Double clutch

Redacted doesn’t have a junkyard as far as I can tell.  What they do have is an old community college building that’s been turned into an almost all year-round flea market slash junk store slash second hand crap slash place where people try to sell old cars and car parts.   

Curved brick arches, sagging cement walls, mysterious giant pipes illuminated by whatever light sneaks in caked warehouse-style windows with rusted latches, doors hanging loose in plaster walls that go nowhere.  I dug it.   

The interior is crammed with racks of dresses and other out of style clothes, plastic crates filled with water damaged records, boxes of plates, silverware, ugly little porcelain figurines, tables piled with semi-functional juicers and shrimp peelers and appliances from old infomercials or sawdusty power tools.  There was one whole room just filled with glass jars.   

The surrounding area outside is broken into four quadrants.  On the north side you have your furniture.  Dozens of kitchen tables all pushed together to create a living area for hundreds of free-range lamps, surrounded by reefs of musty couches and battered chairs.   

The south side is home to building materials, stacks of warped wood and crowds of toilets, cinderblocks and chipped bricks, canoes and camping shit, exercise equipment and weights, fucking statues, sheds and anything else that won’t fit through the doors.   

Out front is where you park, in no particular order, also where the food trucks and the kids selling weed hang out.  The day I was there a great BBQ truck was there.  Out the back is where the action is.  Couple dozen cars for sale with hand-written signs on the back of take-put menus, tarps filled with car parts, stacks of tires and wheels, jacks and compressors.   

I was there to meet Loo, not Lou, about a 2014 Ford Transit Connect with a “fully blown engine”.  Loo is one of those big old guys you see on shows about the Korean war or at wrestlecons, who aren’t fat but aren’t muscular either, they’re just BIG.   

He told me the history of the van, which was just that it had been a shuttle for the very college that used to be there, used for driving students around so they didn’t get raped, until some damn kids stole it and jammed around until the engine “busted”.   

Loo was a talker and like a most talkers didn’t mind that I didn’t say much back.  I offered him $500.  He asked me if I was going to take it over to Al or if I was going to rebuild it myself or what my plan was.  I told him I was just going to try driving it as is to see how strong my car magic is.   

“Boy are you on the cocaine?” was his response.   

“I’m a woman” he blinked at me “I’m not a boy, see, boobs and everything.” 

He stared at me for a while and then apologized, saying that his eyes don’t see so good anymore.  I asked him if he wanted the 500 or not and the deal was struck with much harrumphing and grumbling and sideways looks.   

His eyes work good enough that they almost jumped out of his head when the engine turned over with a bang and cloud of yellow smoke.   

“There’s not even any gas in the tank!” he shouted at me, hanging on the window like a little kid. 

“Cool, that should save me a lot of money” I says to him. 

Leave a Reply