I found a new writer T.C. Boyle in the New Yorker …by a  short story he wrote…

 
…and bought last week his “The Tortilla Curtain”….
 
 man…does he write well!!! for my taste….I took it up North last weekend and just sadly finished it…(the fastest I have finished a novel…recently)…a good book is like a relationship with a good friend or lover…you just DON’T want it to ever end…….but (sigh!!) often they do…..some good ..some bad….
 
 
The book is basically two stories – 
 
two Mexican illegals (husband and wife) who sneak across the border….the terrible hardships they encounter in trying to JUST make an honest living as they camp out in a canyon with absolutely no amenities……..
 
of a “nice” white entitled writer who lives with his well to do family up above the canyon in “Blanco Estates”…..he is a writer for a naturalist magazine….is totally into “recycling” the bottles..and everything else that white entitled yippies do..
 
.. one day as he leaves his house in his Prius…hits this poor Mexican…who was crossing Mulholland (sp?) as he was returning from trying to get a job….the white guy feels awful….and salves his consciousness by giving the non-English speaking man twenty dollars…
 
 
well I just wanted everything to turn out wonderful….where maybe the Mexican man and his pregnant wife…are hired by this psuedo idealistic entitled white  asshole….(and his wife is equally phony with her yoga, soothing sound tapes she plays in her Prius when she gets stressed due to one of her multi-million dollar homes not selling)
 
but alas it did not…..
 
except the last sentence in the book gives  you hope….
 
 
but TC Boyle just grabs me by his writing  to where it was hard for me to relinquish the book….
 
 
I was reading this book in SF as I was visiting my grandnephs, their wonderful parents and my beautiful sister …who threw me back to a my very early life in Philadelphia ..when I  tried to kill her (well not really)  with a hand carved Mexican  baseball bat my Uncle had given me…swung at her ….she ducked and I smashed one of my mother’s favorite Chinese lamps in the living room…we both bonded as we were terrified of what would happen when our Mom and Dad returned..in their  wood panelled station wagon..(back then cars ACTUALLY had real wood panels)….
 
 
what happened  in SF was that a close family friend…had split with his girl…but she just could not accept it …left SF …kept coming back like a bad dream…..you try to escape from….
 
anyway this girl knew my neph and niece and their kids….and my sister said she was a “nice girl”
 
she called one morning as we were just about to leave for Tilden Park….and one of my grandnephs picked up the phone which for some reason goes to speaker at the same time….and she smilingly said thru the phone….”Hi Fin it is me….just come out on the deck and you can see me…. I have rented an apartment across from  you…..I am the girl with the blonde hair and free-flowing blue dress walking toward you”
 
 
well I saw BLACK…it was like a HItchcock film 
 
 
… all these terrible memories came flooding back to me…of my last lover of 3 years  (and I MEAN my last..well unless they are my age)….who unbeknownst to me was on drugs…I realized it when I took him to London…and he got mad at me for not knowing where this particular gay club was….and when we finally found it…he disappeared…and hours later I cabbed back to the hotel on my own….only to hear him arrive back at 3 AM…laughing with the guys he had picked up with my money….and when I asked him where he was…he said I was on the balcony above you…looking down on you watching you squirm and suffer….
 
people thought he was “nice”
 
 
I cannot tell you how much I wanted to just go home…as I had never been treated so shabbily….
 
when we finally got home…I told him he had to pack and leave….which he refused to do unless I gave him $40,000….which if I did have it would never give it to such a selfish, awful person….
 
 
I had talked to Paula…who was married to this ex-Marine…Dan…who had been my boss at one point…the Parking Manager of West Hollywood….I had an affair with him and then with the two of them…flew down to Houston every other weekend…I told Paula what was going on with me and Gil…
 
well one day I came home from work and Gil had left….which totally shocked me…had taken a TV, credit cards …all of my photographs ..etc etc….
 
 
it was weeks later when I told Paula….
 
she said “Well didn’t you get my letter…I wrote you that Dan would come up and smash  his kneecaps….”….
 
and it was then that I realized Gil had been opening ALL of my mail…
 
 
 
and then there was my roommate and Best friend Jimbo…who I saved from a Gorgeous  drug-addicted ..”nice” lover in Honolulu – Kemo….who Jimbo had moved back to Hawaii for….leaving a good job at West Hollywood to work as a low paid manager of a hamburger joint like McDonalds…think it was a pizza place..
.
 
I got to Honolulu….Jimbo got all of his belongings packed as Kemo was working at The Royal Hawaiian Hotel….and it took two station wagon cabs to get us to the airport…..
 
 
I loved Jimbo so much (sort of the way I love my friend Nacho)….such GOOD people!!!  
 
we never had sex as an old Countess in Italy..whom I met at Harry’s Bar smoking with an elaborate cigarette holder ….told me..
 
“Rob if you want to retain someone you REALLY love FOREVER…do NOT bed them!!!”
 
 
…..Jimbo asked me once …if we could live together forever…he with his lover and I with mine….I was flattered and said of course….
 
 
and then there was THAT  morning…August 1st
 
..I should preface this by saying that Jimbo felt he could not tell someone point blank that the relationship was over…he felt by flirting with someone else….at a bar …that the current amour would get the gist and just leave…
 
well Roman did NOT….
 
I drove out of our driveway at 1342 Laurel Ave in my old Benz as “nice” Roman appeared with a bundle of clothes in his arms….I pushed the passenger side window down and asked I could help him as I KNEW Jimbo did not want to…
 
he said “Rob I am just returning some of Jimbo’s clothes”…..
 
so I motored on to do my shopping in Century City
 
when I returned 4 hours later…Laurel Avenue at Fountain was yellow taped off…and I told the sheriff I lived on the street…helicopter were buzzing overhead….and as I drove in the driveway I noticed sharpshooters on the roofs….
 
as I was walking up the backstairs…a female sheriff met me…I told her I lived here and what was happening….
 
she told me Jimbo had been shot dead in his bathroom…….and I could NOT see him …as it would do memorable damage………
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