt covering his ink from top to bottom. When they got to the borderline, Louis did all the talking, he was always good with people, especially his people. Louis answered several questions and then they struck up a conversation about a particular district they both knew of with an old fishing spot. Louis waved to the man in the kiosk and suddenly they were on their way. Junior understood spanish to a certain degree, but he couldn't follow everything. "What did he say?" Louis slapped his son on the back hard, "Welcome!"    

The journey to the ranch is a twelve hour drive, Louis slid the seat back and slept through the last six hours. When they got into town, they went directly to the property, but passed it twice because it was so unrecognizable. There was now a giant security gate, with an intercom and an eight foot barbed wire fence around the entire front section all along the highway. Originally the property itself was about ten acres split into thirds,: one part for cattle, one part for mangoes and the other for corn, livestock and living quarters. The original house sat to the North with an adobe to the West & another to the East, just after the hilly entryway. When they rang the buzzer, a voice answered that was unfamiliar to Louis. " Is Rafael there ?", he asked in spanish. "No, are you making a delivery?"  "No, I am the property owner from America, my son and I are here to visit the ranch."  The gate buzzed and it slowly opened inward, they drove the car up to a check point and immediately Louis was flabbergasted by the modernity of the place. Six visible silos, water tanks on every hillside, lush rolls of mangoes, machinery that he had never seen before, a large tractor the size of his guest house back home. Louis turned to Junior, wider eyed, "Take it easy, this is your place, your the American, your part owner, don't give away your power so easily dad. Were going to take a tour, then were going to talk business, I have some friends back home who told me all about these guys, don't worry about anything at all."  Louis said nothing, he just couldn't believe his eyes. "When it comes to business, you let me do the talking: yes ?" and Louis replied,  "Yes, son, absolutely, yes."  They drove up through the cattle section past a pack of beautiful cows, where there was once a dozen cows , there were now easily a thousand. On the hillside, grazing, were dozens of goats, in corrals, a half a dozen horses, in pens, dozens of pigs and an entire barn that had been modernized for chickens, easily a thousand. The original house was still intact and had been kept up, it looked as if the roof had been recently replaced. Louis was amazed at the entire set up, he was a very wealthy man and yet minutes ago had absolutely no idea how wealthy he actually was. By the time they got up to the main house and out of the car, several employees had come out to greet them. Rafael was no where in sight. "Welcome, a man with a cowboy hat and boots exclaimed. We've been waiting to hear from you for quite some time. How long will you be staying ?", Junior stepped in, extending his hand, he had been told to keep his shirt sleeves rolled down until the proper time. " I am Louis Junior, my father and I just came down to do some fishing and we have been so busy with our businesses in America that we have not had much time in the past few years."  "What kind of business are you in there ?" the man in the cowboy hat asked, Louis replied, "Comida". "Yes, my father has his own restaurant in the harbor and my partners and I are diversifying stocks." he continued, "The economy in America is going through some interesting changes and we think that Mexico is going to be in for a big surprise with some new trade deals on the table. But, lets not talk business so early in the morning. We just got here.", "Thats exactly right, lets have breakfast and we will take you and your Padre on a tour. Later, we will call up Rafael and we can discuss many things that will be of a concern to you and your fathers property."  They sat and ate one of the best breakfasts they had both had in several years. Everything they ate was made fresh on the ranch: juice, eggs, meat, tortillas, everything. Louis was simply amazed. Junior kept calm and played it cool, just the way he was directed. After all, It was this same kitchen that Junior sat with his grandfather every year. 

Louis and Junior took a grand tour of the property by jeep and when they returned Rafael was waiting at the main house. "Don Louis, Oh my god, it has been so long, what a wonderful surprise." The men entered the house and sat in the library, drinks were served. Rafael, the man with the hat, Louis and several other men sat in large leather chairs, several smoked cigars. Everybody imbibed except Junior. "I like your son's style, he's all business and has a great head on his shoulders.", he said in spanish. "Yes, he has learned of the worldly ways in America."  Rafael started in, "So, you must be wondering about the transformation of the ranch ?" "Yes, of course.", Louis replied. "Do you remember the old indian who lived on the other side of the Mesa ?" Rafael asked. "Yes, my son was very close with him. As child, Louis Junior felt a very strong natural affinity with the locals here."  He continued, "Well, one day, about ten years ago, he showed up at our door with a machete and said that he and his people needed food and that the owners of this property had always been helpful to the man and his family. He promised that if we supplied his family with food for the season, he would share many ancient secrets with us that would double and triple our fruit trees, our cattle stock and our vegetation. I had never been a real believer of such tall tales, but I felt sorry for the man and so, I gave him what he needed, when he needed it. He, in return did many things that somehow did seem to deliver his original promise and within five years we began to transform the property into what you see today. My own son went to University in Mexico City studying science, biochemistry and modern  horticulture, with his help and the help of a few of his classmates family investments, we have what you see here today.", "Amazing", Louis replied."  Junior chimed in, "Tell me more about the old Indian, what exactly did he do ?" "Well, this is going to sound crazy, but he and his family dug three natural water pits at the top of each hillside where the water towers now stand and then he simply danced for one week straight, I promise you, in the middle of a drought, it rained on this property for seven days straight, he then dug an irrigation canal and splintered the mango tree branches from single flowering stems to triple flowering stems, he trimmed the trees so they produced more fruit, he kept the cows away from the bulls until certain moon phases, he planted and picked on days that were specific and then just like that, he was gone, they all left, just like that."  When my son Rafi came home from university, we added many of the machines with the profits from what the old indian had provided the place. We now have some very wealthy investors and contracts with three major exporters."  Now, it was Juniors turn. He pulled the Bear Bowl from the inside of his bag and sat it in the middle of the table. "This was given to me by the old Indian. My friends and partners in America come from both the stock market and the streets and there is soon going to be a total transformation of the American export business in the next five years. Right now a plan is in force to bring American goods to Mexico that is going to make things very difficult for the local farmers. Junior slowly reached down, unbuttoned his left sleeve cuff and rolled up his sleeve, revealing a world of imagery that when read by the men in the room, seemed to give him the floor. He went on, "My father and I highly respect science, machinery and everything you have done with this ranch. But we have seen no profits in ten years, we know you have investment costs … ", he rolled up the right sleeve, which was equally as daunting as the left. These were not roadside tattoos, nor army or souvenir images, this was straight out, hard core prison symbology.  "So, we want to make it easy for you to continue everything your doing. But we are going to need to see some serious money as well as a renewed partnership as of now. We also want you to know that, although we have no intention to do so, at any time, we can take this property with the improvements you have made and end this contract within a ninety day period as per my fathers original agreement. Junior  looked out the window towards Mesa Mountain. "Funny how that old Indian just disappeared, aint it? His people had been living on that property for generations." One of the men took his cigar and ashed it into the bear bowl. Junior looked at the man from top to bottom. First he eyed the boots, they were un-scuffed, had never seen a horse or a dirt road in their lives. Then he looked at the man's hands, soft, no scars on the knuckles, he noticed that the man's shirts were pressed professionally. He knew what he wanted to do the man and instead, he lifted the bear bowl, walked into the kitchen, washed it out, walked back into the room, grabbed the handkerchief from the man's suit coat pocket, wiped the entire bowl clean, handed him back the soiled fabric and sat the bowl down in the center of the table. "Someone could make it very difficult to get trucks in and out of here if someone had decided to ever do such a thing." Junior then rolled his sleeves back down and began to describe a plan that was acceptable to both himself, his father and his partners in America. The man did not ash the cigar a second time and by eight o'clock that evening, a crisp contract was hand delivered by a hot shot lawyer arriving for Don Louis to sign then and there. In a single day the busboy had died and Don Louis had been reborn. For Junior this was only step one, he still had work to do. He hopped on a horse and rode to the top of The Mesa Mountain, there were no teardrops this time. He looked over the horizon wondering again about the Indian.  

Published at BUREAU of Arts and Culture Sites in: New York City, Los Angeles, San  Francisco, Seattle, San Diego, Santa Barbara  and  The  Bureau International Literary Site Friday August 1, 2014 Written by The Bureau Editor Joshua Triliegi Tune in Here Every day Mon to Fri for More ...
Fine Art Paintings by Painter David FeBLAND with a featured Art Interview The Summer Edition 

Each Chapter is Written in a Twenty - Four Hour Period without Notes Published Consecutively
R I D E  

Charles had gained some serious peace of mind in the past decade out on the road, along the highways, in the parking lots and alleys and subways and parks and open spaces where homeless people are known to dwell. His health had faltered a bit, he wasn't as young as he once was, but neither was anybody else. He had missed out on a lot, some of it was well worth missing and some of it was a lost treasure: watching Cally grow up into a woman for instance.  No amount of effort would make a difference there, except to be present now that he had returned, and that he did. The long lost tradition of Charles making breakfast for anyone and everyone in the house had returned. In the old days, Charles the Roady was also Charles the Chef. He had been minding his own business one early morning up in Northern California during one of those big monster festival tours with ten different bands : The Grateful Dead, Bob Dylan, Cream, The Band and a bunch of early blues bands from The South, John Lee Hooker and all of that. Charles got up to make breakfast for himself and suddenly, Dylan walked into the kitchen for a glass of milk, he asked Charles what he was making and said that sounded good, could he have some, then Robbie from The Band heard Dylan playing with his harmonica and he became hungry too, all of the sudden, Charles is making omelets for Jerry Garcia, poached eggs for John Lee Hooker, hashed browns for Cream's drummer, how could he turn them down ?, he was the roadie who had quickly become much more than that. When they discovered his drawings on little pieces of scrap paper, he designed album covers, tattoos, and began his art career. The big breakthrough album being his cover for Janis Live. Since then, Charles had become the family chef and his breakfasts were epic. He learned how to cook for an entire band, their crew, the girlfriends, groupies and sometimes even the teamsters, depending on where and when the tour was happening. So, when life off the road became a normal activity, Charles cooked breakfast. Upon his return home, that role was quickly expected and he fulfilled it. For Moon it was buck-wheat pancakes with blueberries and Cinnamon. For Cally and her new girl friend,  who went by the initials 'J.D.' and had just moved into Grandma's room with Cally, so they could save money for their new salon, it was yogurt topped with berries on wrapped crepes with cream cheese and maple syrup, for Maggie, his estranged wife, it was a no nonsense cafe throwback: two eggs over easy, toast with jam. But this toast was made from fresh bread and the jam crushed from fresh organic berries. Even the most basic stuff was made special in Charles' kitchen. Mickey was not a morning person and often missed out on all the illustrious A.M. activity. Charles was often back to bed after serving everyone, he tended to be a nite owl, so his morning cooking sessions were usually after staying up all night, in the old days with the band and now simply reflecting on life, or a long walk or maybe reading an old paperback all night. He was happy to be home, back in Venice, where he was loved, respected and admired by most.

 If anyone had asked him where he had been all those years, why he went homeless and what was it like to be back, there is a good chance he would not have an answer readily available. It wasn't really a drug drop out or a financial fallout or even a relationship failure, with Charles' situation it was more about the big f*ck you. It was a simple : I quit. And what a perfect time to do so, especially for a counter culture guy like Charles, he had practically missed the entire nineteen - eighties. The music, the fashion, the values were in complete opposition of every thing he and his generation had stood for, everything they had rebelled against and much of the artifice that his parents had presented resurfaced and was celebrated: materialism and the all mighty dollar. Charles had  experienced the 1950's as a boy and besides rock & roll and motorcycles, he hadn't much use for the rest of it. When he first started drifting into homelessness, he had been touring with a band in Amsterdam and the lead singer had become such an asshole that Charles simply walked. One of those Rock & Roll Revival show Tours with seven bands in seven different countries within seven days, it was, by then, a joke, he noticed that the whole scene had become a parody of itself and he couldn't stand to see it slowly die, so he walked. He bummed around Europe for a while. Word got out that Charles had quit and he was eventually approached by some of his old partners who set up a post office box for him in several different locations. He was in good standing, had delivered on many occasions whatever was promised and more. He took an early retirement is how they put it whenever discussing Charles. The fact that he took the fall and saved a multi million dollar tour some years back had put him in a heroic category to much of Rock & Roll's real true royalty: Dylan, Jagger, Bowie, they all knew Charles. When he dropped out no one thought about it more than once, the drop out rate for members of the rock and roll underground was in the majority, thats what makes those still in the game so valuable to begin with. Back at home, he was missed mostly by his son Mickey, though his constant life on the road had helped take out the sting. The thing about Charles was that his presence was strongly felt wherever he was and upon his return from any such tour, a sort of St. Nicholas type of ritual would ensue. He would bring back outrageous objects of all sorts. Often at the end of a tour,  someone like Dylan would say, "Hey Charles, lets go to Turkey, I know a place in Instabul that has the best steam bathes in the world, we can scrape this tour off and get back to our lives, how 'bout it ?" or Jagger would invite him to India and so by the time Charles got back home, he would walk in with strange artifacts for everyone at home, exotic dresses and shoes for his wife Maggie, whom he always referred to as Sally. He brought home all sorts of games and foreign pastimes like backgammon and musical instruments from Australia. Once he even brought Cally a Shetland pony after having toured with Dylan and The Rolling Thunder Revue, she was five years old and ecstatic. Charles had always been magic to Cally, a ghostly figure of a man, an earthy, bearded, father time type who seemed to show up at the most opportune times in her life, gone enough to not be authoritarian and present enough to be the kind of father she could talk to about anything. So when he returned, they immediately discussed her latest plans to create the hair salon for 'girls who like girls' and he agreed to help her establish the place. Cally was a gorgeous redhead with long legs and a sharp nose, like Charles' mother. Her girl friend was chocolate brown, with big green eyes: both were girly girls. Charles had simply asked, "So, Girls huh ?", "Yep" she replied and that was that, he said no more.       

Charles had been born in the Midwest, he was a country boy, hadn't seen much of America before he did a tour in Vietnam. Thats where he got turned on to music and drugs and life on the road. He was the perfect Roadie, due to his experiences overseas. When he came back, music was the very thing that had helped him survive and he wanted to be around it as much as possible. Had he been a writer or a musician himself, because of his situation, there is no doubt that he could have been another Doctor John or ZZ Top or Country Joe, but he was a Roadie and a damn good one at that.  Maggie or 'Sally' as Charles like to call her had always been an independent person. They had what people call an open relationship that had gone along with their lifestyle in the early days. Traveling with high profile personalities had a heightened reality that they were both well aware of before they even entered into their lives together, so there was none of that, learn as you go stuff, they knew what could happen on tour and they accepted that whole heartedly. They both had a keen awareness that none of what they were doing was going to last, and they looked at one another as a place to go once it all ended,  They had the kids and the house and that was the anchor. When Charles disappeared, went A.W.O.L. Maggie seemed to take it in stride, on the one hand, he had not been pronounced dead, on the other hand, he had not resurfaced with anyone else, he was missing in action, so she filled her time with  others and kept up her usual intense work schedule working with bands and raising the kids, caring for her mother and the bookstore. When Charles returned, Maggie was glad he had not died somewhere, but mad as hell that he had not attempted to communicate during those past years. The doctors said that he was healthy, but may have experienced some kind of medical condition they were calling Post Traumatic Stress, from his several years of sleeplessness, his prior drug use, coupled with his traumatic experience decades earlier in Vietnam. "Bullshit, That's a bunch of bullshit.", she was pissed. When Maggie complained about Charles not raising the kids, Mickey and Moon just looked at one another, Mick felt that he had raised himself and they both knew that their time with little sister Cally was practically like an Uncle and Aunt. But after a while, the complaining stopped and seeing the kids in the kitchen with their dad was always a good thing. When Charles agreed to help the girls build out the Salon, Maggie completely loosened up and finally felt that he was stepping up. She looked at him sitting at the table, his full set of longish hair slicked back wet, streaks of grey in between the light brown and reddish tone. His long beard and mustache, recently trimmed by their daughter, "Damn that man looks good", she thought to herself. Ten years on the streets and he came back trimmer and more peaceful than he had been before. She couldn't understand how he could do that ? The guys she had been seeing had been gaining weight, losing their sense of self, they were more like boys than men. Charles was a solid gentlemen type, old school mid west country boy with a barrel chest and a solid, healthy laugh that shook the beams. She knew then that no matter what, she had chosen the right man to love, even if he had been gone all that time, he was a real man, he was sensitive and brash at the same time, had all those rebellious qualities wrapped inside a warmth and gentleness that she had always loved and admired in men. He had pissed off all the right people through the years, people Maggie knew were phonies, fakes, fools. She had never let any man cook her breakfast except Charles and as she got to the bottom of the steps she ordered her usual, "Two Eggs, Toast and Jam. Sir." 

Cally and J.D. had been dating for almost a year before they decided to move in together. Having tested the waters on their own, they were now living with the family to save money for the salon. When Charles asked Cally what the initials J.D. stood for, she said, "Jezebel De Simone, but don't call her that. She hates it."  "When I was a kid, J.D. meant Juvenile Delinquent."  Cally just smirked and rolled her eyes.  Sometimes she called him Charles. "Charles, when you were a kid, if you brought home J.D. and claimed she was your new girlfriend, what would have happened ?"  He just looked at her and smiled.  "Well, my parents would have flipped their lids, but all my buddies would have been jealous. Don't forget that the year you were born, your mother and I were on Tour with Mick Jagger and Ike and Tina Turner, your mother and I didn't have to march on Washington, we were on the front lines presenting mixed race musical groups all along and that made a difference too. We took some heat for that on the streets and at the record companies, everybody freaked when that happened and then suddenly, it was normal.", he sat quiet for a minute, "The day that Frank Sinatra claimed that the only genius in out Industry was Ray Charles was a day I will never forget. I don't know why but, that just meant something to us in rock & roll."  Cally just looked at him and smiled quietly. They talked about the salon and Cally explained that because it was a hair and nail Salon geared towards girls who dig girls that they had decided on a discreet location that was not on the main thorough fair, sort of like a private club or a speakeasy, it was once a garage for cars, but had all the right codes and was just around the corner from a popular bar where a lot of the girls frequented. Instead of a big front window, they decided on skylights and privacy for clientele, "Not every girl who digs girls is 'Out' if you know what I mean ?", Charles countered, "Hey your pretty hip for the daughter of a bunch of white, jive - ass - hippies."   "I'm serious, we have a great location and I want you and Mickey to help us put in a bunch of little sinks and we want to buy some vintage barber chairs from the 1930's and have them redone. This is gonna be cool, it'll be a family business that you will see a return on."  Just then, J.D. walked in like a cat at dinner. "So whats going on here ? "  Cally replied, "My Dad was just saying that he thought you were a delinquent and that Jezebel is beautiful name and you should go by 'Jezz', he said its got a nice ring to it. Did you know that Charles here and Tina Turner had a thing going back in the day ?"  Charles just sat quiet enjoying his daughters repartee. J.D. looked at the two and saw the resemblance in the eyes, nose and lips, she walked up to Charles and said, "I love this daughter of yours and I want to thank you for creating her as beautiful as you did." She kissed him on the cheek and then she took Cally's hand and led her upstairs. Charles cracked a  knowing smile and laughed to himself. 

