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Hardpan Curmudgeon SASS #8967

Carjacked! Another ΚΦΔ tale

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Cyprus Sun's "Sleeping Man and Goat" story reminded me of an experience...  :rolleyes:

 

CARJACKED!

 

I first heard the term “carjacking” in the early 90’s, when I saw a news report about a hapless woman in Fresno who had survived just such a horrifying experience.

 

Hmm…. “Carjacked.”  Well, I’ll be darned, I thought; there’s actually a name for it now! Good thing I hadn’t known that many years earlier…

 

It was a cold, drizzly Saturday night in early winter, 1972. I was headed home to the Kappa Phi Delta house from Lord knows where (probably the Burgermeister brewery), when I finally admitted to myself that if I didn’t find petrol soon, I’d be hoofing it the last half mile or so.

 

I crested the hill in my li’l ’69 Triumph "Belchfire,"  zipped down Fell street to Divisadero, and whipped into the Union 76 station between Fell and Oak Streets. Yippee! I made it and cheated the Outta-Gas-Gods once more! With my tank filled and wallet depleted by almost four bucks, I fired up the diminutive four-banger and settled in to head home.

 

Preparing to pull out onto southbound Divisadero, I stopped with my front wheels at the bottom of the driveway, waiting for a break in traffic.

 

Suddenly, I was totally surprised to see the passenger side door open, and before I knew it, I was no longer alone.  Seated to my right was a young black man, perhaps early 20’s, slender and a bit seedy looking, although likely no more so than most young men in San Francisco during that period – myself not excluded.

 

I looked at him, and saw that he was gazing at me, with his right hand in the pocket of an Army field jacket, apparently either with an incredibly stiff index finger or holding a pistol.

 

“Drive.” he said. “Get on the freeway!”

 

“You bet!” I replied, slipping the shifter into first by way of second and releasing the clutch. I merged between a taxi and a VW microbus southbound, then executed a quick turn east on Oak Street.

 

“Uh… where to?” I asked.

 

“Do you know where Hunter’s Point is?” he asked, looking at me hard and not blinking. “That’s where we’re goin’.”

 

I knew the way, and told him as much. And I did not relish the thought of our destination. A couple of friends, Wynuts and Hank, had accidentally found themselves there one night – or rather, a couple of SF’s Finest had found them. They were pulled over, and one of the cops asked incredulously if they had any idea where they were, and when he  determined they did not, they were given a police escort to a safer part of town and advised to NOT return, especially after dark. “‘Twarn’t safe,” they were told…

 

Anyway, there I was. Driving east on Oak, back over the same hill I’d crossed less than fifteen minutes before, headed to someplace I’d really rather not go. My normally over-active imagination was churning, filled with images and thoughts of my neat li’l automachine being stripped or wrecked, and my sorry carcass being found floating in the Bay near the old shipyard.

 

I crested the hill, and, while headed for the on-ramp at the bottom, tapped my brakes when an ol’ Studebaker pulled into my lane. I didn’t realize it quite yet, but that Studebaker was a blessing! When I tapped the brakes, something slid forward beneath my seat and bumped into my heels. It took a moment, but eventually I realized what it was…

 

I pulled onto the freeway, executed the climbing curve to the right to enter the elevated roadway, and stole a glance at my “passenger.” I’d been busy driving, and he’d begun to look about, watching the traffic and scenery, evidently having decided that I wasn’t much of a threat.

 

As he glanced about, I casually reached between my legs with my left hand, and retrieved the treasured object that had slipped it’s moorings behind the seat and stopped at my heels. Slowly, I lifted it ‘til I could capture it between my legs… and discretely unscrewed the cap…

 

And decided to “go for broke.” I dropped the cap, and lifted the flask of Jack Daniels to my lips and took a healthy pull.

 

My stalwart passenger’s head snapped to the left and he exclaimed “Hey! What’re ya doing??”

 

I switched hands, left going to the wheel and right grabbing the bottle by it’s neck. I swung the bottle, slapping the guy none too gently in the chest with it, and snarled “Here! If you’re gonna ride with me, you’re gonna drink with me!”

 

He reflexively pulled his right hand from his pocket and caught the bottle. Eyes widened, he looked at me and declared “You a CRAZY ‘m- f- sumbidge’n white dude!’”

 

“Oh hell… just shut up and drink. It’s good stuff and it’ll keep ya warm,” I rejoined.

 

Well, it took us a while to reach “our” destination. The drizzle had turned to rain, traffic slowed, and we had to take a detour or two.  By the time we arrived, the bottle was empty, he knew my name and I knew his. He had an “old lady” and a little boy. His mama’s name was Louise. He’d been arrested a time or two, and shot once.

 

But his right hand never returned to his jacket pocket. And when I stopped where he directed me, he gave me a grin, a “soul” handshake, and declared me to be “one cool white dude.” He popped open his door and climbed out of the tiny, low-slung roadster, flashed me a parting grin and “finger-gun” shot and disappeared into a darkened doorway.  And I very carefully drove home, grateful to make it without being stopped – that would’ve been a really tough story to serve to a police officer.

