You can read part III here
Dedication for this write goes to NEWSREP brother Ryan B (01a)
“Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world… she walks into mine” (Humphry Bogart in Casa Blanca)
There’s a truck stop here in Albuquerque called the T&A Truck Stop — as the Lord in the heavens that bend above us is my witness. Don’t know what T&A stands for; don’t care a spit. The stop is just another one of my haunts where I go to try and crack more of the human trafficking’s nuts… or at least just look like I am.
There is another nonprofit out there that purports to combat human traffic through the “spreading of awareness” to the drivers of our trucking industry. I intentionally omit the name of that organization, because I’m about to bash the white dog turds out of it.
Now… FORGIVE ME… if I appear a measure of callous on the subject of awareness spreading, but I am a measure of callous on the subject of awareness spreading.
“I’m not really going to do anything pro-actively to stem the tide of human trafficking, but I will spread awareness of its existence.”
Ladies and gentlemen of NewsRep I implore you! I have a 16-lb nugget of solid gold sitting here on my desk as a no-strings-attached gift to the first person who can show me another person who will genuinely attest to his failure to hold awareness of the fact that human trafficking exists in this country and the world.
We are cursed with the scourge of an organization (501(c)(3) not for profit, .org) that spreads “awareness” of human trafficking to truck drivers. Tell, me if you please, how I can volunteer in that organization to help leave stacks of worthless brochures on counter tops in the reception lobbies of hotel/motels?
Points to consider:
1.) I, Ice-G, used to be a truck driver and was exposed to the culture of the brotherhood.
2.) the Truck Driving Industry is not part of the solution to human traffic, they are part of
the problem of human traffic.
3.) I called the 1-800 “help” number on one of their brochures and met with one of the best
bouts of non-helping run-around I have ever experienced. (I swear beneath the bendy heavens
that I have never slammed a phone receiver down harder in my life.)
But alas, I digress…
On this day I sat in the diner at the truck stop, waiting to turn down the menus that Flo would bring me because I always helped myself to the house soups. Her name, in actuality, was not Flo at all, but she did call me “hon” and “shug”.
This diner was an excellent backstop for being at the truck stop. I could sit sipping soup, and watch every character on the campus file in or file by. Hookers that were working the stop came in and out. Vagrant gypsy scum lingered here and about, promising little patronage though overwhelming the facilities.
It was a daily feature film of who’s who in a drug-soaked, pernicious, pestiferous, and petulant society of deadbeats, dead-ends, and degenerates. It was… a truck stop after all.
And then “it” happened.
Little Sister came in the diner and sat intentionally where I would have to see her. She sat at a table with her legs out from under the table like she was already about to leave… not at all looking like she was going to get comfy at the table for a meal. She sat with both arms scooped tightly around her huge pink duffel-purse. I got it, everything she owned and loved was in that bag. Of all the truck stops in all the towns in all the world… she walks into mine.
Probably saw me come in and followed, cuz I really only just got there.
“I’m a nice guy until I’m not a nice guy anymore.” (Delta’s Charles Dexter Chase) I’m an approachable guy by any legitimate person for whatever legitimate standard reason, or so, though, I do fancy myself. When approached too often I start suspecting my kind face is a curse. I’m cursed with this kind face that is so approachable… yet I look in the mirror and realized with a hearty resolution… that my face is not kind at all… so WTF?
She sat just bold-faced gawking at me with a blank stare on her stupid face. I rolled my eyes and my mind hard and gave her a single wave over and instructed in a slightly loud and heavily sarcastic voice: “=sigh= …ok, come on over and sit, Kelly… =sigh=.” Truthfully, I was damn near elated to see her there, but I was positive I didn’t want her to see me appear eager at all. If you suck up to these people ever, you will get taken for a ride of disadvantage by them.
Sister crossed the floor quickly and sat at my both, maintaining the embrace of her pink duffle. I finished my soup in silence, then got up in some more silence, and went to refill my bowl at the buffet. A couple of glances on my part revealed that Sister moved her head and eyes to track me the entire time. She was not smooth at all. She was as I said before, sweet of mind. She may have thought I would try to slip out. Nope.
I grabbed a second clean bowl from the stack and filled it with my same chicken noodle soup. I sat again and shoved the bowl of my same chicken soup toward her only to have her grab it mid-table, tip it immediately to her soup hole, and slurp violently. I followed the soup shove with several packets of crackers catching Flo’s glare at the second order of soup that I failed to declare.
I nodded my head with a savvy smile at her, pointed to slobbering Sister, and held up two fingers. Flo nodded and jotted the addition to my bill. The city’s economy would not suffer the sting of the loss of revenue from that second bowl of chicken noodle soup that night and would flourish yet again. I, on the other hand, became quite dejected, for my mind had raced over how I might spend the money saved by that free bowl of soup.
“Mmmmmm…” I emitted as a segue sort of ice breaker to try to weedle a chat from her.
She slid her empty bowl toward me and gawked.
“Go get you some more, hon!” I invited, gesturing toward the buffet.
Sister blinked but otherwise squeezed her pink purse to her person. She had huge soup wings on both corners of her mouth, and a heavy soup drop dangling from the point of her chin that just refused to break loose and fall. She looked like such an irrevocable little kid. The invisible force that compelled me to reach across with a napkin and dab her dumb face while asking her if she actually got any soup in her tum-tum was almost impossible to defeat… almost.
“Come on; let’s get some refills, mama,” I invited… but she just looked at me with her purse-clutching look and didn’t budge.
“Or hey, how about I just go ahead and get us some seconds, ok?” Aaand she just kept on with her pathetic face.
As I soup-scooped I glanced toward our booth. She wasn’t watching me this time but had taken to laying her head and face in both of her hands, rubbing initially but then just sitting there with her face buried in her hands.
“Stupid fucker!” I snarled as I strained off as much broth as I could to fill her bowl with some gusto that would fuel her up for as long as possible. Sadly that would likely only fuel her through more unspeakable abuse… I think the “Stupid fucker” remark I more so directed at myself:
“Stupid fucker… what are you going to do now? Stupid fucker… figure this out! Stupid fucker… DO SOMETHING!!
And she was gone… just like that, she was gone… just gone.
I waited for her to get out of the ladies room, but too much time went by and I knew she was certainly gone.
“Well-played, geo… very well-played, my man!” dwindled my self-respect. This had been such a miserable situation for me, set up in such a way that I couldn’t possibly win. If I had not assumed she went to the ladies’ room I could have easily darted outside and caught her. Instead, I wasted too many minutes gorging myself on chicken noodle soup.
There on the table where she had sat lay a single nickel… a nickel? Yeah, a nickel. What Sister intended that to mean to me, I had no Earthly clue. Was that a gesture of payment for the soup? It didn’t even come close. It probably was a lot of money for her… from the paltry sum that Biggy Smalls allowed her to have. She likely made upward of $1,000.00 a day for Biggy. Her cut was likely an amount that made a nickel look big to her.
Suddenly that single nickel grew in importance to me, much more than just five cents. Five was a really big, big number, I thought. And five was at the top of the world, ma! Five was a blessing. I held the nickel up over my head; now it was a high-five from Little Sister. I pressed it up to my eye and pinched it in place with my ocular muscles, like an old-school English monocle, one without the chain…
I closed my good eye and looked around the room trying to see into and through my temporary nickel monocle. I wanted to see what Little Sister saw. All I could see was dark and black… void and devoid. I reckoned that it worked, my temp monocle worth five cents… I believed I could see in it just exactly what Little Sister was seeing… every day of her life.
By Almighty God and with honor,