Tuesday, March 6, 2012


Karen was drinking coffee and watching the morning news with the sound turned low. It was Saturday, and she was off for the weekend, but she was showered and all ready for the day. She snickered when she heard Bob fart loudly in his sleep in the next room, but then felt badly about it because she was in intruding on his private world. When Bob got up a couple hours later; he walked the living room sporting ratty his terrycloth robe.
“I made coffee,” said Karen.
“Great. How you feeling?” Bob asked.
“Trying unsuccessfully not to think of what we’re dealing with… I’m so sorry that I got you involved… maybe I should just go, Bob?”
“Hey, in for a penny, in for a pound. Let’s just see what Mamma Basco says? “Mamma Basco?"
 "Is that her real name?”
“Yeah, its short for Tabasco… that lady, puts it in and on everything… she can probably shoot it out of her fingers I’d bet too. She’s my personal voodoo lady. In New Orleans’s that's on pare with having your own personal accountant.” Bob said.
"Why would you need a personal voodoo lady, Bob?"
Bob just raised his eyebrow and smiled at her.
Mamma Basco was just leaving Harrah’s Casio, she had voodoo power in spades, but on the slots she was just another old woman on a losing streak. She was lighting up a Lucky Strike when her cell phone rang.
“Yeah, who dis?”
Mamma Basco walked over to a nearby bench and sat with a scowl on her old wrinkled face… then she smiled.
“Bobby… Bobby Bustamonte! How are you, sweet child? When you comin’ back to your real home? The people’s are finally coming back, no thanks to dat fucking bitch Miss Katrina!”
Mamma Basco, laughed at whatever Bob replied back.
“Okay, why you callin’ Mamma Basco? You must be in need?
Mamma Basco, listed on intently as she puffed hard on a cigarette.
“Okay, you listen to me. I know you got a little experience with the spirits… but Mamma Basco don’t like that she’s not there to back your ass up! You sure you don’t want to fly me out there first class? I always wanted to see Disneyland… I like that Jay Leno too. Mamma Basco laughed. “Okay listen, first you gonna need some sage and smoke that apartment up, like dat Towering Inferno, you know baby. Remember that’ll make the spirit weak to the knees, so you can go in there and remove it… let me ask you something… is you fuckin’ dis woman, baby?”
Mama Basco listened for the response, then laughed.
“Oh Bobby, you a good soul, doing all this and not getting any pussy for your troubles… she’s an old friend, did you at least get it before she got old?” Mamma Basco let out a cackle; she knew that she was being naughty, and she loved it.
“You gots ta get at least a blow job for dis shit baby, its dangerous juju! You ain't Harry Potter, baby boy.” Mamma Basco again, waited then laughed even louder.
“Then maybe you should bring dat girl’s ass in to help you! You never know what’s gonna work? Look, I gots ta get home, you jus call me back in a couple hours. Okay, bye baby.”
Bob was laughing when he got off the phone, he looked at Karen.
“Mamma Basco said that you should at least be blowing me for my troubles.”
“Great, you’ll never stop calling me hurricane? Tell you what Bobby, you get this thing out of my apartment and I’ll take you around the world… and that’s a fun trip… that’s if I still do it for you?”
Bob cocked his head at her.
“Is that a fact? Around the world in what… eighty minutes? You might just have a deal?”
Bob looked at Karen who was wearing some jeans and a little T shirt; a river of old memories came into his head, he guessed that she did still do something for her too. He was glad that their little sexy flirtation had given them a light moment.
“People still come up and tell you that you look like Meg Ryan?”
“Not as much… but that’s her fault… she had too much work done.”
Karen said as she put down her coffee and walked over to Bob and kissed him hard, she put her hand on his crotch and started to rub. Bob pushed her away.
“Thanks a lot,” Karen said hurt.
“It’s not that I don’t want to, but ah…
“But, ah what?” Karen said.
“I don’t think it’s a good idea, at this moment. You know how fighters abstain before a big fight. Thrilla in Mania and all that? I think I… we gotta do the same? Keep a clear head… so to speak.”
“Ugh, I seriously  need to decompress! ” Karen said as she stomped away toward Bob’s room.
“Don’t open this door for at least fifteen minutes; no matter what kind of noises you hear. “Who knows, maybe Teddy Roosevelt will pop up,” said Bob.
“It’s not like I didn’t think of that!”
Karen closed the door behind her. Bob shook his head, grabbed a Heineken and used it to cool his crotch.

