9/27/09 Where Buster is From

Buster

Buster

9/27/09

I have no idea why it took over two years for my Bodyguard to tell me the truth.  I found Buster in the parking lot of the site when it was 5 degrees outside.  He was with another dead hound dog that looked like it had been mauled by another dog.  I assumed Buster had been dumped off or used in a dogfight as a bait dog.  Buster was too sick to fight, though. Furthermore, he seemed abused because he cowered as if he’d been beaten.  (Later I suspected he was punished for having bloody diarrhea, which he couldn’t help due to his illness.)   My Bodyguard and I found him again the next day in the same place.  Buster came right up to us so I called TPM who came in his truck, picked up Buster and took him to the vet. The bill was $600.  We tried to find a home for the dog but a week later the vet told us the dog had been diagnosed with Addison’s disease and needed a shot every three weeks in order to live.  We thought of putting him down but had fallen in love with him so we decided to try and swing it-which has been hard.  A Vile costs $170 and we get four shots out of a vile.  The people that had owned Buster must not have been able to afford his meds.  One thing that is good about Buster having Addison’s disease is that he sleeps which makes a mellow Beagle and allows us to keep him in an apartment building without a yard.

My Bodyguard said the dog was getting old and I disagreed.  My Bodyguard then tells me that he knows the dog is old because it used to be Ted’s dog.  I was stunned as to why I hadn’t been told that before.  Ted was a terrific man who used to be a factory worker and then became the grounds keeper.  He had one eye and kept an amazing garden.  He planted a peach tree in the back of the factory, which we harvested last year.  According to my assistant, his family members were all crack addicts who stole from him constantly and he had an ex wife who was mean. Ted is the man who originally allowed me to paint here.  He loved the place and saw what I saw in it.  Ted died of a heart attack three years ago.  I still have his number in my phone.   Apparently Buster was his dog and that would explain why Buster is so loving.  So now I’ve asked my assistant to find out what Buster’s first name was.  My Bodyguard tells me that he had his old girlfriend sleep over with him last night.  Her daughter also stayed.  He says he has one of those giant king-sized beds and that in the morning his girlfriend cooked him a huge breakfast of bacon and eggs and all that. I told him that sounded like something out of the “Waltons”.  He grinned and told me that was a good show.  I got a kick out of imagining residents of East Saint Louis growing up watching the “Waltons” on TV.  He doesn’t want anything to do with the other girl (who said she was a teacher) because all she wanted to do was party.  My Bodyguard seems happy.  I wrote him a check today.

I do have one funny Ted story to tell.  I was painting in the factory and thought I saw a ghost.  I kept painting.  The next day as I was working I saw a face upstairs and then it disappeared over the rail.  I had no idea who it was or what they were doing there.  I just minded my own business and kept painting. Overnight, the glass ceiling disappeared.  I came in to paint and found several inches of glass all over the floor.  I was angry because the machines I was painting needed a roof for protection and so did I because winter was coming and it was getting cold.  Someone had scrapped the steal doors and all the manhole covers.  Now there was no roof.  I saw two men way up high on the roof dismantling something.  They were stealing the window casings because they were copper.  Ted told me I was to call him if I ever saw anyone else there.  No one was suppose to be there except for Edgar and me.  I packed up to leave.  From the parking lot I saw the men on the roof throw several bundles over the edge.  I called Ted and told him where the copper could be found.  He thanked me the next day grinning several thousand dollars richer. However, now I have to be careful around there because I could be on some gang’s hit list.

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