Thursday, February 02, 2006


I waited to meet my friend, Wall Street Pete, who had his feet in a dozen deals, making money, spinning wheels. He thrived on heat, loved the fight, ignored the tight knot in his chest when doing what he did best, making schemes and dreams come true. That's what made this bum from the slum richer than the richest son of a bitch.

I agreed to meet Pete at the bank. He had a deal in the fire. Something to do with copper wire. "This guy Meyer has a deal so right it can't miss," Pete said "I put Two up for this."

"Two what?" I asked.

"Two Million," he said with a laugh. "If it goes through, I'll give you half of what i get. Pete never welches on a bet."

I waited two hours or more, then saw Pete go in a store, come out carrying a paper bag. When he got near I saw him sag. He stuck a smile on his face. How'd it go? I wanted to know. Pete turned to me and said angrily: "Meyer, that fuckin' liar. He didn't have no Goddam wire. Just a lousy paper deal. A steal, that no good heel! For two I got empty warehouse space in a place in old Soho. Ho! Ho!! Ho!"

"You can sue?" I said. He shook his head. "Naw, I signed on the dotted line. Didn't read the fine print like I usually do. A deal's a deal. You get half."

Pete gave a winners-losers laugh, reached in the bag. Took out a bagel, broke it in two, took a bite from his half, spit it out. He choked. Blood rushed to his head. "I asked for poppy-seed," Pete said. Then he dropped dead.


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