Tuesday, June 08, 2010

The Streak - 90

We're in some casino or another. A turquoise-and-lavender-carpeted monstrosity. We find the hundred-dollar tables. Settle in.

Kyle's talking a mile a minute. "It's not that nothing matters. No. Everything matters," he says. "Fuck!"

I'm impressed by the depth of his passion. 'Til I realize he just got dealt a bad card.

"So what are you gonna do about it?"

"I guess I'll hit it."

"No, I mean about nothing. About everything."

Kyle shakes his head. "I don't know, man. I dunno if I'm gonna be able to play baseball anymore."

"What?!"

"Fuck! Busted! I knew it!"

"Please elaborate."

"It's just that when something so authentic and transformative and revolutionary comes into your life, you need to respond in a real way."

"What the fuck are you talking about?"

"I dunno how to make it any clearer, one-seven."

"Clearer? You don't even know what 'transformative' means!"

"I'll fuckin' transform your busted nose into an even busteder nose is what I'll do."

"Whaddaya mean, quit baseball?"

"That's not all I'm quitting."

"You could stand to cool it with the toot," I concede.

"Nah, nah. That's not important to me." Kyle shifts around on his stool, waiting for the deal.

"What then? Are you abstaining from hair gel?"

He's not looking at me. His knee fidgets and his jaw is clenched.

"Well?"

"Mark thinks I'm an excellent candidate for celibacy," he says finally.

"What?!"

"It's for my own good, Ev. I know it. I know it deep, down inside."

"He told you not to have sex?"

"Not yet. It's pending."

"Pending what?"

"I have some more work to do before then."

"Work?"

"Spiritual work, Ev. Heavy lifting. You wouldn't understand. God fucking dammit!"

"You shoulda hit that fifteen against a ten."

"But when it comes it will be a blessing."

"Christ. What the fuck is happening, two-eight?"

"You think I'm crazy, talk to Esteban. He's going on a pilgrimage."

"A what? To fucking where?"

"The destination does not matter so much as the road be long."

"Who said that, Confucius?"

"Mark Jensen."

I sigh and shake my head. "Are his employers at the New York Yankees baseball organization gonna give him a fucking leave of absence?"

"We've lost thirty-two games in a row, my brother. They're about ready to replace our pinstripes with paisley."

"I can't believe you're going to fucking abstain from sex for this motherfucker!"

"YES!!" Kyle shouts, throwing his arms in the air.

"Huh?"

"Blackjack!!"

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