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The White Homeland
By Tony Cox

When my two boys were still babies, we lived in a little rental house down in felony flats, over on 64th and Tenino. Those were happy times, me and their mom and their sister, all one happy family. My two boys are 18 months apart, so I had my hands full, working 60 hours a week, and then coming home and changing diapers, feeding them, and doing what I could to let their mom get a little sleep. I really did treasure every second I got to be around them at that age. It wasn’t a hassle, it was a joy.

Trouble is, I didn’t settle all the way down right away. I was still acting like a teenager, getting into stupid shit, like telling some guy at the bar I’d kick his ass with one hand tied behind my back. Someone in the parking lot actually had zip ties, and tied my right hand behind my back, to my belt. I ended up with a couple broken ribs over that great idea. More than once I had to hide the family car in the garage to repair body damage. I’m ashamed to say that my wife and children have had to pick me up from outside the county jail, just dumb shit that I was too old to be doing. My wife finally figured out that as long as I had a steady supply of books that I wanted to read, I’d stay out of trouble for the most part.

There was a dopehouse across the street from us. Big fat Mexican living there, people coming in and out all the time, he definitely wasn’t selling insurance.

He had a roach coach that he sold dope out of too.

I didn’t really care about his drug dealing, nobody ever messed with my house or family, most customers were paranoid, and just trying not to be noticed. The only minor annoyance would be the sketchy fuckers parked in front of my house at times. Usually, all I had to do was walk towards their car and they’d take off.

One Sunday morning I came home from work, and my wife was freaked out. She said she was at a yard sale in the neighborhood the day before, and the fat Mexican had threatened her.

There she was, with 2 babies in the stroller at a yard sale, a 5 year old little girl hanging off of her skirt, and this meth mouthed Mexican motherfucker tells her that if he finds out that she’s the one who’s been calling the police, she was gonna be sorry. I don’t know exactly the words he said, only that he threatened her.

I hadn’t had anything to drink that morning, but it was my Friday, and I had a full 40oz of Mickey’s in my hand when she told me. I immediately walked across the street with it.

I knocked on the door and he answered. I very quietly told him that he will never talk to anyone in my family ever again. I also told him that my wife will call whoever she wants to, whenever she wants to, and then asked him if he had a problem with that. I think I had him scared, because all he did was nod his head and apologize. What a fuckin’ tough guy. I was gonna smash that bottle on his head if he so much as flinched, or disagreed with anything I had to say. See, the thing is, it would have been a mistake to just walk over there and start thumpin’ on him. I still gotta live across the street. My kids sleep there. You might think I’m a pussy for not maiming him on the spot, but the whole point of the thing was desiring peace where I live, not starting a war. He never bothered us again.

Fucking tweakers......Living in an almost all white city isn’t quite the utopia that some would have you believe it is. Back when I was coming up, there was a certain standard of behavior that was expected. I couldn’t quite live up to that standard personally, and so, I paid the price. If I was born 20 years later, I’d have an almost clean record. See, I’m double fucked. Now that I’m a goody two-shoes, taxpaying citizen, there’s state-sponsored anarchy all around me.

Around that same time, me and the wife were going for a walk with the babies in the stroller, over on 72nd and Flavel, and this giant ass pit bull comes running out of some duplex apartment, he’s going straight for the stroller, lookin’ pissed off and hungry. I get between the dog and the stroller, flick my knife open and before I know what’s happening, my wife was behind it, had the thing in a fuckin’ headlock! I’m trying to figure out how to stab this thing in the neck without cutting my wife, and just then, two tweakers come running out, guys in their 30’s, no shirts, one of them has a big SS tattoo, he’s saying “Hey! That’s my dog! What the hell are you doing to my dog!” They start coming towards us like they want to start something.

My wife still has this thing in a headlock, and I’m waving my blade around like a crazy person, finally she yells, “Grab your dog!”. I’m holding the knife, and screaming at them that if I ever see their dog again, I’d kill them first and make the dog watch. Turns out, my wife used to work at a pitbull rescue shelter, and she knew how to deal with the beasts. I was really impressed with how she handled that dog. She was always full of surprises. Those tweakers and their dog moved out a month later and so did my wife. She left without any warning, I came home one day to an empty house and a note.