Charles looked at The Bike in Mickeys shop out back and  realized that he hadn't ridden a motorcycle in several years, he sat on the bike, turned the key, started the ignition, kicked the lever twice, on the third time it turned over, that unmistakably all American, one of a kind rumble created only by a Harley. The smell of gasoline and the vibrato, got to him, he pushed forward the stand and the bike was now on its wheels, he revved the motor, it was a beautiful and familiar sound, he put the machine into gear and turned his wrist a quarter of an inch and the bike began to move forward. Charles took a ride. In the old days, Charles and his Biker pals had routes they frequented with stops along the way.  Biker bars, biker friendly cafes, he had about a dozen spots that he had known through the years in Southern California that were part of the ride, but most of them were Sunday biker type of places and today was a week day. He hopped on the freeway and ripped East going way above the speed limit, this bike was fast, he was proud of Mickey for learning so well. When he got downtown he exited and headed east on Third, went over the bridge and parked it in front of a place that was once called Cisco's. It was an old bar and cafe with a dance floor in the back. An old factory lunch place back in the forties and through the years had different owners, but had often kept the same workers who were locals. Charles  pulled up and the place was empty, he let the motor cool, ordered a beer and sat listening to the old time jukebox. The Television was on and a newscaster was reporting from a helicopter high above the city, people were protesting and it had the look of a situation in development as opposed to one that was ending. Charles had been to Vietnam, he could surmise pretty well what a building tension looked like from a helicopter, he could see when one group was outnumbering another, he could pinpoint a soldier in distress and he didn't like what he was seeing at all. If this was a live telecast, than Charles knew that L.A. was in for some real war. He got back on the bike and instinctively drove into the shit, as they use to call it. He took the back way South and then headed West along the streets and noticed that, here and there, little skirmishes were popping up, a trashcan on fire here or a car on fire there, isolated events, it was evening now and as he entered the hot spot, he could see a small lady in front of her shop, swinging what looked like a harpoon at a crowd of people in a circular motion, as he drove up closer it appeared that the crowd had already ransacked the shoe store down the way and had decided to take her place next. It was an ugly scene. Charles had seen this kind of thing before, a group of people harassing a single individual, not only in Vietnam, but also at concerts, he had been at Altamont when a group of people that he knew turned on a few individuals and things went bad, people died. When it was all over the band got in a helicopter and everyone else was stuck on the ground. He saw that happen more than once overseas and now he was seeing at home. Something in Charles went from curiosity to combat in a matter of seconds. He drove the bike into up into crowd, who were really just everyday people simply pushed to the limit with poverty and injustice and had decided somebody had to pay. The brave little woman with the harpoon, was startled, then she realized what Charles was actually doing and suddenly, she stood erect, defiant even. Charles took the chain from the back of the bike, and swung it three hundred and sixty degrees above his head with his left hand and with his right, he drove the cycle in circles around the woman, an impossibly beautiful act, he went from doing circles to figure eights and then larger circles until the entire lot had been cleared and the crowd cooled out, realizing there was another store up the block that was unprotected. When he made sure the lady was ok, and the storefront secure, he drove off up the street to another situation. If the news helicopter had not caught the entire episode on television and aired it live for all the world to see than Mickey and his friends, Moon and Maggie, Cally and Jezz would never have known. Charles returned home and by the time he drove the bike up into the yard, the word had already gotten out, for the first time in his life the decorated soldier from Venice Beach California received a heroes welcome. And from the look on Maggie's face, it appeared that he was about to ride again.


Each Chapter is Written in a Twenty - Four Hour Period without Notes Published Consecutively



Fred had hired a lawyer, one of the best, to help negotiate a deal for the boy. He felt he owed it to Sam, to look after the family now that their father was dead. Most anyone else, including Fred's many friends and associates in the community  would have simply let the boy, who was actually a young man, simply do the time and possibly be prosecuted for a much larger circle of crimes, even though the boy had nothing to do with the others. Fred was beginning to lose faith in the system.  Because of the events that were about to happen in their lives, many of his fellow business owners and pals from the old country were about to feel the same. Although not all of Fred's friends had come from the same country as him, most had experienced the same type of history. A civil war, followed by or even precipitated by a larger abuse of power and sometimes several or many years of bloodshed and actual fighting on the ground in a country torn in two by two larger countries, then a reconciliation and finally an offer to immigrate and start anew. It happened that way in Korea, Vietnam and Cambodia. Now it was happening in Fred's own life, with Sam's family and the boy attempting to burn down the place.     Thanks to Fred's lawyer, the boy had been released and due to his behavior early on in life and a few incidents at school, Fred's lawyer was able to claim that the boy was not working with a full deck of cards. Several forces in authority would have been glad to throw the boy away for several years, local, state and federal branches had all been looking to find the person or group who had been responsible for the Palm Tree burnings. The fact that Fred's lawyer claimed the boy was slightly insane did not necessarily exempt him from prosecution, it just meant that he might not have to do time in the penitentiary. Sometimes a plea like that could actually work against the defendant and suggest to the jury that the boy had done the crime and might have done others too. Fred had been to Sam's family house on several occasions since the incident and his lawyer had assured them how lucky they were to have a man like Fred on their side. He was now looked at by Sam's family and by many in his community as a very honorable businessman. But the recent events had taken their toll and Fred was feeling wiped out. On his own accord, he had begun to investigate the man responsible for his daughters death, ever since his release from prison. The results were worse than not knowing anything at all. When he called the prosecuting attorney at the time, who had become a broken man, both morally, financially and otherwise, he was given a file that had facts in it that only brought revelations of sorrow. He discovered that his daughters boy friend Ryan, had been smoking marijuana the night the accident happened. He also found out that Ryan's car was not street legal and the fact that the height of the cars rear was not regulation, may have caused or helped facilitate the accident. As he delved further into the case, he received the address of the man who was prosecuted and when he parked out in front of Junior's house, he saw, of all things, Officer Chuck of the local police department drive up to the house and enter with a key. How could that be ? Chuck had never once mentioned that he was actually married to Cecilia, the sister of the man who the courts claimed was responsible for his daughters death. Fred started to get paranoid. What if they were out to get him ?  As he looked into the case even further he found out something that he wished he hadn't. Josie was three and a half weeks pregnant when she died. It was right there in the autopsy report. Someone had withheld that fact to protect Fred and his wife  from more pain than was already inflicted, but now, for Fred, the pain was only delayed and amplified. 

Fred went to visit Ryan's parents, but only Ryan's younger brother was home. It had been fifteen years, but the young man recognized him at first glance. "Your Josie's Dad", He said immediately upon opening the door, "Yes, I'm Fred."  The brother welcomed him in. "I'm Ryan's brother.", he said without mentioning his own name. "Come in, please." Without even asking he went to the fridge and open to cans of beer, handed one to Fred, and took a drink. They walked into the back patio and then into the yard. Instead of a grass lawn, there was a traditional asian zen garden with the sculpture of a Buddha near the back and pebbles and rocks placed accordingly. Fred was surprised. "Yeah, my parents were always into stuff like that.", he paused, reflecting  on the past, "Sometimes I think thats why Ryan and Josie had gotten along so well. She loved it back here. I really liked her. I don't mean like a brother is supposed to like his future sister in law, I mean I was just plain in love with her. But, I think a lot of people were. She was really very special, not just beautiful, but kind, funny, respectful. Ryan would be in the garage working on his car and Josie would be out here laying in the sun. I adored her to the point where Ryan would have to tell me to go and play. I was just a kid, but there was something magnetic about Josie. She was so laid back and easy to talk to …" Fred began to drop tears underneath his sunglasses and Ryan's little brother said he was sorry for bringing it up. "No, its ok, I actually came here to talk about it. Did you know that Ryan smoked marijuana ?"  "Yeah, everybody did, in fact, most of my brothers friends were doing a lot more than that sir."  "Josie and Ryan were total squares compared to the rest of their friends, they would sit here in the garden doing their homework, while everyone else what out doing who knows what." Fred continued, "Did you know that Josie was pregnant ?"  Ryan's brother just looked at the man and had trouble responding, "Yeah I did, but I thought I was the only one who did know that. In fact my parents don't even know about that. Ryan told me that he was trying to convince Josie to marry him, but that she was afraid to tell you and your wife, so they had quarreled about it for a week or so. Look, if you talk to my parents, don't mention that will you? I don't think that would bring them anything but pain. Ya know Fred, 'knowing' is not everything it's cracked up to be."  "Thats a very wise statement young man." Ryan replied, "If you promise not to say anything, I want to show you something", he led Fred into the hallway and opened a door that had been Ryan's room, everything had been kept as it was for all those years, just as Fred had preserved Josie's room, they had preserved Ryan's. Hot rod posters, snap shot pictures of Josie that Fred had never seen before, albums, books and images here and there that Fred identified with his now dead daughter. When he had seen enough, they closed the door and walked back into the living room. The door bell rang, and a girl that looked a lot like Josie walked in, "Hey, I thought you were coming over ?", she said as the door opened. "I was, but… an old family friend came by and we got to talking about the old days."  Fred just looked at the girl, he was stunned by the resemblance, frozen in time. "Fred, this is my girlfriend", he didn't mention her name. "We have our own band and we are rehearsing for a gig tonite, Hey, were allowed to have guests, can we put your name at the door?"  Fred, just stood there and stared at the girl. "Yeah, I know she's a knockout, huh?"   The girl became embarrassed and excused herself. Fred said that he had to go now, he was sweating. "Wait a minute. If you ever need someone to talk to, I want you to call me. Ryan and I were close, very close, not a day goes by where I don't think about him. I know what your going through and you just have got to let it go, not forever, but just right now, let it go." He led Fred into the back yard to sit, then walked back inside and explained to his girlfriend what was going on. After a few minutes, the two entered the patio to join him. The girl sat next to Josie's Father. "It must be terrible to lose someone like that, so… young. Just because they're gone doesn't mean they're not with us. He never stops talking about Ryan and somehow, that means that Ryan is still here. Right?", "Yes", Fred replied, They got up and walked back into the house and toward the front door, as Fred exited, The young man handed him and invitation to their gig, Fred turned and asked the girl, "By the way, What do you do, in the band ?", She replied matter of fact, "I'm the singer, but I also play guitar".  Fred just smiled and shook his head in the affirmative, as if to say yes of course. He waved and walked away. 

When Fred got all this new information, he was reeling. He got home, called his new lawyer exclaiming that he wanted to know why he had originally not been informed of all of this to begin with?  The lawyer was surprised by Fred. "Did you request any this information at the time? The lawyer began to bulletin point for the sake of clarifying the situation. "One: The autopsy would have had gruesome pictures that you and your wife probably had avoided for obvious reasons. So you were never informed about the marijuana or pregnancy. Two: Ryan's car was not regulation and your lawyer did everything he could do to prosecute the other boy because that was his job. Fred, the American legal system is not a perfect system, but, sometimes it works and that depends on a bunch of factors that are difficult to pinpoint. What are you gaining by digging  up all this past information ? What has it done for you so far, realistically ?"  Fred thought about it, then replied  "Its made me dubious of everything. I don't know who to blame anymore."  "Well, maybe thats a good thing. What if the kids were actually to blame for what happened that night ?"  Fred sat quiet, the lawyer continued,  "Now you have information that leads you to believe that a boy who went to prison for fifteen years may have been innocent. And here we are in an attempt to save another young man from doing time for something we know that he actually did do, simply because he was your partners son. So is this about justice or is this about right and wrong or is this about using the law to your advantage ?"  Fred sat quietly thinking. The lawyer added, "I have a feeling this whole thing is going to blow over and we won't even end up in court. Its just a feeling in my gut. Some thing much larger and more important could put this whole thing to the wayside."  Little did either of the men know that something larger was about an hour away from making the Palm Tree burning look like kids stuff compared to the kind of devastation that was about to bust loose. Fred got off the phone, he had been listening to a traditional language station that featured music, news and sports concerning people from his country here in Southern California. He was about to relax, when news reports began interrupting the usually scheduled programs. Shop owners all along the corridor where Fred's Liquor Store was located were put on alert. Fred jumped into his car and headed up to the store, by now it was evening. He had no idea that anything was happening in regards to the recent high profile court case. Fred had been so immersed in his own personal dramas that he had no time to consider the larger issues involving the city and it's reaction to another bad legal decision. 

By the time he even got close to the store, he knew there was trouble, stores, cars, trashcans were on fire all up and down the block, cars were racing in and out, people were running across the streets without even looking, not just across the streets, but at all angles, with hands full of merchandise of all sorts: radios, televisions, toasters, even toilet paper. Fred had never seen anything like it except when he was a little boy and witnessed a battle on the streets of his little village. All that helplessness he felt back then, he now felt again. As he got closer to the store, he could see a truck pulling out of the parking lot with boxes and boxes full of stock from the store, rival looters tried to grab at the contents of the truck and the man sitting in the passenger seat, got out a pistol and shot towards those in the lot. When Fred pulled into the lot , people were streaming in and out of the place with anything they could get for free, bottles of vodka,  chewing gum,  toothpaste, potato chips, a six pack, he recognized some of his regular customers taking things that they normally purchased on a daily basis. The little girl that he sold a daily popsicle to for 50 cents walked out with a box of a dozen popsicles. They had pried open the steel gates, busted the front windows and eventually, drove a truck straight through. He called the police, waited a half hour, there was no response. When he walked to the back room, he noticed that his pistol was not in the holster. The men in the truck must have taken it. When there was nothing left to take, someone threw a flaming bottle into the store and a fire burst in its center. Fred reached for the extinguisher, but it was gone. He went to the back room grabbed his business reports, his license, his insurance and original personal papers of ownership and on the way out looked up at the image of him and Sam, it was partially in flames. He jumped up onto a shelf, ripped the frame off the wall and ran out the front door. He watched in dismay as a firetruck pulled into the lot, unravelling  water hoses and for the next hour proceeded to put out the fire. Fred sat in the lot holding the picture, just holding it to his chest while the entire business became a pile of molten earth. As the fire died down, a car came by and  shot towards the fireman on the ladder, he was hit in the shoulder and without even getting off the ladder, they dropped the hose and pulled out of there in less than a minute. Fred stood in the lot alone. The little girl, who normally bought her daily popsicle walked back up to the front of the store, her dress was now soiled with syrup. She looked at Fred and reached her hand out, when she opened it up, two quarters sat in the center of her tiny hand. He stood there, unable to let go of the picture. Tears were running down his face, he looked at the little girl and bowed. The girl put the two quarters on the ground and ran home just as fast as she could. She knew something bad had happened and that she had been a part of it. Shame was something even a child could understand. Fred waited another hour, but no police responded. He then had no other choice but to get into his car and drive home. 

Fred was now in shock. His hands were cut and burned, his face was scratched, he had lost it all. He entered the house, went straight for Josie's room and looked around, there on the dresser was a picture of Josie and Ryan, in the corner, her guitar. He reached into his pocket and pulled out the invitation that the kids had given him, "The concert.", he said out loud, "I have got to get to the concert."  He got cleaned up, put on a fresh suit and hat as he had whenever attending Josie's recitals in the past. He looked at the invitation and recognized the address, it was a popular spot that had been around for years. As Fred walked up to the theater, he could here the music playing and a girls voice say, "This is our last song, we want to thank everyone for coming out tonight." Fred walked into the club, it was packed. He walked right up to the front of the stage. The young man added, "We also want to say that we hope that everyone in this city can find a better way to settle our differences, theres some real insanity going on out there right now…",  the girl looked down and saw Fred standing in the front row. She looked directly at him and grabbed the microphone, "This song goes out to a very special man who is with us tonight and to two other beautiful people that couldn't be here, but their presence is felt."  Then they broke into a slow and soulful rendition of a classic Beatles song that Josie had in her record collection, It was a song called: In My Life. The girl on the stage, who, as far as Fred was concerned, was his daughter Josie, began to sing, "There are places I remember, all my life, though some have changed, some forever not for better, some have gone and some remain, all these places have their moments with lovers and friends I still can recall, some are dead and some are living, in my life I've loved them all… ", Then she played a guitar solo and continued , " …But of all these friends and lovers, there is no one compares with you, and these memories lose their meaning when I think of love as something new, though I know I'll never lose affection for people and things that went before, I know I'll often stop and think about them, in my life I love you more.", The young man who in Fred's mind was Ryan played a piano solo, then the girl continued, "Though I know I'll never lose affection for people and things that went before, I know I'll often stop and think about them in myyyyyy life I Love You More." Then the song ended, the audience applauded and the lights in the theater came on. The girl raised her hand to her brow, looking in Fred's direction, but by then, Fred was long gone. 

Published at BUREAU of Arts and Culture Sites in: New York City, Los Angeles, San  Francisco, Seattle, San Diego, Santa Barbara  and  The  Bureau International Literary Site Friday August 1, 2014 Written by The Bureau Editor Joshua Triliegi Tune in Here Every day Monday to Friday for More ...

Fine Art Paintings by Painter David FeBLAND with a featured Art Interview The Summer Edition 
Mr FeBLANDS Paintings existed prior to the writing of this Project and appear here with his permission

THEY CALL IT THE CITY OF ANGELS  New Fiction By BUREAU Editor Joshua TRILIEGI Each Chapter is Written in a Twenty - Four Hour Period without Notes Published Consecutively  SEASON TWO / EPISODE FOUR / CHAPTER 26    PRIMETIME


New Fiction By BUREAU Editor Joshua TRILIEGI
Each Chapter is Written in a Twenty - Four Hour Period without Notes Published Consecutively


Jordan went primetime when he made a split second decision to get his Uncle's family heirloom from the pawn shop during the first few hours of the riot. He was on duty at the time, so the image of  a municipal bus driver looting a pawn shop, while on duty made news. Of Course, he was not actually looting at all, it was his guitar and he just didn't want anyone else to get his only sacred historical object: The Red Bass Fender from the early days of Soul and Rhythm and Blues. Many of the images that were broadcast during the first night of the riots were simply local and live, but Jordan's escapade had gone National. When Ted Koppel and The Nightly News ran with the image as the opening of that evenings news telecast, everyone across the nation picked it up. The image of Jordan running across the street with a Red Guitar in his hand and the streets ablaze behind him, eventually ended up on the cover of a popular national news magazine and he was forced to come out and tell his side of the story. His first statement was to a local newscaster: "I just would like to say that I do not condone looting, or this riot. What happened was wrong and the courts have made a bad decision, but my act of retrieving a family heirloom from a store that was being overrun was by no means and unequivocally unrelated to the acts of defiance we are currently seeing throughout the city. He reached into his wallet and pulled out the pawn ticket, I own that guitar and I was simply saving it from being stolen by somebody else, it's as simple as that."  But that is not how the Transit Authority saw it,  they promptly fired him. When his mother saw the image on television in a bar located in Detroit called, Cozy's Corner Corral, which had been a Motown hang out back in the early days, she recognized him immediately,"Thats my Boy, that is my son right there, you here me, that little f*cker is my Boy!" Nobody in the bar cared or believed her, but when the interview came on and his name was flashed across the bottom of the screen while he spoke, they couldn't deny her observation. "You see ? Just like his daddy, right in the middle of a m*ther f*cking riot, a goddamn revolutionary sonofabitch !"  She ran all around town borrowing every scrap of change she could find, packed up her few items in a single little pink suitcase, she told Shep up in that tired old apartment that she was leaving to see her, 'famous son' out in L.A. and got on the first train to Los Angeles. Baby never flew, she was more than 'Old School', she was what they now call, 'an original'. Her real name was Florenze, but because Jordan's dad had always called her 'Baby', it then became her official handle.  They were a real ruff and tumble couple back when Jordan was born. Factory people who graduated into power with the street politics of the time times. Everybody in Detroit knew Baby and Little Mac as they were respectively known. As a young child, Jordan never found it very comfortable having well known parents, every where he went, people had some idea of who he was, supposedly because they had heard this or that about his family. Mac had been rolling with some very heavy cats back then, Panthers and such. In and out of prison, community protection, food programs for the poor, big time black liberation people on the front lines of all sorts of activities for the rights of the people. They were very well respected for going to the degree with which they did for other people and for the community at large. Mac and Baby had a selfless attitude that gained them popularity, but it didn't do much for Jordan, whose spent most of his time at Uncles and Aunts houses as a kid, just regular factory folks.

