Sunday, December 20, 2009

book signing

– You are at Barnes and Noble – Dishonorable Horace P Krouch Esquire – Lawyer author – You will be signing your book – If She Did It – Fiction you say – Satin Strangler fiction – First day on the shelves – But not even on the shelves – In oversized bins lining the entrance walkway – No time to put them on shelves

– Your life is too pathetic to write your own friggin autobiography – You have to desecrate the story of the Satin Strangler – Make a mockery of the legend through your fictionalized Destiny Blande character – FICTION – The Satin Strangler – FICTION – I want to wretch

– You will be rich beyond your wettest dreams – Smiles and signatures – They cheered your court conquests – Now they hang on your every word – Worshipers lined up along the streets – Sea View is bursting at the seams – Where have they all come from – And why – All the beloved – But beloved not of you – Do not fool yourself – These are the mesmerized rank and file of the Satin Strangler minions – You have stolen them from their rightful owner to make a mockery of her legend – To turn her into fiction – FICTION

– Eighteen people and then me – Back up back up – A security guard stares down the crowd – He tries to keep them from you – Chubby tough guy – Flashlight in a holster – Feigning power but wielding none – They all must move back – Or what – Maybe he will shine his light in their faces – Everyone on line will get their turn

– Zit girl at the cash register watches you – She sweeps book after book across the bar code sensor – Credit card after credit card – Twenty dollar bill after twenty dollar bill – All for you

– Fourteen until me – I have lived on this line for over two hours – Suffering the mindless banter of the masses – Beach plans and sports teams and favorite songs – Idle chatter to make a head explode – Now they are nothing but giddy – They know they will meet the famous lawyer author soon – They smile and wave and chuckle to each other like school children on a field trip

– The family in the front of the line stops to take a photo with you – Not just one camera – Everyone in the family has to take a photo – The balding dad and the fat mother and their three freakishly misshapen children – You smile with them Horace P Krouch Esquire – Tough luck the others will have to wait extra time – The security guard waits to let the next set of admirers near you for a few seconds – Reaches for his flashlight in case there is trouble

– My turn is coming – The knife dangling from the holster on my thigh seems heavier – Will today be the day when I make my sacrifice at the altar of the Satin Strangler

– Flashes – From where – From behind me – Rapid fire flashes – The New York Times photographer has come all the way from the big city – NBC races right behind them through the store entrance with video cameras rolling – Everyone in line fixes their hair – SYNCHRONIZED – They need to look pretty on television – The excitement reaches a crescendo – They all hope to star on the news tonight – Smile and wave – They will say hi mom I have been waiting over two hours to buy a book and get an autograph

– I turn so the knife on my thigh is away from the cameras – The world will see it only when I am ready to make the sacrifice – The pig is ready for the slaughter – Just a few feet away

– The cameras lock in on the blonde at the microphone – The human line severs momentarily to allow the reporter and crew through – Security boy flexes his chest and biceps to ripple his chub – Is he ready for a sacrifice today – No he is only posing – Tightens his jaw – The show is on

– The cameras are rolling – The manikin reporter asks why you wrote the book – How you know so much about the murder details – Is Daphne Blain really Destiny Blande – Did Destiny Blande really commit the murders – Did she ever admit to committing the crimes – Were the two of you really lovers – LOVERS – Now there is your fiction

– The reporter brushes blonde from her face – She turns slightly to the right then slightly to the left – Which side is more photogenic – Mirror mirror on the wall – She cares nothing about the facts of the Satin Strangler – The world would be a better place without her blonde dye

– This is my chance to correct the story – I grasp the handle of the knife along my thigh and step forward

– The store manager hands out a series of pre-signed books for the cameras – As though this will pacify us – He points us to the zit girl pushing books along the scanner at the cash register – He thanks us for coming – Mister Krouch has to get to the television studio for an appearance

– But I just want to have a few words with him – Just a few words – A eulogy after I slit the throat of the friggin pig lawyer

– I will have to wait for another day – But I am patient – I must be patient

– Barabbas


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