harry siskin – unseeing eyes – 1
I was as tired as an eighty-year old whore by the time I reached the office door.
It had been an enduring trip. There was no telling how long I had been gone. It was an understatement to say, I had completely lost track of time.
The sign on the door still read:
Harry Siskin – Private Investigator
Another sign was taped beneath the official inscription. It was written on the backside of a ripped Kokanee beer carton. It read:
Above it in smaller letters, upper and lower it read:
To the asshole who can’t pay his rent.
It looked to me like it was done in Sharpie. Being a Private Investigator, it is tough not to notice these things. That cheap son-of-a-bitch, landlord, at least he could have printed a half-decent sign. Shows what kind of a businessman he is.
I pulled it off and tossed it down the stairs and slid the key in the lock, said a little prayer. The key turned and the door unlocked.
There were about twenty-five envelopes that had been put through the slot. At least half of them looked like they had been written with the same sharpie as the scrawl on the eviction notice.
I picked them up and tossed them on the desk. Everything else looked as I left it. The blinds were closed. The carpet was still shag and it still had the old bloodstain from an earlier altercation (my side still ached from the bullet of that .22). The room smelled of stale air. Dead flies littered the floor. Death by old age, no doubt.
The high backed chair was what I was looking for. I swept a few of the insect carcasses off the leather seat.
It was as comfortable as I remembered it. I was home. It was nice in 1909, but it lacked certain comforts.
I slid the bottom drawer open and grabbed the Crown. There was dust on the glass so I gave it a quick rub with my sleeve. I poured a healthy dose. Whiskey is your best friend when you are tired from travel, or at any other time for that matter.
I hit the button on the computer. Thought I would give my emails a quick look. The startup chime split the silence, damn near wrecking the taste of good whisky.
The computer is a curse of invention. As far as I’m concerned they are only good for a quick wank. But you need them for business, too. Everybody’s tied to it. Nobody can live without them.
I blame computers for devastated the skin-mag industry. How I used to love those magazines. Had a group of friends I used to trade with. One guy would buy Hustler, another would buy Penthouse, and somebody would buy Oui. Sometimes one of us would head to the city and bring back something really raw.
Now porno is strictly a solo affair. Unless you are making it, like a lot of people do now, thanks again to the damn computer and digital cameras.
I opened my email, typed in my password: siskin. The same one I use for everything.
The ball twirled. 14,843 unopened emails! Jesus Christ! How long had I been gone?
Mostly junk mail, but I would have to go through them. There could be something important.
I poured another. The chair felt good. The office was warm. The whiskey satisfied and the bottle was still half full. It was good to be home.
I checked the first five emails. They were all for Viagra. I don’t know where the word got out I needed this stuff. Sure, I have had a few intimate encounters where my performance was not up to par, but it was the booze to blame, and besides I am often overworked.
I shut down the email. Brought up Google and typed in:
I am old school. I blame it on those skin mags from the 1970’s.
My left hand traded off between the mouse and the whiskey. It had been awhile since I enjoyed the comforts of the 21st century.