Many of Jordan's people were third generation Muslims and although praying five times a day was often for survival, food, a new job or in hopes that a loved one would come home unscathed, they did practice regularly. When Wanda got pregnant, some of Jordan's stricter friends at the mosque suggested that the girl convert, so the child could be assured a place in heaven with Allah. Wanda loved Jordan and would do most anything for him, but converting seemed a bit much to her. Wanda was a middle class working girl with a flair for fashion. She had an earthy style that was very cultural, but more in a reggae style rather than a strict way of living and eating and dressing. Jordan said it would be good for the family as a unit, but Wanda resisted.  Some of his friends at the mosque suggested that he bring Wanda for a visit on a day when many of the ladies would be having a sale of all kinds of fashions for Muslim women, lots of scarves and accessories for the modern muslim woman. Jordan agreed that he would try. Soon enough, he had persuaded her to visit. Wanda met other muslim ladies, they ate, talked, welcomed her.  Jordan bought Wanda a few new outfits with scarves and the plan seemed to be working. But then the guys at the mosque said that if Jordan wanted Wanda to be certified officially that she would have to make a statement that Allah was god publicly and then she could be given a piece of paper from the mosque stating that she was Muslim. Jordan knew that this was going to be difficult. Wanda believed in a heaven on earth, in the grand Rastafarian sense, that, like the Jewish people who were chosen, so too were the Rasta and that returning to Africa was equivalent to visiting Mecca for Jordan. "Why can't our baby be part Muslim and part Rasta ?", she wanted to know. Jordan laughed so hard that he fell off the couch, he rolled on the ground roaring. She was so beautiful and funny and sexy and smart and dedicated that he actually didn't really care what she was: this woman was giving him a baby and he was so damn in love that he was giddy. "Half Rasta and half Muslim ? Whats he going to do smoke all day and pray all night ?", Jordan joked.  "Thats not funny, the Rastafari pray by their actions of righteousness.", she replied, "Yeah, but neither eat pork and I see you eating baby back ribs whenever possible.", "Jordan you a punk sometimes. You know that ?" He just shook his head, "I love you. I'm in love with you. I will do anything for you anytime, anywhere. Can't you just say that Allah is god and we can get on with our lives. You don't have to wear a scarf every day or change your fashion. It is just a symbol of unity between you, me and the baby." Wanda looked at him, "You just don't give up do you?", "Not on you I don't and never on this baby."  They looked at one another for a long time, neither spoke, finally, Wanda said, "Yes", that she would visit the mosque and say the words. But she wanted him to know that the baby was going to have to decide for his or her self what to believe. Jordan agreed and the negotiation had ended. The day that Wanda had made the official statement, she had met more of the families of Jordan's friends. Several of them lived just a few blocks away and they had assured her that they would be  there to support Wanda through the pregnancy and that one of the friends sold organic foods and would it be all right if they periodically dropped of fresh fruits and vegetables to the house?  "Yes, of course, you are always welcome in our house", Wanda had said, trying to be kind and considerate of their offer. All of these events transpired over a period of time just before the riot. When Jordan  went primetime with his Uncles guitar, everyone at the mosque was surprised at his actions and when he lost his job shortly thereafter, things looked even worse. Wanda thought it was embarrassing, but she also realized it was typical of Jordan.  There was something slightly funny about it. The fact that he pulled the bus over, ran into the shop and then hopped back on the bus with his, 'family heirloom', as he put it, or as the guys in the band called instruments, 'his Axe', was downright humorous. But when Ted Koppel and other national news shows ran the image, she was hoping he could handle that kind of exposure. After all, Wanda had minored in journalism and when the station called for Jordan's side of the story, it was Wanda who helped him write his official statement. When the station wanted to conduct the interview in front of the burnt out remnants of the pawn shop, Wanda said no. Jordan eventually had made his statement in Leimert Park instead, with a group of Jordan's supporters and a group of people protesting  the unjust decision that actually caused all the problems to begin with. It came off like a civic statement, instead of some ghetto style interview that normally was presented and the community rallied behind him.

Wanda was several years older than Jordan, she had been in this neighborhood back when the riots of 1965 happened and it brought back some terrible feelings. She had forgotten that Summer and now some of the memories were creeping back into her consciousness.  Terrible images of racism, hatred, destructiveness and that feeling of simply being helpless. She remembered looking up at the adults and realizing that they weren't actually smarter than her, they weren't doing the right thing, they were hurting themselves and everything around them. Now the actual smell of ash and soot and wood and rubber and asphalt and sulphur mixed together began to make her nauseated. She remembered thinking that, back then,  it was somehow her fault that the riot had started. Her parents had been quarreling over wether to visit relatives out of town or to stay in town for the summer. If they left town than none of Wanda's friends would be able to come to her birthday party. So, she made a big scene while her dad was out back burning trash. In those days most homes had a place to burn your trash, it served as a bbq  on holidays and an incinerator whenever leaves or trash needed burning. After her little burst out, Wanda had ran off down the block to the park in tears, she had been spoiled by her mother and adored by her daddy, so these little outbursts were common. Like most kids she was easily distracted and had a large imagination, so when she got to the park, several hours passed quickly. When it was time to go home, Wanda found road blocks obstructing her usual path home. Police cars and firetrucks were everywhere. The entire block was going up in flames and smoke was everywhere. She stood on the corner while two big policemen began talking, one of them sat in the passenger side of the car with the door open, while the other stood on the sidewalk attending to the road block "So, what's this all about ?" the cop standing asked. "I'm not exactly sure.", the cop in the car answered, "But It looks like some crazy bastard got pissed off and decided to burn his own f*cking neighborhood down."  Wanda heard that and ran as fast as she could to her Aunts house, which was a few blocks down. She had heard her Mom  call her Daddy a 'crazy bastard' a whole bunch of times, so she knew for sure who them two cops were talking about. Wanda  ran into the back door and into the kitchen, "Auntie, Auntie, help, help, my daddy's burning the neighborhood down cause mama don't want to leave to the lakes on account of my birthday. Help, we gotta put out the fire…", She collapsed into her Aunts apron and Uncle Milt walked in, "Whats this all, about ?"  Aunt Mae just shook her head and said she didn't know, but that Milt better call over to the house and find out. Milt had been watching the beginning of the uprising on television and he and Wanda's dad talked about it a while, "Terrible Ain't it, gonna set us back a few years this kinda thing…", he handed the phone to Aunt Mae. Then Uncle Milt turned to Wanda, "Your Daddies house ain't on fire, sugar, were in the middle of an uprising girl." He picked her up and they watched the television coverage together. Aunt Mae came in a few minutes later and said that little Wanda was staying the night and that they was gonna be baking a peach pie together, "How does that sound ?" She just shrugged. Aunt Mae's patience only went so far, "You get your little butt upstairs and wash that face for dinner right now young lady." Then she added, "And by the way, your mother wanted me to tell you that you will be having your birthday at home this year. Wanda finally smiled, ran over and gave her Aunt a hug. All these years later, Wanda wished there was someone like that to hug right now, the doorbell rang and her wish came true. One of those, 'Watch - what - you wish - for' moments.

Baby was able to scrape up a one way ticket and enough money to get her hair done, buy a dress and a new pair of heels. When she got to Los Angeles, she already had Jordan's address from the Transit Authority, having lied and said his father was sick in the hospital. She hadn't seen Jordan's father in years, he could have been in prison for all she knew. By now, military soldiers were camped out everywhere, but the damage had already been done. Baby stopped into a local grocer who had somehow survived the uprising and picked up a big gallon jug of red wine, a large bottle of Southern Whiskey, a bunch of collared greens, peas, potatoes, a giant rack of ribs and a chocolate cake. When the cab pulled up to Jordan's, his Mama payed the driver, but asked him to wait until the door opened before he drove off. Just in case her 'famous son' was not home. When Wanda answered the door, Baby waved at the taxi driver and said, "I'm Jordan's Momma, Baby, and you are… ?"  "I'm Wanda, Come on in, it's Florenze right ?", "People call me Baby." She walked right into the kitchen and started unpacking the groceries as if she had been living there her whole life.  "What a pleasant surprise, Jordan is always talking about you and his daddy." Baby replied, "He may be talking 'About' us, but he ain't been talking 'To' us for quite some time."  Wanda just let that barb go and helped to unpack the groceries. "Then, I don't suppose you knew that we are expecting."  She held up her shirt and exposed a tiny bump of a tummy. Baby just looked at it and said ,"Girl, you better get to eating if that kids gonna have a fighting chance. I am going to cook up the best damn southern style meal you ever had in your life. But first I need to rinse off a thousand miles of railroad tracks, if you don't mind. Feel like I just went to town with John Henry himself. Wheres the bathroom honey ?"  Wanda led 'Baby' into the den and suggested she put her things in there for now. She gave her a quick tour of the place and started a bath. For the next few hours Baby was holding court, playing music from their collection, making her original recipes and telling Wanda all those stories that mothers like to tell about their kids. Though, there weren't too many to tell, since Jordan had mostly been raised by Aunts and Uncles. Baby smoked cigarettes on the patio and continued to tell her stories without missing a beat.Talking through the screen at Wanda, who by now was falling into Baby's routine comfortably. Wanda hadn't consumed any alcohol in a couple months and decided to pour herself a glass. Baby was drinking whiskey on ice pretty regularly and continued to play Jordan's extensive collection of rare jazz, blues and soul records. "The kids got great taste in music, thats for sure." then she added, "I think he got a lovely lady here too." And she gave Wanda that hug she'd been wishing for. The two women were having a time. Wanda got tipsy from the wine, the music and all of the energy coming off of Jordan's Momma, who hadn't stopped talking since she walked in the door. As evening set in, Jordan came walking down the block from having recently visited a lawyer about his being fired, he decided to fight it on principle. As he came down the block with a bouquet of flowers, several of his friends from the mosque stopped to ask him how everything was going and they talked a bit.They had a box of fresh food for him and Wanda and Jordan immediately invited them over. The men, several dressed in traditional garb, hats, scarves, beards all discussed Jordan's recent response on television as they walked down the street toward the house. They were both excited and proud of the way he had handled himself on camera. Some of them were saying that maybe he had the type of leadership skills that could be good for the community. Jordan opened the front door to their place and the men walked in to find the two women dancing to James Brown and singing, "…Stay on the scene, like a sex machine, the way I like it, is the way it is … Get up, Get on up, Get up, get on up …".  In her right hand, Wanda held a giant baby back rib, in her left, a glass of wine, she was wearing a bra and an african quilted skirt while dancing about the living room. Jordan's Momma had a cigarette dangling from her lips and was pouring a tall glass of Whiskey on ice. By the time James Brown was, 'Takin' it to the bridge', the two ladies turned to the front door and Baby screamed out, "Oh My God, theres my goddamn little revolutionary", Jordan stood there in the doorway, holding the box of organic vegetables in one hand an a bouquet of flowers in the other, his friends stood behind him: aghast. "Fellas", he said, "This here is my Momma." The men all looked at one another, the music stopped and Jordan's show had just gone primetime.


New Fiction By The BUREAU Editor Joshua TRILIEGI
Each Chapter is Written in a Twenty - Four Hour Period without Notes Published Consecutively



Stan got a call that surprised him. From what he knew of protocol regarding this type of thing, there were three ways it could go, one: You were told that a call was coming in at such and such a time, two: You were told, who was on the line and then you spoke or three: You simply answered the telephone and someone said, "Hello, Stan, this is the President of the United States, Ya got a minute ?"  If it had been one, he could prepare, if it had been two, he at least had an idea, but since it had been three, he simply said, "Yes, Mister President, what can I do for you?"  "Well Stan, it's not what you can do for me, It's what you can do for your country. Wait a minute, that sounds like I'm paraphrasing Kennedy."  Stan laughed, he figured, if the President of the United States could tell a joke under theses conditions than Stan could laugh at it. "Listen, Stan, this whole decision has blown up in our faces. I've been on the phone with the Governor and we're about to send in the troops and the national guard. Would you do me a favor and just tell me what the hell happened out there ?"  Stan paused, he didn't know where to start. "Sir, Mr President, as the presiding judge, I was just as surprised as the public at this decision."  The phone was quiet, then the President continued, "Well listen, were going to have to do this all over again and I just want your opinion, just your personal opinion: what are the chances of getting a conviction in a second trial, if the facts are presented with a jury that reflects the populist of the city and state you serve ?"  Stan thought a second and responded, "Well, Sir, Mister President, I think several of the officers could be found to have abused their power and I believe convictions could be had."  "Fine, now, off the record, I want you to have a casual meeting with a group of guys including the governor next week, just a simple golf game, nothing official. These men are going to be discussing plans and I want you to add any information that you can in a totally unofficial capacity, do you understand ?" Stan answered in the affirmative, "Yes, I do Mister President."  "OK. Fine, I know were not on the same side of the aisle, and looking at the Presidential log, it appears that you have not been to The White House since you were a young boy during Kennedy's Presidency, is that correct ?"  "Why, yes it is, Mister President.",  "Well listen, the next time you are in town, you drop by and see us." Stan was surprised, "Thank You Mister President."  Then the president added one last detail, "You are going to have to drive up to Sacramento or thereabouts for this golf course. How is your game ?" Stan replied, "Terrible Sir, to be honest.", then he replied, "Well good, that'll work out fine for those boys perfectly. Stay in touch now."  The line clicked just before Stan said, "Thank you Mister President" and then he hung up the phone.  

When Dora got home Stan said, "Your never going to believe who called today." When he told her who, she said, "Did you ask him about raising the minimum wage or the imbalanced levels of unemployment among people of color or how  could he send people into war without proper protection ?"   Stan just looked at Dora and walked out of the room, at times like this, there was no use talking about it.  "Wheres Cliff ?", he shouted from the hall. "He's out back.", she shouted back.  Then he replied,  "Listen, I have to drive up to Sacramento next week to meet the Governor about this second trial,"  That peeked her interest,"What second trial ?" He walked back toward Dora in the kitchen, "There is going to be, and all  of this is unofficial, there is going to be another trial, the President wants this cleared up for the public's sake."  "Oh what a load of crap." Dora exclaimed, "The entire inner city is burned to the f*cking ground, race relations have been set back decades and now there's going to be another trial ? Amazing."   Stan then asked her matter of fact,  "Look, I'm taking Cliff with me next week, is that o.k.?  Dora stopped what she was doing and turned to him, "What do you mean, I thought you had to work ?" Stan looked down avoiding Dora's eye sight,  "No. It's a casual golf game and they want me to fill in facts."  Now she was visibly upset, "You mean to say that you are going to golf with the Governor and his cronies to fill in the facts so that a bunch of wankers  can find out how to do a job that was yours to begin with ?"  Stan replied, "That's not really fair of you to put it that way, but yes, thats exactly what I will be doing."  She slammed the cupboard, "Good, and while you have that bastards attention, you tell him that the farmers in this state need support from his establishment or their not going to survive the year. Also, you tell him that if teachers don't get a  raise, education in this state is going to be a joke and public schools will close." Stan had to laugh, "I don't think it's going to be that kind of meeting." She peeked from out of the fridge, "Oh yeah?  Well  you make it, that kind of meeting.", and she punched him in the chest with her little fist. Stan grabbed her and gave her a hug, "Get away from me.", she half joked and went back to preparing the meal, "You know Stan, when you're not on the bench, you are allowed to speak your mind. You vote, you're an American, tell them how you feel."  Stan replied, "I feel like the system we work in is broken, that's how I feel."  Then she set the table and said rather sternly, "Than it's our job to fix it. Now sit down and lets have some dinner."  Stan sat down and Dora tousled his hair. "Thats what I get for getting involved with a girl like you." They both turned and saw Cliff smiling at them, he had a blissful look on his face. It was seldom that he saw his parents playing and to him, it was a beautiful thing. He walked up to Dora and pantomimed that he wanted his hair tousled too. Dora gladly obliged the boy and the family sat down to Dinner. 

After dinner, Stan walked into Cliffs room and studied the big painting on the wall. He couldn't make sense of the fact that Cliff drew things that seemed to occur in life in a way that was exacting. The painting of the city on fire was crudely executed in terms of style or technique, but the exact details were rather amazing. That night, Stan brought it up to Dora, "How do you think he does it ?" he continued, "How does Cliff create images that seem to correlate with a future reality ?"  Dora was quiet, then she said smartly, "Oh does he ? How interesting, I guess every parent likes to think that their kid has something special to offer the world."  Stan carried on, "Oh come on, you're the one that wanted to send him to some shaman interview." Dora sat straight up, "That's not true, I simply suggested …", Stan interrupted her, "You said that if he had a special talent than maybe we should share it with the world."  Dora sat quiet and Stan just looked at her. "So where are you going with this ?", she finally asked and after a minute of silence,  he retorted, "I am just wondering why or how something like that occurs ?" Now Dora was frustrated and she raised her voice, "I don't have any idea and half of the people we know or work with would think we were both insane for even pondering the issue. Why don't you ask the President ?"  Stan laughed and asked, "What about the other half ?", Dora replied, "What other half ?"  He continued, "You said half the people we know would think we were both insane, what about the other half ?"  She thought about it, "Well, if presented with the facts including images, dates and correlating events, it is possible that a jury would find that the boy was not only funny, sensitive and gentle, like his father, but he was also cute, attractive, daring and adventurous like his mother. And if pressed further, they may even decide that the boy was not just one of the best fancy dancers in the indian nations, as we recently discovered, but that the boy could actually draw the future."  She looked at Stan and gave him a kiss, he kissed her back. After a moment, Dora asked, "So, what exactly do you propose we do about this ?" Stan thought about it, "Well, we could get all the artwork together and put the dates that he created them, with titles that suggested the locations or subjects and show them publicly, let people see for themselves if anything is there, meanwhile, maybe it would be nice for Cliff to share his work with a larger audience."  Dora thought about it and asked,"You mean at like an arts center or a school ?" And Stan said, "No, at a  professional art gallery. We could find one that deals with the spiritual or other worldly aspects of art. I know it sounds weird, but, what if he ended up working to solve cases someday ? What if he could help someone ?"  They looked at one another and a tear ran down Dora's face. Cliff walked into the room, saw his mothers face and tilted his head, his brow furrowed, Dora held her arms open and Cliff flew into them."We love you so much little man." Then Cliff replied in his raspy little tone,"I love you, too".  

Stan and Cliff drove up to the private members only Country Club and gave their names at the gate. Forty years earlier and they would have been excluded because of giving that name. They entered into the lot and Cliff pointed up to a small helicopter that was landing on a private pad across the hillside, 'That's the man we are going to be playing against.", Stan said. Cliff's eye's widened a bit. "Ok, So here the deal", Stan explained, "This is a game where you take a bunch of clubs, sort of like big sticks and you hit a small ball with the stick in an attempt to sink the ball into the hole. Everyone gets a turn and then we go onto the next hole, understand ?" Cliff nodded yes. "Good, now this is your first time, so you are going to be my partner on this understand ?"  Cliff nodded in the affirmative. You are going to push my sticks in a little basket with wheels on it right behind me. Whenever I need a stick, I am going to hold out a certain number of fingers and you are going to count how many, then grab the stick with that number in the basket. Understand ?" Cliff looked worried, but was able to spit out a "Yes". Then Stan added, "I know your going to do fine, we're going to do fine.", and they walked up into the clubhouse. Stan picked out a basket of clubs and walked into the foyer. Cliff watched him shake hands with a group of men who smelled like a forest in a cartoon and after the men drank their glasses empty, the game began. While walking up to the first hole, Stan took Cliff aside and said, "Think about your drawings, maybe something interesting will come to you.", Cliff  peered up at Stan with a puzzled look, the boy was already concerned with having to count fingers and find the right stick and now Stan was asking him to think about his drawings too. Then Stan clarified, "What I mean to say is that, if you get any ideas for drawings about these guys, remind me later.", now Cliff was really confused. On the first hole Stan held out his fingers, Cliff counted them and looked for the stick with that number, Stan pointed to the number and after that Cliff was fine. This went on for quite some time. The men discussed the case, the riots, the cops, the public, the jury, the president and the election coming up in the fall. Stan added a few comments here and there. Cliff was so busy counting fingers and finding the proper stick that the afternoon passed quickly. It was hot and several of the men smoked cigars and drank from shiny little metal containers. On the last hole, Stan swung too far and his ball ended up in a pile of trees to the left of the green. He and Cliff climbed up over a sand trap and down into a flat area that sat between a bunch of trees, Cliff looked at Stan whose face was all red and became worried. Stan found the ball, when he reached down to put the T in the ground, he fell to the floor. Cliff ran out on the green, but the other men were talking and didn't look over, he tried to scream, but nothing came out, he ran back over and turned Stan on his back, he slapped his face lightly, but Stan did not move. The boy was beginning to panic, he got frustrated with himself and didn't know what to do. Just then, a piercing beam of light shot down from between the trees and landed on his dad's left hand, Cliff stared at the hand that now sat in a circle of light. When he followed the beam of light upward, a giant bird sat on a branch and it screeched so loudly that Cliff had to cover his ears. He then reached down, grabbed his fathers left hand and bit the tip of his pinky so hard that the man sat up straight and said, "What happened ?" Cliff had tears running down his face, he couldn't express himself. Stan stood up and brushed off his pants, he saw the boy and assured him that everything was o.k., "Take it easy son, I must have fainted." He placed the T, hit the ball and landed it directly on the green. "See that, I told you everything was going to be all right.". Cliff looked up and 
the bird was gone. 

