“No man, I’m serious! I was at Hardware last night and G.G. Allin threw poop into the crowd! Hit some Nazi in the face and now they want his ass- it was wild!”
“Where did he get the shit, man?”
“Uhm, from his butt dude, he took a royal shit on stage!”
Crevis thought about this hard for a minute, “it takes concentration to dump…I can’t image shitting on cue.”
“Pretty impressive, right.” Toby was easily impressed.
Crevis took a look out their studio apartment window, “let’s get over to Punkin Donuts before the rain, I need coffee bad.” Toby nodded and stepped over Wally and Ace who were passed out on an old mattress covered with a Superman sleeping bag and his grandma’s old quilt. The apartment was a complete dump and smelled like old gym socks, mildew and wet ash trays. Crevis had bought some incense sticks at The Alleycat and it took some of the skank stank away.
Punkin Donuts was where all the broke ass punks hung out on Belmont and Clark. He loved it- you could always find some one to talk to, bum a smoke- read some comics in The READER his fav free weekly newspaper- see what bands were playing where. Although since he got the back bar gig at Hardware, he was in “the know”. He was gonna try and work his way up to back bar at O’Bannion’s but only time would tell.
Supposedly, the Crafty Beaver a proto-punk band was recording their new album at Wax Trax, a underground music studio not far from their apartment. He was gonna try and roadie for them. Crevis wished he had some musical talent but he couldn’t sing or play an instrument worth shit. At the end of the day he just liked the whole scene.
It was overcast, an icy wind moist with the last prickles of winters threat, seemed to follow Crevis and Toby over to Punkin Donuts. The place wasn’t really named Punkin Donuts, it was just a Duncan Donuts centrally located by some great punk places. A bored looking Indian guy took their order and they got a couple of large black coffees to warm the feeling back into their fingers.
“When The Alleycat opens I’m buying one of those 99$ leather motorcycle jackets,” Crevis announced as Toby and him sat down on the hard concrete of the sidewalk next to the building.
“With what money asshole,” Toby said hotboxing his newly lit cigarette, puffing like he’d never smoke another cigarette again. He was wearing two zip up black hoodies with an old stained jean jacket that was covered in band patches. Articles of Faith, DK, Replacements, Minutemen, The Damned…and a few silver screen monsters, the latter they bought at a t-shirt shop called Strange Cargo. Toby had worked pressing customizable t-shirt for the owner until he got busted sleeping on the job.
“ Got paid a fine C-note painting the titty bar, asshole,” Crevis shot back. Toby nodded in acknowledgment.
There had been an extremely skuzzy, piss soaked bar in the neighborhood that needed to be cleaned out and painted. A guy had gotten shot and the body sat there for a week…so when Crevis and Wally came on to clean up it was literally barf inducing. But for a hundred each, in cash and all the free beer they could drink until the tap ran dry, well it was a, “great gig,” according to Wally.
“Rent is due ya know,” Toby reminded Crevis.
“What the fuck man, when did you ever care about rent?”
“Since I saw my old man last week and I never want to live with that mother fucker gain.” They watched a sexy girl with green fishnets and a leather skirt walk by- even with a bald head she was hot.
Toby’s dad was a rough guy who had bartended since forever and was a complete alcoholic. He job jumped from Green Door on Orleans, Simon’s in Andersonville and Green Mill in Uptown…and had managed to piss off all the most powerful bar owners in the city- finally ending up at a late night cop bar called Early Tymes. The last person these patrons wanted to see was Toby strolling in with his punk rock jean jacket, mohawk and combat boots.
“The prick sees me come in, all the pigs is staring a hole into my ass and dear old dad, grabs me and drags my ass to the front door. A real show for the boys. ” Toby tried to look tough but you could tell he was hurt. “I was trying to tell the bastard he needs to go check on mom- she fucking has cancer man…like he could care. Have another drink dick head.” Toby hit that cigarette and it glowed as hot orange as the rage he was feeling but couldn’t explain.
“Fucker has got another thing coming…” he dug in his inside pocket and dangled a set of key’s with a four leaf clover key chain. “When he grabbed me I snagged his keys… went back early this morning and gabbed the first case of hard liquor I could find and a carton of Lucky’s.” He smiled with pride, like an evil cat.
