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Hello Lee Rudnicki. It's me, Ty Hardaway. You probably remember me
from back when we were young and would play on the docks together.

I thought about you the other day.

I remember it like it was yesterday. Perhaps it
was, or
maybe it wasn't? Memory's not what it was. In
the good old days I could remember everything like
music and notes and sometimes the rests. Sometimes
I even remembered to take the anti-psychotic/anti-
depressant/anti-neurotic/anti-

anti-social meds.

Oh yeah, it was like any other day,
I was panhandling for "food" money (we always say it's for food - I usually buy cheap fortified wine or some bad street drugs actually) when I
noticed this guy in the distance that walked
just
like you. Goddamn, I said. Just like that, "Goddamn!
that looks just like Lee Rudnicki. What is he doing in
Kansas? I thought, just like that?

So, I stopped pestering this old lady for quarters
and chased the Lee-Rudnicki-walking-image-

impostor
down and screamed, "QUARTER!" [that's my panhandling
schtick, screaming "QUARTER!" - to the point,
huh? You know what they say, every successful bum has his own
and very sophisticated technique].

Anyway, this Lee Rudnicki wannabe jumps out of his skin. I
must have scared him half-loopy because he look frightened
and desperate; as if I were a bum trying to beat him
out of quarters for "food."

Well, it wasn't you. Ha! Like I have to tell YOU it wasn't
YOU. You probably would have remembered this guy with long, scary
hair coming out every which way with a beard not shaved
since I don't remember, and only six teeth left screaming, "QUARTER!"
with his hand extended; nails dirty, cuts and scratches everywhere.

You wouldn't have recognized the smell.

You probably wouldn't have even recognized me. I betcha though you
would have given me a damn quarter though! You've always been so generous
and
kind to small, furry animals.

So, this guy says, "Uh, I don't have a quarter, can I buy you some coffee?"
Well,
I don't really drink coffee so I walked away mumbling
Something to him about not being the REAL Lee Rudnicki and that he was
a sorry citizen impersonating Lee Rudnicki right in the middle of
Atchison, Kansas like that and all.

I remembered a story a friend told me once, he said he heard the story from
a mutual friend, Dave Forziati. Here's how it went:

"I like monkeys.
The pet store was selling them for five cents a piece.
I thought this was odd since they were normally a couple thousand.
I decided not to look a gift horse in the mouth so I bought 200 of them.
I like monkeys.
I took my 200 monkeys home.
I have a big car. I let one of them drive.
His name was Sigmund. He was retarded.
In fact, none of them were really bright.
They kept punching themselves in the genitals.
I laughed.
They punched me in the genitals.
I stopped laughing.
I herded them into my room.
They didn't adapt very well to their new environment.
They would screech and hurl themselves off the couch at high speeds and
slam into the wall. Although humorous at first, the spectacle lost its
novelty halfway into it's third hour.
Two hours later I found out why all the monkeys were so inexpensive; they
all died.
No apparent reason.
They all just sort of dropped dead.
Kinda like when you buy a goldfish and it dies five hours later.
God damn cheap monkeys.
I didn't know what to do.
There were 200 dead monkeys lying all over my room; on the bed, in the
dresser, hanging from my bookcase. It looked like I had 200 throw rugs.
I tried to flush one down the toilet. It didn't work.
It got stuck.
Then I had one dead, wet monkey and one hundred ninety-nine dead, dry
monkeys. I tried to pretend that they were just stuffed animals.
That worked for awhile, that is until they began to decompose.
It started to smell real bad.
I had to pee but there was a dead monkey in my toilet and I didn't want to
call a plumber. I was embarrassed. I tried to slow down the decomposition
by freezing them.
Unfortunately there was only enough room for two at a time, so I had to
change them every 30 seconds.
I also had to eat all the food in the freezer so it didn't go bad.
I tried to burn them, but little did I know that my bed was flammable.
I had to extinguish the fire.
Then I had one dead, wet monkey in my toilet, two dead, frozen monkeys in
my freezer, and one hundred ninety-seven dead, charred monkeys in a pile on
my bed.
The odor wasn't improving.
I became agitated at my inability to dispose of the dead monkeys and I
really had to use the bathroom.
So I went and severely beat one of the monkeys.
I felt better.
I tried throwing them away but the garbage man said the city was not
allowed to dispose of charred primates.
I told him I had a wet one.
He couldn't take it either. I didn't bother asking about the frozen ones.
I finally arrived at a solution.
I gave them out as Christmas gifts.
My friends didn't quite know what to say.
They pretended to like them, but I could tell they were lying.
Ingrates.
So I punched them in the genitals.
I like monkeys."

_____________________

 

But, I don't believe it for a minute. I KNOW monkeys burn just fine, thank
you.

So, anyway, Lee Rudnicki I gotta go. These people might come home at
anytime and not understand why I'm in their house. They might be scared
too.

It's the smell ? the smell of bum.

Anyway,

But, I just wanted to tell you that I thought about you the other day.

 

Your pal,

 

Ty