They walked up to the green and everyone was talking about Stan's save. After the game ended, they thanked Stan and congratulated each other on a great afternoon. The Governor held out his hand to Stan and he suddenly decided to speak his mind. "Governor…", he said, all the other men were now listening, "I came here today because the President asked me to and I hope my presence has been useful. But goddamn it, don't the kids in this state deserve to have teachers that can afford proper housing? And what about the farmers in the central valley, don't they deserve subsidies while the economy flattens as it has ? This case I presided over is not just about justice, it's not just about an abuse of power, it's not just about a bunch of cops who almost beat a man to death. The people reacted to a much larger problem and that problem is poverty, that problem is hunger, that problem is education, that problem is institutionalized racism, that problem is property taxes, that problem is inner city schools, that problem is the cost of living, that problem is public transportation, that problem is unemployment and the minimum wage. Now, I apologize for speaking out of turn here, especially in front of your advisors, but my wife and I have been through hell and high water because of this case and I couldn't sleep at night if I just sat by and said nothing about it. I know we are on the other side of the aisle, but we must get some progress done to create peace in this state and a conviction is only going to be the beginning." The Governor and his men just looked at Stan, everyone was completely quiet, "My god son, we should run you for office.", he joked, and all the men began to laugh out loud. "I think we can use some of that in your speech next week Governor," one of the men said. Stan continued, "You use whatever you like, I am just a simple Judge, but my wife walks among the people and those are her sentiments exactly."  The Governor then remarked, "Oh, yes, you married Dora Wendell didn't you ?  Quite a spitfire that girl…", he continued  "Well, you tell her that the message was delivered and received."  Then the Governor added, "That was quite a stroke."  Stan heard the word 'stroke' echo in his head, he peered right through the man and realized what had occurred. Stan looked back toward the trees one more time, grabbed his son's hand and walked away. He had just survived a stroke.


In the late Summer of 2013, The Editor of BUREAU of ARTS and CULTURE Magazine Announced a New Experimental Fiction Novel all about Los Angeles. Mr Triliegi wrote a chapter a day for several few weeks, working without notes or any preconceived structure and posted the results daily at various BUREAU Sites that regularly showcase Art, Theater, Music, Photography Cultural & Community events. Part One of The Series lasted all of 22 Chapters and was a resoundingly successful, accepted Literary Art Work. Mister Joshua Triliegi will again repeat that process for Part Two beginning on August 1, 2014. The New Chapters will be published daily M - F at our different community sites and can be translated into a multitude of languages for easy reading.

" I thought it would be a good writing exercise to simply write about what I see and hear everyday on the streets of the city. To simply create a chapter a day based on the people and things going on in Los Angeles. Since we all come from so many variable back grounds, styles, cultures and languages, I decided to structure the multi character novel to represent all of Los Angeles. I simply write a chapter a day by allowing the characters to unfold and the story, as well as the structure to reveal itself."

" Its a challenge to simply introduce a character and follow the creative line as it flows into something structured and complete. I usually know the beginning and the end of each Chapter and simply let the middle fill itself out. I like the daily discipline as well as the audience being in on the process. In this particular case, I do not take any written notes. I just start with an idea and let it flow. This is not a normal novel by any means, but it is a new and interesting challenge for both the writer and the readers. It's been a lot of fun. I hope the people of Los Angeles and the world will follow it out as it reveals itself. As the writer, in this particular case, I am just as curious as the reader as to what will happen and how things will go. The cool thing about this project is how quickly the characters began to take on a life of their own. I am curious to see what they do next"

Here are four Pinnacle Chapters near the very end of Part One of the Fiction Project. The entire Part One is available on our Site BUREAU of ARTS and CULTURE . Com as well as our Community Sites in L.A. / N.Y.C / S.F. / Santa Barbara / San Diego and the New International Literary Site with links to Publishers, Book Stores and Literary Events. This particular Excerpted Version is accompanied by the Fine Art Paintings of  Contributing Artist David FeBLAND represented by George BILLIS Gallery in LA and NYC. 

The Paintings existed and were created without knowledge of the Novel Project, though we felt their presence here allowed for a visual narrative that compliments the Series well. Read The Chapter A Day Novel Project Monday through Friday beginning on August 1, 2014 On Line.

New Fiction By The BUREAU Editor Joshua TRILIEGI
Each Chapter is Written in a 24 Hour Period without Notes Published Consecutively

G I R L S 

Every now and then Chuck would have doubts about his occupation. He had always felt that he was a natural detective, but being a cop on the beat was not his 'specialty'. At times like this, in the middle of a full on riot, he would come home and tell Celia that maybe they should start their own business, "We could buy a bar or start a gym," he knew plenty of guys who would frequent either. But Celia would say, "Honey, you're a police officer and your one of the good cops in this town. Just stick it out and follow through with your commitments." Another day would pass and Chuck and his partner were back in the patrol car. Chuck was always scheming to get his transfer as detective, now that the the riots broke out, the palm tree burnings were a blip on the map. Chuck would have to come up with something much bigger than that, if he was ever to graduate and run with the big boys. His research over the past few years had given him a wide variety of leads, but you needed witnesses to get a conviction and once you had a witness, you had to find a way to keep that person safe from harm and make a case that the detective squad would deem valuable and worthy of prosecution. A few weeks back, while Chuck was off duty, he saw a girl in the park, that couldn't have been more than twelve or thirteen, she was strung out, dressed in heels, looked like she hadn't slept in a week. She was also a very beautiful child, someone that was his daughters age. When he walked up to see if she was o.k., she propositioned him, said she needed some money. He said that he would give her five dollars, if he could simply walk her home. "It's too late for you to be out here alone. Girls get hurt out here, some of them even get raped or killed." She simply stared at him and said, "Do me a favor." Then she replied, "If I go back there without any money, they will beat my ass silly." "Where do you live ?" Chuck asked, "Not too far from here," she answered. By the way, you're being watched, "Just thought I should tell you, you see that row of house over there, well they got eyes on this park and people back at my place is in touch with them eyes." Chuck sat quiet for a minute, "How many girls do they have ?" "At my place or everywhere ?" she answered. "Everywhere ?", Chuck asked. "Yeah everywhere, they got houses all up and down, probably just under a hundred girls,"  then she added. "Your a square ain't you ?" Chuck shook his head no, "I'm a father of three girls that are home in bed right now." Then she asked him point blank, "And you mean to say you ain't never jumped in one of those beds ?" Chuck was taken aback by the comment, "Of course not, those are my girls." She just looked at him in disbelief. Then he said, "Listen, why don't I go get my car and enough money so that you can go home for the night ?" "Would fifty dollars do it ?", she just looked at him blankly, "A hundred ?" She then said, "Yeah, that'd do it ?" Chuck walked back to the house, drove his car to the park and picked up the girl. "What do you want ?", she said. "I want you to get a bite to eat and them I am taking you home." He picked up a couple burgers and fries and a malt shake and they sat in the car. Chuck began to slowly grill the girl. "How did you end up at that particular house ?" And the girl began to tell Chuck her life story, which was harrowing and sorted. She'd never had this type of man be so interested and kind and she said so,"At least not without wanting something in return anyway." Then Chuck said, "But I do I want something in return. I want you to consider going after these people." She became visibly scared at even the mention of such a thing. "I know some people who have friends that might want to help you, if you ever decided to do something about these people." She looked at him differently now. Then he added, "Look, it's getting late, I better take you home. Chuck withheld the money until they got to the house, and then he gave her the bills. "I'm going to be watching you, I want you to be careful. You're better than this." The girl looked at him and then looked away, she got out of the car and walked up into the house. Chuck remembered the house, street and address and headed back home. Since then, he had staked out the place several times. Eventually eyeing an older man and woman, who got into a beat up old station wagon and drove up into a local market. Chuck followed them into the market, bought a six pack, followed them around the store, then got in line directly behind them. That took a while, because they had filled the shopping cart with enough instant food items to feed a girl scout camp. The couple didn't say a word, but at one point, the lady looked up and glanced at Chuck, who simply feigned a smile. She smiled back, revealing a terrible set of front teeth, that were grey and beige, the kind that Chuck had associated with speed freaks through the years. He wrote down the plates, ran a check on the car and began one of his many detective routines, even though he had to be to work on his usual beat soon enough. Sometimes, his desire to become a detective affected his performance as a regular boy in blue and his partners through the years had always noticed whenever he was putting too much time into something else. "Watcha working on Chuck ?" Became a familiar phrase around the station. He figured there would always be a group of underachievers willing to hassle someone like him, who actually took the job to heart. Chuck took the job home, sometimes even crossing the line, as he had by taping his wife Celia's little brother's phone calls when he had been released from prison and had come to stay with them. That had backfired on him. When Junior found the recording device in Chucks office, he began a series of calls that were fakes and Chuck waisted a lot of time trying to follow false leads. Now that Junior and his Dad were now back on the ranch, Chuck was about to pay a serious price for that misstep. He'd already been reprimanded by the force and was about to catch hell from his wife.

Celia had always been a homemaker from the get go. She had dreamed of finding a good man and having kids most of her life and so, the dream had come true and she was a very contented person. Her daughters were smart, rambunctious, funny, and sometimes downright mischievous, not unlike the way she had been as a child. She kept up the house and the garden, had her hands full with the girls, cooked, did the laundry and through it all seemed to have found the perfect man to share her life. To her, Chuck was hard working, honest and cared about the world. So the day she found the recording device in his office, which she normally did not clean because it was usually locked when Chuck was not home, all hell broke loose. She pressed play and immediately a series of calls between Junior and his girlfriend began to play, "So what are you doing right now ?", "Nothing" "Can you come over ?" "No, I can't, maybe at the end of the week."  "I miss you." "I miss you too." Celia fast forwarded to the next and the next and the next, she freaked. When Chuck got home that night, Junior and Lewis were gone on a fishing trip and the girls were already asleep. He walked into the kitchen and she said without hesitation or reservation, "I want to know why you had been recording my bother's f*cking conversations." Chuck just looked at her. "Look, When a guy gets out of prison, theres a chance that he can get involved in stuff that could end him right back in the joint. I did it to simply monitor him, make sure that he's not getting involved with the wrong people. "Oh yeah, well what If I got involved with the wrong people Chuck ?" She looked at him. "What if you got involved with the wrong people ?" He didn't respond. "This is my family, this is my brother, how could you do that ?" he said nothing, Celia continued, "Why, when there is a whole world of evil and ugliness and very bad people would you bring that type of scrutiny into my house ?" Now he got fired up, "Hey, this is our house. We have daughters. You don't know what kind of things even go in prison. I don't even tell you a small percentage of the stuff that I see everyday on the streets because I don't want you to become jaded." She just shook her head and crossed her arms, "We grew up here Chuck, my family has been through a lot. I lost a lot of friends before I even graduated from high school, did you know that ? So don't try to tell me anything about the goddamn streets. My first boy friend was killed by a kid from another gang simply because he answered the question, "Where are you from ?" to the wrong group of kids, "They blasted him in the back, Chuck. Understand ? You didn't marry some little white girl from Pasadena here. Junior is my only brother. I will not condone any type of surveillance of my family whatsoever: Do You understand ?" He looked at her directly but said nothing. "I will take these girls and go away from here so quick if I ever see or hear anything going on between you and my brother. He just did fifteen years for something that happened when he was a kid. He paid his debt to society. Now go out there and protect the public from harm. And I don't want to sleep with you tonight. I'm staying in the girls room." Chuck was devastated. He had never seen Celia so upset. Well, at least not in a couple of years. On top of that, Chuck had been assigned to handle riot crowd control tomorrow and didn't do very well on the job without the support of Celia, who was his rock of personal security. He sat in the kitchen and cried like a baby. Then he slept on the couch, got up early and was out of there before the girls awoke.

He and his partner were assigned to Long Beach at Signal hill, the night before, they had lost an entire row of shops to angry protestors and things were heating up. They were getting so much flack from people on the streets that is was more than discouraging, it was denigrating. Four cops had beat the hell out of a guy and got away with it in a court of law and now every cop in the entire city was being blasted with more hatred, more humiliation and down right aggression that many of he cops were feeling defeated. Chuck was among that group. He knew a few real assholes on the squad and thought: Why should I be talking abuse because someone else can't do the job properly. They spent the afternoon showing their presence to not much effect. People still looted and pillaged, even in front of the show of force. At one point, things got so bad that a group of police were forced to simply stand by and watch things burn to the ground. Chuck told his partner, "I am not going to arrest some kid for stealing a pair of shoes that cost five dollars and ninety-nine cents on principle alone. I won't do it," and his partnered just looked at him. They got back into the squad car and headed into down town. They got a call to visit activity up on Pine Street. On the way over, Chuck, who was sitting in the passenger side, noticed the beat up station wagon three car lengths ahead of them, "Wait a minute, drop back, drop back." His partner asked, "What is it ?" Chuck replied, "This guy in the station wagon, follow him, stay way back, keep a couple cars between us." "What is it Chuck ? Were supposed to get to Signal hill." "Trust me on this one." His partner replied, "I've heard that one before.", "Just follow this guy,will ya ?" They followed him as he drove down a few streets and up another and parked the car in the drive way of a home. The man grabbed what looked like a twenty-five pound bag of rice, put it on his shoulders and carried it through the back entrance. Chuck wrote down the address and cross street. When the man exited, two girls got into the back seat of the station wagon and they drove toward the bridge. Chuck said to follow them. Now his partner was getting upset. "Chuck, you better know what you are doing here." "I do, now just follow this guy." They drove up and over the bridge, the man headed directly to the house where Chuck had dropped off the girl. Then Chuck ran the sirens, cranked the lights, and called it in. "We've got a random traffic stop at …" he gave the address. The two girls panicked and ran into the house. Chuck asked for back up and also requested coverage at the address on the house on the other side of the bridge. He pulled out of his gun, asked the man to raise his hand sand exit the vehicle. He told his partner to watch this guy and kicked in the front door, the girls started screaming. The woman sat in the kitchen watching the riots on an old television on the counter, "Put your hands on your head and stand up with your back against the wall." He saw the back door was wide open and when he looked in the yard, noticed an entire chemistry lab with metal barrels, all sorts of giant vats. He kicked in the door to the back structure and discovered two and a half pallets of meth. By then, his back up had arrived and the house was discovered to have eight different bunk beds crammed into three small rooms and a handful of underaged girls scattered throughout the house. When they included the contents of both houses, it became one of the biggest drug busts to date. The girl that Chuck had met in the park was the first to testify and the arrest of the couple led to the biggest ring of child trafficking cases and it busted the city wide open. Because of the Los Angeles riots, an arrest that would have normally made the front pages was relegated to a brief mention. Chuck didn't care, he wasn't looking to be a hero, he was looking to become a detective. When he got home that night, Celia had made a special dinner and all the girls were dressed in their finest. The living room table was set and the seating arrangement had been formal. He walked in the front door and Celia announced, "Girls, I want you to come in here, your father is home." The girls came running in and kissed and hugged their dad. Chuck looked at Celia, he was still unsure. She grabbed him and said, come here, "I want to see what its like to make love to a detective," and she gave him a kiss that even made the girls react. Chuck had finally made detective.

New  Fiction  By  BUREAU  Editor  Joshua  TRILIEGI
Each Chapter is Written Consecutively in a 24 Hour Period without Notes & Published 


The only person who really gave Charles a hard time was his son Mickey's longtime girlfriend, Moon. She saw her boyfriend go from the king of the castle, to the simple son of a man who had been gone, missing in action, for a decade. Charles knew how Moon felt and he liked her for it that much more. He started to joke with her by saying things like, "Don't hold back now," or "Tell me how you really feel," and she did. Which was all the more frustrating for her because he could take whatever she could dish out. Finally, one afternoon, not long after Charles' escapade in the middle of the LA riots, Moon cut the man some slack and they talked heart to heart. On the days that followed the riots, Moon told Mickey, that she wanted to keep the bookstore open all day and all night and have local people, writers and some of the poets do a full days readings of the works of revolutionary poets, writers and works of social justice. She said it might be a good idea to have Charles and some of his biker pals camped out in front of the store to insure security and Mickey thought it was a good idea. "We need to teach people that a true revolution happens with education over time not in three days with fire."  People got up and read Le Miserables, Angela Davis, John Reed, Russell Means, Allen Ginsberg, Sartre, The Bill of Rights, The Constitution, Thomas Paine, Black Elk Speaks, Bob Dylan, Malcolm X, Ken Kesey, Nelson Algren, William Seward Burroughs, Buddha, Amiri Baraka, The Abolishment of Slavery, Poetry of Struggle, Artaud and on and on. While the city was burning itself to the ground and the National Guard was marching in on the Presidents request, The Bookstore was teaming with words and music and a subverted energy that simply said, "We understand your frustration, now lets express ourselves to make real change."  A group of younger readers got up and read songs as if they were poems, including the works of punk rock bands like The Circle Jerks, Suicidal Tendencies, TSOL, Black Flag, Red Kross, The Minutemen, Sex Pistols, The Clash. With lyrics like, "Wild in the streets, running, running, wild in the streets … " they brought a social commentary and an angst and expression that was wholly appropriate. During all this, Moon turned to Charles and said, "Well, what do you think ?"  "About this ?", Charles asked, over the loud readers, crowd and general hum. "I think it's beautiful."  She nodded in agreement. "What made you stay out there so long ?" Moon asked him.  He breathed in a deep slow breath and then breathed out a long slow exhale, looked at her with his eyes beginning to well up, and said, "I am not entirely sure." Then he thought about it and continued. "There was a silence out there that became very necessary to me. Just a silence of the mind that seemed to make time itself pass rather quickly. I once sat in the same spot under a tree in the middle of a crowded intersection for at least a year.  And to me, it seemed like about three or four days. Ya gotta understand, my life had happened at a tumultuous speed. The music, the bikes, the drugs, the times themselves, it was just all to quick and had happened all to fast and then it ended even quicker than it had actually happened. Maybe the thing it Vietnam didn't help. All I know is that, it all had passed so swiftly, I didn't even realize the time."  

Moon stared at him. She saw something in him of a small boy. Then asked, "Did you ever think of your family ?" Charles replied, "Yes, All the time. The mind is a strange and interesting place to stay for ten years. I would gaze into the distance and recreate  all my favorite people and just watch an interaction in my mind. But there would be no words, simply a beautiful interaction. Like making love or playing on the beach or walking through the forest and then my skill pattern became so focused that I could literally be in the middle of say a battlefield or a busy intersection or anywhere at all, in any weather condition and totally zone in on things. It got to the point where I could sit and watch the Civil War or the Meeting of the Great Chiefs or the entire concert at Woodstock, wether imagined or based on a real experience. I was out there, really and truly, out there. That doctor at the hospital said that if it had not been for the 'shock' of the accident with that bus driver, I may have just spent the rest of my life in that state of mind. He said it 'woke' me up."  "Would you like to meet him ?", Moon countered. "Who ?" asked Charles.  "Would you like to meet the bus driver ?" she replied. He thought she was joking with him. "He is actually a customer of ours. His rest point on that bus route was just around the corner. We had become friends long before the accident. Mickey rode that bus route into Malibu and even thought he saw you on the beach a week before the accident. He came home thinking that he was seeing things."  Charles added, "Mickey's a hawk, he has  always been a keen observer. As for meeting the bus driver, Yes. Maybe it would do him some good to know that he actually 'woke me up from a ten year slumber'. We should have someone read, 'Rip Van Winkle'.  Then she added, "Charles, I know I've been giving you a hard time…"  Just then Mickey and a few of his friends came walking in and interrupted, "Dad, I want you to meet a good friend of mine…" Charles got up and excused himself from the conversation with Moon. He didn't like sentimental apologies and knew that she was correct in criticizing his long absence. So he simply pretended not to know where she was going with that one. Moon watched the man and the son and his friends discussing something or other and she began to like the fact that a King had returned and maybe Mickey wasn't giving up his crown so quickly after all. 

