Friday, July 29, 2011

FULL CIRCLE (#fridayslash)

Press play for some mood music

Patsy was born under a bad sign. That was painfully obvious.

His mother, a runaway, gave birth to him near a dumpster that she would eventually abandon him in. It worked out, though. She eventually would hitch her way into a cocaine overdose and he was handed over to a nearby soup kitchen on the down low. Turned out Patsy owed his life to a bunch of bums in the alley who, in between whiskey sips, noticed the wails of a crying newborn. For the record, they all thought it was a cat in heat -- all except for Rufus. He knew what a crying baby sounded like since he had around 20 of them scattered from Chicago to Tallahassee.

Back then, there wasn't a system set up to protect kids. Sure there were adoption agencies, but in Patsy's case, salvation came in the form of Madame Martha, headmaster of the soup kitchen. A former Army WAC, Martha didn't take shit from anyone and saw to it that Patsy had three meals a day, a place to sleep, dry socks and Sunday clothes.

Around the bums he fit in quite well and by the time he was five, Patsy served them cornbread with a smile. By thirteen he was in charge of certain delicacies -- namely a concoction he invented called 'Chicken Ball Soup.' At 19, he all but ran the place when Madame Martha fell ill from a foot infection that eventually took her leg. She was gone a year and a half later and for a while, her kids and Patsy tried to keep the kitchen open but it wasn't the same.

Patsy's only choice now was to hold a rifle but for whatever reason, the army didn't want him. Chalk it up to flat feet, bad eyesight or the possibility of being just plain ol' batshit.

There was only one thing to do. The only question was what brand?

* * *

He woke up drunk, disoriented and piss-stained and for the life of him, he swore he heard the wails of a dying cat. But it was no cat...

Patsy walked up to the dumpster, looked at the newborn, saw himself and wept. He watched the baby a bit more, its wails growing louder and more pathetic. He thought of his own life and how nothing much had come of it and Patsy knew what he had to do. He left the baby where he was, stumbled on home to his flophouse and called the Police.

That sad baby, Patsy thought, will get it's own family. He'd make goddamn sure of it.


  1. Nice. Could hear Hagen's sax far far away over the traffic slither and near miss sirens. Noir is all about losers losing but sometimes even a yellah alley tom scratches up a good thing.

  2. Poor Patsy he made the best of a bad job I reckon.

    You set the mood very well in this piece and I good visualise him serving those down and outs their cornbread.

    I think this might be a typo "He's make goddamn sure of it" make did you mean made?

    Where do you get those wonderful pictures from that you put up? Love them!.

  3. Opps I've got a typo of my own good should be could ^__^

  4. What a great character to go through all of that and still know what is right at the end of it all. A great read.

  5. ah this was a sad one. love the segue - what brand? and so the cycle continues. peace...

  6. Love the breaking of the cycle. Nice job, Anthony, poignant and punchy.

  7. I should have paid more attention to the title: full circle. Indeed! And I'm glad. I wonder if maybe this kid will give him something to distract him from making his life worse.

  8. Full Circle...I like that...

    Patsy may have had a shit life, but he had a heart of gold. Fantastic story, Ant.

  9. A nice bit of paying it forward. I like that.

  10. I don't want to know what goes into Chicken Ball Soup, Anthony. Just tell me you've never had any.

    Have you considered recording yourself reading these? I know you're hiding and hording quite the voice over there.


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