Can it get worse? How about a mugging in your own hotel lobby?

So: I go back down to the Sidewalk Café hoping to write. A guy from Chicago sits down beside me and orders—no shit—a tequila on the rocks with a tequila shot back.

WRITING DAY BLOWN. I knew. Now my job became that of a social listener: Listen to another drunk guy.

I had no idea what a sociopath I was dealing with.

  1. It turns out he’s involved in the manufacture of so-called “energy gum,” which I question on its face as concept but anyway: he commandeered my notebook (WHICH NO ONE DOES TO ME), started ripping out pages, and elbowed his way into a writing stance from which he said this: “I am gonna rewrite (MARK) my great heavy-metal lyric which Metallica will one day record as a 2-CD set.”

Friends, there are moments in life when you know for certain the person beside you is drinking entirely too much. These tend to be those moments when you should….hmmmm….what’s the word:


So finally, too late, I tried. He fucking followed me the whole way back my hotel, challenging me at every alleyway in the interim “Come up this way, motherfucker—”

Right up to the Cadillac. And straight into the lobby. I alerted the guy on the desk and made to get into the elevator when Tequila/Gum Fuckwit lunged between me and the door.


“Sir, I’m done with this guy now—”

At which point Tequila/Gum Guy shoved me back from the elevator, I shoved back, he got me twice in the face but I got him once at least in the left temple, not that he’ll notice. He got away from the cops but, see? Here’s one more sign. Never America again.


About johnwylam1957

I'm a poet and teacher now living in Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
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