I’d been in Burien about a week. Burien is basically south Seattle. More of a hard edge than the north side, where I was from. I was 18.
Somehow I met another 18 year old guy, named Nate. Nate Clarke.
The first day we met, we went to a kegger party in south Seattle. This Nate Clarke guy got wasted in the first hour and hid under the sink in the kitchen, curled up like a baby, his ass went to sleep.
I knew not a soul at this gathering.
Being 18, and prone to outbursts of belligerence, I began smashing holes in the ceiling and walls with a pool cue, as there was a pool table on the bottom floor of the house which was hosting the kegger party.
I was soon kindly admonished to refrain from destroying the host’s family home by three black gentlemen around my same age.
Instead of taking the friendly warning, (which is exactly what it was), I decided to impugn the race and insult the female family members of these gentlemen.
They inquired if I was willing to enforce my beliefs with violence, and I answered in the affirmitave.
“I’ll take on all three of you niggers.”
Now remember dear reader, if I’m drunk enough to pick fights with strangers in an unfamiliar town, I am, of course, too drunk to actually fight.
Out in the backyard we go, them hitting me with the short sections of 3 piece pool cues, and me usually falling down before they even hit me. It had been raining and the ground was muddy. Three on one, I was doomed for defeat.
Like a big stupid oaf, I kept getting up and trying to fight. I didn’t really feel any damage being done, I thought I still had a chance for victory.
A very nice blonde girl finally got between me and them. She cautioned that one of their blows was bound to kill me. I don’t believe she cared a whit for my well being, but instead was being a responsible citizen and steering us away from a life changing catastrophe.
The dudes stepped back, and the nice blonde girl told me to leave immediately, which I did. Until I figured out two blocks down the road that my hat was still in the backyard, having been knocked off my head. I turned around and barged back into the yard, demanding my hat, and insinuating that some thief had it.
The nice girl gave me my hat and down the road I walked, in some strange neighborhood I’ve never been before, not knowing where the hell I was or where the hell I was going.
Two days later one of the black kids who had been smashing my head with a stick not long ago, approached me on the street. He shook my hand, said no hard feelings, and insisted we become friends.
That same day I saw Mr. Nate Clarke also. We started drinking beer and hatched a plot to rob the guitar store down the street.