to get me to cave. I was on the verge of screaming. Sammy wasn’t my type, all legs and lanky, and h e had the biggest and straightes t teeth I’ve ever seen on a guy, enlarged white chick-lets inserted in his gums. Plus he showed off and talked about what he had all the time, new clothes, new hat, new jewelry, new skates, his parent’s house, swimming pool, blah, blah, blah. He wore his fancy patent leather skates every Saturday night. They were slick black with dice on the laces. One of a kind, made in France by a veteran shoe maker, he told everyone, over and over again.
I simply ignored him in hopes he would go away but after the fourteenth plea, I went straight up Midge Mayhem on him. My hips whipped him a swift cut to the side. It hurt like the dickens but I reckon the roller derby queen would have been proud. Last I saw Sammy, he was rollicking across t he rink like a rickety old cart. The hip whip must have traumatized him because he lost his balance, crashed into a line of people and landed on top of June Blackburn. It was a perfect love collision. June’s crop hair was as black and shiny as his pristine skates. Sammy never bothered me again. Who knew I was a matchmaker.
I went back to listening to the women gossip at the booth. I had missed a backlog of informat ion already, so I had to fill in the missing parts with whatever I could come up with in my head. I came in on the middle of the story, when Betty, such and such, I didn’t get the last name but anyway, she had a dark secret but in reality it wasn’t a secret at all because the whole town knew about it and if the whole town knew about it, then it was a pink elephant. This is how I learned of those pink secret keepers and it’s also how I learned women had potty mouths worse than men. Shocked Betty found out her ten year marriage was a sham because Ralph, her lying, no good for nothing, cheating, sonsabitchen husband had been sleeping around with the town whore. Betty was a traditional Baptist martyr who refused to confront the two timing bastard with tiny brass tacks for balls, because of submission or something to do with the law or God, I don’t know, but come to find out, she just pretended it never happened, drowned herself in a bottle of bourbon and spent all his money in revenge. That’s when Sue Fletcher said three words. Addy Mae Henderson. Uh. Oh. According to the gossip mill, Addy was the secret behind the secret, behind other people’s secrets, and the secrets no one dared talk about. Lord, I was getting in on the good stuff. My ears were nearly on fire. Even I knew, that the mere mention of Addy Mae Henderson’s name would turn women heated and a little crazy. Tonight was no different. The conversation turned to men who are bastards, men who cheat, men who drink, men who are sorry, no good for nothings and the final curtain closer—one day that whore is going to get what she deserves.
What does she deserve? Why? What? Right when I thought I’d get my answers, I got slapped in the side of the head with a two by four that left me seeing pink stars until I was sure Princess Lay-you-out had f ound me. I sat up slowly, my eyes envisioning a multitude of prismatic colors. I looked down to see a wallet lying neck to me. In my head I replayed the montage of events that transpired simultaneously.
The charismatic DJ on the microphone said, “All skate. All skate.” Lights flickered and the disco ball in the center rink spiraled in a cosmic glow of colors and lines. Bangs, clangs and loud shrills came from behind the partition. The music blared from the speakers and a mob of skaters entered the rink. The particle board partition was like a rubber band pop to the face. It knocked me clean on my back. I felt a leering dark shadow over me. It was Sue Fletcher. Her slanted eyes told me she knew I was snooping and likely heard every word. To save face, I grabbed the wallet and
Willie Nelson, Mike Blakely