The Garbage Man
by Pete Simon
A squat wooden shack sat atop a garbage mound
under the sweaty yellow July sky. On Saturday, all the wealthy pricks
parade their minivans through the Chinney’s dump to pitch their
valuables into the rotten slimey decay, stooping for a moment down to
Chinney’s level to shit on him from spotlessly clean assholes; to
remind him of his place underneath their eyes, otherwise out of sight
and mind. But under their radar also.
“Hi! Excuse me!” one faceless saint blared through pearly teeth. Chinney saw past those even row white rows into the total emptiness inside—hollowness, but not empty.
“Hello, yes, I’ve got some old computer stuff here. Should I put it with the appliances?” The hollow saint looked past Chinney, despite his enormous size. The only thing they hate more than being here is me, he thought grimly.
Chinney chomped down on a blackened banana and tossed it towards a tiny pail. Then he flicked off his blocky beige CRT and spun around his pivot chair. He heaved himself up from the front desk, sigh hustled towards the door and approaching the customer in an attempt to make eye contact.
“No, don’t get up, it’s okay. I only want to know where to put electronic stuff,” the saint’s voice picked up as Chinney approached, and Chinney could feel magnetic force repelling him backwards, but he pressed on.
Now standing at the front office doorway, he was actually higher up than the saint who now swayed uneasily. Chinney was looking upon the inhuman figure trying to find his eyes.
“I need to take a look at it.”
Overpowered, the saint turned away.
“It’s just some old computer stuff.” he said in a weakened voice.
“Okay” said Chinney, “just leave it here. I’ll take care of it.”
“Are you sure?” asked the saint, still positioning himself in any angle that would evade Chinney’s eyes, as if attempting to be invisible.
“Yeah, I mean, usually there’s a fee for this,” Chinney continued. He looked down to the cinder block sized desktop laying flat int the dirt, he breathed slowly, patiently, and buried his excitement beneath his huge frame. The boxes were bursting at the screws full. Chinney wondered how the hollow arms of the saint could lift and carry them.
“I’ll pay the fee then.” the saint seethed, the sound was like wind sneaking through the cracks of a rickety home.
“It’s 5$ per component, so this will be 15$.” Chinney stated.
The saint made no audible sound but the magnetic fields around him buzzed with disdain and Chinney would have been repelled through his shack had he not weighed more than a cement mixer.
Chinney pushed back, “you’ve got 3 components, a CPU, a monitor, and a printer. Give me ten and I’ll take care of them,” he said with tint if affection.
The saint grinned through gritted teeth, “nice racket you have here.” then he pulled money from his back pocket and punched it at Chinney, who caught the bill as it fell crumpled from the unclenched fist.
Chinney found himself again trying to make eye contact with the inhuman, but the eyes were like buttons beneath a fold of cloth. The strange, shapeless face was without an angle from which to be seen.
And now the body was slipping like the shadow of a kite beneath a cloud, out of reach and sight, occluded by the sun.
Chinney’s bear sized arms scooped up the discarded items from the moss brown mud. He hummed as he hustled back inside and headed down to the main “office”; he was electric with excitement.