I would be glad to help him polish off some of that fine hooch.
“So what’d ya snag?”
He looked at me, standing a little bit taller…”I think it’s European, it’s called Malort!”
I couldn’t bare to tell him the stuff tasted like cat piss and ear wax with a rotten grapefruit as garnish. It was seriously the worst booze he could’ve nabbed.
One of the stoner guys who was sitting near us was listening to our conversation, “kid, they only make that shit in Chicago…they tried to make absinthe…a liquid hallucinogenic…but the shit just tastes like paint thinner.” Tobys face lost its glow. “It’ll get ya fucked up, though.” The guy added, flashing his toothless grin. Toby’s glow returned.
We headed over to Rocket 69 to pick up some rolling papers. The place was full of hippies and neither of us liked hippies. So we got our shit and headed over to The Weiner’s Circle for some char dogs.
Wally and Ace were already there chowing down.
Crevis swept in and took a big bite of Wally’s char dog, as he chomped, and Wally groused, Crevis added, “nah, this ain’t enough for me, I need a Double Char Burger and some-a those cheese fries.”
“You better share summa yours Crevis, you ate most-a mine, ya asshole.”
“Quit your pouting ya pussy.”
But in the end Crevis shared some of his fries…. Wally did have a car after all and if they wanted to go see a triple feature across town at The Portage Theater, he had to stay on Wally’s good side. All three films were gonna rock…Pick Up Summer, which looked like a stroke film, Alien Contamination, which he heard was like a low budget version of Invasion of the Body Snatchers and the cream de la cream Basket Case, he’d already seen it and it never got old. His mom literally had the same basket but no insatiably hungry mutant lived in it, just her pads and girl stuff.
Wally’s car was a huge gas guzzling rust bucket that blew dark gray smoke when you fire it up. We all piled in and headed to the show. His backseat was filled with shit. We all were surprised he didn’t have roaches. He had a beer box full of print clippings he found cool, he was hot for us to make a Chicago punk ‘zine.
“You still want ta’ make a zine dontcha,” Ace said finally emerging from his silence. He was rummaging through the box.
“Yeah man, there was this zine my brother use-ta read called Sniffing Glue…And Other Rock “N” Roll Habits… it was sooo fuckin cool, funny and really turned me onto some bands like Eater and Buzzcocks.”
We all proceeded to make fun of him for his high aspiration but we were in. We’d give it a shot. This girl who was into Crevis worked at a copy shop in Wicker Park and she could do personal stuff after regular hours. Maybe it would be a way to make a name for himself. Like John Holmstrom did with his PUNK magazine. Crevis figured he could be the Legs McNeil, “resident punk” who’d give Wally all the choice stories from the clubs.
They parked the rust bucket in an illegal spot by the Portage because per usual they were running late. There was this group of people kinda jamming up the doors by the ticket booth, fuck, he thought now they’re gonna miss the whole set up of Pick Up Summer. Some fancy people with expensive looking “too new”
leather jackets and Hollywood new wave hookers were buying tickets…then Toby spotted him, “Dude, it’s Joey Ramone, no ones got a face like that…”
“…or hair,” Wally added, already sipping from a flask hidden in flack jacket. Joey Ramone had a strange long over grown shaggy dog look with…bangs?! Somehow he made it look cool and considering he was the king of NYC punk scene and CBGB’s the famed rocker bar, we all starred at him, jaws dropping in awe. “How could he be here, 12ft. in front of us…” Crevis gaped in awe. “What should we do,” Ace said looking at Crevis like he’d have a plan.
Before anyone knew what was happening Toby ran up to Joey and shoved a bottle of that rat juice Malort into Joey’s hand. “Joey and the girl with the Debbie Harry dye job nodded in approval, “Thanks Man,” Joey nodded in his rangy all black clad coolness that even fame couldn’t smudge off. “Thank you man for step’n up for all us punks and showing us the way.”
Joey said something in approval and had his people buy us our tickets and whatever we wanted at the concession stand.
By now security, which was two big bikers in AL’S Moving t-shirts were pushing us away, but Joey gave us one last wave before he disappeared into the theater,
“Greatest moment of my mother fuckin life,” Toby said…
“I knew today was gonna be a great day,” Crevis said as the usher showed us to our seats.