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‘Money on the Counter’
With Little Dave on the #36 12:15-45, Friday, 6/8/2018

Little Dave boarded the #36 at Valentino’s restaurant, across the street from where he normally offloaded at 5:25 A.M. when I took the bus home with him as he went to work on weekday mornings. This was 30 yards west and 7 hours later whence Broken-Legged Kong tried to drag tackle me roughly 15 months ago.

Little Dave has a very Irish face, small yes, a sloped button nose and brown hair trimmed over the forehead and pony-tailed low in the back under a fitted hat that gives him a whiggerish look. His hands are tattooed and of descent size for a man who stands all of 5 feet 2 inches in a city of ebony giants Hs statue has led to him being suspected of being Mexican in the past. Little Dave is not speaking as clearly as he used to. Perhaps it’s late in his day, perhaps it’s late in an unspoken game.

“Harford Road is off the hook, getting’ crazy. I got in a fight.

“I was walking out Valentino’s and got punched in the eye. He was big—you know [ebony]—tall, like him.”

[Points to 6’ 4” inch ivory wastrel of perhaps 170 pounds, a big dude.]

“I fought back, put ‘em up ‘en went at ‘im. Wen’ back ‘en forth fer a while. Den durin’ a breather, I say, ‘Why you hittin’ me?’

“He say, “ ‘Cause you so-in-so.’

“I say, ‘I ain’ so-in-so, I’m such-in-such.’

“He say, ‘Prove it, nigga.’

“I put up ma lead, get out my wallet, slide out my I.D. on the step-away en show it to him, “Look, my name is Dave.’

“En he’s like, ‘Oh, ma bad, later.’

“And there he goes, jus’ like dat. Didn’t even know da man.

“Another day, I’m at the carryout counter behine dis dude who got panhandled, like me, by the same guy. Dude was like, ‘Sorry, I got no change.’

“Same here, I ain’ got much ta spare.

“Da man in front is pickin’ up ‘is carryout and ‘snatch!’ Dat panhandler squeeze between us, reach to the counter where da man laid ‘is hundred dolla bill, en he was gone, gone like a flash.

“Da poleese snatch ‘is as up en ged da man’s money back ‘cause he on camera. He out on ‘is own recog next day, 13th offense. Lesson is, no money on da counter, keep it in your hand.”

Don't Get Boned: The Harm City Handbook

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