The Pimp & The Paperboy
Written by Michael D. Gutierrez
My mom works at a gum factory... Well, she did work at a gum factory. Dude Gum Inc. You know, the gum that says it makes you blind.
So Dude Gum Inc called me in today to talk about her worker’s compensation. The CEO himself set the meeting at the factory's boardroom. Better late than never to finally get help. I have no idea what took them so long. We used up all of my college fund to pay our rent.
My mom told me to get all dressed up since I'm going on her behalf.
Mom: I don't want my boss to think I raise a slob. Mikey, did you wash your finger nails? You got to look professional for Mr. Kent.
Mickey: Yah yah mom I know. I'll get to it.
Mom: Don't give me yah yah, Mick. Soon as your meeting is over with, Mr. Kent, go straight to school. Keep going to school, alright?
Mickey: Dammit, school is such a waste of time. Everything they teach I could look up on my phone. All they’re trying to do is tell me how to think. When I go to class I feel like my soul is draining away into a spiral of Hell.
Mom: That's part of growing up, Mick. Anyways, hurry up you’re going to be late for the meeting.
Mickey: But it's too early. I just want to stay asleep, mom.
Mom: Now you finally know how I feel every morning. Anyways how am I going to buy groceries if we don't have my money?
Mickey: Alright, I'm going already.
Mom: Did you brush your teeth?
Mickey: Ummm, no...
Mom: Why do I need to still tell you this, Mick? You just turned thirteen and still need me to tell you this stuff.
Mickey: I'll do it when I come back. I’ve got to go or I'll be late.
I took the 181 bus down to Eagle Rock production district. That’s where Dude Gum factory is. In the front the factory is a line of employees about to check in to work. They look like they are all overworked. Dirty smoke covered the sky above the factory.
I walked up stairs to the meeting room. Mr. Kent had his arms crossed, ready to see me. I did not know the older man next to him with the briefcase. Mr. Kent seemed to be really pale, like he’s never been out in sun.
Mickey: Hey I'm here, hello.
Mr. Kent: You’re five minutes early. I respect that young man. Successful people are early. Believe me I know.
Mickey: I'm surprised too Mr. Kent. The Bus is never on time in this town.
Mr. Kent: Mickey, glad you came here. You have grown so much since the last time I've seen you. I remember when you were a little five year old thing.
Mickey: Yah. I never really come to the production district of Eagle Rock.
Mr.Kent: Mickey, this old British geezer looking fellow is my close friend and golden boy lawyer. Mr. Paul has been in my family since this company's birth.
Mr.Paul: It's a pleasure to meet you.
Mickey: Oh, Hello.
Mr. Kent: Hey, Mickey we have some news for you. It's some news you may not find in your favor. We both want to inform you that well...
Mickey: What's going on?
The old guy, Mr. Paul stud up and look strait at my eyes.
Mr. Paul: Spit it out man!
Mr. Kent: Kid we don't owe you anything. Your mom got injured when she was off the clock. We destroyed any video tapes of your mom falling. So you can't sue us. You get nothing from us.
Mickey: What the hell! My mom has worked here for twelve years. She has never taken a sick day of here life. She has been employee of the month eight dozen times. Give us something guys.
Mr. Kent: Mickey, I'll give you a courtesy apology. I'm sorry. You're asking me to go against my nature. Just giving money out to people is against my nature. It's like asking a dog to kiss a cat.
Mickey: Your a billionaire how is this unreasonable reasonable.
Mr. Paul: This is what wrong with your generation. You kids want everything handed to you. Go on welfare and leave honest business owners like Mr. Kent alone. Be a drag on the system instead.
Mickey: This whole meeting was a big bull crap ambush.
Mr. Kent: Sorry, Mickey, if I don't legally have to pay you I won't. Beside you don't under stand. Workers always fake injures to get a payout from rich little old me. What am I? A slot machine.
Mickey: Why did it take two months of waiting for you guys to tell me this bullshit now. Mom has bills to pay.
Mr. Paul: I can answer that. The Dude Gum legal department is swamp with hundreds of lawsuits everyday. Because the public keeps suing us because the gum keeps turning them temporarily blind or sometimes permanently blind.
