Scenes from a Los Angeles, #1
December 2006. Echo Park.
A shabby-ass McDonalds full of local Mexican, Guatemalan, and Salvadoran workers.
I try to use the men’s room but it’s occupied.
A drunk seven-foot black man orders a Filet-O-Fish sandwich and fades away.
We order fries.
Lily tries to use the women’s room but it’s occupied.
Lots of mumbles are exchanged that no one else understands.
Someone else tries to use the men’s room but it’s still occupied.
Two other women try to use the women’s room but it’s still occupied.
We check out an ink drawing of Rita Hayworth hanging on the wall.
Lily just took amoxicillin and keeps trying to use the women’s room but it’s still occupied.
It was Christmas a week ago but other than Rita, the walls are bare.
Eventually the men’s room opens.
I use it.
Someone else uses it when I’m done.
Lily and now four other women are waiting to use the women’s room but it’s still occupied.
Our fries are ready.
Eventually the women’s room opens. The drunk seven-foot black man walks out.
The women’s room looks like a bomb exploded and smells even worse.
Everyone is appalled. Five women glare at him.
He shrugs as he walks towards the counter.
“When ya gotta go, ya gotta go…. WHERE’S MAH FISH??”