||No Trains in Mexico
"How did you get a whole boxcar to
your self," I ask the two
Mexican boys. They stare at me with blank, confused looks.
The box car resembles the chipped, multicolored interior
of a lower-class, Mexican dormitory, with two unkept beds
and an Indian-style throw rug.
Out the open door, at the rear of the room, I can see the
sporatic shape of the train track strobing at breakneak
speeds, then silently stopping as if in a silent movie.
go or I'll miss my stop."
I run as fast as I can, out the opposite door
and through a passenger car filled with mustached
business men, all absorbed in newspapers. Upon returning
to my seat, I was instantly approached by a beautiful
stewardess in some sort of airline flight suit.
"Why do you
run?" she asks in broken
aftraid I would miss my stop."
"You will not
miss your stop, but you must leave this train and wait
for the next."
My father and I leave the train, quite confused, and
dazed from the long trip and now the unexpected wait. We
find ourselves in a small community in the middle of the
Mexican desert. The community, to our suprise, is
composed of American ex-patriots, hippies and freaks of
every imaginable sort.
A man in a uniform and mask made of black and white, silk-screened
metal, stitched together in no particular pattern,
babbles at us in fake Spanish, ending in "Habla espanol?"
I say, "and I
don't think you do either."
he says, removing the stitched mask and black mop
dredlocks to reveal a middle-aged, balding man.
have a drink?" he says.
We retire to a small, inconspicuous, hole-in-the-wall bar.
He orders me and my father a drink. On stage, a lounge
singer dressed as an Egyptian queen is surrounded by
naked midget women singing to the song "I Can Dance."
The waitress brings a tray full of various-sized cups and
shot glasses and sets three glasses in front of each of
us -- one tall glass half full of an amber liquid, and
two shot glasses, one filled with a coffee-like stuff,
and the other with a substance resembling Elmer's glue.
Our host takes the lead and pours the contents of the two
shot glasses into the large glass and slugs it down in
I reach for the black liquid and somehow spill half of
the contents of all three cups. I still manage to mix the
elixer in the way I was shown. I drink most of the bitter
mixture down, discovering that some of the concoction had
coagulated into a large, white, slimy ball in the bottom
of my glass.
"Not a big
deal, kid," he says. "Come help me give this little one
The man rises and walks over to a small child I hadn't
noticed. The little girl is sitting blindfolded in front
of a television screen that had been somehow converted
into a "learning device." Wires run from the
box and are duct-taped to the child's fingertips, which
"Now, just sit down behind the kid."
I do as I am told and the box lights up with laser-like
brilliance. The man begins adjusting various levers and
nobs, opens a valve, throws a switch. Such a powerful
shock is sent throught the little girl that I am thrown
back against the floor. I get up and am thrown down again.
The child laughs hysterically and slowly rocks back and
My attention is drawn to two small plastic kittens that
have been placed atop the television machine. One is
posed in a curled up sleeping position. The other sits at
attention, batting at an invisible moth. Suddenly the
upright kitten began to dance wildly around the other.
The other wipes its plastic eyes and begins to move.
I suddenly realize that I have been drugged.
The man looks at me with a sly smile. "You feel that drink yet, boy?"