Sunday, November 22, 2015

A Queens conversation

I was volunteering this morning at a tailgate party at Sunnyside Gardens Park this morning, working "security." My boss is a big cross-eyed Irish marine named Jamie. I was talking to him and a man from Turkey named Ahmad. We started talking sports, what else at a neighborhood tailgate party. Ahmad started talking about crazy Futbol fans in Turkey. Jamie launched into one of his famous stories. "Turkey's a rough country. I remember when I was there with the Marines. I was at some little hole in the wall with my guys and I had my wallet up on the bar. All the sudden they were closing the bar. It was only 12:30 in the afternoon. They were closing the bar because of a public hanging. So we all went outside. And all of the sudden we realized we had been pushed to the front. They were trying to show us Americans, 'This is what we'll do to you, if you're not careful.' I looked at my guys and told them, 'When the body drops I want you to cheer and scream full of bloodlust. Because we wanted to show them." Then Ahmad, with a big smile said, "There's never been public execution in Turkey in my lifetime. It must have been some other country you were in." Jamie countered with, "Well, it was a small town." Ahmad was resolute, "I'm from a small town." Jamie, "But you cut off the hands of thieves over there." Ahmad, "No we haven't done that for a long time either." Jamie, "I'm going to get some coffee, do you guys need anything?"

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