Thursday, July 11, 2013

Kid From the Streets

When I woke up, the graffiti was already on the wall, only 10 feet away from me. I sipped on coffee while contemplating how the hell someone could've put their tag on the inside of my house, in the same room I was sleeping and I didn't notice it.

It was a complex tag too. It had multiple colors and you could tell the artist had complete control over the spray paint. I took a picture of it on my phone.

I wasn't mad, that was until I noticed both my home desktop computer and work computer were missing. I stared at the wires hanging from the back of my desk, rage and panic taking over my mind. 

I stepped outside and the cool autumn air smacked me right in the face. There were school kids playing all around. I called one of the closer ones over, a little girl with her hair up in brightly colored barrettes. She had confidence that scared me. 

"Yeah, what do you want?" She stood six or seven feet from my front porch. 

"Do you know who's work this is?" I showed her my phone.

"Maybe I do."

"Well, I like it, but it seems I'm missing some things from my house. You think you could get whoever did this? Tell them just to come here. They can stand ten feet away for all I care, I'm not trying to catch them, just want to talk."

She scrunched her face up for a minute and said, "Yeah, ok, I guess that's fine."

I continued drinking my coffee as I saw a pre-teen boy approach. His confidence was that of someone who knew he was busted.

"Um, yes... yessir."

"Hey man, so I'm into your art. I think you have talent. I don't plan on pressing charges, but is there anyway you can get my computers back for me? I'm crippled and broke. I really need to work."

The kid looks down at my leg and sees my brace. He pulls out his cell phone, still unsure if he can trust me. The kid turns his back to me and talks to someone on the phone. He somehow thinks that just because he can't directly see me, that will muffle the sound. 

"Yeah, so I have the gray computer still. They're bringing that back."

"What about the black one? That's my work computer. I need to sign in at 9."

"They're working on that. We had to send it to another guy because we couldn't get into it."
"Well, while we're waiting, you want to come inside."

The kid does follow me in, and I'm not really sure why he trusts me all of a sudden. 

I offer him an orange juice and we both stand, sipping our drinks, staring at his work. "I do really like this work. I've seen it around town. Most graffiti I think is ugly, but when someone actually has talent and spends time working on it, you get some beautiful stuff."

"What do you know about art?"

I pull out some of my old sketch books. "I'm a little rusty, I don't get to draw to often anymore, but I know art. I can teach you."

"Yeah? Ummm, that might be cool. I'm going to make another call."

I can hear him in the other room, just slightly muffled, but the sound carries through the thin walls. "I don't care if you have it in pieces. Bring it back. This guy is pretty alright and he has to work. Alright, bye."

We spend the next 15 minutes just sketching and talking. Kid has parents that both work two minimum wage jobs and he essentially gets to roam the neighborhood doing what he feels like. He eats at a little diner everyday. They know him well enough to know that he eats the same meal on each day of the week. He's telling me that Thursday is Turkey Club day when a chubby red head boy wanders into my house without knocking. He has my computer in a backpack. 

Without talking, he starts pulling pieces out and putting them back together. "Sorry about this, we were just trying to get past the encryption so we could sell it."

"So what I want to know is how I didn't wake up during this."

The artist starts laughing. "Man, I don't know, you were asleep though. We had ten people in here, messing with your stuff." The kid shows me his phone and sure enough, 10 kids all taking pictures with my who is in what has to be the deepest sleep of my life, going through my underwear drawer, and one kid who seems to love licking things. "Hell, we're pretty sure your wife saw us and waved."

I reach for my phone to call Sallie and...

Newbie jumps on my stomach and I wake up. I didn't get to finish the dream, which sucks because it wasn't the normal sort of dream I have. Wonder what would've happened.