Monday, December 26, 2005

Ghost of the Redneck Riviera

If there was ever a sign that it’s time to leave this motherfucker, it was this holiday season. In the spirit of Pauly’s Redneck Riviera I give you this heartwarming holiday tale.

Rachel and I were still in recovery mode from the Vegas trip and were easing back from staying awake for two and three days straight to getting back on our normal schedule which is much more conducive to leading a responsible “adult” existence. We went to bed around 1:30 AM on Saturday and just as I we were drifting off to fever-dreamland….

What the fuck??

Now, our house is nearly 100 years old, built in 1910, so we’re accustomed to the strange noises made by the old place. Personally, I’m not altogether convinced that it’s not haunted a bit, but this noise was way too loud to be explained by old age or ghosts. Citing the possibility of pre-holiday vandals, both of us crept downstairs where we were greeted by the situation enlightening, “Darnell, I didn’t fuck my boss and you know it!”

Fucking wonderful, our house is going to be on Cops.

This would be a good spot to explain a bit about our neighborhood. It’s an area called Riverside and is right in the middle of the city. It’s and old neighborhood, populated with bungalow style houses about the same age as our own, all in various conditions (nice for the most part, though). It’s a hodgepodge of homeowners and renters. Well, as the gods of fortune would have it, the house next to us is one of those rentals. For the last three years, our various renter neighbors have been pretty good. It even seemed as though the current renters were decent even if they were kind of strange. Strange, as in, one of us would say hello and they would look at us like we were from outer space. Anyway, for the first couple of months they weren’t any trouble, although the two of us were growing increasingly suspicious of their white-trashiness.

When they moved in, they were driving a 2000-ish Chevy Cavalier. You know, the Chevy’s version of the Neon, and it looked pretty new. Of course, not two weeks later, the rear end was bashed in and it wasn’t getting fixed. Shortly thereafter, a giant white Cadillac, mid 90’s, ghetto cruiser style, showed up in the driveway. Sure enough, once the 30-day tag was close to expiration the Cavalier ended up backed into the driveway, and its plates ended up on the Caddy. Great. The white-trash stock just went up a few points.

So there you have it, a little background. We now return you to the domestic dispute, currently in progress.

Rachel and I are peeking out our back door window at the unfolding drama and I’ll admit that I was a little bit giggly that this guy’s name couldn’t have been more stereotypical. Earl was the only other name I could think of that might have been more appropriate, but Darnell is still pretty good. He’s drunk and crying and yelling, and she’s yelling at him to stop hitting the car (I guess that solves that mystery). He’s doing the tough guy pace and all of the sudden..

WHAM!!! (again)

Good lord, this guy is beating on the top of his new Cadillac with a snow shovel! It would really be laughable iif it weren’t so sad and embarrassing. They yelled for another fifteen minutes or so before finally going back inside. We were getting bored, so we just went back to bed.

Fast-forward one week. Day before Christmas Eve.

They cannot possibly be at it again already.

Rachel and I already know for sure this time what the deal is, and with great anticipation run downstairs once again to witness the show. Oh look, Darnell is drunk and angry again because he can’t get over the fact that his baby momma is a whore, and he has to give up some grips to take care of a kid and his job sucks. As soon as we took up station at the back door and looked out we could see that Darnell had really showed his baby-momma who was boss this time. The back window of the Cadillac was busted out. Nice.

“Darnell, stop it, goddamnit! The baby needs that car to get around!”
The baby drives?

That was the mother-in-law. We still can’t tell whether she lives there now, as well, or just hangs around a lot, but now she and her daughter are out on the porch trying to calm down drunk storming Darnell, who is leaving but wants to go inside and get his cash and his weed first.

BOOM! (There goes one of the side windows)

Evidently one busted car window wasn’t worth it, but two is the breaking point where it becomes proper for the mom-in-law to call the cops, and she gets on the horn. Darnell doesn’t like this idea, something he makes known by busting out another side-window and decimating the windshield. 4 out of the six windows are now gone and He takes off down an alley, and of course the cops finally show, walk around, but don’t really do look very hard for him. Way to go Johnny Law. Let the destructive trash keep on keepin’ on, while you treat me like a crack-smoking hardened murderer for doing 4 mph over the posted speed limit.

As I sit here postulating on the inner workings of the white trash mind, there’s still one question to which I can’t even field a partially complete answer.

Why in the hell would anyone destroy their own car? Or, in keeping with the old Tootsie Pop commercials, “How many whacks with a snow shovel does it take to beat your way to the center of a ’93 DeVille?”

And I’m spent. Back at ya tomorrow.