When Moon invited Jordan to meet Charles, she had decided to do it in a covert way. Jordan had given her the home number when Moon had convinced him that he should preorder a special  collection of Maya Angelou Poetry and said, "We will call you when the books arrive."  She was a savvy salesperson and made it extremely easy for people to buy books, either by order or layaway or any way she could. To her the bookstore experience was personal, life was personal and even her business style had become personal. Moon called the house and left a message saying that they had some new books put aside that Jordan would like and could he call the store sometime soon. When he finally got around to it, Moon answered the phone and Jordan said, "Someone called the house about some books I ordered." She replied, "Oh yes, this is Moon from the store in Venice Beach. I put some books aside for you and your lady that I thought would be good for your collection. I hope It's o.k. that we called you."   Jordan said it was fine. In fact he explained that he had been thinking about her boyfriend. "You mean Micky ?", "Yeah" Jordan explained that he wanted to talk to Micky about possibly buying a motorcycle. "Well, thats interesting because were having a party at the new family salon next week. Maybe you and your lady…"  She paused so that Jordan could fill in the blank,  "… Wanda."  He added.  "Yes. Maybe you and Wanda would like to attend ? It's sort of an investors party, but I think it would be a great time for you to talk to Mick." She gave him the details of when and where and they both said goodbye. A week or so later, Jordan, Wanda and Jordan's mom, who went by the name of 'Baby' entered the Venice beach hair salon, which was not yet open to the public.  This was an investors party,s o people were invited to consider investments in the new establishment and those who had already invested were present to see the progress and development so far. The salon itself was the brainchild of Mickey's sister Cali and her girlfriend JD or Jezz as Charles had begun to call her.  Jordan had been feeling strange about what had happened out there on the coastline that day. It was bad enough that he had struck a pedestrian, but he had also grabbed a wrapped bundle of bills that had spilt out on the highway, just on reflex and was now wondering if keeping the cash was the right thing to do. The cash had been wrapped in paper that had once been dipped in LSD. It was part of Charles' leftover stash from one of his many post office box drops. So every time the bills were handled, there was always a chance that Jordan would begin to have light hallucinations and this had happened several times since the incident. He decided to bring the entire bundle with him to the salon, not knowing exactly what he would do. Jordan figured that if he ordered a motorcycle from Micky than he would be putting the money back into his hands, so to speak. He had  originally been told by his lawyer who the man was and the background of their family, in the event that something such as a lawsuit were to occur, so there was no surprise when he found out that they owned the bookstore and that luckily, he knew Moon. Jordan believed in these types of occurrences and although he was not one to quote his beliefs system publicly. His friends would have easily said, "It is up to Allah." Jordan had a modern way of looking at his tradition. He felt a man had as much to do with the actions of the world as god himself and there were times when that belief both rewarded and seem to challenge his life. 

The party was already on its way when Jordan's camp arrived. Moon immediately saw them enter and greeted the trio with beverages, found a seat for Wanda and Jordan's mother and led Jordan over to meet Mickey, who was standing with Charles. "Mickey, this is Jordan, you've met at the store once or twice." Then she turned and notice that Jordan was visibly nervous about meeting Charles. Jordan,"She said, "…this is Charles, Mickey's father."  She had already told Charles about Jordan and so he was already well prepared to meet the young man. "So you're the guy who woke me from a ten year slumber." Charles stated rather loudly.  "My doctor said that had I not been struck that day, I may not have even returned to the living. So after discussing  it with Moon, we decided that a meeting was in order."  Jordan didn't know what to say.  "I felt terrible about what happened out there sir."  Charles responded, "Well it wasn't exactly your fault now was it. Not only was the other driver in the wrong, but as I recall, my little shopping cart was out in the street. We would often do that so cars would not veer so close to the edge of the highway. 'We', meaning,  me and my other roving compadres." Jordan felt a sigh of relief and began to reach into his pocket to give the man his money back. Just then, Cally and Jezz brought the meeting to order and announced that investments in the business would provide a return on the money within eighteen months and a percentage of the profits thereafter at such and such a rate. She had drawn out proposals and charts and projections as well as paper kits for attendees to take home. Investors would also be provided services at half rate for them and their loved ones. Then Mickey stepped up and said that the first person to invest over five thousand dollars in the business would also receive one of his motorcycles for half the price and he would provide a custom paint job to order. Now Jordan saw his way out of this without difficulty. He walked into the restroom, counted what was left of the bundle of hundred dollar bills, roughly about eight thousand dollars. He put the wrapper in his coat pocket and walked back into the salon. Jordan waived to Moon expressing that he wanted to talk to Mickey in private. They walked out back away from the crowd. "Hey man, I just want to say how sorry I am about …"  Mickey interrupted him, "My dad would  maybe never have been discovered if it wasn't for you. The hospital would never have called the house. Who knows how long he may have drifted, were grateful to you."  Jordan said, "Well in that case, lets talk business," he pulled out a wad of bills, "I don't want my Lady or my Mother to know about this, so lets keep this in-house. Here is eight thousand dollars for the bike and the salon. I don't want anyone to know about this. Just say its by an anonymous investor. We can start an account for my kid with whatever comes back."  Mickey looked at the money and laughed out loud, "All right."  Jordan felt relieved, he shook Mickey's hand and mentioned that all the details could be settled at another time. Then he said goodbye to Charles and noticed that his Mother and Wanda were talking up a storm with Cally's girlfriend, Jezz. Jordan said he was tired and wanted to go home. Wanda and Baby said they wanted to stay. Then Cally announced that someone had invested a major amount anonymously and that the shop would be open in the next thirty days. Everybody cheered. Mickey held up his beer in Jordan's direction and Jordan took his left fist and held it in the air. They both smiled at one another.  Jordan walked over to Moon and didn't exactly know what to say. Then he remarked, "You don't actually have any books for me at the store do you ?" She laughed, "Of course I do." Jordan looked her over, "But that's not why you invited me here is it ?"  She giggled, "Not exactly."  Then she added, "We all saw what happened to you with the transit authority, losing your job and all of that."  He just looked down. Moon continued, "Jordan, your pretty well known now, maybe it's time you got into a new line of work. How would you like to sell books for a living ?"  Jordan lifted his head up, he thought about the question more deeply and simply said, " BOOKS ? " 

New Fiction By BUREAU Editor Joshua TRILIEGI
Each Chapter is Written Consecutively in a 24 Hour Period without Notes & Published 


Fred had a community that was very tight. When the word got out that his store was the first to go up in flames the first night of the riots, a panic occurred. Fred's lawyer who happened to be the best in the community set up an emergency meeting. No one knew better than this group of first generation immigrants that the right to bear arms in protection of one's property was the right of the people. Sometimes the immigrants knew more about the constitution and the bill of rights than everyday Americans. When Fred's calls for help were not responded to quick enough to save his property, everybody rallied to save their own property and the community lawyer suggested that they bear arms and stand up for themselves. They had every right to do so and that he was willing to represent their cases after all was said and done. No one on the other side of the law had ever expected this community which was quiet, reserved and even conservative, to come back with as much fire power as they did. In a riot situation such as this one, it starts with protesting, but it develops into something very different, very quickly and when the big dogs came rolling through this district, they came to get what they wanted, which meant whatever was there: Televisions, Radios, Furniture, all the way down to the last item of stock that had any value. This particular riot was a poverty riot. Poor people filtered out of their homes, their apartments, their bungalows and basements hoping to return with something new. The consumerism of the 1980s had left its mark on society. The promoting and selling of video cassette recorders and home movie cameras and big screen televisions was in full swing, everyone had been bombarded with commercials that had said, 'Get your new TV Now, Come on down to Circuit City Today !', and like people will do, having been told something twenty-five times a day, in rotation, non stop, they did just that. Once the big electronic chain stores were emptied out, those who got a taste of that free item, had an unquenchable thirst for the victory of receiving another and they wanted more. If it was that easy to take a large store, it should be even easier, to take a Mom and Pop store. But what many of the professional looters found out, was that this Mom and Pop community was a lot damn tougher than anyone expected. Fred's community figured, If they go 'gangster' on us, we'll go 'gangster' on them. On the second day of the riots, wild west shootouts occurred that made cop shows on television look like a joke and old style movie westerns seem tame. It became a challenge to 'take a store' and conversely just as much a challenge to protect it. Whole teams of professional looters took turns against storeowners, testing their veracity and sometimes even their will to survive. A good many of Fred's friends had passed the test, many did not. Protestors on television made statements like, 'We don't need a liquor store on every corner.' Fred had never even thought that he and Sam were doing anything but being good new American business men. Now, he had to actually rethink his responsibility on a whole other level. When the women in his community found out what happened, they brought food to his home and tried to support him with small everyday gestures and slowly he recovered. For weeks, he sat in his home listening to his daughters albums and reviewing old films and family snapshots of his life. Fred had always been a survivor. He believed that transformation was always possible. He knew that if he didn't reinvent himself quickly, it might never happen at all and he would be branded as a broken man. But that was never Fred's style. He plotted a return.


Fred had never paid much attention to Josie's music collection until recently. He sat around the house playing The Beatles, Jefferson Airplane, James Taylor and compilation albums with dozens of different artists.The albums said, 'K-Tel presents Top Star Festival Dynamic Hits' including: Donovan, Bread, The Bee Gees, Aretha Franklin, The Guess Who, Elton John, The Osmonds, Rod Stewart, Three Dog Night and More!" Although he had never seemed to notice, as soon as the music hit his ears, his memories all came back to him. Fred had found a way to connect with his wife and daughter through the music and a sort of healing occurred. When one of his friends wife came by, he opened up his wife's closet and said, "Please take these things, what you don't want, give to your friends." Many of the fashions from back then had returned and so the woman obliged. He did the same with many of Josie's things. But with that, Fred called Ryan's little brother and asked that he and his girl come by his house sometime soon and they eventually did. Fred invited them in and thanked them for their recent concert. He then said that he wanted to show them something and he walked them down the hall and opened Josie's room, it had been preserved as it was the day she passed away. "I would like you to have some of her things," he added, "I understand that these fashions have come back in style." Ryan's girlfriend looked around the room and said, "No. I think you should keep these things, sir." Fred looked at the girl and said, "I just can't do that anymore." He grabbed Josie's guitar and said, "I am giving you this and you cannot refuse it." Ryan's little brother said that he understood and he took the guitar case in his hands. Fred added, "A silent guitar, a formless gown means nothing to me in this world." He led them back down the hall and into the kitchen and in much the same way that Ryan's little brother had done during their first meeting, Fred opened two cans of beer and a soda and offered his guests a drink. They sat in the living room quiet. Ryan's little brother looked in the corner and there, leaning against the wall, was the burnt out picture of Fred and Sam. He grabbed the guitar case, opened it, gave it a quick tuning and began to play an old classic tune he had learned long ago. He played a simple riff and then sang, "Love love love, Love love love, Love love love," His girl then joined in, "Theres nothing you can do that can't be done, Theres nothing you can sing that cant be sung, theres nothing you can say, but you can learn how to play the game, Its easy." Then they both sang the chorus, "All you need is love, All you need is love, All you need is Love, love, love is all you need." They repeated it again and on the final chorus Fred joined in, The three of them sat there singing, "Love is all you need, Love is all you need, Love is all you need, Love is all you need, Love is all you need, Love is all you need, Love is all you need, Love is all you need, Love is all you need, Love is all you need..." It became a mantra that helped Fred to heal.

Sam's family had rallied behind Fred ever since his lawyer began to support their son, who had made a dire mistake by attempting to collect on the insurance deed on Fred and Sam's store: by creating a fire. This little event complicated and slowed down the eventual process of Fred being able to collect on his insurance due to the damage caused during the actual riots. Because Fred's store had been entered into first, this allowed for him to collect a full insurance payment for theft and damages. After all had been said and done, it was strange for both Fred and his dead partner's family that, 'a fire and insurance', would somehow end up settling their differences. It took months of waiting and processing, but eventually, Fred received a check and split the value accordingly with Sam's family. Surprisingly, he and the boy had become friends. Ever since his father Sam has passed away, the boy had drifted into loneliness and despair, which led him to do the kind of things he did to the store. They had named the boy Alex. Fred and Alex spent a few afternoons together, boarding up the front of the store directly after the riots, his mother demanded it. But after a while, the two became close. Fred began to tell Alex stories about his father that made the boy laugh. Things that Sam had done to deflect abuse that happened to just about every immigrant class to enter America. He explained how they had worked in the factories and warehouses and canneries, the back breaking work, the dismal pay, the names they were called and when they were actually offered money by the government to start their own jobs and businesses, they had jumped at the chance.

Back then to own a liquor store was a tried and true respectable business, it was a corner market, a convenience store, as they were once called. Now, Fred explained people were saying there were too many liquor stores in that part of town. Fred looked around and eventually had to agree with them. He and the boy went fishing and eventually decided that they would go into business together. Fred had his sights on the next big wave of services to provide. Everybody was talking about yogurt being the next big thing, second to that, water infiltration. Both were good for people and both could be sold to folks from low and middle income families. Fred knew that on his own, he could only afford to open one store, but if he and the boy as well as Sam's wife went in together, they could have a few very small stores throughout the city. Fred said that he was getting too old to run the places himself and that if Alex and his siblings stepped up, they could have their own places to run and eventually have their own stores altogether. Alex asked the man point blank, "Why would you want to go into business with me ?" Fred stared long and hard at the young man, but said nothing. Then he simply stated, "Anyone willing to do what you did to get what you wanted has the guts and the tenacity to deal with the challenges that will come our way with this business. People are sometimes hard to deal with. The stores are sometimes vandalized. All kinds of things can happen. Just the fact that you and I have become friends is a sign that we can transform this into something better. Besides that I owe it to Sam, too." Then Alex said, "I think I would make a good American business man, if you show me how." Fred put his hand out and the two men shook on it. When everyone in the family found out that Fred and Alex were going into business, it sent a ripple of hope through their community.

They were back in business within eighteen months and now had three stores, two for water and one for fresh yogurt that was served with berries and other fresh fruits, Fred called it Josie's, they played a constant track of hip retro music and designed the place with her favorite colors. Fred enjoyed being around Sam's family, the young adults and their kids became his second family in a way and if anyone had a problem, needed someone to talk to, they went straight to Fred. By now, the second trial prosecuting the police officers who had originally been found innocent had been completed and two of the officers had been found guilty, they did time and lost their jobs on the force. The entire fiasco transformed law enforcement in the city of Los Angeles forever. For the opening of 'Josies', Fred called Ryan's little brother to play live music. Since that original meeting, the band had been signed by a record label and had actually gotten lucky with a hit single that played on alternative pop stations. So their appearance at Josies became an event. The band's label had demanded that Fred hire extra security for the opening night concert which was to happen in the parking lot of his new business. He couldn't really understand why, but when he drove up to the store at nine a.m., a group of about a hundred kids had already lined up. By the time, the band showed up, the entire street was flooded with young music fans. Apparently, Ryan's little brother and his girlfriend had become a total out and out hit. They now had a full band that was part reggae, part punk and a touch of soul. "Hey everybody, welcome to the grand opening of Josie's. This city has been through a lot of tough times, but no matter what, we are a city and we need each other. We don't play cover tunes anymore, as you all probably know by now, we play originals. But for the sake of remembering a beautiful person who couldn't be here with us today, we would like to sing one of her favorite songs, her name is Josie, the song goes like this …"

New Fiction By BUREAU Editor Joshua TRILIEGI
Each Chapter is Written Consecutively in a 24 Hour Period without Notes & Published 


Dora had her hands full with a slate of cases that she was overseeing, not as a lawyer in the courtroom, but as the head person at the table behind the scenes. She had originally consulted with Jordan regarding his case with the bus accident and the beachcomber. Since that time, he had been caught on camera retrieving a bass guitar from a pawn shop, during the first few hours of the riots. He had owned the guitar and feared it was going to be looted, so he secured the object. Unfortunately, he was on duty, in uniform and the footage was played on national television news outlets. He had already made a public statement in his defense and Dora found a local lawyer who said he would take the case on principle. When Jordan visited Dora's office Cliff was playing in the back room and Dora was with another client. Jordan had become curious about kids ever since he was told by Wanda that one of his was on the way. He watched Cliff for a while, who was pushing a small motorcycle through a traffic zone he had created with a bunch of toy pieces. "Just before you get to the railroad tracks," Cliff said out loud, "…be careful, because this particular light is not working properly. See this guy in this truck here…"  Cliff grabbed a toy truck, "…he doesnt know that this is a stop."  Jordan thought Cliff was funny, he had the voice of an old man. Then Cliff continued, "When you see this guy here…"  he grabbed a plastic figurine of a man in a suit and hat, "…then you should go this way." And he took the motorcycle and made it turn left, instead of going over the track.  

Jordan sat watching Cliff play, then Jordan noticed the drawings on the walls, lots of the same animals that he had actually fixated on: a Spider, a Turtle, a Hummingbird, a Deer. Cliff walked up to Jordan, "Do you like the animals ?"  Jordan answered, "Yes."  Then Cliff said, "Do You like Richard Pryor ?" and Jordan was taken aback. He answered, "Yes."  Would you like to hear his concert live from Washington DC ? And Jordan assumed that Cliff meant a recording, "I would, but I'm here to see your Momma."  Cliff said she was going to be busy for at least another ten minutes. So Jordan said, 'OK' to the Richard Pryor recording. Instead he watched as Cliff grabbed his Mr Microphone radio attached frequency toy and began doing the entire concert routine, verbatim, word for word, including intonations and audience reactions. It was an amazing performance, Cliff had Jordan in stitches.  He did not edit the routine, because he did not know, nor did he care that certain words were attached to certain meanings. So, exactly as Richard Pryor had done, Cliff utilized more cuss words and n-words than Jordan had heard since his own childhood. When Dora and her client were wrapping up, Cliff was just getting to the part where a girl in the audience says to Richard, "What happened to the hair on your chest ?" and he says in return, "I never had any hair on my chest," then he asks her, "What happened to your face ?" and the audience roared, Cliff made the sounds of the audience with the microphone. Jordan was loving it, he hadn't laughed like that for at least a year. Dora saw what Cliff was up to and said, "O.K. thats enough Richard."  Cliff just stayed in character and answered her into the microphone as if she was in the audience of the concert, all the while doing his best impersonation of Pryor. "Oh, so we been waitin' for twenty minutes and now the white lady show up and is ready to get down and do her thing. This ain't about you baby, this is live from DC ! Got that sister, this is some real shit here, now if you would be so kind as to let the brother here finish this here concert, me and my man Jordan here, will be with you in just a few minutes." Then Cliff went right back into the routine. Dora walked the client to the front door and out into the parking lot. She looked back at Cliff with a look of impending danger. He was so caught up in Jordan's appreciation of the routine, that he didn't really give a damn. "Ya, see, we got a whole lotta brothers up here in DC, now most of the cats can't even vote, but imagine if they could ?"  

Dora walked in and turned off the Mr Microphone stereo, and Cliff just snapped out of it. "Sorry mom," he said quietly.  Jordan's eyes were watering and he couldn't stop laughing, it was the funniest thing he had seen, maybe ever. He couldn't stop laughing and the more he tried to stop, the more it would start back up all over again. Cliff had never had an audience that appreciated his performance and understood it so well. It made him just slightly aware that he actually had a skill. Dora stood there while Cliff sat quietly and Jordan attempted to regain his composure. Then Dora said, "I will be in my office as soon as you two brothers finish up." She walked back into her office.  Jordan stood up and said, "I know some dudes in the park that would really dig to hear that concert live."  Cliff, looked up and said, "Really ?" Jordan nodded yes and wiped the tears of laughter from his face. "You got some real chops there, son." Cliff had never received any admiration in that way. "Thank You. I really like that album alot. But, they wont let me listen to it anymore, so I had to memorize it."  Jordan replied, "Yeah, well you definitely did that."  Then Jordan added, "You know, some of them words is not really for kids." Cliff looked at his feet, "Yeah thats what my Mom and Dad said."  Then he added, "But don't get me wrong, with the right audience, that would fly."  "Thank you,sir,"  Cliff held out his hand and Jordan shook it and then taught him the latest cool cat handshake. "You're a special little dude."  Then Cliff said, "Maybe me and my dad can visit you and those dudes in the park sometime."  Jordan walked into Dora's office, turned back and said, "Anytime you want." Cliff stood there looking into the distance behind Jordan and cracked a tiny smile. Dora got up from behind her desk, walked out to check on Cliff, gave him another stern, knowing look and then shut the door and her and Jordan began to discuss his case.  

