Rocketer

You remember when Billy first went into space, don’t you? First time one of those crazy rockets of his went off with him in it. First time he sent up the big rocket, not those little ones with the sensors made of old cell-phones and other garbage. Chuck always said he’d send up Chairman Meow, or Mr. Catkins, or Daisy’s kitten Cindy next, but he didn’t. Billy went up immediately, soon as he knew as he could.

You hear what Daisy said? She was just in here, you just missed her. Billy calls her now and then. Only one from round here, ‘spect. She told me Billy says the Jupiter colony wasn’t gonna work by the end of next year. Called it the biggest failure of his life.

Daisy’s doin’ well. Says her VD’s cleared up clear as day, and she gonna get back to work. That boy of hers is gettin’ tall. She made a joke about how someone needs to market a daycare for prostitutes. That’s Daisy for you. Always got a sense of humor.

She made some joke about Billy; can’t remember what it was.

Remember how Chuck broke Billy’s arm soon as he came down? Billy told everyone it was from re-entry, but a bunch of us saw him crawl out of that craft using both arms after landing. You saw it was Chuck, didn’t you? Slammed Billy up against the wall, kicked him in the stomach, spat in his face. We all did a bit of that, but Chuck broke Billy’s arm, make no mistake.

You seen Chuck recently? He looks good. He’s serious about quitting this time. Ever since that last binge, he’s been serious. You know, the one he pawned his prosthetic leg to finance. You said he’d be clean after losing that leg in that car accident, but he proved you wrong, eh? But he’s serious now, he said so.

Still hard to believe Billy went, ain’t it? Even after we all saw him, saw that rocket made of junk and debris took off into the sky? No one thought it would, despite what Billy told us about super-dense material and reverse-gravity fields an all that other hoodoo he’d spout. But there it went, rocketing into the sky, out of Filt Street, out of Sporboro, out of the goddamn state and country and world.

Anyways, here’s the usual; you’re still one of the best customers here, even after what happened to your throat. It’s amazing you can get enemas to work like that for you. Bottoms up! Ha! See you next week! The wine’ll be restocked!

What was that joke about Billy…

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