Mamma Basco made her way down to the corner of Dauphine Street, and walked into the Déjà Vu Bar and Restaurant. It was one of her favorite joints in the Quarter to get a quick beer and some food. She plopped her little body down on a bar stool.
“Give Mamma an Abita
“You got it, Mamma,” he said.
The long haired man poured her a beer and put it in front of her. Mamma grabbed a bottle of nearby Tabasco and but shook a couple drops in her glass.
“The devil may care… but I don’t,” Mamma Basco said.
 She licked her lips and took a big gulp of the icy cold amber beverage.
“Damn, that good,” she said to herself.
“Little Chanel still in Hollywood working in the movies?”
“Yeah, Mamma, she’s working on CSINY right now” said the long haired man.
“Yeah? I like them CSI shows…when they gonna do CSI about us here?
“That would be good… Lord knows we got enough dead bodies here too? They could put John Goodman in it, he's already here,” said the long haired man.
“Lordy, John Goodman’s too damn fat… they gotta use Judge Connick’s boy, Harry. You gots ta be skinny to be catchin' dem criminals. They makin’ lots of movies here now, Chanel should come home and work… Mamma just sayin.’”
"Next time she's in town, I'll pass your advice along, Mamma."
"You go ahead and do dat."
Mamma Basco looked across the way to an old Jazz Fest poster of Professor Longhair that decorated the Déjà Vu’s wall, and raised her glass to him and took another big drink.
“Damn, that tasted even better than the first one.”
She looked over at the long haired man over the counter.
“You need Mamma to make you any love potions, honey?”
“No, Mamma, I got too many ex-wives… can’t afford no more love!”
Mamma Basco slapped her knee and cackled.
“Can you make Mamma a fried egg and boudin sandwich, baby,” she said to the man. As she sat there drinking her beer. Giving Him Something He Can Feel by En Vogue came on the jukebox, and Mamma started singing along and swaying on her seat.
Her phone rang and Mamma Basco reached in her bag and grabbed it.
“Why don’t En Vouge make dem good songs no more?”
The long haired man behind the counter just shrugged at her.
She shook her head and started talking on her cell.
“Mamma Basco, how can I help you? Oh, it’s you baby. How’s dat ghostbustin’ going wit you all? Did you get dat sage like Mamma told you?”
Bob was drinking a Heineken looking out his window of his red brick apartment onto the street known as Speedway below, which was basically just a long alley. It hadn’t changed much since Charlton Heston drove down it back 1958, in an classic noir film called Touch of Evil, which also starred and was directed by Orson Welles. Welles had the imagination to have Venice stand in for a seedy boarder town, as opposed to shooting on the back lot at Universal in the valley. Heston called the picture “The greatest B movie ever made”… It happened to be Bob’s favorite movie, he dug that he lived and worked in a place that had such a cool cinematic history.
“I got it Mamma. Any other suggestions on this matter… that you can think of? Let me ask her. Karen, Mamma wants to know if you’ve been playing with a Ouija board recently.”
Karen was sitting at the counter in front of her laptop cruising Facebook… she was just sending Bob a friend request.
“No! Of course not!”
“She said, nope.
"Did you do anything different to your apartment? Was it remodeled or something like that?”
 “No, nothing… nothing’s changed since I moved in the place three years ago,” she said.
“That’s a no; according to her Mamma… no, Mamma I’m not sure what happened to En Vouge… I’m just as baffled to why they’re not making records too,” Bob just shrugged as he could see Karen scratching her head listening to his conversation.
 “Karen, Mamma wants to know if you brought something into the apartment? An old piece of furniture or something like that? Hold on… Mamma says don’t forget about my b.j. for all my troubles.”
As she tried to think about the question, Karen couldn’t help imagining Mamma Basco cackling loudly somewhere in New Orleans.
“Gosh, I do go to flea markets and yard sales a lot… you think it could be it that?”
“Okay Mamma, we’ll do that. Yeah, I’ll try you in a couple hours… I’ll try look into that En Vogue mystery... Okay.” Bob said as he hung up his cell.
“She had to go to an appointment in the Garden District, but she said to think hard, you might have brought something in yourself and not know it? She said that we should sage the place; then go look around looking for clues. We’ll also need a big seashell too, to burn the sage in too.”
“Boy, this Mamma Basco’s really worried about the happiness of you penis, isn’t she?”
“Well, whatever you got me dealing with might be some real bad juju. And she doesn’t understand the reason’s I’d go in harm’s way for you… if I was bangin’ you, then at least she’d think I doing it for the pardon my French; the pussy… like a dumb fuck… so Mamma’s perplexed to say the least,” Bob said.
“We’ll maybe you should just tell her we were married once?”
Bob laughed, “We were married for a week… if that? I think, she’d really think I was a dumb ass if I mentioned that?!”
Karen picked up a couch pillow and threw it at Bob.
“We have a bond, admit it!”
“Karen we haven’t seen each other in over ten years… I didn’t even know you had my phone number?”
Karen just stood there and waited for Bob to answer her question.
“Okay, we have a bond of a guy and a gal, who got drunk on too many tequila shots and did something really stupid, if not comical  in Vegas once… if that joins people together, than yes, we have a bond.”
“You have to admit, that it sure was a fucking fun New Years Eve,” Karen said with her honey and whiskey voice.
“Well yeah, the two F’s… that weekend was one of my more memorable Vegas trips.”
“What?! Not thee? I gave you my all that weekend… I’ve never had such an intense weekend of debauchery as New Years Eve 1999! ”
“Karen, I’ve been to Vegas more times than Wayne Newton."
"I don't think so Bob... he lives there."
 "Whatever" I’ve had a lot of fun there… did I ever tell you time I hooked up with Gina Gershon at the Shadow Bar at Ceasars Palace? She ain't no lesbian, I'll tell ya … Va-voom!” 
 Karen looked at Bob with daggers in her eyes.
“Really....and where’s your Gina Gershon at now?
 “My guess making a movie somewhere?”
 “Let me ask you a question, Bob…. Do you want to do me?”
Bob stopped drinking his Heineken and looked at Karen, despite her recent troubles, the years had been good to her… and he couldn't forget; when it came to sex, she was pretty much up for anything that he threw at her… in fact she’d throw it just as hard back... and that still excited him to no end. Bob knew why they had distanced themselves from each other after that Vegas mishap. Their pretend honeymoon was fantastic, but the being married part just scared the hell out of them both, even if it was just a drunkin’ goof… so they just went ahead and disappeared from each others lives.
“Yes! But we do have a history of making rash decisions together, ” Bob said.
“Duly noted... but I really think we should hurry and get to my apartment, and look for whatever possessed piece of junk is there.... and then as I Dream of Jeanie said; your wish is my command... how do them apples stack up against Gina Gershon's apples?”
Bob liked how Karen, put all her cards on the table.
“Let's go!” Bob said.

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