Saturday, November 18, 2006

Forays into the Forbidden...and The Frontier (or: Burritos and Break-ins)

I was thoroughly lazy today, namely b/c I had a glass of wine on an empty stomach before bed last night, which gave me a royal headache this morning. (What happened to the days when I had an Irish, iron-strong gut?) This one foray into the forbidden set off a landslide of naughtiness. I soothed my aching head with a disgustingly delicious breakfast burrito from Frontier, the ultimate in NM guilty pleasures (green chili, cheese, scrambled eggs, AND hash browns, baby!) and a cup of coffee from the cutesy shop down the street. Rex and I have become regulars since running out of beans a few days ago. The woman who owns the place is always fawning over the dog and feeding him treats. I'm tempted to beg for a cupcake. I know some pretty good tricks, myself.

Roger and Freddie (next-door neighbors) came over this afternoon to finish scraping the layers of linoleum from the kitchen floor. I tore up the top layer, but there's some ancient, yellow stuff glued down to the cement that just won't come up. So, when Roger offered his assistance (for cash, of course), we shook hands and made a deal. Freddie was telling me that he gets harassed by the cops b/c he looks young. He does. He's 31. I thought he was 19. The cops, he said, pulled him over as he was riding his bike home from the store -- sirens blaring! And they pulled a fucking WEAPON on him! Crazy!

"They won't bother you, though," he said.

It's b/c I'm a wetta, isn't it, I said.


Freddie says I'm the only white chick in the neighborhood. It's true, at least for a few blocks. But I like it. It was the same way in Brooklyn, but there wasn't as much poverty. I didn't realize until I moved in how absolutely impoverished my neighbors are. Roger just offered me food stamps at a discount. There's a black market food stamp ring I wan't privy to, but it exists. Breaks my heart. How to tell him I don't need them w/o offending, or seeming righteous?

And that guy, Rick? Lupe, Roger's wife (former truck driver! so cool!), warned me that Rick is bad news. Not only is he pushy, he just got out of prison -- for the umpteenth time. I suspected he was on drugs, and, sure 'nough, it's true. Lupe says he overdosed and nearly died on his front lawn not too long ago, needle sticking from his arm.

There are some SERIOUS DROGAS en esta barrio. Muchas drogas, and just down the street from an elementary school. All night, cars beep their horns and dim their headlights, signaling for a deal. It's fucking everywhere. Totally pervasive, totally obvious, yet the cops are more concerned w/ people speeding down Central. Not that I want the cops around here. I don't. I just don't understand the blatant deals and the city's blindness. Corruption, no doubt the culprit.

Yoga was like a Floridian torture chamber today, without the rednecks and the gators. But it felt really good, especially after sledgehammering out the ceiling and wrecking my back w/ all of this manual labor.

The only work I did today was minimal: I climbed up on the roof and yanked down all of the hideous cable wires that were falling across the front of the house. I don't have a TV, so what's the sense?

Lupe warned me that my house is going to get broken into. I know it will, especially b/c everyone here thinks I'm little miss moneybags.

"Once they break in, they'll realize I don't have squat."

Lupe laughed. "Sure looks that way, honey."

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