The Casino

We were sitting in Karsen’s, drinking Crown on the rocks, arguing about what to do next.

Me: Aren’t we overreacting a bit? We really didn’t do anything wrong — well, that they can prove anyway. Let’s just have Numbnuts there hide his stash and get back to the business of watching baseball. We need to get to Peoria for the night game.

Fast Eddie: This is Arizona, man. They squash cocaine users. They don’t need evidence; they’ll plant the evidence, and in case you haven’t noticed, I ain’t white. They don’t like my people. We need to find a place to hide until this blows over.

Me: Your people? You are from Hicksville, Indiana, dipshit.

Sir Jolters: No, you don’t understand. Things are different here. The Wild West is on its last breath, and people are pissed. Just listen sometime, and you can hear the Wild West being crushed by asphalt. White people blame their lifestyle change on brown people.

Yard Gnome: Baby Jesus in a Formula One Car! Would you stop with your empowerment bullshit? The cops are looking for us. We need a plan.

Fast Eddie: We can’t stay here. The cops will be coming through that door real soon.

Yard Gnome (looking at me) He’s right. You done bleeding yet? We gotta roll.

Me: We don’t have any wheels, remember? We took a cab to the game.

Sir Jolters: My wife will come get us.

Fast Eddie: That’ll take too long.

Jolters: Rocks, call us a cab.

Fast Eddie: No cabs, man. They are all narcs. The Heat will be waiting for us wherever he drops us off.

Yard Gnome: The team in Miami? No calls THE LAW the Heat anymore. Go to the bathroom and splash some water on your face, and GET YOUR SHIT TOGETHER.

After Fast Eddie went to the bathroom, the discussion turned to him.

Rocks: Your friend is trouble, man. Never trust an Indian who likes his drugs.

Me: He’s Filipino.

Rocks: What tribe is that?

Yard Gnome: The kind with dots on their head, man. Savages.

Sir Jolters: You are just mad he threw you into the urinal.

Me: The Phillipines! Not India!

Yard Gnome: Look, man, you are going to be a real buzzkill if you keep explaining the jokes to the ASU fans. Make them earn it.

Me: You really want me to beat your ass, don’t you?

Sir Jolters (to me): Look, your friend is really not right. Normally, that is a plus in my book, but he scares my wife, and I understand why. He scares your wife, and she doesn’t scare. She even likes Numbnuts there.

Yard Gnome: All women love me. It’s just the nature of the beast.

Sir Jolters: Except the one you have slept with. They all hate you.

Fast Eddie began freaking out in the cab after about four blocks. We ignored him the best we could, but the cab driver was getting anxious. The Yard Gnome, sitting in the front seat, slipped him some currency and shrugged. The cab driver was silent the rest of the way to Casino Arizona, then sped off without a good-bye.

Fast Eddie: This is a really bad idea. They have cameras everywhere, plus our cabbie is on the phone with THE LAW now.

Yard Gnome: Not the Heat? Hey, since our ride isn’t here yet, you guys mind if I go play a few hands of pai gow?

My roundhouse caught the Yard Gnome square in the ear, staggering him him, but he stayed on his feet. We were all silent, and other patrons began to stare.

Yard Gnome: I suppose I had that coming, but let the record show no one said no. Be back in a few.

The Yard Gnome wasn’t back in a few. Eventually, we had to go in with Sir Jolter’s wife to get him while Fast Eddie stayed outside. We found him at the cashier’s window, filling out the paperwork necessary when one wins enough money to have to report those winnings to Uncle Sam.

Yard Gnome: We got a bankroll now, boys! Let’s get to that game. Drinks are on me. We’ll even get Rocky there all the Band-Aids he needs. No drinking the cheap shit tonight, Champ.

Sir Jotler’s Wife: Are you sure that’s good idea? The weirdo is still in the parking lot.

Sir Jolters: It’s okay, Honey. It’s Arizona. The statute of limitations has expired.

Next: Peoria

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