So, I mentioned there was a "chair over the head" incident recently. I don't remember the occasion, but we decided to have a party in the parking spaces in front of our building. It was really cool - we had The Misting System set up, daintily misting water out on people to cool down the area. Tee and Apollo had two grills set up along with a table full of various food. We managed to borrow several tables and folding chairs from the church so yeah, we had room for a lot of people!
And of course, because no ghetto is complete without it, the guys had a sound system outside, complete with dj mixing, etc. It's funny how they think they're good mixers. LOL
Anyway, so yeah, all was going well. Various neighbors and their dogs came over to visit, the firemen would wave when they drove by...it was your classic urban get together. But then, sometime after dark, my notoriously drunk neighbor came home from a party. "Mike" was wasted. He's the one in the middle of the group in the picture, which was taken a matter of minutes before The Incident. (Note Big Mac's gigantore Caddy - that sucker is HUGE!) Mike was acting very strange, so we all sort of avoided him. We were nice, but we knew he was a time bomb.
Someone drove up to the house next to us and parallel parked her still running SUV in front of the driveway while she got her kid out of the kiddie seat and suddenly, a glass bottle came out of no where, landing near her front tire. Amazingly, it remained intact. We were all shocked and looked at each other. Who threw that bottle? (I feel like I'm writing a police report) It was dark and we couldn't see well, but we squinted into the darkness and there was Mike, standing back in the shadows between some other cars giving the SUV the snake eye. As Mike started to walk back towards us, one of my friends "Alan" walked up to him and said, "Did you do that?" Alan was actually very casual when he asked. See, Alan is a sweet, nice guy that assumes the best of people.
Wait, maybe I should give you some more background so you can see how this situation is extra-inappropriate. Mike is Mexican, in his 50's and not exactly at the peak of his health. He's averaged height, but maybe a little skinny. Alan, in his 20's, is tall and of large build. He's a Pacific Islander and yes, he fits the stereotype. As mentioned earlier, he's a sweet guy. If he asks someone a question and it sounds naive...well there's a high probability he is naive about it.
OK so Alan asked Mike, "Did you do that?" WELL Mike started yelling, "I didn't do that? Why do you think I threw it? Are you accusing me of throwing the bottle??" and getting in Alan's face. Alan started to walk away but Mike wouldn't let it go. They started to go around in tight circles, Alan with his bulk looking down at a small, old and inebriated Mexican. They kept throwing things back at each other like, "I didn't f**'n throw it!" and "Don't swear at me, I don't like it when people swear at me!" It was stupid. At one point, Alan looked at me with a funny smile on his face and started to walk away when Mike spit in his face. SPIT IN HIS FACE! First, that's disgusting. Second, don't spit in someone's face when they already want to kick your ass. With the spit dripping off his glasses, Alan reached over and picked up a folded chair.
Imagine in your head, about 15 folded chairs leaning up against palm tree's. A man, reaches down in slow motion and grabs a chair and starts to swing. This is how I saw it. In slo-mo. At the same time Mike was reaching into his pocket for something. We all knew Mike had knives, too, and this freaked us out. Somehow, at this point, the rest of the posse, Big Mac, Tee and Apollo (in photo) all were involved. Tee standing in between the two trying to keep them separated, while Apollo grabbed Mike and had his arms behind his back so he couldn't get the knife out of his pocket. I'm not sure where Big Mac was. It was a big tustle of yelling and bodies. Because Apollo was holding back Mike, he took the first blow of the chair that Alan threw at Mike. Bodies were spinning, another chair was grabbed and this time (ok things get a little hazy here because I was freaking out), it landed on Mike's head. Or, at least I think it did. I'm not sure if the chair made contact with his head or if it was the cement. Yes. Cement. Mike and Apollo fell down, and the next thing I knew there was blood everywhere! Mike was cut from his head and hands.
This all happened within a matter of seconds. It was really weird, I mean, how does someone justify picking up a CHAIR and throwing it at people? What would possess you to do that? I don't care if you're in the right! It was METAL! The guys told Alan to walk it off so he took off down the street. Meanwhile, Mike was trying to follow him and was screaming and yelling craziness. He went into the building and tried to follow Alan by going out the back door, but Apollo blocked him. Then, because he locked himself out of his apartment, he started scaling up the side of the apartment building to get into his second floor building. All the while saying, "I'm going to get him! I've got something inside for him!"
So, we're outside, stunned and trying to clean up all the chairs that had fallen on the ground, when Mike comes out, waving his cordless phone in the air and screaming something about police. *sigh* I really do live in the ghetto I guess, because it was a matter of a minute or two before about twelve police cars, two firetrucks and an ambulance showed up, taking up the entire road. I would LOVE to know what he told the 911 dispatcher to get that kind of response! Good thing we made Apollo go change his shirt, he had blood all over it and would have looked very suspicious. A couple police started questioning us immediately while others, with the paramedics, went up to talk to Mike. About two minutes later they came out and they told us that Mike was so crazy, it was no wonder he was hit. Apparently he was screaming and yelling at the paramedics and basically belligerent, so they refused to treat him.
My friend Alan must be blessed by God, because the police drove away without taking a police report! They didn't ask our names, nor Alan's name, nothing! So basically, he got to hit someone in the head with a chair and didn't suffer any consequences.
After the police drove away and the firemen ate some of our food, Mike came out again. He was screaming and yelling, "You're not my *&$@# friends" and other such nonsense. He was also throwing glass bottles up and down the clay tiled hallway in the apartment, so you know it was loud! I went for a drive and picked up Alan, and that's basically the last time we've really spoken. Sure, I've seen him a few times since then but it's always been, "Hi, how are you." I guess he's embarrassed.
Meanwhile, in the morning light we saw blood all over the place. There were blood drips up and down both hallways and on the wall. Apollo had some cuts on his elbow and arm, but he wasn't the one who bled all over. I guess all the alcohol Mike consumed made his blood really thin and drip everywhere. Later that morning Mike cleaned up all his blood and apologized profusely. He felt he deserved to be hit in the head, and people...that was really sad. I don't care how crazy you're acting, you do not deserve the physical violence he faced that night.
Several months later, Mike suffered a stroke and moved away. Sometimes I can't help but wonder if the two incidents are related. Alan and Mike never spoke to each other again. We've had parties out front since then, but we're careful who we invite and we don't allow folding chairs. While Alan isn't in any of these photos, I'd rather remember the night with this lighter moment.