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Friday, May 8, 2009

Carlyle Junior’s

Carlyle Junior’s

By Mel Bosworth



When I was sixteen, my first job was as a busboy at the local pizza joint. My boss was a real prick, a fat Italian named Bruno with greasy black hair and a mustache that looked like it was eating his upper lip. He used to call me an idiot and he’d always be yelling, “Bussa tables! Bussa tables!” in his shitty accent.

The third week I was there I came down with the flu. I worked two hours of my shift and then asked Bruno if I could go home. It was a Tuesday night and the dining room was empty. He told me to “Bussa tables!” but there weren’t any tables to bus so I helped the dishwasher in the back, a short Colombian kid that wore an earring he’d made from a razor blade. His name was Reuben.


I was pissed so I scrubbed the pans hard with steel wool, making my fingers raw. Reuben told me to take it easy. After about twenty minutes, I felt the blood drain from my face and my body broke out in a cold sweat. I puked on a stack of clean serving dishes. Reuben tried to help me but when Bruno saw what had happened he fired me on the spot. I didn’t think that was fair so I told him to go fuck himself and then shoved a paring knife into the soft folds of his belly.


Juvie wasn’t bad. I made fast friends and Reuben came to visit when he could. He respected what I did and even quit that same night I’d stabbed Bruno. My mother was upset but my father was proud. When he was sixteen, he got drunk and stole a lime-green Dart and ran over a cop that was giving someone a ticket. The cop lived and my Dad became a legend at Juvie, the same one they stuck me in. Some of the counselors from his stint were still there and they recognized my name. They called me “Carlyle Junior” even though my father’s name was Mike and mine was Chris. But I liked it so that’s what I named my restaurant when it opened fifteen years later.


The place was situated downtown, two blocks from the courthouse. We were open from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. for lunch, seven days a week. Three hours a day for business might not seem like much, but Carlyle Junior’s made a killing. Every day like clockwork, the fat lawyers and judges would click-clack over in their smart shoes for a hot dish. The small dining room never had an empty seat.


Over the years, I’d established a network of people I could trust and I brought them all in to work for me. We all had lives and obligations outside of Carlyle Junior’s, so the schedule worked perfectly for everyone. Reuben helped me run the kitchen. It was filled with ex-cons and old friends from my Juvie days. It was an ugly bunch back there but you couldn’t see them from the dining room. You wouldn’t be looking for them anyway. My waitstaff was nothing but strippers dressed in bathing suits and running sneakers, some of their tits so big and tight they threatened to break the knots of their tops.


The food was good but the customers came for the girls. A fat tip would get you an invite out back where you could shell out even more money for some head or a quick fuck. I kept one eye on the alley and the other on the clock; I got a cut of the girls’ earnings but when the sign on the door read “Open,” I needed them in front just as much as in back.


My regular dishwasher was a young kid named Paco. He was a good kid, but a little stupid, and when he got busted for selling meth one summer, I told him the job would be waiting for him when he got out. In the meantime, I needed to scoop up someone to fill his spot for a while. Reuben suggested we bring in his cousin Hector and I said we’d give him a shot.


Hector. The greenest of the fucking green. Hector was a straight A student who always tucked in his shirt and never cursed. His first day there, he walked in on me while I had one of the waitresses bent over my desk. Her name was Saffron and she had red curly hair and a hard round ass. The strings of the pink bikini bottom choked her thighs as she took my cock like a soda can. Britney Spears cranking through the speakers in the kitchen and dining room had drowned out Saffron’s reverse-birth cries, which in turn had muted Hector’s pathetic knock on my office door. I told him to get the fuck in or get the fuck out, but either way, I want that fucking door closed. In a panic, he jumped into my office and closed the door behind him.


I slowed my hips but Saffron squealed and pushed back, keeping me buried to the hilt.


“Don’t stop, baby,” she said.


I told Hector to turn around and give me a second. While he nervously faced the bulletin board, I finished off Saffron. But she was a squirter and a loud one too. When she came, she came like a train, loud whistles and lots of exhaust. I pulled out and she sprayed my knees. Flicking my wrist a few times, I launched a creamy rainbow onto her back. I wiped the shit up with a towel and told her to get back to the front. She staggered out with shaking legs and blurry eyes. I asked Hector what was up.


“My time card?” he asked, sheepishly.


The poor kid was scared to death and I could see it all over him in his shy eyes and slumped shoulders. I apologized for the spectacle he’d just witnessed and then offered him a candy. He studied me for a moment and when he saw I wasn’t fucking with him he took it. He was a smart kid. He reminded me of myself at that age.


I told him that he didn’t need a time card because there wasn’t a time clock. If he showed up for his shift every day, he’d get paid for the full week. I told him this wasn’t like a regular job. I told him that we take care of one another here.


“Do you understand?” I asked.


“Yes?”


But he didn’t understand and that was fine. I told him I was good friends with his cousin Reuben, and if he had any questions, he could ask either of us at any time. I reminded him that he was here to wash dishes.


