You see, this isn’t even Flint and he didn’t deliver newspapers to my Grandma who didn’t think he was a jerk probably because he actually walked up to the front porch and placed them a step from the mail box instead of pitching it halfway down the front sidewalk from his bike as he breezed by.
I mean, don’t get me wrong, she was exactly like that but probably hated him because he was not Republican and also said bad things about Roger Smith.
Anyway, so I’m back in Michigan to plant another relative (oh, you want to see what that looks like? Almost precisely like this, the significance of which I’ll explain in another piece).
But because this is an almost true enough story, after we dragged my Aunt wailing from the hole next to where she will be planted because, you know, tradition (I don’t have a space of my own because first of all I’m never going to stop tormenting you and second of all I’ll be dead and won’t care) we went out to eat at a terrible restaurant that could have been good once (I personally don’t know that it was ever very good, common trolls like Emily’s family, even from the right side of the tracks, have no taste at all, including in their mouths, and noodles in Ricotta and Ketchup and bad beef pounded to paste somehow pass for Lasagna and Steak Delmonico there).
I had Talapia in Parmesan which wasn’t altogether (Talapia in Parmesan) better but at least I could choke it down and of course marked me out as an effete East Coaster and everyone on the Group W bench kind of moved away until I added that I was also disturbing the peace so we could talk about Father raping and Mother stabbing and play with the pencils.
Yeah, you and I get that, my family would politely ignore it until the SWAT Team came to take me down.
But I do in fact have some vague recollections of the mid-West, it’s called Pop out there (you park your ass on a Davenport) and they had it in pitchers along with sweet Iced Tea.
Now, and pay attention to this, I’m actually in Flint. Nothing about the water there is really any better because the problem is the corroded pipes and they haven’t fixed that.
They in fact have no bottled water, still or fizzy (which I prefer), no bottled or canned Soda (which is what we call it Down East), nothing but beer.
So I order an Amstel Light because it’s imported from Holland.
This negotiation kind of eliminates the positive image I’ve cultivated with my immediate neighbors, but nobody else really noticed it so I suppose I remain in the will.
I appear to have survived more or less unscathed other than my distinctly Romanesque penchant for Gladiatorial combat and aggressive war (both of which are actual, factual side effects of chronic Lead poisoning and a somewhat more disputable connection to the decline in violent crime we have experienced in the last few decades) but I already had that (“Joey, do you like movies about gladiators?”) so it doesn’t signify, even anecdotally.
Did I get worked up like that? I am Corleone to the bone and I was there to represent in a Tom Hagen kind of way and since there is no strife amongst the Gilmores I’m a perfectly acceptable consigliere. I’m much better than I report because I focus on flaws, triumphs are assumed.
I think I’ll stop here other than to point at what ticked me off.
Flint Must Stick With 2013 Water Plan, By Frances Langum, Crooks and Liars, 6/22/16 8:00 am.