Mr. Kent. They can sue me all they want. I'm never taking moon shine off the recipe, Paul. The consumer won't stand for it. It's a international classic. Remember when we tried New Dude Gum in the 80's, Paul?
Mickey: You guys are out of touch pieces of monkey shit. Me and my mom are going to be homeless. What's our plan B, man?
Mr. Kent: I don't know? What are you thirteen? Collect cans or something like that. There's a dumpster across the street where the raiser blade factory is at. Check that, Mickey. Or you can be shoe shiner. My grandfather made a pretty nickel when he was a kid doing that when.
Mr. Paul: Young man you should be grateful were even talking to you. Do you know both of us have a six hour plane ride to, Manhattan in the morning. Plus we didn't even book our hotel rooms yet.
Mickey: I don't care. Thanks for wasting my time. I got to get to school before I'm late.
Mr. Kent: Mickey, if I gave cash away to everyone that ask for a hand out, Dude Gum would not be a billion dollar company. It's not in business man's nature to just give. Unless there is a tax incentive. I hope you could understand how business works.
Mickey: It's not a handout you idiot. My mom hurt herself in your rundown piece of shit factory. What type of business is this? If they don't protect their own workers.
Mr: Kent: A Good business man needs to be cold blooded to keep the money in the company. Why do you think we are moving the factory to China in six months. You don't know how strong I have to be knowing I'm putting hundreds of people out off work. I've started recently getting death threats on my private emails.
Mickey: Dude Gum is moving out of Eagle Rock? But why?
Mr. Paul: He just told you idiot. Your wasting your wisdom with this kid sir. I can tell by his eyes your info is going over his head. He looks like he go's to public school.
Mr. Kent: Be nice, Paul. I think Mickey gets it. Oh, by the way Mickey, on your way out don't mention that the factory is going overseas to the workers outside. The news would lowers morale.
Mickey: You guys are a bunch of clowns in suits. What waste of time.
Mr. Kent: How rude Mickey Jones, you should count yourself lucky I don't charge you for my elite business talk. Do you know my pupils spend five grand a hour to be able to stocks with me over Skype?
Mr. Paul: That boy is a white trash fool. You remind me why I never had children. Most of you millennials are entitled bums.
Mickey: Go break a hip old man. I'm done with you guys.
Mr. Kent: Wait, Mickey don't go! I want to help your help you help yourself. Here is my card a number. The phone number on the back of my card is, Richard Lemmings he is the owner of the Eagle Rock Rose. He will hire you. I'll put in a good word for you. We're business associates. I almost bought him out a couple of weeks ago.
Mr. Paul: You pretty much almost throw away three million in the trash sir. Print media is dieder than died. It is a lot easier to pay off bloggers to say nice things about your products instead.
Mickey: All I get is a paper card? I'm just 13 years old I can't get a job. Isn't their child labor laws?
Mr. Kent: Yeah there's child labor laws here. Why do you think I'm moving my company to China.
Mickey: I did not even know Eagle Rock had a local newspaper.
Mr. Kent: Your welcome, Mickey. I'll make the phone call to, Richard tonight. He owes me tons of favors.
Mickey: This is not fair. My mother is hurt she can't even work.
Mr. Paul: Life is not fair you little ungrateful twit. A opportunity has just appeared before you. Be a man and take it and shut up.
Mr: Kent: Show up to the Eagle Rock Rose early tomorrow morning.
I left shocked not sure about the job for the news paper company. I've never really had a job before in my life. When I walked out of the factory I felt my heart was sinking into my stomach. How am I'm I going to tell my mom were doomed. No money is coming to help us out. Crap, we're screwed. How am going to tell my no money is coming to help us.
When I walk stairs to the apartment I saw our land lord miss Chang. She is painting over big amount of graffiti made by Grump street gang.
Miss Chang: Hello, glad to see you, Mickey. I need to talk to you about the rent this month. I can't wait anymore I need the money. Where is it?
Mickey: The money is coming, Miss Chang. Your a great land lord for your patients. thank so much. You have big heart.
Miss Chang: I need the money soon. I got bills to pay too. Gentrification making everything more expensive in this town you know.
Mickey: I we know. You'll get the money soon. We haven't forgot we owe you two months of rent.
