Home > Funny Stories by Dick Oakes, Jr. > Funny Stories by Dick Oakes, Jr.

Funny Stories by Dick Oakes, Jr.

By Dick Oakes, Jr.

By Dick Oakes, Jr.

The first time I ran afoul of Gee-Temple was in the Outlands.

He had come out there with a vice squad from the capital to bust up a fruit stand ring. Completely normal roadside fruit stand– completely normal-looking country people running the thing. You’d buy, say, a handful of grapes and the next thing you’d know, they’d reveal themselves to be complete perverts. I couldn’t figure on any of it.

I was standing outside an electronics shop on some hick main street and the next thing I knew, a van pulled up. People started to climb into it, so, I figured, what the hell, and I climbed aboard. The thing drove for miles in complete silence and eventually pulled into some highway motel. Everybody got off– I figured on it being some kind of a jackpot, so I got off too.

There was a long line at the front desk. People were asking all sorts of questions about the kind of carpet, the shower curtains, ply details on the toilet paper. It made no sense, none of it.

Finally, I reached the counter. It was a sour-looking couple, slow-moving, suspicious– the woman looked like a bird. The guy kept putting pieces of gum in his mouth and lighting cigarettes. It was all senseless.

“Well…how much for a room?” I opened.384469
“He doesn’t have $37,” the woman said slowly, carefully to her husband.
I pulled out two twenties.
“Listen, whyn’t you go down to the Ranchito. That’s more your speed, buddy.”

I drew up a story about a daughter from the East. She was coming out on a plane and I was going to take her to the amusement park. It was pure nonsense but they bought it. The woman even gave me a couple of extra towels. They were folded in some weird way so that they slightly resembled swans. She fished for a compliment and I gave it to her. Big boy handed me the keys.

It was furnished in bright blues. Everything was bright blue. After a shower and about fifteen minutes sitting around, it was burning my eyes out. I tore off the bedspread and shoved it into a closet that was locked with a chain. I could clear just enough room to push the damn thing in there. Then I took down a couple of bright blue paintings from the wall. They were just unframed canvases painted bright blue. I couldn’t figure on any of it.

I went up to the second deck to get some ice. There was a grown man standing there, playing on some kind of hand-held game. He put it away as soon as he saw me.

“Nice…beautiful night out, huh?” he said. “Look at them stars.”
I couldn’t see anything but I gave him a little nod and dropped a quarter into the slot. That’s when he grabbed me from behind and flung me backwards. He was holding me over the railing. I could see a couple of cars below me, had to be a good fifteen feet. I heard the bucket clatter away in the distance. Looks like you’re finally a goner Oakes, I heard myself saying. Then, I got a hand free and knocked him out. I dragged him into the shadows and looked through his wallet. Couple of tens in there, couple of restaurant tokens, no kind of identification. I pocketed the money.

And that’s when I came face to face with Gee-Temple.

He took me downtown and booked me for armed robbery and perversion. “What’s the perversion charge, Chief?” I asked him. “I can’t tell you now,” he said, kindly. “We’re going to set you up with a little chicken dinner in your cell. I think it’s chicken breast with green beans and a little side of ice cream.” He thought about that. “It sounds really good, doesn’t it? I could eat that right now, even if it was in a cell, I think I could eat that.” He was really mulling it over.

I didn’t eat the dinner.

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