just like i wanna do next week…
…most of the flashbacks will be celebrating the fifteenth anniversary of this shit (back then titled astrowhore, and most of us still call the articles on here “whore bits” in conversation) so here we are:
12/21/2002: “my people”
the subject line today is courtesy of our good ol’ buddy kramer. “my people”. kramer used to live in east austin, so whenever he and i would wander over to one of the poorer sections of the east riverside area, he would refer to it as “his people”. no longer living in that area, and not being latin, as many of the people he would refer to as “his people” would be, i never quite understood how they were “his” people. but such is the mind of an astrologer, i suppose. maybe there was just a high degree of sagittarius folks in the crowd.
then there’s the trailer park folks. your typical white folks, with odd senses of fashion, culture, and food. people who’s homes are on wheels. people who’s cars are NOT. people who actually make hand-me-downs out of the long sleeve jersey they got from the mötley crüe dr. feelgood tour. these folks kramer ALSO refers to as his people, which is odd because…
oh yeah…wait. that last one does make sense. let’s move on.
i spent a chunk of my morning hanging with other people that kramer calls “his people” (although they DID contain a healthy chunk from that last group), the “people” at the gun and knife show. THAT was scary. more trucks and camo and bad hair and worse tattoos and missing teeth AND missing chromosomes than one building should contain.
so why the fuck was I there? money.
yes, santa debt brought me a healthy dose of his brand of holiday cheer this xmas, where the “x” is a cartoon representation of the part of my anatomy where he wedged it, trying to make it look more O-ish. but let’s move on. i was cleaning out a closet a few weeks ago when i stumbled across something from my “mad-at-the-world” phase that was part four in the “mom dies” then six weeks later “my career dies” then six weeks later “my relationship dies” then six weeks later it’s my birthday series. turning twenty-five kicked off a few mad at the world weeks, and in the midst of all this a purchase was made.
a chinese sks carbine-fueled semi-automatic assault rifle with a thirty-five round clip.
did i climb a clock tower with it? no. start taking out those who had “done me wrong”? hardly. hell, i only fired the thing once, i think. then cleaned it, and put it away. where it’s sat ever since. when i came across it, i went to a gun store to see how much it was worth. “hell, we could only give you about $100”, they said. “those didn’t sell for much…but at a GUN SHOW? collectors will pounce all over it…especially with that high cap mag. you could probably get three bills for it.”
“cool….”, i thought. i’ll do that come spring. maybe use the money for a condo on the beach for a week and drag someone down there with me so we can just chill. that WAS the plan. and then came santa debt and the money had other, more holiday-themed places to go. not that the beach thing won’t happen in the spring…it’s just that an assault rifle sale won’t be fueling it. and the show didn’t go as planned, either…
i walk in, magazine in my pocket, gun in hand. i had been told the night before that assembled the rifle of that caliber, with that kind of capacity, was breaking two or three federal laws. today i was told that wasn’t true. i don’t know which gun nut was accurate, so i won’t speculate. i was also told that i wouldn’t have to seek out a buyer, but that they would come to me. in the guys defense, when he saw me last night, i was in a long sleeve sweat shirt, with a baseball cap on, and my glasses. ditch the glasses, and the sleeves, and show the shaved head, and people don’t tend to “come to you”. they tend to “back the fuck off” instead.
and there was more…
i had been told that the high capacity magazine alone would be worth $100. “those are pretty fucking rare”, was the comment i got from more than one direction. well, they might be rare, but they only go for $25 at the gun show. and the first table i went to had a six-gun rifle rack, and three of the were sks’s…and all were being sold for UNDER $200. none were in nearly as good a shape as mine, but they were still UNDER $200. all of a sudden i was damn glad i hadn’t booked a condo and counted on this to back it. i wandered around, and various tables offered me anywhere from $100 to $125. i talked the one closest to the door up to $155, with the extra $5 to cover what i’d paid to get in, and i was gone. every little bit helps. and they are still so not my people.