Hello everyone, everywhere,

There is no more band. The end. I will cry for the loss my whole life. To be fired…well, that’s done, I guess. I will recover, as I always do. Except this one was harder, because it kicked my heart and not my stomach.

Anyway, now I’ll be looking for new horizons.  I’ll take the dream and will fight once again. I write what I write at the bottom of every story because I remember when I laid alone in a hospital bed, and a doctor came in and said, “If you don’t move, you’ll never walk again.” The next day, I started physio. The end.

I cannot begin to tell you where I find these words, and how numb I am at this point. I’m surprised. I hope you will be too.

And now it’s time to close our eyes and our thoughts, if only for a moment…and rest.


The Case of Find the Doll – Part 3

John Barry, proprietor (standing at rear) from Lincoln Coffee Lounge & Cafe, Rowe Street, Sydney

The next day, Danny gave an early appearance at work.

Glenda looked up and said, “Danny Spitz! What are you doing here? It’s the morning!”

Danny paced around his office and replied, “Yeah, kid, I wanted to be here before we opened.”

Glenda replied, “Oh, Danny! It’s 11 a.m. We open at 9 a.m.”

Danny Spitz didn’t miss a beat. He rarely did. He turned to Glenda and said, “Of course you do. Now I want you to contact your cousin. I can’t believe I’m saying this–we need Dick Curtain. Find him fast.”

Two hours later, Dick Curtain made an entrance.

“Well, well, well. Do not fear, Dicky Curtain is here. Who needs mopping up, Uncle Danny?”

“Here is the moxie, Dick. We’re working a kidnap case. An old lady’s dolly is missing,” Danny said.

“Geez, Uncle Danny! Did she try bowling?”

“Already threw it in the mix and she tossed it out with the laundry. Anyway, never mind that, Dick. I need you to go to this address and touch base with Agent Lester Luckless. Got it?”

Dick Curtain, Junior PI looked at his Uncle Danny and said, “Touch base? Where are you going with that?”

Danny rubbed his chin as a writer might do, and said, “Don’t any of you people ever walk downtown Skid Row in the middle of the night?”

Dick wasn’t getting any of this. “Nope, nothing in the handbook about touching bases and such.” He cackled a little and said, “Okay, boss. I’ll go meet up with Agent Luckless. And don’t worry, we’ll go touch some bases.”

Danny Spitz wondered how he ended up with these three. But Dick was a high school wrestling champ, so there was the meat. (So to speak).

On we go.

Later that night, the boys returned to the office. Danny said, “Give it to me boys…uh, I mean, tell me everything, but only about the case, Lester.”

Right away, they both started talking at once. Danny yelled, “Stop! One at a time!”

Lester Luckless said, “Dick, you go first.”

“No!” Dick said. “You, by all means.”

Lester said, “By all means? That doughnut ain’t sopping up my coffee.”

Danny said, “Shut up the both of you! You remind me of this little red-headed broad I once knew. I don’t know…she was tapping her finger and clucking like a chicken, spouting some crap I knew was crap, so why listen? Got it now?”

Lester said, “I watched the dame’s joint all day. And, being an artist, I was making small sketches. Anyway, about 7 p.m., this black sedan pulled up in front of her house. The one guy got out of the car and went to the dame’s door. He stood under her porch light for five to ten minutes. Then he left with the other guy.”

Danny Spitz said, “Lester, give me any idea of their mugs?”

Lester said, “Better, boss. I sketched them. Looks just like ’em, don’t you think?”

Dick Curtain jumped up and said, “I agree!”

Danny Spitz looked at the sketch. “Holy mackerel! This kid ain’t too bad!”

After a closer look, Danny slapped himself in the face. It hurt.  “I know this guy. Or rather, I seen him. Seen him before, I’m saying. But where?”

And then, like a guy who knew he was getting lucky tonight, Danny spewed, “Sonny’s Grill! Of course! Come on boys! We’re going to Sonny’s Bar and Grill!”

As they rushed in (a little obvious to every drifter and low life in the place), Danny saw Sonny at the counter.

“Danny!” Sonny said. “Long time no see! Toasted cheese sandwich?”

“Forget the food. (I know I’m trying to). Sonny! Look at the sketch. Do you know him from coming in here?”

Sonny cleaned his glasses using, I swear, the same dirty apron he had on three years ago, and said, “Yeah, that’s Denny Spoon, and he’s sitting with his friend Stinky Mike.”

Sonny pointed to the corner at two slugs sitting in a booth, making friendly with cigarettes and coffee.

Conclusion next week.


By jamesghutcheson


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