 

Almost fifty years later I reflect on that evening, and it occurs to me that carjacking was a MUCH more genteel sport back then!

 

 

                                                                                                                   Spitfire.gif.8a565dec4e97fbd08f907149e197dc37.gif

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3 minutes ago, Sixgun Sheridan said:

Damn. That would be a good scene in a movie! :blink:

 

Interesting times back then - SF was still kinda "wild and woolly."   Now it's just plain stoopid.  

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Great story and well delivered. Most enjoyable.

 

:D

 

 

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One can't help but wonder if that young man had an attitude adjustment after that experience or if he continued to make one bad choice after another.

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I love your adventures.  Too strange to be fiction but how did you ever have time to go to school?

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Great story Hardpan. :D

 

I have a similar one but it isn’t as entertaining. ;)

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16 minutes ago, Pat Riot, SASS #13748 said:

Great story Hardpan. :D

 

I have a similar one but it isn’t as entertaining. ;)

 

Well, let's hear it, Pat~!    big-grin.gif

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Okay. :)

 

Back in 89 I was working at a liquor warehouse in Albuquerque, NM. I got off one afternoon at 1:00 and was heading home. It was really hot that day so I had both windows down in my little Mazda pickup truck. To roll the passenger window I had unlocked the door, rolled the window down and shut the door without locking it.

Anyway, I had to stop at the drug store to pick up some cold beer that was on sale before I headed up the mountain towards Edgewood & Moriarity.  The drug store was near the start of the on ramp to I-40 East when I was leaving the drug store parking lot I was  stopped and ready to enter the roadway when this guy walks up and opens my passenger door.

He says "Can you help me? I need a ride East. I will  go as far as you're willing to take me."

I said "I will  take you to Moriarity. Hop  in." He appeared a bit squirrelly but harmless enough.

The guy jumps in and immediately mooches a cigarette from me. He also immediately opens the ash tray on the truck dash where I kept my change and asked if he could have the change. I  gave it to him.

As I get on the Interstate he starts telling me about all his experience in the "Special  Forces" and how he was a Green Beret tasked with teaching the Navy SEALS and how he took Para-Rescue training with the Air Force and Blah, Blah, Blah, Lie, Lie, Lie...

This went on for 10 or 15 minutes and he is on his second mooched smoke when all a sudden he whips out this big folding knife that had a blade every bit of 4 1/2 inches.

He starts telling me how he could disembowel me with one move and how he is so dexterous with the knife that he can throw it and hit a man in the eye at 50 yards. Of course that was right handed. With his left he was only good up to 20 yards.:rolleyes:

I wasn't really afraid because the guy appeared to bear no malice but him waving that knife around did make me a little nervous.

He was flipping it back and forth between hands and being all Joe Cool Dumbarse with it. 

I did make sure my Colt .45 was exactly where it should be at one point hoping I wouldn't have to shoot this guy.  I kept it in a left side pocket on my Indian Blanket seat cover. An added feature my neighbor sewed in for me.

As we drove the guy mooched a  third smoke and as he was putting the cigarette lighter back into the ashtray he says  "Hey, check this out."

He proceeds  to flip the knife into my ashtray which is centered on the dash between us.

He flipped it once. Grabbed it quickly. Flipped it twice. Grabbed it quickly again. This  is really  ticking me off now.  Not only do I really want to shoot the guy just for being stupid he is dinking up my ashtray with the point of his crappy truck stop knife.

He flips it a  third time and "BAM"! I snatched it before he could.

I snatched the knife, hit the brakes, and pulled off the highway all in a very quick succession of moves.

The truck came to a  stop with our hero'es face pressed  firmly against the windshield, his chest on top  the dash and his neck bent in such a way that I wasn't sure the human neck could bend.

When the truck stopped fully he slammed backwards in his seat.

I  jumped out of the truck and walked to the front of the truck and threw his knife into the sage brush about 50 yards away.

I yelled "Get the @#$% out of my truck...There, that was fifty yards with my right hand. Go out and get it and bring it back and I will show you what I can do with my left hand."

He got out of the truck and he looked like he was going to cry. 

He screamed "What'd ya  do  that for?" I knew right then and there this guy didn't have the faculties to be mean.

I said "That was for making me nervous  you dumb#@$. You  don't get in someone's truck and start flipping a knife around! I could have shot you and dumped your body out somewhere no one would ever know."

He just stood  there sobbing looking at where his knife went.

I told him to get in and I  drove him the rest of  the way to Moriarity. I actually felt bad for throwing his knife  away. He was just a goofy harmless guy. I would like to think I did him a favor by tossing that knife.

 

 

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Well told, Pat!!  :lol:

 

Yeah... they're out there.  I think I've encountered more than my share.  worried.gif

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21 hours ago, Whiskey Business said:

I love your wild and wooly stories.

 

Thank you, Ms Whiskey!  :)

 

And they really did happen....

 

'Bout '91 or so, the Former Missus Hardpan and I were headed home one evening after a small reunion of sorts with some of my old frat buddies and their families - none of whom she had ever met before.

