Don’t try to
Pull your hand away
As I try to greet you
Comandante de Policia
A firm hand shake
If you don’t like me
Just say so
But don’t hesitate
It doesn’t make
A good first impression
It doesn’t look good
In the presence
Of your subordinates
It was not my intention
To reel you into this
Art is sometimes
Full of surprises
Your police officers
About the radios
Perhaps I can
Sell it to you too
A CONTRITE POLICEMAN
“Sorry man, I fucked up” The cop said.
“Why do you say that?”
“Because I called the Comandante”
“Nothing to worry about right? We are amongst friends aren’t we?” I asked.
The police officer kept his silence. I looked at his nametag and it read Hector Estrada. I thought about Erick Estrada for a moment, but Hector was not as cool as Erick. I pressed on.
“Hector, there’s no need to be so concerned, it is only a radio. You do like it right?”
“Well yes, and if it is okay, I would like to buy one from you”
“Of course it is okay, and I would be happy to sell you one”
“Do you have cell phone?” Hector asked.
“I don’t like those things”
“Because they give you cancer”
“Do you know what a microwave is?”
“An electric oven?”
“Something like that, you see Hector, cell phones work with microwaves, and when you place the cell phone on you ear, what happens is that the microwaves enter your brain through your ear canal. And your brain begins to cook.”
“Is that so?”
“Yes, Hector and what is even more dangerous to your health is when you drive in your squad car using one of those machines. Once you are using a cell phone in the comfort of you own automobile, the microwaves convert you car into a microwave oven. You wouldn’t want to be turned into a taco. Would you?
Hector’s pupils looked like green beans, he looked towards his right at saw an unmarked white pick up truck enter the compound’s parking lot.
“The Comandante is here” Hector said.
“Relax Hector, everything will be alright”
I looked at a cop that was standing next to a wall behind Hector. He was in the background and he looked like he was about to cry.
Friday, August 22, 2008
Thursday, August 21, 2008
We drove towards grandma house. The 3 of us sat silently in the car; I was thinking how much I enjoyed the liturgy that had concluded a few moments ago. A good liturgy has the following elements: passion, drama, and a heavy dose of art.
The children perhaps were thinking of a theme park, or about the toys they would like to play with. Traffic began to slow down and soon we could see a checkpoint ahead.
“What happened dad?”
“It’s the Federales”
“What are they doing?”
“They making sure everything is alright”
“Look at their machine guns dad”
“Yes, machines guns” Now I knew what their precious minds were focusing on.
When our car approached the officer, he looked us, he scrutinized us, he studied us and he said:
“Pull over the side of the road” He had a chilango accent.
This was a first, since the Federal Police was restructured by the Calderon administration, that we were stop by them, the last time a federal pulled me over he had to as asked for a cigarette and then he let us go. I remember at that time my boys were two beautiful babies sound a sleep on their car seats. This time there would be no cigarettes since I don’t smoke anymore.
“Registration please” He asked as we looked at him silently.
“Here you are” I gave him a folded registration card that I took out from a coin pouch.
“Your driver license please”
“There you go” I took the card from my wallet and handed to him.
“What do you do?”
“I sell radios”
“Can you open the trunk?”
“Yes, I can” I got out of the car, walked towards the back of my car, inserted the key, and twist first to the right, and then to the left. The trunk opened. My briefcase was in plain view.
“Open the briefcase”
I opened the briefcase and step away from it. He inspected the overall contents except for the inner compartment.
“What in there?” He asked with a trembling voice refereeing to the unopened section.
“How long have you been in the radio business?” The pitch in his voice was shaking.
“I have been an operator for a very long time”
“You can go sir, sorry for the inconvenience”
“Have a nice day” I said.
The other policemen stop all oncoming traffic; I accelerated and began to drive on the road again.
“What do you learned today kids?”
“That persuasion is better than guns” My boys answered in unison and with boredom in their voices.
“That’s right children, never forget that”
Posted by Martínez at 5:58 PM
Wednesday, August 20, 2008
Beautiful native girl
Walking next to me
At the grocery store
You make me feel alive
Old man whistling
As I pass you by
With psychotic charm
Confirmation of consciousness
One man carwash
Who likes to share
With you fellowman
Fisher of humans
Teacher of those
Willing to learn
You visit me daily
You force me to look up
Towards the heavens
Posted by Martínez at 5:57 PM
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
FISHING IN PEMEX
“Let’s go fishing”
“Been watching too many fishing shows on the tube?”
“No, I am hungry”
“Charlie told me the best fishing is done by the PEMEX condominiums”
“We already have a grill, it be great to throw some fish on it”
“That’s a good idea, but I rather use the grill for carne asada”
“You know I am a vegetarian”
“I know man; I am just giving you a hard time, fishing is like hunting, is better in the early morning or the late afternoon”
“Yeah man, we can use the boy’s fishing rods, all we have to do is get some used sparkplugs ─we are going to be fishing oily fish anyways─ from a mechanic and use them as sea leads, and we need to stop and pick some fishing hooks.
“Very good then”
We threw the stuff in the car and made our way towards town. I drove slowly because of all the potholes; this adds some longevity to the suspension of any used car. We could see the ocean down below us; it is this way on sunny days. We were heading west, traveling down the hill. One problem I have to face when I drive slowly is dust. Dust always catches with you. I have tried driving faster on other occasions to see if I could leave the clouds of dust behind just to watch them forming in front of me. Dust is just a problem one has to deal with it. Once we hit the pavement we were faced with other realities that need to be taken into consideration, like semi trucks, and taxi drivers, and unlicensed drivers (one of those put me out of order for more than a year) greedy cops and smiley soldiers sporting machine guns.
