Warning: session_start(): open(/var/php_sessions/sess_27ad611514ab566f1770313277391eeb, O_RDWR) failed: No such file or directory (2) in /hermes/bosnaweb19a/b1035/ipw.myroboti/public_html/restore/wordpress/wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/wordpress-automatic-upgrade.php on line 121 Warning: session_start(): Cannot send session cache limiter - headers already sent (output started at /hermes/bosnaweb19a/b1035/ipw.myroboti/public_html/restore/wordpress/wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/wordpress-automatic-upgrade.php:121) in /hermes/bosnaweb19a/b1035/ipw.myroboti/public_html/restore/wordpress/wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/wordpress-automatic-upgrade.php on line 121 Strict Standards: Redefining already defined constructor for class ftp_base in /hermes/bosnaweb19a/b1035/ipw.myroboti/public_html/restore/wordpress/wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/lib/ftp_class.php on line 56 Strict Standards: Redefining already defined constructor for class ftp in /hermes/bosnaweb19a/b1035/ipw.myroboti/public_html/restore/wordpress/wp-content/plugins/wordpress-automatic-upgrade/lib/ftp_class_sockets.php on line 8 My Robot Is Pregnant » PART TWO

My Robot Is Pregnant theme song!

tough guy poetry and manly stories of loneliness
all contents copyright Jon Rolston 2004, 2005, 2006

July 19, 2006

PART TWO

Part two of yesterday’s story, where Kenny Haskins and Jim Pilgrim decide to break into a bar to steal empty kegs to sell for cash at the recyling station.

You can imagine that breaking into a bar would not be an easy thing. But these boys were smart. Like old Saint Nick, they went to the rooftop, and up there was a big old swamp cooler.

Not everyone reading this story will be as informed about heating/refrigeration as Kenny and Jim are. A swamp cooler is an air conditioning unit popular in the dry heat climates. The basic concept is this: water constantly circulates over grills filled with fiber. As hot air from outside comes in across the fiber and evaporates the water, a fan blows the air cooled with condensation from evaporated water down into the room. You can see why hot humid air wouldn’t be effective in this equation.

Jim Pilgrim could tell you the theory behind these cheap forms of air conditioning himself. He’d spent 18 months in the sticky heat of tropical Vietnam, drinking formaldahyde-laced #33 beers under the cool breeze of these contraptions.

“Spit on the back of your hand then blow on it. Feels cool don’t it?” He’d say.

With a set of wrenches and a flashlight, the two men set to opening up the swamp cooler and making their way down the air shaft. Over the course of four hours they got the hood off, and the grills removed. They pried the trap up and the four inches of accumulated water poured down into the room below.

They themselves were entirely baptized in moldy water and grease when they hit the pool table that lay under the air shaft. The pool table, for its part, was soaking wet with water flowing down into the corner pockets and out the ball return. But they were inside.

“Find a light switch.”

“No, what if someone sees the light?”

“There ain’t no windows. Don’t worry. You want a drink?”

“You know I don’t drink Kenny. I showed you my thirty day chip yesterday. I need support right now, or I’m likely to relapse.”

“I’m sorry Jim. Congratulations on that. It takes a lot of interior work to make it that far. I’m of course real proud of you. Real proud. You made it over the hump. Takes a lot of soul searching fer sure. Real proud of you. You have my 100% support. If you don’t mind, I do want a quick shot of tequila.”

Kenny was walking behind the bar with the flashlight, Jim was still on top of the pool table.

“Here’s a switch”, Kenny said, and flipped on a set of lights that illuminated the mirrors and rows of bottles behind the bar. Just then across the room a noise came up.

BAM! BAM!

Two bullet shots ripped through the air and the noise stopped, but the lights of the jukebox still paraded around in a happy glow, enticing drunks to come over and pick out tunes.

“You shot the jukebox!”

“Hey just like that country song!”

“We gotta get the fuck outta here!”

“What about the kegs?” asked Jim.

“You dummy, someone’s gonna call the cops! That shit was loud!”

Kenny scrambled from behind the counter and jumped up on the pool table, slipping on the wet felt. Jim stuck the gun back in his belt and helped Kenny up. Kenny grabbed onto the thin metal strips that supported the tiles of the drop ceiling and tried to pull himself up into the air shaft. Unfortunately a large section of the drop ceiling pulled out of its anchors and Kenny fell back onto the pool table under a rain of acoustic tile dust and chunks.

The metal frame work was sagging and buckled across the whole stretch of the room. A ten foot circle around the air shaft was completely torn out and dangling down to the floor. Jim was knocked off the pool table. He kicked his way out from under the dusty tiles and twisted brackets. The two men stood up and surveyed the destroyed room.

“How do we get out Kenny?”

Kenny stared up into the black hole of the air shaft.

“Maybe the front door?”

But that turned out to be padlocked from outside.

“Get a bar stool!” Kenny commanded Jim.

That was placed on the pool table as sirens could be heard in the distance. Both men froze for an instant. The next instant their bodies made up for it, with unnecessary contradictory spasms as they scrambled over each other onto the stool. It wasn’t tall enough. Two feet short.

“Jump,” Kenny screamed at Jim.

Jim jumped but couldn’t grab the outside edge to pull himself up into the night air. He fell back on the stool, toppling over, twisting both his ankles and sending Kenny off the pool table onto his head, a blow that was only slightly softened by the acoustical tiles on the ground. The sirens were much closer now.

Tune in tomorrow to see if I bother finish this story.

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