Black Short Stories : The Street is Watching!

Discussion in 'Short Stories - Authors - Writing' started by raymondobe, Sep 4, 2009.

  1. raymondobe

    raymondobe Member MEMBER

    Jul 30, 2009
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    That night,
    as I lay on my bed
    listening to the dogs bark,
    I began to wonder
    how much more I could take,
    and I began to get a terrible
    feeling inside my chest
    and a tightness at
    the back of my throat,
    and I jerked upright with my head
    spinning and stared into the darkness,
    thinking that if things don’t change very soon
    I will have no choice but to throw in the towel.
    Still the next day and the day after
    nothing worthwhile came,
    and I stood back from my desk,
    holding my head,
    and then hearing a familiar sound,
    I sprinted off to the passage.
    Jesus, it’s driving me insane,
    I can’t do it,
    I panted breathless into the phone.
    What d’you mean you can’t do it? he said.
    I took a deep breath and
    tried to control the frustration and
    anger seething inside me.
    Exactly what I just said.
    I keep trying but nothing happens.
    I’ve been like this for weeks.
    I don’t know what’s wrong with me.
    Maybe you need a rest.
    That’s all I do is rest.
    I sit in front of the thing just staring.
    I’ve been staring for two hours straight already.
    I’m actually starting to feel sick.
    Well give it another go and if it doesn’t happen…
    If it doesn’t happen I
    think I shall have to kill myself,
    I said without smiling.
    Then I hung up the phone and
    went stood by the window in the living
    room and stared out at the traffic.

    A police car and
    a Vauxhall Cavalier pulled up to the curb.
    The two cops climbed out and
    walked up to the Vauxhall.
    One of them pointed at the
    driver and
    signalled for him to cut the engine.
    The doors opened and
    two guys got out.
    Both were in their early twenties,
    both were wearing jeans and had
    dark blue bomber jackets;
    and both were black.
    They followed the cops
    over to the wall.
    The taller of the two cops began talking
    into his radio,
    and then while his partner stood in front of
    the two black guys,
    with his arms slightly raised and
    pushed out in front of him,
    he took out his note pad,
    walked round to the back of the car,
    and scribbled something down.
    Somewhere in back of the flats
    I could hear the annoying sound of
    somebody’s dog barking.
    It was almost 3pm and
    the dogs had been barking on and off
    for most of the day
    and part of the night.
    The cop with the note pad squatted down
    to check the car’s back tires and
    then stepped back to check
    the taillights.
    Then he opened the car door and
    leaned in and checked the
    glove compartment,
    while his partner talked into a
    radio close to the top of his chest.

    I went into the kitchen to make a cup
    of coffee mainly to keep
    myself warm.
    It was freezing cold in the flat.
    It was always cold in the flat and
    every time I breathed I could
    see the cold air rushing out in front of me.
    I was trying to save money.
    And during the day
    when it was particularly cold,
    I’d put on my green puffa or jogged
    on the spot wearing a Beanie and
    a couple of woollen jumpers.
    When it dropped below
    as it had done at the beginning of the week,
    I would wrap myself in a
    duvet or
    simply refused to get out of bed.

    I decided to make myself something to eat,
    which had ceased to be an easy task,
    since the cupboards nowadays
    were nearly always bare.
    I was eating one or two meals a day,
    (and sometimes none at all)
    but I was expecting a cheque
    from my ex employer soon,
    which would hopefully keep me from going under.
    In the end I settled for a thin slice of cheese
    that I’d accidentally left to
    turn mouldy in the bread bin.
    I cut off the mould and
    ate it between two stale slices of thin
    with no butter.
    I was desperately
    and every day there would be another announcement on the news
    or from one of the so called current affairs programmes
    about the deplorable economic situation,
    the collapse of the banks,
    in the markets,
    (house prices were falling and there
    were almost 3 million out of work.
    Over in America,
    The USA
    The home of the Buick,
    Michael Jordan;
    the often mentioned,
    and celebrated
    American Dream…
    the 44th President
    Barrack Obamama
    was trying to
    Push his STIMULUS….Package forward.
    An avert a cataclysmic crisis reminiscent of
    The 1930’s
    soup kitchens,
    mass unemployment,
    They Shoot Horses Don’t They.
    But some of the bigwigs
    wouldn’t bite, budge etc,
    so it was any one’s guess,
    how it would all turn out in the long run,
    and against this background,
    I was existing…or to use a well-worn phrase: ‘on the bread line’,
    romantically rejecting
    the rat-race,
    turning off
    and tuning out,
    and barely eking out a living,
    if you could call what I was doing
    living at all);
    but as they say,
    such is the life of a
    die-hard writer.

    When I got back to the window,
    still chewing part of the sandwich,
    I noticed that there were two more
    police cars parked next to the Vauxhall,
    and three of the cops were standing by
    the back of the car,
    peering into the boot,
    while a further three had formed a half-circle around
    the two black guys.
    One of the cops at the back of the car
    turned to say something to another cop,
    and immediately afterwards,
    they began removing items from the boot and
    placing them on the ground
    beside the vehicle’s back wheels.

    I trudged back to my desk,
    sat down and
    glared with growing resignation
    at my archaic circa 1980’s,
    Olivetti computer screen.
    My head felt empty.
    Every time I looked at the computer screen
    it was as if everything worth saying
    had either already been said and
    any modest contribution I might make
    seemed utterly banal and useless.
    After a while,
    shaking my head,
    I got up and went
    back to the window.

    One of the cops was now
    lying on his back,
    with a torch in his hand
    looking up at the Vauxhall’s chassis.
    Another cops pulled the driver aside
    and started asking him questions and
    going through his pockets.
    The driver stood with his arms aloof,
    and his head turned to one side holding
    onto his wallet and keys.
    The cop looked up and
    said something to him and
    the black guy looked down at the cop and
    shook his head.
    Then the cop checked both
    the young men’s wallets and
    handed them back.