“Are you going to stop for the sparkplugs?”
“Yes, there’s a tire shop up here”
“Do you know them?”
“I think they know me”
“Alright, I’ll be right back” I got out of the car and approached the owner.
“Do you have any used sparkplugs? You know, for fishing?”
“No, sorry we do not” He showed some genuine consternation.
“How about nuts and bolts or any thing we can use for sea leads”
“No, you see, we fish too” The 3 grubby fellows that were sitting next to him smiled affirming their boss’s remarks.
“Okay, thank you”
“Wait” one of the grubby ones said.
“If you go up the road you will find a mechanic that does taxis, he will have your sparkplugs”
I got back in my car and I was asked:
“No, but I was directed to the right location”
I drove a few blocks and we spotted a bunch of broken yellow taxis.
“I think we’re here” I said.
“I believe so” Cruz said.
“I be right back”
I spotted a guy in a taxi looking at me; I tried to approach him but he signaled with his hand, directing me to go inside the compound. I walked in and saw a guy under the hood of a yellow taxi.
“Buenas tardes” I said
He looked at me and did not say anything.
“Do you have sparkplugs? I pressed.
“How many do you need?”
“Wait here” He walked inside a shed and came out with 2 oily sparkplugs and handed them to me.
“Thank you” I said.
He did not say anything and went back to work under the hood of the car. As for me, I got back to my car and handed the 2 sparkplugs to Cruz.
“Got them” I said.
“Now lets get out of here, we still need to go and get the hooks”
“Do you want me to watch out for you as you back out?”
“No, I’ll be okay”
At the store I saw two girls who were stocking shelves, and I asked the prettiest one.
“Do you have fishing hooks?”
“Yes, I think we do, can you show him please” she said to her coworker.
“Yes, comes with me sir” She said. I followed her and noticed she had a beautiful body. We arrived at the sports department and she knelt next to a gun case and looked through the window of a wooden box.
“Sorry sir, we are out of hooks”
“Thank you for looking”
“You are welcome”
I needed to break a $100 dollar bill so I walked to the tortilleria, grabbed a kilo, and hurried back to the cash register.
“I can help you here sir”
“Yes, thank you” I place the kilo of tortillas next to her.
“Is that all?”
“Yes” I handed her the bill.
“Do you have anything smaller?”
“No” I smiled and then she smiled back.
“Can I give you your change in pesos?”
“No, dollars please” I smiled once again and I saw how her pupils minimized till they looked like two small planets.
“Okay then, I am going to get your change” She ran towards an office. She was pretty and reminded me of a girl I once wrote a song for. When she came back she gave me my change and wished me a good day. I did the same.
“No hooks man”
“I’ll try the radio”
“CQ, CQ, CQ, where can I get fish hooks?
“Deportes Atlas” said the voice coming from the speaker.
“Thank you and 73”
“73” said the radio operator.
“Okay, to the sporting store it is”
It was difficult to find parking in downtown but with persistence we managed to park in front of the store.
“You know the drill, I be right back?”
“May I help you” said the clerk behind the counter.
“Yes, I need fishing hooks”
“You came to the right place, come over here and let me show you” The case was filled with all sizes and styles of hooks.
“I am looking for small ones, I am fishing from the shore”
“What do you thing of these ones?” He showed me a size 6 hook.
“Perfect, I’ll takes 6 of them”
We drove towards the beach looking for the fabled PEMEX Condominiums. Charlie always told incredible stories of successful fishing at the place. I got lost and ended up a military check point.
“Is the way to the PEMEX Condominiums? I asked
The military man was carrying a side arm, it might have been a 9 millimeter or a 45, it was hard to tell. He was probably a Captain; I could see 3 soldiers with him carrying M16’s.
“No, this the Thermoelectric Plant, you can’t fish here but I show you how to get to the condominiums” He said with a smile.
“Is it true there’s good fishing there?”
“Yes, but as you know, is a matter of luck”
“You are right”
We drove away towards the condominiums. I was eager to cast my bait, but I knew we had more than enough time.
“Did you see the face of the soldier on the booth?
“He looked preoccupied”
“Yes, I hope they don’t shoot us with a bazooka”
“No, the Captain looks like a good man”
At the PEMEX condominiums we did not see any spectacular fishing spot; there was no parking and no way to access the beach from those government buildings.
“No wonder” said Cruz
“All the good looking girls we see at the main boulevard are coming from here”
“I think you are right, I think Charlie is also right, but I don’t feel like fishing inside a penthouse.
“Let’s get out of here; we’re going to the PEMEX Beach”
“We need to get close to the dikes… that’s were the fish are”
“Great, perhaps we can get on top of them and fish from up there”
“No, I don’t think the soldiers like that, they’re very protective”
“There just making a big deal out of nothing”
“They don’t like accidents”
“Yes, better play it safe”
We parked the car and walked about half a mile to the dikes. I was tempted to drive on the sand, but did not want to risk getting stuck, at any rate, exercise is medicine. We got close to the rocks, rigged our fishing rods and cast away. There were other fishermen doing better than us. Nonetheless we were fishing. We were concentrating on all the fish we could get.
“What’s up with the rabbit hunter?” said Cruz.
“He’s protecting the dikes, just doing his job”
The soldier walked on the rocks, he was wearing cammo fatigues and a M16 hanged from his shoulder. His face was that of a happy child, playing on his back yard.
Posted by Martínez at 7:33 PM
Monday, August 18, 2008
I like my
Resurrects a memory
I can climb
I can smile
All the way
When my feet
Posted by Martínez at 7:55 PM
SHORT HAIRCUT & GLASSES
He has a
In his arms
And another one
Of his offspring
Walks beside him
Posted by Martínez at 7:53 PM