Art by Paul Rios
“What are you looking at dicknose?”
The words left my smirking mouth without hesitation. From an outsider’s point-of-view, it was a wildly inappropriate response to Dave’s compliment about my sunglasses, but when he mentioned I looked like Styles wearing them I didn’t think twice.
Teen Wolf, bitches.
It had been a while since Dave and I got a chance to stand around and laugh. Perched on the second floor of the Secretary of State’s building, the sunny weather only added to the occasion. A gentle breeze was slowly moving the shrubs to our right, making the shadows cast at our feet dance from side to side. Mid-70s in July—this must be what it’s like to live in L.A.
“Hey, can we move this inside?” Dave said after a break in the conversation. “ I’m supposed to meet Saulo; I guess there’s a broken table we need to haul out.”
Bleh. Work always gets in the way of a good time.
We had barely made it through the tinted glass doors before Saulo came walking sluggishly around the corner. His short, barrel-like frame was a near replica of the Juggernaut sans helmet, if he were Mexican.
“What’s going on?” Saulo said, barely meeting eyes with the two of us. He was leaning against the wall like a crutch and sweating.
“Saulo had a long night,” Dave informed me in between laughs. I had deduced that much the second he arrived.
“Oh yeah,” I said grinning. “What were you up to?”
“It was my friends twenty-thirr… I mean thirty-second birthday,” Saulo said, pausing to burp and wipe his brow. “We went to the Mix.”
“It was all bad,” he added, new beads of sweat replacing the old.
No shit, I thought. I’ve had some rough mornings, but it was 1:15 p.m. and he was still in danger of yacking. Dave was still laughing; he must have been thinking the same thing.
“I told the cab driver to take me to 17th and U in Sacramento,” Saulo continued. “He told me, ‘You are in Sacramento!’ I thought I was in Berkeley for some reason.”
Things just got worse… or at least weirder.
“Wait, what?” I said, now thoroughly perplexed. “You thought you were in Berkeley?!” Saulo cracked a weak smile. “How much did you drink? Actually, were there ever little pieces of paper floating in your beer at some point in the night?” LSD would be a simple explanation for all this.
“I don’t know what happened,” Saulo said, chuckling. That was an understatement.
“Wait,” I jumped back in. “You thought you were in Berkeley and the best solution you could come up with to get home to Sacramento was a cab ride?” The craziness of this story was really sinking in. “How much would that have cost?”
“Yeah,” Saulo said. I think his stomach was still turning. “I guess it’s a good thing I was already in town.”
For a brief moment, I completely understood why Prohibition happened.