Two men: One message

Little guy

The little guy, in a black raincoat and dark fedora, looked like a cartoon character. Less than five feet tall, he approached a bushy bearded man in a long leather coat. Both stood face to belt buckle on a busy street corner in NYC.

The fedora said, “I have a message for you.”

“Huh?” The six-foot-ten man moaned, and pulled his stoking hat over the top of his ears.

 The little guy spoke louder, “I said, I have a message for you.”

“Yo, nimrod. Why you talkin’ to my belt  buckle. Go away, you’re bothering me.”

“Dammit. I said I have a message for you!” The fedora shouted and jumped straight up, and drove the two inch heel of his right boot into the leatherman’s instep.


 The big man’s huge fist came at the little guy in a wide arc. The short person adroitly bowed his head, and five enormous knuckles whizzed by. The balled up package of meat, bone, and sinew, hit a metal pole holding a sign that said, “No parking. Taxi Lane,” and the impact was much like walnuts being crushed at Thanksgiving.

The fedora waited while the big man jumped up and down; several times on his right leg, and once on his left. He brought his mangled fist up to his eyes and said through lips oozing drool, “My gawd, look what you did to my fist!”

 “You should’a listened to me.”

 Leatherman’s chin shone with wetness, “I think my foot’s broke, too.”

 “I told you. I have a message for you.”

 “You a weirdo? You talkin’ to my crotch!”

 “I have a message for you.”

 “Who from?”

 “Mr. Hulse.”

 “Don’t know him.”

 “I have a message anyway.”

A silver stretch limo rolled to the curb. A dark rear window slid down, and an arm sleeved in tan cashmere appeared. A gloved hand pointed, lifted up slightly, and pointed again at a street corner directly opposite.

 The fedora looked in that direction, and saw another man, wearing a long leather coat and wearing a stocking hat; waiting on the street corner.

 The fedora looked toward the limo and nodded. And without a sound, the car’s window rolled up, and the vehicle eased into the traffic flow.

 The man with the bad hand witnessed the silent exchange, and limped two steps backwards. He cupped his mouth with his good hand and shouted to the leather coat across the street, “Yo! Big guy! Somebody has a message for you.” And with the index finger of his good hand, he nodded his head vehemently, and pointed at his foot stomper.

 The fedora looked up, this time, into the injured man’s face.  “Sorry about your hand, bro. Guess you’ll be off the basketball courts for a few days huh?”

A street light flashed “walk”and the leather coat watched the fedora scurry across the crosswalk toward his new quarry.



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