That night when Dora and Cliff walked in, Stan was laying on the couch watching the ever present commentary after the riots. Fifty some people actually died and the city was in shambles. The Governor was scheduled to make his public speech. Dora noticed a pile of presciption bottles on the counter. "Whats all this," she asked ?  "Well, do you remember that day  Cliff and I went golfing ?"  Dora's voice became animated and cat-like, "Do I remember ? Why, it was a shining moment in you career, as far as I am concerned." Dora exclaimed and she jumped on him. Stan added casually, "Well it turns out that my golf catty here saved my life out in the bush. Turns out I had a minor stroke while planning my attack against the opposition. Little man here turned me over and instead of applying mouth to mouth, he used a new scientific technique and bit the tip of my pinky so hard that it brought me back to earth.  Dora  thought Stan was playing, looked at Cliff and said, "Did you hear that sweetie, you saved your dad's life." Cliff got worried and began to cry, he held tight to both his parents. And than blurted out, "But why do we have to die ?" Dora and Stan had never heard Cliff ask anything like that before. Dora looked at Stan, realizing that he was not kidding, she walked over to the counter and looked over the prescriptions. Stan tried to console Cliff, "Well, maybe it's a way of making people appreciate one another."  Then Cliff responded, "But I already, I already…" he was having trouble with pronouncing the word. In the past, either Stan or Dora would have said it for him, but this time, they knew he had to say it for himself. "…I already Ahhh-Preeesh-eeee-ate-you."   "I appreciate you too, little man."  Cliff stood next to his father, Dora came over and they laid next to one another. Cliff snuggled in between them. 

Then the Governor and his cronies showed up on the telecast. Cliff's eyes perked up, he walked over to the television and turned it up. This was the official statement to the public. Then the governor began to speak. "I want everyone to know that I have spoken directly with the President and he has assured me there there will be a retrial, there we be justice and there will be peace. But let us all remember," and heres the part that shocked Cliff, Stan and Dora,  "…that this is not just about an abuse of power, it's not just about a bunch of cops who almost beat a man to death. The people reacted to a much larger problem and that problem is poverty, that problem is hunger, that problem is education, that problem is institutionalized racism, that problem is property taxes, that problem is inner city schools, that problem is the cost of living, that problem is public transportation, that problem is unemployment and the minimum wage. And I want to say that we in government are doing everything we can to alleviate those problems. We are currently working on an eight point plan to solve these issues, but we cannot do it without your help,"  "That son of a bitch," Dora shouted.  Stan just laughed, and said, "Welcome to politics son."  Cliff was dumbfounded, he knew that those were his dad's words. Cliff had watched Stan tell the man on television exactly what was now being espoused to the public that day on the golf course. The boy got up, turned off the television. He grabbed a tall glass that had been sitting on the table and said, "My name is Richard Pryor and I just want to know what made all you crazy motherf*ckers come out to see this concert in the goddamn snow ? Ain't ya got no where else to f*cking go ? Goddamn ! I have never seen so many crazy ass people in one room together in all my motherf*cking life and you paid to get up in this shit ! You DC brothers and sisters is some tough some bitches I will tell you that."  

Below are The New Chapters at the very Beginning of Part Two of the Fiction Project. The entire Part One is available on our Site BUREAU of ARTS and CULTURE . Com as well as here on our Community Sites in L.A. / N.Y.C / S.F. / Santa Barbara / San Diego and the New International Literary Site with links to Publishers, Book Stores and Literary Events. This particular Excerpted Version is accompanied by the Fine Art Paintings of  Contributing Artist David FeBLAND represented by George BILLIS Gallery in LA and NYC. The Paintings existed and were created without knowledge of the Novel Project, though we felt their presence here allowed for a visual narrative that compliments the Series. 

New Fiction By BUREAU Editor Joshua TRILIEGI

Each Chapter is Written Consecutively in a 24 Hour Period without Notes & Published 


Junior and Louis had done the impossible and yet, for Junior, it was only the beginning. He still had to follow through with his assignments. The first was to visit an upholsterer just outside of Mexico City. That was going to take a day, then he had to get back up to the border, which was another 30 hour drive. He talked Louis into staying on at the ranch. The adobe abode to the East was made available and Louis could live comfortably there for the time being. There was no reason for him to return to work as a busboy at this time, he had been given a new bank account and was now just soothing into the idea that he was now a Don. This was his Ranch and he was now an active partner as opposed just the guy renting the place to someone else. Because of the fact that Rafael and his family had started their business entity with Louis' original stock of animals, trees and machinery, it gave him an actual interest in the advancement of that stock in a financial way as mentioned in his original rudimentary contract. Now, the new contract included a salary, a percentage breakdown of stock at various levels and allowed for Louis to stay on the property as long as he desired. Junior had done well by his father and when he called the members of his circuit, they told him that the reward he had been promised had now been delivered and he would have to work hard to retain that reward. He agreed to do so and they gave him the exact address and location of the upholsterer outside of Mexico City. He was told to order the new seated upholstery in red leather with white piping and to be sure that he was there at the opening hour. Then he was to drive back up to the border and enter back into the United States at five in the afternoon, two days after the upholstery had been completed. Which meant he would be driving fifteen hours a day. Junior was told that an event was going to happen at the border. His job was to delay the officials from apprehending a group of individuals who will be crossing into America at the same time. Which could mean any number of actions depending on the day's circumstances: keep the attention of other guards, distract through some form of activity, obstruct the pathway of anyone in pursuit and if all else fails, if you see an action happening elsewhere, to make a scene for no reason at all. Junior said he understood. Junior got into his car and headed for Mexico City

Junior was parked out in front of the upholsterers when they opened up. He began describing what he was looking for: red leather with white piping. The man looked at him kind of funny and repeated very slowly,"Rojo and Blanco" ? Junior shook his head yes, "Front and back. Right away." The man ran to the back of the store, he got on the telephone, made a quick call and grabbed his tools to begin removing the seats from Juniors car. While Junior sat in the front of the store a man dressed as an old style monk entered the store carrying a small leather bound object wrapped in a roll. The two men talked and then the man sat next to Junior. He spoke in a broken english, "So you are getting your seats improved ?" "Yes," Junior replied. "Have you seen our church yet ?" "No, I just got into town." The man continued, "It is going to take most of the day, why don't I show you around and give you a tour ?" Junior sussed up the guy, "I would like to see the church. Are you a Father," he asked the man ? "No, I am more like a brother, you might say." He continued, "This is the best leather craftsman in all of Mexico City, How did you come about utilizing his services ?" Junior was hesitant, "My father owns a ranch near Centro, we heard that this was the best place to get saddles long ago." "And so you choose red leather with white piping. How did you come to make that choice ?" Now Junior was unsure of this guy, "Well, I have always liked that particular combination. You know, the purity of white and the passion of red." Now the man became animated and asked if he would like to see the church now. Junior agreed and the two men walked a few blocks and entered through the side. "You know that long before the churches were built, before the spaniards came, the Indians used this exact same location for their ceremonies. Prayer, music, healing, deep thought, meditation, marriage, community, ecology all stem from the original Indians." Now Junior was getting interested, he had been thinking much about his experience with the Indian from his childhood and he spoke up quickly, "As a very young boy, I experienced many things with a local Indian, he gave me lessons, including bear medicine," he added the word, "brother." The man from the church continued, "There is a new movement that is happening here in Mexico and around the world. Indigenous peoples are rediscovering their history and making a direct link with the pre conquistador experience. It is not a rebellion, it is an awakening, an awareness of our power. Many people both within the church and without have come to a major realization that the individual is the power. Yes, we are a group of people. But each person must find their own personal power, as Jesus found his…" and he pointed up at the crucifixion. "But what kind of power is that, to die in such a way ?" He looked at Junior, placed his hand on his shoulder and said, "Every man and every woman and every animal and even the plant life, must die, but what did you do with life ? What did you do with death ? To inspire so many millions of people, was that not a death worth dying ?" Junior looked at the man as he went on, "The Indians have made peace with the church and with themselves, but we are not fools, we are not puppets, we are not living in fear of crucifixion as we once did. When men in boats rode horses into our villages and exposed us to the image of a man tied to a cross. Can you imagine how that image was originally interpreted ?" Junior thought about it. Then the man continued, "That image scared the original Indians, it was an illustrated threat that said: This is what we will do to you, if you do not cooperate." Junior had misjudged the man, he was actually a radical. "Where do you live ?", the man asked. "In America", Junior replied. "Where in America ?" the man asked. Junior then answered, "I live in Los Angeles." The man said out loud, "The City of ANGELS" and pointed to all the paintings on the walls. "Have you been to Broadway ?" he asked. Junior thought he meant Broadway in New York, "You mean the street ?", he asked. "Yes, that street is actually called, 'Eternidad', it was a Mexican Street in a Mexican City and State and Country, long before Pico and Sepulveda pushed the Indians off their property, so they could gain some for themselves. You recognize those names too, eh ?" Junior replied "Yes, brother." The man continued, "Long ago, a man came to this church and he brought a box of sacred objects from Europe, from Italy and from the Middle East. It is said that he had travelled the world to protect the ancient objects and relics and so, many were replicated, so that the actual original objects could stay in the hands of the people, instead of the many institutions and when I use the word, 'institution', I am actually referring to the very place that you and I are standing. The people of this planet feel that they own the right to their great teachers and Gods: Jesus, Buddha, Allah, Sellasie, Muhammad, Yahweh, the great one, all mighty god and to some, to the Indians, the very earth itself. You are now apart of something. This is bigger than you and me and this church and anything you could have ever imagined." Junior didn't say a word. The two men walked up the stairs to the top of the bell tower and looked over the city. "Imagine all this before conquistadors. Villages, teepees, ancient astrology, sciences, medicines, sports, agriculture, time systems: we are a noble people. You are a man with a very important mission." Then the old man halted his speech, turned to Junior and said, "Now, lets get something to eat, I'm starving." And the two men walked back down the steps. Junior began to like this guy.

Junior had spent the entire day with the old man and his imagination was now swirling with ideas. He didn't know why, but he was feeling very much alive. When the man walked him back to the upholsterer, the work had been completed. Junior was amazed, how could one man do all that in eight hours? When he walked into the back room, he saw a team of men sitting around a small table playing cards and laughing up a storm."I have come to pay for the work." Junior announced in spanish, the owner told him the cost again and Junior paid the man. "Well, Brother…," he told his tour guide, "It has been a fascinating afternoon and I appreciate your company." The man was visibly touched by Junior's leaving, "You have a long journey ahead of you. So I want you to be very careful. As you had recognized long ago, this place here makes the best saddles in all of Mexico City, but only a great man can handle great power. Remember, the conquistadors wielded their power over us with horses, but now, we have learned to ride. Handle your power well young man. Complete what you have bargained to do and be very careful as you enter back into America. You would not have been be the one chosen for this task had you not already been tested. Any man who lives in the dark for so many years is sure to recognize the light. If blood is spilt, be sure it is not yours, but if it be yours, do not fear for god is on your side." The old man had gotten so worked up that tears began to stream down his face and as Junior drove off, he began to wonder what the f*ck this was all about. As he looked in the rearview mirror, the group of men had come out from the back room and a small argument broke out between the men. It appeared that his tour guide was being chastised by the upholsterer, but he couldn't be sure. He had a job to do, so he got back on the road and headed north. He was just a day or so away from completing his mission.

All along the highway that first night, he noticed people along the sides of the roads with candles and alters. 
Whenever he passed a church, groups of people knelt on the side of the road, whenever he passed a rural area, several people held candles again and again. Junior thought that there must be some form of holy day happening, but he could not think of what it might be. He drove for twelve hours straight and at sun up, pulled to the side of the road and rested. He found a small cafe and got breakfast, the husband and wife smiled as if they knew him, while he ate, their daughter played on the ground in a corner. He noticed the picture of the saints on the wall and was reminded of what the brother had been saying back there. Again, Junior asked himself, "What was this really all about ?" He finished his meal, exited the cafe, and turned the corner to find his entire car was covered with ravens. "What the hell ?", he found an old broom alongside the cafe and shooed the birds away, but they just landed back on the car until he started it up and drove away. He drove another twelve hours. Now he was six hours away from the border and needed to get some rest, a wash, a shave and prepare for whatever was about to happen. He pulled to the side of a small riverbed and washed his face, he rinsed his shirt in the river and hung it to dry on a tree. Junior sat under the tree and fell asleep, when he awoke it was night. He looked at the car and the entire cab was lit up, "Did he leave the door open ?", he was wondering as he walked up to the car. He noticed that the windows were wide open and that the entire cab had filled with fireflies. It was a startling and beautiful sight. He looked in at the new red upholstery and again began to wonder what was really going on here. He walked back to the tree, grabbed his shirt, then back to the car again and all the fireflies had gone. He got into the car and drove into Tijuana.

Junior was half a day ahead of schedule, it was now Sunday. He hadn't seen a bullfight since he was a teenager and decided to attend. Plaza del Toros was a giant arena, the size of Dodger Stadium. It was beautiful cylinder shaped structure that sat just a mile or so from the coast and could be seen by those driving both south and north. Bullfighting was not just for the tourists, nor was it just for the wealthy. Not unlike other sports, a seat up front went for more than a seat in the bleachers, but when Junior was a kid, he noticed that to watch the bullfight from above, gave it a sense of ceremony and even majesty that a seat up front could not provide. He was so nervous about the coming event at the border and making sure that he was there at the exact time and place, that this was just a way to bide his time. He had always loved the pageantry of the event and found it a hypocrisy when people who ate red meat, wore leather belts and shoes and in general approved of the killing of bulls for food and fashion, but not in an ancient ritual. Most of the people who claimed to dislike the sport had never attended and had no idea that if the bull actually gored the toreador and won, then he was saved and set free to roam the ranches at will. Junior had never actually seen a bull win, but that possibility was always imminent throughout the ritual. He parked the car up front and noticed, for the first time in his life, the wealthy people of his fathers homeland. A group of men and women entered in their Sunday best, it was an entire family. The daughter was a healthy girl with a beautiful face that was both adorable and despicable at the same time. She was extremely attractive, the kind of woman that a man like Junior had never been close to, but had always been curious about. She wore a dark dress, her eyes flashed deep black that matched her hair which was braided in a way that looked like a work of art. Her skin was light coffee and she was obviously a woman, not a girl. Her eyes and lips were painted tastefully and Junior fixated on the girl. Then he saw that she was trying to get the attention of a young man among her friends, when the young man turned around, Junior saw the man next to him was Rafael, the younger man must have been his son Rafi and this was most likely the family that had invested in Junior's father's ranch. Junior saw Rafael and tried to avoid him, but Rafael had already caught his eye and excitedly, waved him over. "Junior," he shouted, and Junior waved and walked over to meet everyone in the group. "Everybody, I would like you to meet the son of Don Louis, the American businessman who owns the property and is now a partner in our family business," he said in spanish. Louis Junior shook hands with the men, said hello to the girls and the older women and when introduced to the Lady he had fixated on, he grabbed her hand, bowed, held it to his lips and handed it back to her. This was a very antiquated and dignified tradition he had seen in the movies when he was a boy and it caught the attention of the older folks. The women giggled and the men smiled. Then it came time for Junior to meet Rafael's son, "So, you're the crazy American Indian I've been hearing so much about from my father." He said in pitch perfect english. Junior laughed and to match him, tried his best to respond in proper spanish, "And you are the brilliant young scientist who went to University in Mexico City." Everybody laughed. They shook hands and now the girl with the deep black eyes was trying to get both of their attention. It looked to be quite an interesting bullfight. 

New Fiction By BUREAU Editor Joshua TRILIEGI
Each Chapter is Written Consecutively in a 24 Hour Period without Notes & Published 


Maggie and Charles originally met in a coffeehouse in Greenwich Village exactly thirty years ago: the spring of Nineteen Sixty-Two. Their kids got together and decided that since Charles' return, a party was in order. Moon had invited their friends, Cally dressed up the house, Mickey rented a keg and asked some local musicians to stop by throughout the day. Charles and Maggie had been spending their nights together and rediscovering the things they both had originally admired about one another. Apparently, Charles, although out of commission for a decade, still had that magic touch. Maggie's demeanor had changed and everyone noticed it. She became, quiet, reflective and available. Jezz remarked to Maggie, "You're so mellow lately". Maggie replied, in hush tones, as if a secret were being told, "I think I'm in love again, after all these years. Can you believe that ?" Charles was out in the backyard with Mickey and the two ladies watched them through the window. "Yes, I can see why."  Mickey had been preparing the motorcycle for Jordan, who had chosen an upright model that carried two comfortably with a front shield and a major audio component. He painted it black with gold pinstripes. Cally and Jezz had opened the hair salon successfully. The business was brisk and constant. They had recently decided to add nails and pedicure services as soon as possible. Then it could be a one stop shop. One day, a guy walked in and asked for a trim. Jezz,  who usually sat at the reception, looked over at Cally, who looked at the man and said, "We can take care of you in fifteen minutes, would you be a dear and run next door for a cup of tea, Jezz will give you the money and get yourself one too." The man was surprised, "Oh, sure, thank you."  Jezz gave the man a bill from the register drawer, looked over at Cally, who simply kept cutting hair and suddenly, they doubled their customers by fifty percent. After all, this was a business, not a private club. Jezz looked at the cash, closed the drawer and they both had to giggle. Charles and Mickey had recently bonded over an incident that had everything to do with the money that Jordan had given him for the motorcycle. The bundle of cash was originally wrapped in a very strong and archival sheet of LSD that Charles had been carrying for too many years to remember. When Jordans bus hit Charles on the coastline, Jordan had picked the bundle up and since then had found a way to return it by investing in the salon. Apparently, the bundle had been rained on and soaked through each and every bill, especially the edges, so that if perspiration or any form of humidity occurred, it actually activated LSD and could effect the person handling the currency. Mickey who was responsible for serving everyone refreshments the night Jordan handed him the money, had activated the paper bills and when he got home that night, began a twelve hour journey into the mind. Charles had stayed up all night with him, guiding him through. He had done this plenty of times and was the perfect guide to do so. Since then, Mickey and Charles had finally broken the ice and most of the barriers that existed because of Charles' ten year absence. Mickey assumed that one of his friends had slipped him something as a gag and had no idea that every time he gave somebody a piece of that original currency, there was a very good chance that they were about to, 'Trip the light fantastic'.  All a person had to do was touch the dollar bill, then rub their eyes, or any area that might be susceptible and they would be tripping. Mickey did business with a lot of people. Some of them were total squares who were most likely, about to become: well rounded. 

Jordan could see that his mother was not here to visit, but to stay. He didn't exactly know how that was going to work out and one day he returned home to find a letter from his father. It was from Lompoc prison with a number printed in the upper left corner, instead of a name. The letter explained that Little Mac had been seeing the recent events on television and in the papers and he wanted  Jordan to know that he was proud of him. Jordan, put the envelope in his coat pocket and just wasn't really ready to deal with these feelings that had gone unchecked all these years. He was generally pretty dissatisfied with many of the things that had played out in his life as a child, he had not looked back and didn't wan't to start now. Here he was starting a family of his own, doing it right, and now, his parents showed up. Half the time, he felt like the parent during those early years. They were beautiful, but they had let emotion override common sense and it hurt them as a family, it hurt him and, ultimately, it hurt the common goals that they fought so hard to achieve. He didn't say anything for a while and then at breakfast one day, he mentioned casually, "I got a letter from Mac." Wanda and his mother, who went by the name of 'Baby' stared at Jordan. "Well, what did he say," Wanda exclaimed ?   Jordan just shook his head, ran his fork through the eggs on the plate in front of him and mumbled, "Not much, the letter is in my coat pocket." Baby got up and pulled out the letter as well as a piece of paper that was crumpled underneath it. She pulled out both items and brought them to the table. Jordan looked and saw that the other piece of paper was the brown wrapping paper with the funny designs all over it. It was the original wrapping paper that had covered the money bundle that he took the night he ran into Charles on the coastline. It had a funny little design all over it in faded multi colored blocks that looked like little stamps with perforations in a grid. He had never really paid much attention to the pattern, but here in plain view, it was full of animated details. Baby read the letter aloud and she cried. Mac was a good man and although they had not been close lately, she hated to be reminded that he was still  paying a big price for who he was. She had never met a man like Mac and knew he was an original and had given her a boy like Jordan who was now providing her with a new life and a grandkid.  Then she wiped her eyes and looked down at the other, crumpled sheet of paper. She opened it up and recognized what it actually was : a sheet of vintage LSD.  "What the f*ck are you doing with this," she screamed. Jordan jumped in his seat as if he were six years old. "What," he looked at her blankly ?   "Do you know what this is,"  she asked him ?  Jordan shook his head, meaning no. This here is enough L-S-'f*cking'-D to turn on Jimi Hendrix for an entire tour. "Have you ever heard the song, "Are you Experienced ? Well, this is exactly what he is talking."  Jordan just stared at her, Wanda was quiet this whole time, but now she joined in,  "Well, lets have it boy. Whats the story ?"  Now he had two angry mothers at the table and there was no way out, he had to come clean. 