    The three cops moved away from the boot
    and started going through the inside of the car again.
    A heavy looking cop with grey
    hair moved across to where the
    black guys were waiting.
    He and the black guys began to speak to one another,
    occasionally blowing into their hands
    and looking off to the side before
    engaging again.
    They all seem oddly friendly.
    And after the cop had finished
    saying what ever he was saying,
    both the black guys nodded their
    heads in unison
    and then all three began to laugh.
    I yawned and walked back to my desk.
    This time I hoped that something good
    would come of it.
    In the early days shaking with excitement
    I had told myself that maybe I could be the next
    Richard Wright,
    or Hubert Selby Jr
    or Chinua Achebe
    or Jack Kerouac.
    So I had imitated each style,
    which of course is not uncommon,
    but as time went on it
    become more and more clear to me,
    that there could only be one
    Richard Wright
    or Hubert Selby
    or Achebe
    or Kerouac,
    and after reading a paragraph of my
    prose and comparing it to that of the masters,
    I would instantly feel defeated,
    wanting to dash my brains against the wall,
    depressed by the apparent sad conclusion,
    that I had absolutely ‘no right’
    to call myself a writer,
    particularly since for the last two months
    I had hardly written a word.
    And since I wasn’t doing much writing.
    Perhaps all I really was a bum
    clinging to some arrogant notion,
    that it was my god-given-right
    to while away my days
    in the pursuit of solitary creativity,
    while babies starved,
    wars were fought,
    Wall Street crashed,
    and Rome metaphorically burned.
    I scratched my head and
    chewed my fingernails
    and stared into space.
    Everything seemed hopeless.
    Then I heard the sound of another police siren
    and I jumped up and
    hurried back to my spot.

    A police van,
    with its lights flashing,
    squeaked to a stop behind the
    three police cars.
    One of the cops ran up to the van,
    said something to the driver and
    pointed over his shoulder at the two
    black guys who were stood with their
    arms crossed,
    moving their feet from side to side,
    expelling puffs of cold air through their nostrils.
    Then moments later both black guys were
    ushered into the back of the van,
    shortly after which they climbed down again,
    shaking their heads and
    doing up their belt buckles.

    An hour had passed and
    I was back at my desk having still not
    written anything worth calling fiction.
    A writer writes
    is what they tell you…
    So that what I did.
    I began to type these famous mantra,
    over and over again,
    in bold italics,
    across my tiny computer screen.
    Then realising that that wouldn’t work
    I got up and began pacing the room,
    and then out of curiosity or perhaps panic,
    I wandered back to the window and
    peered outside.
    The black guys were now leaning up
    against the wall smoking cigarettes,
    and looking extremely bored with the extremely slow and
    drawn-out proceedings.
    One of the cops was holding what looked like a
    Pencil-torch in front of him and
    was searching the car interior,
    pulling up one of the floor mats with his free hand.
    He placed the torch between his
    front teeth and
    slid one hand across,
    and tapped the knuckles of his other hand
    against the inside of the door panel.
    One of the black guys looks at the other and grinned.
    He began shaking his head and
    pointing at his wristwatch.
    His mate rolled his eyes and
    shrugged his shoulders.
    On the other side of the road,
    a succession of passing vehicles beeped their horns,
    as if to express their sympathy.

    The three police cars and the van sped off.
    The two remaining police officers said
    something to the black guys,
    and then began quickly walking away.
    One of the black guys shouted something
    but his friend appeared to restrain him.
    A cop turned round,
    rubbed his jaw and
    turned back again.
    Then both cops got in the police car,
    and sat there for a while talking into the radio,
    while both black guys stood on the pavement,
    watching them.
    I stepped out into the passage and
    looked at the clock on the wall.
    It was an hour and forty-five minutes since
    the cops had first flagged down the two black motorists.
    I began to wonder if perhaps it was
    some sort of record.
    I jokingly considered writing to
    the Guinness Book of Records to check.

    The two black guys got in their Vauxhall Cavalier.
    The cop car pulled out and
    the two black guys pulled out after them.
    My only regret was that I didn’t possess
    a video camera.
    Instead I leafed to the back of my note pad and
    started writing notes about
    the two black guys and the cops.
    I figured that maybe I could turn
    it into some kind of dramatic story.
    Maybe a story about the badlands of London,
    or a tense thriller
    or comical story about a couple of rouge cops
    who would go around hassling
    innocent drivers,
    who are mostly black,
    because they’re mostly black.
    ..A sort of 90’s version of CHIPS,
    The Cannon Ball Run
    meets Dirty Harry.

    I dropped the notepad on the sofa and
    hurried back to my writing desk.
    I rubbed my hands together and
    ran my tongue over the front of my top teeth.
    I sat down,
    took a deep breath and
    stared at the blank computer screen.
    Then amazingly, it came and
    I started to type
    the first sentence of
    my 60, 000 word,
    Literary novel.
  2. MRS. LADY


    Dec 3, 2007
    Likes Received:
    to seek truth
    everywhere and nowhere
    dig this homie... *mondo* i c u

    u sleep wit the prophets wife


    just like i told cadddy sox

    u want my spot

    u have tah come realer then that

    still i honor the life within u.. i just don't respect u or her.....

    treading lightly on that dere.... cause i won't dishonor me man.... nor that which bore the seed

    server can get it to... him and his bible
  3. $$RICH$$

    $$RICH$$ Lyon King Admin. STAFF

    United States
    Mar 21, 2001
    Likes Received:
    BUSINESS owner
    great story