It’s All Show Biz

Farlo cut in front of Honest Johns Emergency Plumbing truck, which caused honest John and his son who was on probation for possession with intent to sell to swerve in front of a drop off mom who was rushing from the elementary school where she dropped off her two kids. She was going to Gold’s Gym where she had a 9:30 a.m. appointment with her personal trainer and lover. The drop off mom, wanting to avoid hitting honest John, swerved into the passing lane where she sideswiped a senior citizen bus headed to the Bingo Hall for a Bingo Tournament. The senior bus back ended a farm to market truck carrying 750 cantaloupes that rolled out of the truck and crossed the highway causing a series of accidents, the likes of which had not been seen since the great fog, two weeks earlier.

Joey was looking out the back window, “You got to see this, Farlo. It’s mayhem. People are crashing into each other, cantaloupes are all over the road. Seven traffic helicopters are hovering over the scene. If I didn’t know better, I’d have thought you caused it, but it happened behind us. Go figure.”

“That’s what happens, kid, when people don’t care about each other. Me? I do my best to drive carefully and always look out for the other guy,” said Farlo as he took Exit 231, went down the ramp, at the end of the ramp, he accelerated through the stop sign, and hung a left against a sign that said NO LEFT TURN. An oncoming driver avoided broadsiding Farlo and veered into a fire hydrant. The resulting geyser left a third of the town without water.

Joey had his face pressed against the window, his one free fist banging against the unbreakable glass, he mumbled nearly incoherently, “You need to be locked up. If I ever get out of here alive, I’ll tell it all,” screamed Joey.

“Who you gonna tell it to, kid? Your mommy? You’re naïve. You haven’t lived. You have no sense of adventure. You want life served on a platter with all the trimmings, that’s what you want. To you a six pack beer and a delivery pizza tops your bucket list. Life doesn’t work that way. Some days you’re lucky if you get a bad cup of coffee. Other days, it’s a good one if a bird doesn’t crap on your head. You see where I’m going?” snarled Farlo.

“Honestly? I have no idea where you’re going. Give me a hint,” said Joey.

“Where have you been for the past 24 hours, we’re going to the Last Stop Assisted Care Facility to rescue Harry J. You’re not the brightest bulb on the planet. I’d guess you’re a few cookies short of a dozen. It’s what the dope did to your pathetic brain. I’m working with silly putty instead of a perfect piece of marble, see what I’m saying.”

“I’m tired of your insults, Farlo. I’m not silly putty, I know what’s going on,” said Joey.

Farlo turned down Blanco and into a residential neighborhood. A four way stop loomed fifty feet in front of him, three cars were in line waiting their turn. Farlo hit the accelerator, turned the wheels to right, went up over the curb, and drove across three lawns leaving a trail of tire marks in perfectly manicured grass.

When he exited the last lawn, he narrowly avoided two joggers, flipped them off as he turned right on Oak Street. He looked in the rearview mirror and saw one of the joggers taking out her iPhone and snapping photos of his black and white,

“Martinez is not going to like this. She might not be in a good mood when I get to O’Rourke’s. BTW, you know what’s going on?”

“I don’t know what’s going on. I was trying to make conversation,” said Joey.

“Last Chance is two blocks up, just past the cemetery. If we don’t save Harry J, it’s going to look bad on your report. I wouldn’t want to be in your shoes, kid. Filo doesn’t tolerate failure.”

“Me! Why me? You’re the nut job. I’m spilling my guts to Filo,” said Joey.

“Look in the mirror, kid. You think Filo’s going to believe you? He’d believe I won the 2 billion Powerball before he’d believe you.”

“It’s 2 billion? Can we stop and buy a ticket? I got a question before we go in, what’s your last name? Is it Maxwell like you told Martinez?” asked Joey.

“The name’s Farlo. That’s it. It’s like Adele, Madonna, Sinatra.”

“They all had two names, what’s your other name?” asked Joey.

“It’s their show biz name. Here’s a tip for you, kid. It’s all show biz. It’s all a struggle to grab the glitter and the glitz. That’s what we’re after, the glitter and the glitz.”

“I thought we’re after Harry J.”

Farlo ignored Joey, pulled up to the guardhouse in front of the gate, the black and white’s lights flashing, Farlo lowered his window, and barked at the guard who was checking his Facebook page, “Open the gate.”

“Let me see your badge,” said the guard still staring at his Facebook page.

“Tina,” commanded Farlo.

Tina jumped on Farlo’s lap, stuck her head out the window, growled, her lips curled back over her gums, Farlo holding onto her collar faux restraining her. “This is my badge.”

“Open it.”

“Yes, sir,” said the guard.

Farlo drove down the half-mile driveway and pulled the flashing black and white under the portico. He grabbed hold of a small canister of pepper spray, got out of the car, Tina followed him. Farlo walked around the black and white, opened the rear door, removed Joey’s handcuffs and helped him out of the car.

“Listen up. It’s up to you if we are going to pull this off. Follow my lead,” ordered Farlo.

“That’s all I’ve been doing is following your lead and look where it’s got me. I’ve been handcuffed, classified as a dangerous bed wetter, I’m dressed in Goodwill clothes. I look like I’m homeless. I lost my job. And, I’m running around with some guy with only one name.”

“Perfect cover. Let’s go.”

Will they rescue Harry J? Who’s Filo? Will Joey spill his guts to Filo?

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