Gillian went on a road trip.

She’s my client, the one on whose clothes Nickel Catmium likes to roll and perv, and I swear in between massages she never stays put. This time she hauled ass down to North Carolina, in the company of one of her “coveninis,” on account she is a committed and playful Wiccan who does earnest spells on behalf of her friends, in this case, someone tackling the quotidian horror of chemotherapy. They were occupied for the weekend putting up frozen homemade soup and performing hair spells for abundant regrowth as the pre-emptive head-shaving took place.

On the way back through some wide spot in the North Carolina road system, Gillian heard a thonk under her car and a succession of flap-flap-a-dab-a-daps as she rolled on. Pulling over at the nearest sign of intelligent life, she was told that about three miles on there was “a tire place,” where someone could at least get her car up on a lift and discern what had gone amiss, as the obvious conclusions like a blown tire didn’t seem to be responsible.

Substantially close than three miles, she saw a large illuminated sign reading Mechanic on Duty, which on closer inspection fronted a tractor maintenance and repair business. Surmising that anyone there could at least scope out her problem, she pulled over and stuck her head in the door, to be greeted by a purple-faced, white-haired redneck who seemed distinctly well into the late day’s drinking ration.

“Y’all lost your bumper liner here,” he said. “Used to they put these things on with solid clips. Now it’s all cheap plastic shit. See here? All in shreds. I can cut it off and stop the noise, throw it in the trunk so you can show it to who’s-ever does your car work. Bumper’ll rattle a little but no harm. How’s about?” Well that was fine, said Gillian. They stashed the damaged part, and as she was ferreting in her wallet the redneck added “Now, I don’t know if y’all are interested, but we got some of the best shine around here, just pulled off a new batch. Care for a slash?”

Gillian pleaded a weak head and the need to drive, but their new friend was undaunted. “Give you a good price. This ain’t like you read about where drinkin it can kill you, you gotta pull off that first few gallons. Don’t sell that part, it’s about a hunderd thirty proof.”

“Yow, you could put that in the gas tank,” said Gillian.

“Y’all hear that generator out back? Whatcha think that’s runnin’ on?” winked their new friend.

Gillian forced a twenty into his hand, and as they piled into the car, he said “Well if y’all get back through here, you know where to find the good stuff okay? My name’s Buddy.”

“Of course it is,” said Gillian as she got back into the car, and floored it.

Gillian usually brings me the pain relief unguent of the locality when she travels, which is typically far and wide. This time, she came back empty handed. All to the good, I figure.


2 thoughts on “Buddy

  1. We can buy moonshine legally over the counter in Tennessee now. Also, as of this year, wine can be bought in grocery stores. Many are surprised that civilization did not collapse.

    • There is some sort of alleged shine sold in kitschy Mason jars in the state stores here in VA. I don’t know how authentic it is. You can even buy it on Sunday now, something of a revelation to me a few years ago; I don’t know when that started. When I was a kid you could barely find a drug store that was open on Sunday.

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