 

Driving home, I glanced at her - she was just gazing out the window and being unusually quiet.  Silent, even.

 

So I asked, "are you okay?"

 

She turned to me with a look of mild astonishment, and blurted out "They're true!!"

 

Huh??

 

"All those stories you've told me over the years... they're TRUE!

 

"I never believed 'em... just figured you'd made them up!  But they're true!  They really happened!  I was shocked to hear those guys telling the same stories - and how come you never told me about the other stuff??"  

 

:rolleyes:

 

A few years later, when about five or six, Sassparilla Kid overheard me telling my cousin Chuck a story about a fire at a shooting range (I think I've posted it here).  When I hung up the phone, the Kid looked at me and said "Dad!  Why do you tell stories like that?  You know that stuff doesn't happen in real life!"

 

I was stunned.  My kid was calling his old man a liar.

 

So, I picked up the phone and dialed... after a few rings, "Hi, Hardpan!  What's up?"

 

"Dangit, I gots a problem.  I have this boy here who heard me tell my cousin about the 'range fire' and he's accusing me of making it up!"

 

"Put that boy on and let me talk to him!"

 

I did.  As the Kid listened, his eyes grew wider and wider. He finally said good-bye, handed the phone to me and with a total change of heart declared "Dad!  It really DID happen!!"

 

For the rest of his growing-up years the kid would eschew playing with his buddies if he had an opportunity to tag along with me and my friends - just for the stories.

 

By the way - it was Palouse, who hangs out here in the saloon from time to time, who set the Kid straight.  He'd been there for the 'range fire,' and also knew a bunch of the other characters....  :)

 

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Both of you guys have some great stories. Have either of ya'll (individually of course) thought about consolidating your stories into a book of some type. I'm being serious here. I think folks would have a great time reading about it. True stories, maybe embellished slightly, but true stories none the less.

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I love both of your stories.  Please keep them coming. 

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48 minutes ago, Cypress Sun said:

Both of you guys have some great stories. Have either of ya'll (individually of course) thought about consolidating your stories into a book of some type. I'm being serious here. I think folks would have a great time reading about it. True stories, maybe embellished slightly, but true stories none the less.

 

Working on it, Cyprus.  :)

 

For the last couple years or so I've been involved in two writing workshop/classes; one is "Memoirs Writing" and the other "Writing for Publication."  

 

Interestingly, the first story I presented to the "Memoirs" group was Half-Breed Pete and the Rhubarb Pie.  It was well received; however, the instructor cautioned me that "whereas it IS a well written story, I must remind you that the core of a 'memoirs' class is that the stories must, at the very least, be TRUE."

 

I was momentarily stunned; I assured her that it WAS a factual recount.  Then, I said "Just ask Helen Brimstone here! (Helen was in the same class).  She knows all these people!"

 

Still seeming a mite skeptical, the instructor lady caught Helen's attention and indeed did ask her - to which Helen quite emphatically assured her that not only was that story true, but that there were a LOT more that she'd heard from those who'd actually been there.  

 

Ha!  ^_^

 

And remember ~ we do have a few published authors right here in the Saloon~!!  big-grin.gif

 

 

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16 minutes ago, Hardpan Curmudgeon SASS #8967 said:

 

Working on it, Cyprus.  :)

 

For the last couple years or so I've been involved in two writing workshop/classes; one is "Memoirs Writing" and the other "Writing for Publication."  

 

Interestingly, the first story I presented to the "Memoirs" group was Half-Breed Pete and the Rhubarb Pie.  It was well received; however, the instructor cautioned me that "whereas it IS a well written story, I must remind you that the core of a 'memoirs' class is that the stories must, at the very least, be TRUE."

 

I was momentarily stunned; I assured her that it WAS a factual recount.  Then, I said "Just ask Helen Brimstone here! (Helen was in the same class).  She knows all these people!"

 

Still seeming a mite skeptical, the instructor lady caught Helen's attention and indeed did ask her - to which Helen quite emphatically assured her that not only was that story true, but that there were a LOT more that she'd heard from those who'd actually been there.  

 

Ha!  ^_^

 

And remember ~ we do have a few published authors right here in the Saloon~!!  big-grin.gif

 

 

 

I'd be interested in reading that. Your stories always remind me of something from my past.....sometimes they didn't turn out the same way though.:ph34r:

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6 hours ago, Hardpan Curmudgeon SASS #8967 said:

By the way - it was Palouse, who hangs out here in the saloon from time to time, who set the Kid straight.  He'd been there for the 'range fire,' and also knew a bunch of the other characters....  :)

 

That was one unexpected, but very enjoyable conversation with the Kid. 

 

A lot of vivid memories from the fire day, the best included Needa Tailor. Fire out or nearly so, the bomber pilot wishing to make a point, dropped the last of the fire retardant from about 200 feet on the vehicles where we parked, AND US!  As it was coming down, Needa  headin' for the cab of her truck!! She was NOT going to be painted red!! She should have been in the Olympics! Gawd, I'm glad that I wasn't between her and that Ford!  The red guck landed 15 yards short of actually hitting her truck.  

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