Sunday, 23 November 2008

21 November 2008

“I didn’t think you’d actually do it. You’ve finally come to me.” “Yep” I said “Everything fell apart in my family. How are things in yours?” “Not so good, not so good. But we’ve got a million things to talk about. Jack the time has FI-NALLY come for us to talk and get with it.” We agreed it was about time and went in. Now my arrival was somewhat like the arrival of the strange and most evil Angel in the home of the snow-white fleece, as Neal and I began talking excitedly in the kitchen downstairs and this brought forth sobs from upstairs. Everything I said to Neal was answered with a wild whispering shuddering “Yes!” Carolyn knew what was going to happen. Apparently Neal had been quiet a few months; now the angel had arrived and he was going mad again. “What’s the matter with her?” I whispered. He said “She’s getting worse and worse, man, she cries and makes tantrums, won’t let me out to see Slim Gaillard, gets mad every time I’m late, then when I stay home she won’t talk to me and says I’m an utter beast.” He ran upstairs to soothe her. I heard Carolyn yell “You’re a liar, you’re a liar, you’re a liar” I took the opportunity to examine the very wonderful house they had. It was a two-story crooked rickety wooden cottage in the middle of the tenements right on top of Russian Hill with a view of the Bay; it had four rooms, three upstairs and one immense sort of basement kitchen downstairs. The kitchen door opened onto a grassycourt where washlines were. In back of the kitchen was a storage room where Neal’s old shoes still were caked an inch thick with Texas mud from the night the Hudson got stuck at Hempstead near the Brazos River. Of course the Hudson was gone, Neal hadn’t been able to make further payments on it. He had no car at all now. Their second baby was accidentally coming. It was a horrible tragedy to hear Carolyn sobbing so. We couldn’t stand it and went out to buy beer and brought it back to the kitchen. Carolyn finally went to sleep or spent the night staring blankly at the dark. I had no idea what was really wrong except perhaps Neal had driven her mad after all. After my last leaving of Frisco he had gone crazy over Louanne again and spent months haunting her apartment on Divisadero where every night she had a different sailor in and he

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