Jordan started in and described everything that had happened from beginning to end. Then he explained that the night they visited the salon in Venice Beach he had returned the money as an investment in the new business and was setting up an account for their child with the profits. He didn't mention the part where he was also given a motorcycle just yet. Both of the women sat silently and stared at Jordan. He didn't know if it was admiration or anger. Then he looked at the crumpled paper and said, "Well that explains a lot of things."  Baby busted out laughing and Wanda couldn't help but join her. "You mean to tell me that you're not just a revolutionary, but your also experienced," she asked matter of fact ?   "Yes, Momma," Jordan admitted. Then she cackled, "Now I know for sure you is Mac's boy."  Wanda looked at Jordan, Jordan looked at Baby, Baby looked at both of them and simply said, "You kids will never really know what life was like back then, and I don't wanna hear another word about it." She got up from the table but couldn't stop shaking her head and smacking her lips in amazement at the boy's story, the house was quiet. Jordan sat up, excused himself from the table, he walked over to the stereo, pulled out an album, dropped the needle and the sounds of John Coltrane reverberated through the household: A Love Supreme, a love supreme, a love supreme, a love supreme, a love supreme, a love supreme, a love supreme, a love supreme, a love supreme, a love supreme  …    Later that evening Jordan explained that one of the perks to his investment in the salon was half price at the salon and a new custom hand built motorcycle. He then suggested that they drive over to Venice Beach tomorrow, he would pick up the bike, while the two ladies had their hair done and had a second look at their new investment. The ladies agreed. He had created a future and Wanda was seeing this thing in a whole new light. Jordan dropped the ladies off at the salon, gave them the keys to the car and walked over to Mickey's shop. He was still not entirely aware of his own notoriety, but, because of the incident on television, people knew who he was. Mickey was happy to see him and said the bike was ready.  Jordan was impressed, "It's beautiful man." Mickey smiled, "Yeah it is." He handed him the keys. Jordan started the motor, cranked his wrist an eighth of an inch and felt the power of the road underneath his feet. He headed straight towards Lompoc prison. While Wanda was getting her hair done by Cally, Jezz and Baby were talking up a storm, then Jezz looked down and saw Baby's toes. They were perfectly groomed and painted flawlessly with little designs and flourishes that Jezz had never seen before. "Who did your nails," she asked and Baby answered, "Oh I did, been doing nails for me and a family of girls since I was twelve. Done Wanda's too."   Cally heard the girls talking and noticed that Wanda's toes had been perfectly designed with a triple french tip in three tones of light pink. They were gorgeous. Cally said out loud, "You did that ?" Jezz and Cally looked at one another, they looked over at Baby and both agreed quietly. "Why, what is it," Baby asked ?  Jezz replied, "You see that section over there ? How would you like to run our new nail department ?" They described the hours and the pay as well as the tips and Baby said that if Wanda and Jordan didn't mind her staying on, until she could get a place of her own, that she would be glad to have the opportundegradationity. Wanda chimed in, "Baby, you know you have always got a place with us." The woman had been through so much agony and struggle and degradation in her long journey, that it hit her all at once: she had actually landed safely. She was beautiful, she had a son, she had a home and now she actually had something to offer. Her eyes welled up, then she asked what time did they open tomorrow ? "Fine, I will be here." 

Stan had taken Cliff's drawings around to a few of the art galleries and finally found one. They thought it would make an interesting exhibition as well as a great promotional back story that leaned in favor of the idea that everyday people, as well as professionals, had the ability to envision a future happenstance. The art gallery owner was also a clairvoyant. They sold books and the accessories that go with the territory: sage, essential oils, crystals, ceremonial items from around the world. But first and foremost, it was an art gallery with a large exhibiting space that Stan could definitely envision as a first show for Cliffs current works which included the giant centerpiece drawing which depicted the riots and had been drawn long before, as well as a series of works that were connected to cases involving people that Cliff had predicted, through pictorial reference, some particular outcome. When Stan brought the works, he also brought images and articles of the actual people. One of them was a portrait of Junior, so Stan then brought a picture of Junior. He explained that the works involving public cases would not come with a reference, as that would be encroaching on the privacy of those people, but for the sake of convincing the gallery owner, he brought the source proof.  Other images were more date related, the day he had executed the work was juxtaposed with the event later occurring. And still others where Cliff  had drawn an animal and later that animal had shown up in Cliffs life in some way. Stan had explained the incident with the hummingbird, the dear and a family of foxes, wherein the drawing had appeared first and the occurrence not long after. It was an impressive story and what appeared to be an interesting body of work. Once Stan had seen the art work out of the house and the images laid on the floor of the gallery with clean white walls, he saw something totally different. Cliffs artwork had a raw, expressionistic, emotional style. He had a keen eye for detail with a great sense of rhythm and an overall composition that was interesting to look at both up close and from a distance. Something that couldn't be said of many of the professional artists working in the contemporary field of Modern Art. The gallery owner likened the work to Max Ernst and the German expressionists, even William DeKooning. Recently an artist from out of state had cancelled a show that was slated for next month, so the gallery owner suggested they move to frame the small and medium works and the large centerpiece would be attached directly to the wall utilizing museum style specimen attachments as they do with butterflies and the like. The main work had over a hundred small pieces of paper that equaled one giant overview of the city from above with all of the freeways, neighborhoods, the beaches, the mountains and the deserts of Southern California. " Strangely enough, this is the exact combination I prefer to display,"  the man explained, "You want one very large impressive work that only a major collector can afford, than a few mediums for the mid - range or blue chip crowd and then some small works for the everyday buyer." Stan was pleased with the gallery and they set the dates and signed a simple contract that was a fifty - fifty split. The works would stay up for six weeks and then the gallery owner had a year exclusive regarding any new works or commissions that might come the artists way through whatever promotion had been generated in the way of advertising and editorial attention. "Were also going to need a one page bio and some quotes from the artist," Stan didn't know how that was going to work out, but he figured to cross that road when he got there. He wanted the whole thing to be a surprise, so went he got home that night he didn't say a word. It didn't feel exactly right because there were no secrets in their home. But this was special and Stan felt that driving up to a room full of people with Dora and Cliff would simply be the best way to celebrate. He also felt that it was his turn to deliver something special to the boy and this was his way of doing it. Although the gallery owner didn't say much about it, he became fixated on the image of Junior and decide to use that as the main promotional image. It was a striking portrait that looked like an Indian.

Stan had created the biography page, but still needed some quotes from Cliff. So one day, after school, Cliff was sitting in the backyard and Stan came home early and just started asking Cliff questions about the art. "What do you think about when you draw ?" Cliff responded, "When I draw, I don't have to think about anything, thats why I like to draw, it's a way to have something that is mine." Then Stan continued to delve, "What makes you draw something like a particular animal or a person ?"  "Sometimes I have a dream," Cliff explained, "…and other times its like a thing in my head."  Then Stan asked, "What about the really large piece ?"  Cliff looked over at Stan and said, "Gee dad, when did you get so curious ?"  The man laughed and said, "I've always been curious."  Cliff looked at him with a smirk as if to say, 'I don't think so.'  Then Cliff humored his dad and said that, "The big one was like that time I was sick in bed with a fever. There was no stopping it, even when Cliff had wanted to sleep or to get some graham crackers and milk, the drawing told him not to stop. It was a scary dream,"  then he added that, "…the animal dreams are always happy, even when it's a weird animal."  Stan had the boy now, "What do you mean weird ?" Cliff thought about it, "One time, this giant snake came crawling out of a rock and every time it bit me, I became stronger, then more and more snakes appeared and they also bit me and each time they did, I grew taller, by the time they had all bit me, I was way over the city and thats when I did the large drawing. 'Cause I got so tall that I could see everything from above."  Stan looked at the kid and had to hold back his emotions, he took a breath and simply said, "I think we should have these man to man talks more often,"  then Cliff hugged his father and said, simply, "Me too."   Eventually Stan had to tell Dora and Cliff that he had a surprise for them and that next friday night he wanted to take them somewhere. Invitations were sent out and people were told not to mention it as this was to be a surprise. The gallery owner had promoted the show and it happened to be a big art weekend because of a big international art event at a neighboring gallery the same night. People walked back and forth between the shows and Cliff's art was getting some play. Stan, Dora and Cliff went out to dinner and then drove to the gallery. They parked across the street. The place was fully lit and it was now after dark, the gallery was packed with artists, buyers, hipsters. Stan had decided not to put the year of Cliffs birth on the bio and even if he had, most people would have surely assumed that it was the year the works had been made. As they crossed the street, Dora saw the name on the window in large letters: CLIFF GOLD New Drawings and she let out a hoot. "Look at that, what does that say ?"  Cliff looked at the words on the window and said, C - L - I - F - F , that says Clliiifff," and then he got a little confused, "Why does it say my name on that window," because tonight your drawings are being shown to people and your dad wanted it to be a surprise."  Cliff just stood there. He wasn't very impressed with the idea and then he said, almost irritated, "O.K. Now what ?"  Then Stan stepped in, "Now we go inside and mingle with these people who came to see your artwork."  Dora led the boy behind Stan and they walked into the brightly lit gallery. The noise level was immense, everyone was talking animatedly about the work, the Los Angeles Times art critic and some of his hangers on stood listening to his every word. An old lady was spouting soliloquies about the majestic honesty, the passionate execution, the deep and intellectual new take on the city. Stan and Dora were extremely proud and impressed. For Cliff it was the equivalent to a Charles Schulze Peanuts cartoon on television. All the adults simply sounded like. 

Cliff had a great sense of authenticity and he couldn't find it anywhere. Then he looked up and there was Jordan. "Little man, you did it. This is cool stuff. We are thinking of buying the turtle."  Then Cliff looked at him with a strange furrowed brow as he often did under circumstances such as these. "Whattya mean ?"  Then Jordan kneeled down and said, "I want to pay you money so that I can have the piece in my home."  Cliff just looked at him, "You mean to take it, away ?"  Jordan sensed something wasn't going the way he had expected, he called Dora over. Then the gallery owner came over excitedly and exclaimed he had just sold the major work to one of the most important collectors in Los Angeles. She owned works by all the majors and many of the up and comers, half her collection was on loan and toured the world museums, it was a major sale. He had been working on this collector for years and it finally paid off. She wanted to meet the artist. Cliff was now unsure of all of this. He didn't even know if he wanted the works to be 'away' from his home, either temporarily or forever. The major collector and her husband and a few of their friends stood with cocktails in hand  expecting to meet some brilliant young art student or a grizzled old discovery and up walked Cliff. The gallery owner said, "Madame and Messieurs, I would like to introduce to you : The Artist, Mister Cliff Gold.  They thought it was a joke and then they looked back at the giant drawing and again at the boy and realized that it was not a joke at all, it was a wonderful surprise. "We have bought your drawing," the lady said, and to Cliff, again, it sounded like, "Whaa - Wha - Whaa - whaa - whaaaaaa."  Then Cliff said, "Wait a minute." It was one of the things he liked to say whenever he was trying to figure stuff out. "So Jordan's taking the Turtle and now you're taking the City," he asked irritatedly ?  The art collector responded, "Well we are going to pay for it and we will take very good care of it and you can even visit it if you ever want to."  That didn't so too bad, then he looked at Jordan and suddenly thought about Richard Pryor. Stan and Dora hadn't even thought about asking Cliff if he cared to sell the works and they became a little concerned about it. Then they sold two more pieces and now Cliff was not sure about this at all. He walked up behind Stan and pulled on his coat. Cliff became very shy and said he wanted to talk. They walked out front and he looked at his name again on the window.  "Dad, they are taking away my drawings." Then Stan looked at the boy and said, "Yes isn't that wonderful, they really like them," and Cliff just looked at him. "I don't know dad, what if the big drawing gives that lady a bad dream or something. Not everyone can survive the snake bites."  Stan looked at the boy in bewilderment, Dora came out to check on them, "Hey guys what's up ?" She was ecstatic and decided to have a cocktail. Stan explained,"Well, uhm, well, Cliff is having some reservations about letting a few of these pieces go 'away'.  Dora kneeled at the boys eye level and said, "You don't have to let any of them go if they mean that much to you, understand ?"  He slowly shook his head up and down a few times and then Stan added, "…but if you let these pieces go, new ones will come to you and then we can do this again sometime." Then Cliff looked at his name again, he looked at his parents and said, "Our name is  G - O - L - D, Goooooaaaalllllddd ?"  And Stan said, "Yes."  "But how could that be," he asked ?  "…everyone knows that G-O-L-D is the color of a crayon."  Stan said they would explain it to him later. "Look, all these people came to see you." Dora remarked. Cliff looked inside and the only person that caught his attention was Jordan, he really liked the man. "Could we make a deal ?"  The two adults looked at one another and saw that their son had some lawyer in him after all. "What kind of a deal," asked Stan ?  Cliff was working on this one, "Uhm, the kind of deal, it's the kind of deal where you let me do something that I want to do and then I let you do something that you want to do."  For Cliff, this was a major accomplishment and Dora was beaming. But Stan, being the Judge and all, was still caught up in the negotiation, "So whats the proposition ?"  Cliffs eyes opened a bit, "The prop, the prop - uuuhhh  - zissshhh - unnnn is this."  And he said matter of fact, "They take the art and I do Richard Pryor live from Washington DC"   Dora looked at the crowd and wondered how it would go over with this group. Stan was impressed with the boys ability to even negotiate but was torn. He wanted to tell his friends that the boy had sold major works of art to big time collectors, but he was concerned about the words. Then  Stan said."You know that word that starts with an N ?" And Stan drew an N on the window. Cliff thought about it and said, "Yeah."  "You can do Richard Pryor live from DC but you cant say that word, o.k?  and that's my final offer and it's not negotiable"  Cliff looked at the man, who was his father, held out his hand, they shook on it and Cliff ran into the gallery. 

He pulled on the back of Jordan's shirt, "Hey re - member how you said that with the right dudes that the Pryor thing would fly ?"  Jordan shook his head yes, then cliff added, "Are these the right dudes ?"  Jordan looked around and then shook his head no. "But why not ?" Cliff asked.  "I don't know how to explain it, but these are definitely not the dudes I had in mind."  Cliff looked at Jordan and was puckering his lips to the side thinking about it. Then he looked back toward the window at his mom and dad through his name on the glass. "Look, these dudes are white and I was thinking of some dudes with a little more color in their palette."  Then Cliff got all excited, "These dudes are WHITE ?"  Jordan shook his head in the affirmative. Now Cliff knew exactly what to do. He walked to the back of the room looking out towards the street and announced, "Ladies and Gentlemans, my name is Cliff Gold and this is Richard Pryor live from Washington DC …"  and then he got into character and started in, "I see that even some of you White people came out tonight," and he looked at Jordan. "…Yeah, its funny to watch White people around the brothers. especially when they come walking back and see that their seats have been taken. Pulling out their ticket stubs and shit… then the brothers say, Ticket stub ?  Mother f*cker I ain't seen this dude in three and a half years, now go sit your ass down somewheres else … Yeah, White people are something else, you ever notice how they cuss ? It's like, 'You Damn Peckerhead' or  'Son - of  - a - bitch' and the brothers just let it out. My dad was a great cusser, he could cuss like no man I have ever seen and he was tough too. They dont make dudes like that anymore. And if they do, they got 'em all locked up. 'Cause they so damn honest, have told too many truths and shit …  I was even surprised to see so many white people came here tonite. And they all sittin' together, ever notice that ?  Just in case something happens to the motherf*ckers, they'll be ready…  just in case we start something, you know, like a meeting or something … cant have none of that … and they got all kinda long words for shit, like commiisserrattting, what the f*ck is that ? the brothers is just talking in the park and some c*cks*cker in court says they was co-misser-ating…  Damn, that will confuse some brothers too …  We was doing what ? I ain't never done non of that, he told his lawyer, never , ever , ever, nope, ain't done none of that…"  Then Dora gave Cliff the signal, Jordan clapped, everyone joined in and Cliff ended his routine. He walked up to Jordan and asked, "Did it fly ?"  Jordan looked at him and said, "Dude this is your show, you do what you gotta do and wether it flies or not, well, who gives a damn. I thought it was great."  Then they shook hands and Cliff said, "Cool, I gotta go home now,"  and he walked out. 

Fred had been spending much more time at home, now that Alex and the rest of Sam's family had learned how to run the new business' on an every day level. He would show up a few days a week, keep the books, write the checks and deal with all of the license's, warranties for machinery and the like. He began to redesign the house to fit the tastes of a man living alone, as opposed to a husband and father. He turned Josie's room into a music room, with her record collection and original player, some instruments he had found from the old country, an old square banjo looking guitar and some wooden flutes that he remembered being played from his childhood. After the riots, many of his partners began to sell old items due to the fact that their business had been ransacked or just simply trying something new. One of his friends sold him an old jukebox that was stacked with old songs from his country. They were classic forty-five's on vinyl that included folk songs, pop tunes, big city modern stuff and old school classics from his parents generation. He had no idea what the machine was going to mean to him and how many great memories it brought back about his family, his childhood and his country. In his bedroom he hung a collection of swords that he had gathered through the years. Fred was a samurai in the way that he did business and he believed in a code. He bought new everyday machines for the kitchen and made the place his own again. He even began to transform the yard into a zen garden, somewhat inspired by his recent visit to Ryan's family's home. He even took off his ring. On Saturday evenings Fred began to frequent a small restaurant that was within the same market place as his new yogurt shop. The lady who ran the place had always flirted with him and he simply assumed that she was being kind and probably was just a person who knew how to make her customers feel welcome. One day, she stopped by his table and asked how everything was going at the shop and did he know that there was a lovely new spot just a few blocks down that had live acts from overseas, then she simply said, "Why don't we go over there tonight and take a look ?"  Fred peered up, took off his glasses and said, "Take a look ?" "Yes," then she added, "I let the manager close up on Saturdays. I will bring you a pot of tea and then we shall walk over there together and see if it's as good as they say, o.k. ?"  Fred shook his head, yes.  He had to admit she was beautiful and had a voice that was easy to listen to. Fred had watched her move from table to table for the past few months and noticed that she moved like a dancer and was the perfect hostess. He had never loved anyone but his deceased wife and a girl that he knew in school as a boy. Then he stopped to realize that he had never even attempted to see women after his wife's death. Maybe he was incapable of loving again. He drank his tea and the lady grabbed her coat and waited for him at the door. When he reached into his wallet, she laughed, don't be silly. She waited for him to open the door and together they walked east a few blocks and entered into a darkly lit lounge. "My name is Ta," she told him. She ordered drinks and they enjoyed the live music. Fred began to loosen up, they spoke in their native language and he completely opened. They talked about surviving the early wars, the recent riots, local politics and he eventually told her about his wife and daughter. 