Miss Chang: I can't wait to sell this old crummy apartment complex. You people keep taking advantage of my kind nature. I don't mean you people in a racist way by the way, Mickey. I have had a white boyfriend before.
Mickey: Yah ok... I got to go. Bye!
I went into the apartment to my mom's room. She's not in here bedroom. The television is still turned on in here room.
Mickey: Mom where are you. I got really crappy news to tell you.
Mom: Mickey, I'm in the bathroom. I can't get up. Come over here.
Mickey: What the heck! What happen mom? I thought someone broke in the apartment.
Mom: I hurt my leg worse crawling to the bathroom. I can't even crawl anymore. My leg is not getting any stronger.
Mickey: You should have waited for me to come back from the factory. I could of help you to the bathroom.
Mom: No, you should be at school right now. Why are not at school?
Mickey: I'll go back to school soon, ok. I assure you I miss driving my teachers crazy.
Mom: Mickey, I need to be honest with you. I'm slowly going blind.
Mickey: What! How is that possible? You don't even chew Dude Gum, mom. It is impossible for to be getting blind.
Mom: The many years working near the chemicals effected my eyes. That's pretty much how I got hurt at the factory. I could not see were I was walking. Then I trip on the boxes.
Mickey: But the Dude Gum blindness symptom is only temporarily. Are you going to get better soon from that.
Mom: Maybe, but it's just never taken this long for the blindness to wear off before. But you know, Mick?
Mom: A great miracle is about to save us. Tell me what happen.
Mickey: Like what, mom?
Mom: My severance package. Tell me about the severance package, Mick. What was Mr. Kent deal for us. I've known him personally for a couple of years it must be great.
Mickey: It is the first check is coming next month. Mr. Kent, told me the payroll department was having problems.
Mom: That's go because i'm tired of miss Chang staring at me like she's going to kill me. She really does breathe down your neck when you owe her money. Ha.
Lying was my only choice. I don't like to lie, but had too keep one of us sane. I don't believe in miracles. I think I got to force one to happen.
"DIG IT OR SHIT. COM" posts of the day #HelpHomeless
(@WilsonJackson): We pray for the homeless because time are tuff in America right now. There God's creation. #HelpHomeless
(@MackGray) : What's with all these homeless in Eagle Rock? I thought we were out of the recession. This is ridiculous. #HelpHomeless
(@Troll669): Check out my latest viral video of me giving laxative chocolate to some homeless folks. LOL! I do the best pranks. I do the most epic gags. #PrankHomeless
(@BradMonday) : All these homeless guys are just bums. They should stop begging for money and get a job like me. I bust my balls at the old Dude Gum factory everyday you hear. You'll never see me beg for food or money. #ForgetHomeless
(@Stephaniebell): There should be some programs to help these poor people in our community. Don't forget a lot of them are children and elderly. #HelpHomeless
(@DanielMans): No, stop with this socialists talk. I run a business, I do know very well how the world works, ok. Leave the helpless alone. They will just drag you down. You bleeding heart liberals need to understand that. #ignoreHomeless
( @GraceD): let's just admit it, nobody wants the homeless in their city. We just can't seem to find a solution. #HelpHomeless
(@JamesBrave): I hate seeing their sad faces everyday after work. Why does no one just move them all to a different town like Highland Park or Pasadena. Put them in some type of camp. #MoveTheHomeless
(@FrankGram): I saw some homeless guy tripping balls on Dude Gum. It happen a week ago next to the mall. Or maybe he could have been drunk. #GumHomeless
Dude Gum Inc
(@DudeGum): Hey bro, Dude Gum does not make people delusional. The worst our product can do is turn a person blind temporarily. When someone abuses our product. For more information check our website, DudeGumInc.com. #HelpHomeless
(@FrankGram): Rad, Dude Gum responded to my post. Lol. #DudeGum
Dude Gum Inc
(@DudeGum): Of course we did, Frank Gram. Corporations are people too you know. We will donate $50,000 to the closest homeless shelter. Because we care ;) #HelpHomeless
Eagle Rock Rose
(@Eagle Rock Rose): Breaking News! Dude Gum Inc, announced they donated $50,000 to a homeless shelter. What a great company run by a genius. Eagle Rock Rose is proud to have, Dude Gum Inc as our advertiser for longs as we have been running. Thanks. #BreakingNews