22 Feb

His real name, last name, was Metzger but Meddy stuck to him somehow. His first name was John. John Joseph. Named for two saints. Only to us he was Meddy. Must’ve been some sort of childhood nickname or something. Sounds like a little kid trying to say his last name, if you ask me. I met him in 1983 in a garbage can. Marty Pearson put the both of us head down into the containers. Me because I was a filthy immigrant and Meddy because he was a filthy Nazi. Actually, Meddy was born here; it was his father Arthur who was a full blooded German.
A wall of Olympia beer cans inside the apartment. Two Asians sleeping in a Trans-Am underneath our balcony. Meddy says…
(Wait. Did you hear that?)
Meddy says.
–Watch this.
And he pours a pot of boiling water onto the hood, from two stories up.
–Ling Dao! Pick-Pye motherfuckers!
And he laughs. Meddy. That’s Meddy for you.
–What does that mean?
–I don’t know. They say it in The Deer Hunter. It’s Vietnamese. You know the part where they’re playing Russian Roulette? You know, with DeNiro and Savage and Walken?
–Watch this: Ling Dao! Pick-Pye!
He yells this out the window at the two guys sleeping.
–They can’t hear you.
–Their fucking windows are down. They’re just trashed, is all, the fuckers. They’re parked illegally, besides.
And then he dumps out the boiling water on the car. Like some pseudo-royal defending his castle from invaders.
Meddy. Out of sequence.
In sequence it gets more complicated.
The same Meddy who won the trifecta out at Pimlico playing the ponies. Harness racing. About the most crooked, fixed thing you can find. But he hit it. One night, he hit it. The same Meddy who got stuck in a mental institution in Laurel over unpaid bets to bookies.
–I heard he fucking went nuts, is what. I heard he went psycho so his sister Anne-Marie had him committed.
We all heard. We heard what happened after, too.
The same Meddy who pulled the nastiest double prank on me and Wolfgang that summer night when he had Skubecki call from a pay phone and say he was being harassed by some masked freak in Goddard Park and that I should grab Wolfie and a Louisville Slugger and meet him by the concession stand. When Wolfie and I got there Meddy was wearing a black balaclava with only his eyes showing and talking in some weird southern accent. Then he pulled a gun on us. We argued with him, not knowing who he was, and I called him on it:
–You don’t have no fuckin’ bullets in that, you fuck.
And he took off. Wolfie stood there, but me and Skubecki ran after him and caught him in a patch of forest after a while. I took off his balaclava and Meddy started laughing and laughing at the joke.
He said:
–You bloody idjit, you shoulda seen your fuckin’ face: You don’t have no bullets in that, you fuck.
Skubecki was in on it and he laughed too. I felt so thick. I hated being played a trick on.
–And it is loaded, besides.
Meddy said.
Meddy said.
–Let’s keep it going. I’ll shoot off in the air and you both go back and tell Wolfie there was some sort of fight and the gun went off and you left me in the woods.
Skubecki said.
And I agreed. Because I felt like a thick and I thought if we twisted the prank, we could get Wolfie who was probably still standing there. And tricking someone else was consolation for me feeling like a goddamn idjit. And so that’s what we did.
That was Meddy.
In sequence it gets more complicated. We all heard. We all heard about everything.
But I like to think about the last time I saw him. Before all the awful things that came down with him. In the auto-parts store, after a bunch of years. He had a great haircut and his skin was brown from the summer sun. He said he was going back to school and was going to be a teacher. It was strange, I felt inadequate somehow.
Like I had a big growth in the middle of my face and he was staring at it. Or I imagined he would.
–So what’re you doing now?
–Driving a courtesy shuttle for Marriott.
That was the last thing he said to me. I read the papers much later. It was awful. Everything was awful. But it was always best to take Meddy out of sequence.
–It’s like…some kind of Vietnamese thing or something. Like, shoot or do it or something. Watch, watch: Hey! Pick-Pye, motherfuckers. Piiiick-Pyyyeeeee!
And he dumped the pot of hot water right on the hood of that horrible, primer Trans-Am.


6 Responses to “Meddy”

  1. Slyboots 22/02/2008 at 10:45 PM #

    Hey, what’s with the logo on the right at the bottom of the column? I just was curious.

  2. (S)wine 22/02/2008 at 10:56 PM #

    They’re Borromean Rings. Here:

  3. zombieswan 23/02/2008 at 1:55 AM #

    OOOh, I like the new heading. If it’s new. Why haven’t I clicked in lately?! I’ve been so stressed, I feel like I haven’t read any blogs I really like. (Hanging out in the forums on the Chronicle’s website, instead.)

  4. zombieswan 23/02/2008 at 2:00 AM #

    Look. I can has profile pictures. :)

  5. zombieswan 23/02/2008 at 2:00 AM #

    darn.. didn’t work

  6. (S)wine 23/02/2008 at 6:11 PM #

    Not sure which heading you think is new…but it’s not. And your profile pic shows up. I see you’ve lost some weight and changed your hair color. Looks kind of flat, though, this picture. Try some different lighting next time; you need more of a 3-D look.

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