Of course she had already known most of those facts because she had already been asking around about him from the time he bought the new place.  Near the end of the evening, they walked upstairs and danced to a singer who specialized in ballads. Fred explained that he had recently purchased an old jukebox with all the songs from their childhood and he had forgotten how important music was to one's identity. At the end of the evening, they took a cab back to the marketplace. Fred, held the cab for Ta and began to say goodnight. She stared at him disappointingly and looked at her watch, "It's not even past ten-thirty, I'm not ready to come down and what will my girlfriends think ?"  Fred didn't entirely understand, he'd been out of the game so long, he had forgotten how to play. "We most go out for dessert and a nightcap," Ta announced and the taxi driver gave Fred a big smile, as if to say, 'you lucky bastard'.  Fred felt like an old man, he paid the driver, opened her door and walked her over to his car. When he opened the door for her, Ta reached over and kissed him, "Thats better," she said and sat down. Fred closed the door, got inside, started the motor and backed out of the parking space. Ta turned on the radio, but it was all modern music for kids. "Hey, why don't you show me this jukebox you were telling me about. I want to hear some music from back in the day. We can pick up something for dessert on the way."  At this point Fred simply let Ta run the show. He had never known a woman who had been so independent and he was beginning to enjoy the fact that he didn't have to lead. When they pulled up to the house Ta said, "Oh I love it."  He gave her a tour of the place and saved the music room for last. When he opened the door and Ta saw Josie's picture on the wall, Fred said, "This is Josie," and she simply responded, "Oh Dear … Oh, I am so sorry."  "It's OK, that was a long time ago" Fred replied and turned on the jukebox. Then Ta reached for Fred and squeezed him tightly to her, he hugged her in return and they danced to the music until they both became tired. Ta grabbed Fred's hand, led him down the hall and began to undress herself under the window light of his bedroom. He began to speak and she simply held her finger to his lips and for the first time in a very long time, Fred fell into the arms of a woman and made love as if it were the last day on earth. He couldn't stop himself and she didn't want him to. Their lovemaking was overwhelming and as the sun came up, she said to him, "I think we should do something totally reckless." He answered, "We just did." Then Ta confessed, "Well then, I think we should keep doing something totally reckless, because that was the most beautiful I have experienced ever."  Fred looked at the woman. She was lovely, she was modern, she was funny and she knew what she wanted: she wanted him. Fred  thought about what Ta had said while staring directly at her and slowly shook his head in the affirmative. Eventually saying, "Yes, I think you are correct. Yes." and then he repeated what She had said, "We must go on doing something totally reckless: together. It's the only way."  She laughed and rolled all over the bed like a child. Ta had been looking for a real man for years, someone honest, someone strong, someone to love and now she had finally found him. Ta and Fred had fallen in love. 

When Fred had cleared out all of Josie's things, he held onto a few items that he could never let go, her sketchbooks, her diary, her albums and all of her scrapbooks. One day, for no reason at all, he did the unthinkable, he opened her diary and began to read it. In it were deep descriptive passages of her longing and her love for Junior. How she was afraid to tell her parents and about the times they would steal away to be with one another. One of the sketchbooks was entirely dedicated to Junior with photos, ticket stubs, napkins from places they had eaten, cards from him and letters saying how much he loved her. A ticket to Catalina island. Fred remembered that she had told he and his wife that she was going on a field trip with her girlfriends. He was starting to realize that he didn't really know much about women and maybe he didn't know much about anything. He took out the original file and autopsy reports, the Diary and the scrapbook on Junior and put them on the living room table where they sat for over a week. Then, he simply grabbed the contents got into his car and drove down into the Harbor. Fred knew where Junior was staying and he had also found out that Chuck, the original cop on the case, had since then married Juniors sister Celia, complicating matters. He pulled up to the house and didn't know exactly what he was going to do. Fred grabbed the three items and walked to the front door which was open. When he knocked, a small girl peered through the screen door.  "Mom…"  She said, "…theres someone at the door."  "Is Louis Junior home ?" Fred asked.  "Celia was working in the kitchen and shouted, "No. he's not can we take a message …"  then the little girl looked at Fred and said, "My Uncle Junior disappeared and their worried about him. He's been gone a long time. But don't say anything."  Fred nodded in agreement and Celia came to the door. "Can I give him a message ?" Then Fred said, "Is Chuck home ?" which startled Celia, she knew that her husband Chuck who had recently made detective and her brother Junior, who had friends on the other side of things, did not run in the same circles. "Well. Yes, he is, he's in his office, just a minute."  She knocked on Chuck's door, "Honey, theres a man here asking for you."  Chuck opened the door, he had recently shaved off his mustache and she was still getting use to it, she kissed him. "Babe, he was asking about Junior."  Chuck walked down the hall and then exclaimed his surprise, "Fred, good to see you. What the hell is going on ?"  Fred had his hands full and nodded that he wanted to speak in private. "Step into my office here. Babe could we have a couple beers, Please ?"  The two men walked down the dark corridor and entered Chuck's home office. "So what can I help you with ? I heard you bounced back with a couple of new businesses. I also heard we let you down out there. I'm sorry"  "That's ok, all things happen for a reason," Fred responded. "I lost a daughter, you gained a wife."  Chuck looked at him and wasn't sure where this was going. "You know Chuck, the other kids car was not street legal." Fred continued, "In fact, since then the regulations on those cars have been updated to specify such. That model car is now known to flip at high velocities." Chuck was confused, Fred was doing a total reversal. "This kid Junior, he had no prior record, he was smart, he was funny and my daughter was deeply in love with the kid."  Fred opened the scrapbook and displayed all the adornments. Chuck looked at the scrapbook and saw pictures of Josie and Junior at the beach, in the parking lot of an old cafe, at a punk rock concert in Hollywood. "Look, I don't know what I'm doing here," Fred said, "But, I think it has something to do with the way in which a person like yourself or a person like myself or the system as a whole could actually get things wrong."  Chuck looked at Fred, but could find no words. "Everything has changed, Chuck. I see things differently now, I see things from a much different viewpoint and I just want to say that I wish things could have been different, for Josie, for Ryan and especially for Junior." The two men sat there quietly. Celia brought in the beers and the room was dead silent. The sound of the girls in the backyard could be heard, they were screaming and playing loudly. Celia opened the office window and told the girls to quiet down, "Your father is working, now quiet down,"  Fred stood up, "No, let the girls play, our work is over." He dropped the file report on Chuck's desk and simply said, "This case is closed."  Then, he turned to Celia and said, "This is for Junior," Fred handed her the diary and the scrapbook, "It's from my daughter Josie, she was the love of his life and he to her. If there's anything I have learned in this lifetime Its that love is the only thing we can keep when it is over." Then the man walked down the dark hallway, out the front door, down the steps and into his car. He started the engine and didn't look back. Celia and Chuck looked down at the scrapbook and wondered where the hell Junior was ?

Junior entered the bullfight arena to the sounds of trumpets in the background and  the plaza was just as he had remembered. He had planned to simply sit alone and bide his time until the final portion of his assignment was ready for completion. But on the way in, he ran into his fathers old business partner Rafael, who had introduced Junior to his son Rafi and a very magnetic young socialite they called Ezzie as well as a group of wealthy friends of the family. Everyone insisted that Junior sit up front in their section, he felt somewhat obligated and complied. Rafi sat on one side of Ezzie and Louis Junior sat on the other. "What does Ezzie stand for," Junior asked ?  Their eyes met and she said, "Esmerelda. My father was a big fan of Victor Hugo."  Junior didn't know who Victor Hugo was but he had seen the original Hunchback of Notre Dame and remembered the gypsy girls name was one and the same. "Esmerelda, like in the hunchback." and her eyes flashed. She had assumed he was referring to the book and now she was impressed. "I have always liked that name."  The men were all talking about the very recent controversy surrounding the authenticity of an item in the news. When Junior asked what they were discussing, she grabbed the paper from one of the men and explained that there had been either a swindle, or a robbery surrounding a recent artifact that was, " Described to be the actual original cloth that Jesus had been wrapped in directly after the crucifixion."  It had travelled to Mexico City to be studied by a group of scientists who had claimed it was a duplicate. Some said that the real cloth had been delivered to Mexico from Europe, but that it had been replaced by a fake. The fabric had been identified as authentic to the proper dates, but that the blood could not have been that old. Now true believers are claiming that the real cloth has been lost. So the controversy continues. " Rafi is a scientist, so he does not believe in such things." she concluded.  "And you," Junior asked ?  "I am very open to the possibilities," she said, through a subtle smile. Then added, "They say you are an Indian ?" Junior looked over at Rafi disapprovingly and whispered in her ear, "Arn't we all ?" Junior explained further, "My father owns a ranch, when we were children, I played nearby a spring where an old Indian lived. He was able to perform rather unnatural or I guess you might say supernatural things that had astounded me. He eventually shared his medicine with me. I know how that must sound to you." She played coy, "Oh, do you ?"  Junior had to laugh, she was sophisticated. "Your english is very well spoken," he commented. Then she parried back, "Yes, we are taught at a very young age that to speak english means we may one day marry a rich American gringo like you."  Junior corrected her, "I am not exactly a rich American gringo, more like a pocho, isn't that what you call us ?" He grinned. "So, you did do your homework last night," she replied, then she turned the newspaper over and Junior saw a picture of the old man who had given him the tour the day he had started his assignment in Mexico City. She looked at him and noticed his composure drop, "What's wrong," she asked ? "What does the paper say about this man ?" Junior inquired. Esmerelda read and explained  "It says that he fell from a balcony." Then one of the men added, "More than likely, he was pushed."  Then Junior asked, "Do they relate the story of the lost artifact to the death of the man ?" Esmerelda read on and said, "No, I don't think so. Why ?" Junior had to keep his cool, then added "Just curious. Junior needed to check in with his people. He needed an excuse to step away, the first fight had started, but it was a young matador and a very small bull, so nobody paid it any mind. Junior excused himself and ran to find a telephone. By the time he got change, found the phone and made the call he was starting to panic. He got his people on the phone and was told that everything had changed. Junior was no longer there to distract from the main event. He was the main event. 

Junior was supposed to be carrying a replica, but the old man had given him the original and now his life was in grave danger. Then he reported that he had seen the local paper and that the old man, who had been his guide, had been killed. A voice on the other line simply said, "Do you believe everything you read ? Your new assignment is to cross the border just after sunset, as soon as it gets dark. There are going to be some distractions and if you don't get over in time then you will not get out alive. Do you understand ?" Junior said that he did. A group of people who expected to receive the original item will now do anything to shut the border down and ensure that the item does not leave Mexico. Be ready for anything. If you make it across, within three miles of the American border, you will see a replica of your car along the freeway, when you do, drop back and let it take the lead. Then we will present an opportunity for you to accomplish, I cant say what it is, you will know when you see it. Understand ?" Junior said that he did and then the voice on the other end clicked. He checked on the car. Then he ran back up the steps. "Did I miss anything ?" Junior asked the girl. "I don't know. Did you ?" she replied. He gazed through the audience for anything that looked obvious. If his life was in danger, then the safest place to be was exactly where he was. Then he answered in a whisper, "Well, maybe just a little. I had to call my father," he lied. Then Rafael said aloud, "Your father says you were trained as a bullfighter at nine, ten and eleven."  "Is that so," remarked Ezzie ?  "Well, I played around during those three summers, but unfortunately, I never followed it past childhood."  Junior had always identified with the toreador, but for some reason he was now identifying with the bull. Sitting among these refined people after all he had been through, now his life was in danger, he looked at the bull and saw Quasimodo. The crowd cheered and the picadors marched out and stabbed the beast. Why was his life the way it was ?  Maybe it was true, that he was an Indian in a world full of overly educated non believers who could explain away any natural or supernatural phenomenon. He had seen unexplainable acts with the Indian and he knew there was a force of life. Most notably experiences with animals. Wild animals in unfathomable numbers appeared and disappeared,  weather, light, healings and so forth. Was that all just a natural occurrence or a trick ?  Now he began to look at Rafael and wonder what had really happened to the Indian ? They said he had just disappeared. "You're awfully quiet," the girl stated. "Yes, I was thinking about what Rafael said about those early years. It was a very magic time for me. But, I guess that childhood is like that." then he added, "I feel good sitting next to you. Does that sound ridiculous ?"   "On the contrary," she whispered.  Then he changed the subject, "What else does it say about this cloth of  Jesus ?"  The crowd began screaming, 'Ole', ole', ole' as the second toreador made his lunge and gracefully, ceremoniously landed his sword directly into the heart of the bull. A man on horseback marched out and dragged the animal out of the ring. The girl answered, "It says that the original cloth had come from a church in Italy, a place called Turin and before that had travelled throughout the middle east. The borders have changed so many times that they don't know if was traced back to Persia, Iraq or Iran." She added, "All the places where your Presidents are constantly fighting."  Then Junior remarked , "My presidents ? You make that sound so personal. We have no power over presidents anymore than you do."  "I guess thats true." Esmerelda agreed. "Of course its true," added one of the college boys. Now the headliner appeared. The man was respected by everyone and this is why they came. The bull entered the arena and the toreador dropped to his knees.Rafael explained the history of this particular type of bull. He knew where and what and for how long it had been bred. A fierce beast created for only one purpose, to pummel a man down. Than Rafael explained."This is the first man this bull has ever seen unmounted by horse."  When Junior looked up, he noticed that the sun was slowly fading behind the other side of the arena and he gauged the time by eye. The picadors broke the beast momentarily, but instead of tiring, it became more enraged. He held up his capote' and stood erect in the classic style of Belmonte, an antiquated approach that was formal and dignified, then the bull had turned and the audience was aghast as the horn entered his left hand on the inside of the palm and extended through the other side six inches. The toreador lifted his hand from the horn, as a group of his comrades came out to carry him away, but he said no. He walked over directly to Juniors party, his composure was astounding as blood simply poured from his hand. The toreador asked Esmerelda for her scarf and Junior grabbed it, folded into fours and then wrapped the scarf around the man's hand a number of times and knotted it on the outside tightly. The toreador bowed, reentered the center of the ring, requested his sword and the audience went wild. Seldom does a toreador continue after a pierce from the bull to a hand or a limb. He must hold the capote and the sword to create the illusion that will allow the bull to distract itself and accept the sword to the heart and succumb. The toreador took several turns successfully, the bull was tiring, he had the beast exactly where he wanted him and when the bull lunged forward, his sword entered the perfect position and the bull had dropped to the floor. The audience reaction had given the toreador both ears and the tail, a rarity. He strolled around the arena holding the honors and thanking the crowd. When he walked over to hand the tail to Esmerelda and an ear to Junior. Esmerelda hadn't noticed that Junior was gone. Rafi teased her, "Where's your new lover ? Did he get queasy at the sight of blood ?"  She took out the roses, handed them to the Toreador and accepted the tail. A roar filled the Plaza del Toros as Junior got into his car and drove north. 

It was still an hour away from sunset and a good ninety minutes from total darkness. His father had a stopping point in the old days where you could park and find out what the border wait was going to be, sometimes if you pulled up at say three pm, you might be in line till five thirty, but if you waited till four or five, you might only wait twenty-five minutes. Junior remembered it was just east of the plaza and slightly south of Boulevard Revolution where he would run to look at all the strange things going on as a kid. He surprised himself by finding it. He parked the car next to the bell tower that sat in the center of the park. As soon as he did so, a group of men wheeled out a freshly forged bell on an old wooden cart. Junior sat on a bench and asked the man shaving ice what was going on ? The man explained that somebody had stolen the bell long ago and they finally had melted down enough brass handles and objects to re pour a casting and replace the object. A pulley lever had been placed at the top of the tower and a rope had been threaded running both up one side and down the other. They tied one side to the bell loop and then the men wrapped their hands around the other end of the rope and they began to pull. As the bell got closer to the top, it became harder and harder for the men to hoist it, even with the assistance of the lever. The men had gotten the bell just feet away from the top and then they tied it off. The man shaving ice said that these men needed his help. It was almost complete, they just needed one last pull. Junior looked around, but there were nothing but young boys and old men. He grabbed hold of the rope and the men all began to pull, just as it reached the top, one side of the lever gave way, the other men let go of the rope and as the bell came hurling down, Junior was hoisted eight feet into the air and landed flat on his back, he heard the bell land seconds later, it missed his head by a few inches. he stood to brush himself off and noticed that the thumb from his right hand was missing. He looked down to the floor like a man would do as if he dropped his keys and there sat Juniors dismembered finger. He walked over to the man shaving ice and grabbed a bucket that was full, he threw the finger into the ice, wrapped his hand in a bandana and turned to see that the men were fumbling around his vehicle. Junior took the ice bucket and swung it at one of the guys, then took his bandaged hand and backhanded the other, blood splattered all over the man's face. Now the trunk was open and the last two men were rifling through it. Junior opened the drivers seat door, tossed the bucket inside, he ripped the eight track cassette player from the dashboard and swung it at the man closest to him, who dropped to the floor and the last remaining man simply ran away. Junior walked back over to the man shaving ice and handed him a hundred dollar bill. He took another bucket full of ice and simply said, "No Habla" The man looked at the bill and assured Junior that he would not speak of this to anyone. He then got into the car, started it, shoved his hand in the bucket and drove toward the border. 

The wait looked to be thirty minutes or so, the sun was setting. Junior jockeyed for a position and waited in line with everyone else. The lines are football fields in length. All along the way,  people are selling blankets, plaster sculptures, cigarettes, tequila bottles, all kinds of artifacts as last minute sale items. A duty free, last stop from Baja California. This was the part that he had always hated. At the end of each summer he would cry his way down this steel snake pathway back to America. Every car next to him, now seemed suspect. He looked terrible and was sure to be rousted if he didn't clean up quick. He reached into his suitcase and pulled out a plastic bag, wrapped his right hand and taped it at the edges. Then he removed his shirt, put on a clean sweatshirt, wetted his hair and refreshed his face which was sweating profusely. His body was no doubt in shock, but the ice was helpful, his entire hand was numb and the cold began to crawl up is forearm. Junior prepared his i.d. and registration on the dash and attempted to conceal all signs of distress, which included the other bucket with his thumb. He put that on the back seat floorboard next to his fishing tackle box, looked in the rear view mirror and a warrior looked back at him. He was now ten minutes from the kiosk. Three cars back a group of people in a beat up car to his left were rustling through some packages and Junior had become alerted. They pulled up to the left of him. Some cars get searched and some cars don't. It all depends on the border patrols individual intuition. Junior pulled up to the barrier, she checked his i.d. ran the plates on the car, which was registered in his dad's name. "I'm an American citizen, my father holds dual citizenship and he and I have been fishing. He's staying on and I'm coming home. We own a produce ranch outside of Centro Province."  When she walked around the car, she noticed the trunk was shutting improperly. "Somebody tried to break into it while we were fishing, but I never keep anything in it so … "  She opened the rear door, peered inside the bucket  and saw the thumb, Just as she was saying, "What the hell is that ?" The car to Juniors left busted through the kiosk barrier and opened fire on the border patrol, they blasted their way through, jumped over the concrete island and were now entering America up the wrong side of the freeway. All entires into America were now on lock down. Junior knew he had minutes to cross over or that was it, he was dead. He ripped the plastic from his right hand exposing the bloodied hand, "I lost my thumb on the side of a fishing boat and if I don't get to a hospital in America within an hour, I'm going to lose it."  She looked at the bloody hand with the tenons hanging and the extended raw bone stub and threw up on her own shoes. Then she got on the phone and said, " I need a motorcycle escort through Chula Vista into San Diego Medical center, an American male in a red 1976 Le Sabre has a dismembered hand that needs urgent care."  A voice came over the dispatch,  "Can he drive ?"  She had to wipe her mouth, "Sir can you drive ?"  "Yes, I just need to get over the border."  "That is affirmative," she spoke into the phone, "Pull up to that lane on the right with the yellow lights. Two motorcycle cops came zipping up around and waved Junior onto the lane, the lights turned green and Junior crossed the border with escorts. The fog rolled in and now it was pitch black. The motorcycles kept a steady lead and were traveling a good eighty miles an hour. Junior stayed several paces behind and waited for the duplicate of his car to appear as he had been directed. And then, just like that, a car identical to his raced up in front of him, he dropped back and within a minute, a diesel truck cab pulling a long enclosed trailer container pulled in front of Junior. The back pull up doors were open and a full steel ramp with shock absorbed wheel extensions trailed along the rear of the truck. He clocked the speed of the truck at a consistent fifty-five miles and hour and then dropped back to forty-five. Then he gunned the peddle back up to seventy-five and his vehicle shot straight up into the back of the cab. Junior  slammed the brakes, as the door rolled shut behind him, he pictured the bell, slowly falling from the top of the tower, it hurled itself through space in his direction and as the instrument hit the ground, on impact, a lightening bolt  fissured up the side of the instrument and forever and ever, the bells first ring would be only his to hear.