Furniture and Betty
by John McAuley
So far I've scavenged a coffee table, two plastic chairs and a small lamp.
See, most people don't leave these apartments voluntarily, so, when they get booted-out, they dump their stuff because they've got nowhere to take it. I try to pick up what I can without looking like a vulture.
My own apartment doesn't have much of a view, but it's better than what I had before.
The old guy next door drinks vodka and milk. Says it soothes his stomach and doesn't give him a hangover. He talks a lot, especially about Sweaty Betty. She lives over in number twelve and supposedly gives a helluva ride for twenty bucks.
I read about a man my age robbing a bank for forty dollars. He gave the cash to a security guard then waited for the cops.
He asked the judge to give him just enough time in prison to where he'd be old enough to collect Social Security--he'd lost his job and just couldn't hold on for another year.
The judge obliged.
Ten months until my Social Security kicks in. Until then I'll keep flipping burgers.
But I'm thinking about dipping in to my retirement fund.
It cost me fifteen years without parole because I'd never tell them where the money was.
I'll be careful.
I'll buy some cheap furniture.
And if Sweaty Betty hasn't been evicted I may pay her a call.