Apparently, I’m not that much fun to be married to. Funny thing is, I moved into those guy’s duplex as soon as they moved out. Only had to move my meager possessions but a few blocks.

Let the World Fend for Itself

Big Ron's Baltimore: A Working Man's View of Urban Blight

Add Comment
BobFebruary 2, 2018 2:46 AM UTC

I like reading about real lives. Less so about characters from authors who have to study real lives.
BobFebruary 2, 2018 1:21 AM UTC


I'm flattered. A butterfly flaps its wings...ha ha.

I tried to contact Andrea Nolen through New Pop Lit to bring you to her attention, but to no avail. She used to blog about the cloak-and-dagger brigade but also on the art of writing. Here's an archived sample:

As I said before, you've got a natural flair for story-telling. Not everybody can write in a way that is both engaging but not labored or contrived. Told like you were the guy on the next bar stool. It's a gift.
Tony CoxJanuary 31, 2018 2:23 PM UTC

Thanks Bob! I’m gonna dedicate my first book to you. “For Bob”. Not kidding.
BobJanuary 30, 2018 11:09 PM UTC

@ PR: I've often wondered whether a karate chop to the spine/neck wouldn't turn off Cerberus' lights for good.
BobJanuary 30, 2018 7:22 PM UTC

Great story by Tony and also "anonymous". Thanks.
AnonymousJanuary 29, 2018 9:52 PM UTC

I love dogs. I lived on a rural back road for years. For whatever reason dogs got abandoned there. In retrospect, problem dogs that the owners didn't want to send to the kill shelter. One day a pit/golden mix showed up. Great powerful lovely dog. Of course the kids fed it hot dogs, which means you have adopted the damn thing. I have raised hunting dogs, especially when i was a kid. The most important thing is to establish absolute dominance; they become happy and you can relax. This entails- if the dog is running away, whether scared or in chase, and you call it back and it comes back; well then- it it is good boy.

Anyways, me and this dog got along famously after we sorted things out. It completely ignored the wife's and kids commands however; which i thought was funny (haha) at the time. Also, i had a terrier mix. They are the most loyal of the breeds, tough as hell too. This terrier got along with Goldie too but i did notice that it would assume a protective stance between my toddlers and the pit/golden mix. This got me thinking along very dark lines. The end of the story: Goldie killed the terrier with one strike for eating out of his bowl. I got called home to a pandemonium of which you can probably imagine. Goldie knew he'd been bad; he ran. I shot him in the head at full gait at 40 yards. One of the best shots of my life.

Two points as i know i sound like a psycho. 1 I had to do someone else's dirty work and did not like it. 2 We have domesticated wolfs/dogs and different breeds because ruthless men killed/culled them into what we know today.
PRJanuary 28, 2018 3:49 PM UTC

Haha I could've written a similar article. A relative lives in a huge mansion on a golf course and even his dog has been attacked by pit bulls. The black guy down the street is a retired basketball player who owns them and lets them run feral. I've stepped in front of pitbulls a couple of times to stop them from attacking. They tend to know when a larger, meaner animal is about to take them out. As dogs, they are cowards - kind of like the Boston PD of the dog species. If they ever latch onto someone you love, get behind them, grab onto their hind legs and try to break their legs behind their back like you'd break chicken legs off a roasted chicken. DOes this make sense? Then, of course, apply the "can-opener" with your knife.

With criminals, most are so fat or out of shape that they can barely breathe, much less fight. It's funny how many of them roll over in response to the slightest pushback. Maybe this is why they own vicious dogs. I haven't seen any of my neighbors' pitbulls since I chased one with a pitchfork.

I recommend against committing any assaults on your neighbors' property. I was screaming at one after the latest pitbull episode and when he told me I was on his property, I backed up onto the sidewalk before I resumed screaming. It was all bluster intended to draw attention to their behavior - I never intended any harm. It was quite effective.