Completing my diatribe on the perils of transporting yourself around the NYC area I will present my greatest triumph in escaping vulnerability in a very unique way. This last one goes down in Queens late one night. It began earlier in the day with me buying a Bass Clarinet with money that I didn’t have. I won’t discuss my two bankruptcies here except to say the judge suggested another line of work, since being a musician was clearly not working out. I played a gig with my new Bass Clarinet and then took the seven train to Jackson Heights. It was about 3 or 4 in the morning and with no buses around I plunged into a 25 minute walk in dark silence. I had done this before. Headphones are not advised as they will distract you. Keep it moving, know where you are and where you’re going. I was carrying my new horn and also my trumpet. Not a good time to get picked off. I never had a problem though so there was a stroll aspect to the pep in my tired steps.
About 10 minutes deep I noticed a car pass by me that had all ready passed me. It was moving slower then before. They had tinted glass so I couldn’t see inside. Uh-oh. I’m being cased to see if I’m a legit target. Am I drunk? No. Damn, whoever these thugs are they want my horns. I’m out here in the middle of nowhere. No cell phone action at the time. I had better come up with a plan and quick. Running with all this shit is not an option.
As predicted here they came. On the third pass the car pulled up in front of me and 4 guys got out and approached me. They were Colombian. They may have been slightly tipsy.
“We want to talk to you. I think you need to give us those instruments”.
With my horns bring in mortal danger I hatched my emergency plan that I had just devised. I was well aware of a demon spoken of in the Latin world known as the Chupacabras. A mythical creature that fed on cows, pets, and maybe people at night. He was popular in Washington Heights, depicted on Tee-shirts as having the head of a fly with a massive weight lifter body.
There was no time to waste then in revealing my true identity..
“YOU MUST BE CRAZY TO FU** WITH ME! CAN’T YOU SEE WHAT I AM?!!
I AM THE CHUPACABRAS AND I’LL EAT YOUR HEART!!”
The jack my horns crew wasn’t prepared for this shit. They looked at each other confused. I pressed my advantage having them on the ropes.
I DRINK BLOOD. I’ll DRINK YOURS. RIGHT HERE. RIGHT NOW! GIVE ME YOUR BLOOD! ONCE I’M DONE YOU’LL CONTRACT MY DISEASE. ZzZzZzmMmMmMzZzZz.
They started to step back. I put my horns down and made a move like I was attacking THEM.
RRRRAHHHHH!! I MUST FEED!!!!
The leader of the pack gave the command. “Vamanos!” which translates as let’s get out of here, this gringo is insane and dangerous. He might actually be the Chupacabras!
They piled back in the car and drove off. I kept it up acting like I was having convulsions and that I might chase the car or follow them home. Once they were out of sight I boogied my ass to Northern Blvd and found a car service for the remainder of the trip. I had come too far to get picked off now. I made it home and told my roommate what went down breathing heavy. My horns and I had survived again.
The very next day I was trying to buy a vitamin water rooibos tea, my favorite. They kept it real cold. My beard was untied which made me look a little middle eastern or you could say bodega-ish. Enough so that a white couple came over to me thinking they could tell me what to do as they gave me an order for two sandwiches. One chicken and one Roast Beef.
“WHAT THE F*C*? I DON’T FREAKING WORK HERE! YOU THINK YOU CAN JUST ORDER SOMETHING FROM ME CAUSE YOU GOT IT LIKE THAT?! REALLY?!”
The man grabbed his girlfriend by the arm and they quickly left.
It was almost as if they had just encountered…
The Chupa cabras.