One morning when I was a kid–maybe nine years old–I was in our back yard with a pal of mine when another kid we knew came walking toward us from the property line at the very rear of my parents’ yard. It was actually misty that morning and he appeared from the fog like a figure from a spy movie. The kid was wearing a trench coat tied at the waist. No one I knew had a fucking trench coat and it looked cool as shit. And he had that goddamned fog–like it was tailor-fucking-made. My pal, Britt and I just gawked. The
other kid walked right up to us. He had a briefcase in his hand to go along with that damned trench coat. He even had a hat.
“Look what I got for Christmas,” he told us.
He held out the briefcase. A Man From U.N.C.L.E. briefcase.
He opened it up. It was packed with cool-ass secret agent shit. It had a gun with a silencer. A snub-nosed revolver. A goddamned grenade. Walkie-talkie. An U.N.C.L.E. badge…other cool-ass shit.
“Damn,’ we said.
After letting us stare at that shit for a while the kid closed the briefcase.
“Let me borrow it,” I said.
“Yeah, let us borrow it,” Britt added. “We’ll just play with it and give it back to you.”
The truth was we barely knew the other kid. He lived one street over and we rarely even saw the guy. He was just trolling the neighborhood to rub in what a cool-ass score he’d gotten for Christmas.
“No,” he said.
“Aw, Come ON! Loan it to us!”
“Yeah,” said Britt.
The other kid eyed us nervously and backed away with his hat and trench coat and briefcase. Several steps and he turned on his heel and made his way back the same route he’d walked in on. The London fog had burned off–it was just Atlanta January mist baked into a figment of our imagination by the sun.
I considered tackling him from behind and taking that goddamned briefcase. Maybe even the fucking trench coat, too. But I didn’t.
To my memory, neither I nor Britt ever saw that lucky bastard again. He doesn’t know how close he came to losing it all. Or maybe he did.
|Damn, it was a sweet score.|