Wednesday, March 17, 2010
The first time that I drove Carlos was sometime in 2006. I remember it distinctly, because he was leaning against the wall, outside Von’s Tavern, on his outstretched arms, wearing blue jeans and a shredded white shirt, hanging open in the back, revealing bruises and scrapes. When he got in the cab, he gave me his address at an apartment complex by Bush Park. As we drove he started talking about how he used to drive a cab in Mexico City.
“You have to carry a gun, because you get robbed so much,” he told me, and continued with his story. “One time I picked up this guy who pulled a gun on me and told me that he was robbing me. I pulled out my gun and took his away. Then I made him take his clothes off, and get out of the cab naked, in the middle of downtown. I Threw his clothes in a garbage can after I drove off.”
Since then I’ve driven him his Anglo girlfriend, and her kids a hundred times. Tonight he was alone, and was going to the Flamingo to watch the Manny Pacquiao fight.
“I have cable at my place,” he told me, “and I invited my friends over to watch it, but they said, we’re not sure if we want to.’ I told them just bring your own beer over, but they acted like they didn’t care. So today they call me on the phone and ask if I’m going to watch the fight? They pissed me off, so I told them that I was going to the Flamingo to watch it. Fuck them.”
He kept repeating this story over and over, because he was so upset, until he finally changed the subject, to getting robbed. He then proceeded to tell me that he was living in Los Angeles at the time, and he was robbed twice, but he hunted down the guys who did it and got his money back, “because that’s the kind of guy I am,” he said.
“If anyone fucks with me, I’ll hunt them down, like I did them,” he said. “I found the one guy and got my money back, then I shot him in the back and now he’s in a wheelchair. Fuck him. That’s what he get’s for robbing me. Fuck my friends too! I told them that all they had to do was bring their own beer over, and they didn’t want to, until today, when they called me to ask if I was going to watch the fight.”
I dropped him off at the Flamingo, and he told me that he’d need a ride back home later, but he would probably walk across the street to Vons Tavern.