“Just keep it simple, Hector. You do what you’re supposed to do and we’ll be okay.”


He lowered his eyes and turned to go.


“And, Hector?”


“Yes?”


“I reward good work. You’ll learn that.”


Hector’s first week went well enough. He caught on to the routine and did his job, even with all the madness and distraction that spilled around him. But there were still lots of things he didn’t see yet because he wasn’t ready to. And even if he was ready, he might not want to see.


I hated all of my customers and they all hated me. But the one thing most of them gave me--and I gave back--was respect. They liked the food and they liked the girls. I liked keeping my ass out of prison. I provided a service for them that no one else could and they returned the favor. We were all fucking scumbags but at least I was honest about it. But every week, two special customers would come in. They’d usually get a meal and a fuck, but they also got something extra that they never knew about.


Judge Matheson was a white-haired pig with a slack leather face. He was the cocksucker who had sent me to Juvie when I was a kid, and he’d also sent up a bunch of my kitchen boys to Dresden, the gray shithole of a prison on the outskirts of the city. He thought he was above it all, untouchable. He always ordered the chicken salad sandwich and then fucked Lexie, a short blonde with brown nipples that looked like pencil erasers when they got hard. She always told us what a pervert he was, thumbing his own ass and saying she reminded him of his daughter.


John Riggs was the big shot district attorney, and like Judge Matheson, he didn’t play ball either. He’d waltz in with his pressed black suit and slicked hair, order his turkey pot pie, blast one of the girls in the ass (they charged an additional two-hundred for anal but that was all he ever wanted) and then he’d go back to sticking it to some young kid inside the courtroom.


There was an unspoken gentlemen’s agreement among scumbags that you don’t shit on your own kind. But these fuckers didn’t play the favors game. They took and did what they wanted. They ate the food and fucked the girls, but when good kids like my dishwasher Paco stood before them looking for help, they turned up their noses and screwed them over. I took exception to that shit.


So when Riggs and Matheson came into Carlyle Junior’s one balmy Tuesday afternoon, I told the boys in the back to make their favorites. I stood at the counter, smiling and waving as I watched Saffron bring over two glasses of ice water. As she leaned over the table, Matheson palmed her ass and Riggs squeezed the back of her thigh, his long skinny digits sliding under the lip of her bottom, trying to weasel a free finger-fuck. Pro that she was, she played it off cool, giggling as she swatted their hands away. But I didn’t play it so cool. I stormed back into the kitchen and asked for their plates.


“Did you make them special?” I asked the hard faces on the line. They nodded but I wasn’t satisfied. I snatched
up the plates and went down to the dishwashing station. It was time to show Hector what he’d been missing. He jumped when he saw me.


“What is it?” he asked.


“Just keep washing,” I said.


I set the plates on the counter and tore the lid off the turkey pot pie and the top off the chicken salad sandwich. Then I dropped my pants. Hector, sleeves rolled up to his elbows displaying his scrawny arms, stared at me, mortified. I grabbed a handful of chicken salad and wiped my ass with it. Then I slammed the shit-stained remains back onto the plate. Salt-N-Pepa thumped throughout the restaurant.


“Push it real good!” I screamed, wild-eyed, at Hector. Over his shoulder, I could see the boys on the line laughing. Then my view was obscured by a spasm. Hector’s torso snapped like a snake and I knew what was coming. I clamped onto the back of his neck and barred his arms at his stomach. Holding his face over the exposed turkey pot pie, I whispered to him that it was okay. He puked. It wasn’t much, but it was enough. I let him go and then slapped the lid back onto the pie.


“Take a break,” I told him. “Go sit in my office. There’s some ginger ale in the mini-fridge. I’ll be right in.”


I watched him scamper off and then I pulled up my pants. The kitchen was roaring. Reuben burst from the freezer followed by a sticky-lipped Lexie.


“What happened?” he asked, zipping up his fly.


I handed him the plates and told him to give them to Saffron. I said I’d explain later, that I had to talk to his cousin first. His face was a crumple of confusion, but when I winked, he relaxed.


In my office, Hector sat in the chair by the door, crying like he’d done something wrong.


“Are you going to fire me?” he asked.


I took a roll from my desk and knelt in front of him. I peeled off five-hundred dollars and stuffed it into his shirt pocket.


“If you feel up to it, finish your shift. If not, we’ll see you tomorrow. Okay?”


Then, quite unexpectedly, Hector fell forward and embraced me. As I patted his back while he sobbed, I thought of all the fucked up shit I’d done in my day.


“You’re a good kid,” I said. “Stay that way.”


About the Author
Mel Bosworth lives and breathes in Western Massachusetts. In addition to writing, he is also a cat whisperer. Read more at his website, eddiesocko.blogspot.com.

4 comments:

xTx said...

nice one! Great job!

Mel Bosworth said...

Thanks, Ms. X.

Adam Blomquist said...

Pleasantly disgusting. Nice one Mel.

Mel Bosworth said...

Thanks, Adam. When I think of "pleasantly disgusting," I think of Big Macs. I may have to get one today.

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