TERRORIST PERFORMANCE ART-The first thing I ever had published

Posted: March 25, 2010 in Short Stories
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New York City, late nineteen-ninety-nine… I find myself living in Hell’s Kitchen. I share a one bed room apartment on West 49th Street with an El Salvadorian. His name is Hector. Hector has three loves in his life. These loves are drugs, hookers, and music.
So let’s describe the living situation. The floor plan is a simple one small 10×10 bedroom, and another 10×10 room attached. The non bedroom doubled as kitchen and shower. I can literally cook food and shower at the same time. Luckily the toilet is in a small closet between the two rooms.
I come home one day and look up at the exterior of the building. What do I see? Strobe and laser lights flashing out my apartment windows. Latin house music bumping through the air at top decibels. I don’t even touch more than six stairs up the six flights that lead to my apartment. I must know what the fuck he’s doing!
I burst through the door to find Hector and his friend Ralphy have got some sort of club lighting system and CD mixer, complete with fog machine, operating in the rat’s nest of an apartment we occupied.
“What the fuck is this?”
“You, me and Ralphy are going to be DJ’s.”
” Man, wherever  people want us, weddings, parties what ever!”
“That’s cool I guess, where the fuck did you get the set-up?”
“Oh shit, Ralphy got the hook up. This only cost like $250.00”
“Whatever man… but do you think we could shut the fog machine off?”
“Yeah man that’s cool, what you think about the name DJ House?”
“Hey it’s your name.”
Hector never ended up never even booking one gig although from time to time I’d come home to DJ House and DJ Papi Chulo’s Latin disco tech. Located at 549 W.49th St. Apt. 54. They’d have hookers from the neighborhood dancing in the shower like it was a fucking cage.  Random Latino’s sucking on pacifiers, while rolling on ecstasy. It was some sort Latin freaknik in our tiny one bedroom apartment. It truly was an insane living situation.
At one point Hector found these five Polish girls visiting the States for the summer. The bastard ended up renting them the kitchen to live in for a hundred bucks each a week.
“Think about it Eddie, now we only got to come up with 150 each, man I love rent control.”
He will go down in history as the craziest room mate I’ve ever had!
Now, I loved New York, and it loved me. I fitted in perfectly. There’s far too many lunatics living in that city for me to stick out like the sore thumb like I often do. Constant stimulation and creativity are the blood that pumps through the arteries of this city. For me it was, anyway.
When I wasn’t working for several different catering companies in the city, I’d spend my time with Asend. Asend was the founding father of a graffiti crew called the Hostile Bomb Threat Kids, a crew I call my family to this day. The man is one of the most brilliantly talented artists of our time. But he’s a master procrastinator.
We’d spend every night being some one else. That was the great thing about New York – so many people. Who was going to be able to find out if the two drunk lunatics at the bar that day weren’t a professional skate boarder and a journalist doing a story on New York Cities skate scene. Hell, we’d been everything from Jarred Leto’s stand-in for Requiem for a Dream to famous artists.  It didn’t matter it was a way to entertain ourselves with how far we could push a story.
This period in my life also spawned my writing. I’d write countless letter’s to companies and politicians making ludicrous demands and requests. For instance I once wrote the good people at General Mills a letter telling them I had a six box a day Count Chocula habit. I went on to tell them my local grocer had quit carrying it, and I was having severe withdrawals and hoped they could hook a brother up with some free boxes. Another letter was written to Rudy Giuliani stating I could curb NY C’s rat problem if he’d just supply me with a single Humvee, with a dead rat on the hood, the supplies to make one thousand gallons of jellied gasoline, a couple flame throwers, a subscription to Soldier of Fortune, and three first class tickets for my most esteemed colleagues to help me out. He never got back to me.
Asend always helped fuel my madness. One day we were walking through the city sticker bombing and I decided to stop at this local Bodega. In the Bodega I found some cap guns. So I bought one for him and one for me. We test fired them and found them to be extremely loud.
Shortly after we got a call from our friend Jeremiah. He informed us there was a few gallery openings that night and we should hit them up for at least free drinks. Fuck it! We decided that if we can’t make any connections it’s always fun to mind fuck pseudo intellectuals.
The shows all happened to be in Brooklyn so we hopped on the L train, and made our way over to Williamsburg, brown-bagged forties in hand. By the time we got to the first show we were pretty buzzed. A few complementary vodka red bulls and we were ready to get HBTKRAZY! So off to the next show we went.
By the time we got to the next show the booze is really starting to kick in. I reached into my pocket and found the cap gun I’d forgotten all about. As we were making our way to the gallery somehow we decided we need to do a performance art piece. I chased Asend straight into the gallery screaming that I was going to kill his ass! We both draw our guns and begin shooting at each other.
People were hitting the floor screaming. Women were crying, a stampede to the exit erupted. Then everyone realised neither of us was hurt, never mind shot. We had nothing but harmless cap guns. An uneasiness settled over the crowd. Some saw the true art in this performance, a select few. Others were just disgusted and called us terrorists.
Some people are just unaware of true art, and this was art at its finest. That quack Andy Warhol would have been proud of that piece even. It obviously wasn’t as artistic an audience as we had hoped for. In fact most of them were pretty pissed.  Fuck’em, we decided, and continued to mingle with the more appreciative members of our audience.
The night went on and we found ourselves in some sort of drunken daze, wandering through Williamsburg in a drunken stupor. Somehow we navigated ourselves home. Me to Manhattan and Asend to Hoboken.
The next day I was awoken by a phone call from my brother. He said he was coming with his friend Billy for the New Year’s Eve celebration. That just happened to be in two days. He’d be here in the morning, arriving by train.
Well, a blizzard of massive proportions rolled in that night. The city was at a standstill. Early the next morning I walked my way through three feet of snow to Pen Station. I found my brother and Billy already out of their gourds. A few beers at the bar and we made our way back to my house.
Hector was there upon our arrival. The first question out my brother and Billy’s mouth was “Can we get some fucking coke?” This lit Hector’s eyes up like the ball that about to drop the next day. After a few phone calls we found a delivery service that was willing to oblige.
Once the coke arrived, my brother, Billy, and Hector started busting out lines. Hector was the type of guy who did tiny key shots of coke. My brother and Billy were not.
“Let me show you how to do this shit!” Billy said.
He then proceeded to cut a three inch rail, fat as my pinkie, across the mirror. He sniffed that thing in a millisecond. My brother followed suit. Hector’s eyes just lit up.
“Let me try that!”
The next thing I know, we’d gone through a quarter ounce of coke that was supposed to last us the night in about an hour and a half.
“More! We need fucking more!” my brother and Billy screamed.
Another call was made this time we needed at least half an ounce. During the wait Asend made his daily visit.
“Holy shit, you guys are starting early!” Mind you it’s two o’clock in the afternoon.
“Fuck yeah you want a line?”
“Of course!”
So there we were, the five of us, sniffing monster lines of coke all afternoon.
Suddenly the already tight walls began to close in on us even more. The general consensus was that we needed to get the fuck out of the house. There still was a blizzard going on outside though. Fuck it, we decided, let’s go check out Times Square.
Times Square was desolate. It so desolate that we were making snow angels in the middle of 42nd street. We made our way for a while geek-ed to the max. A couple rounds to the local neighborhood bars to take the edge off, and it was back to the house.
More cocaine filled our nostrils. By this time I was lying on my bedroom floor clutching my chest. It was too much for me. Five coked up freaks in a tiny apartment was too much and I was in the midst of a panic attack.
Asend found some of my spray paint and was like “Fuck it! Lets go paint your roof top.” I was down and we made our way up there. Somehow the graffiti bug had bitten everyone including Hector. He just happened to be so out of his mind he began tagging all the apartment doors in the building except ours. With the name of an El Salvadorian street gang, Wanacos. Which mind you he wasn’t even a member of!
The spray paint had run out but I still had the urge to bomb. I found a gallon of white paint, and a sponge under the sink, and made my way to the door.
“Where are you going with that?” Asend asked
“You’ll see.”
Now mind you I lived only two blocks from Times Square. So with the blizzard and the total lack of human life on the street. I had a once in a life time opportunity. I ran trough the snow to a giant grey block building. I dipped my sponge into the paint and proceeded to paint in letters so large it took up half a city block- HOSTILE BOMB THREAT!  This was an outstanding NYC hit. Two blocks from the most heavily trafficked and populated part of the city, I had pulled a giant bomb! This only elevated my coke high.
I made my way upstairs, basking in my hit. The rest of the night found us just getting more and more fucked up. Cases of beer being ordered from the local Bodega every two hours. Hector was on some whole other paranoia induced high and found Jesus and was begging Billy, who was now dubbed Billy-Billy to please teach him how to pray in English. Asend by this time had had his ill and made his way home.
The rest of this trip was spent so fucked out o our minds the only thing I remember is Hector offering to throw me out if my brother and Billy-Billy would move in because as he said ” Now you guys know how to fucking party, man.”
Late in the afternoon of January 2, 2000, shortly after Y2K never hit and the banks didn’t collapse, planes didn’t fall from the sky, and nuclear holocaust never came, I waved from the platform to my brother as he boarded a train back to Boston.  I wouldn’t see him again for five years, when I finally stopped running.
  1. Rose says:

    E.J. I loved reading this.

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