INTERVIEW 3

“Joe”

Coffee truck guy from subject 1’s station


 

How long have I been working this parking lot? Oh, a long time my friend, a very long time. The old police chief, he came from my station, and I made him coffee when he was there. He was thinner then, but thicker on top, you know? Maybe my churros helped him expand, I like to think they help. When you work with cops all the time, you start to feel like you’re helping. Like a remora, you know the fish? Except I am feeding the sharks.

Sure, show me the picture. I don’t know all their names, but I know faces. Everyone who works there has been to my truck at least once. Is it the man, or the woman you want? I think I know them both. Ah, si, si. He’s special to me, that one, you know. Señor Green Tea, I call him. You can call him that too, if you want. He will know.

He used to bug me for green tea. He was not the only one to ask, but the most persistent. so I went to the Korean market and bought a box of one hundred packets for four dollars. If you want a tea, it costs a buck. Now I buy a new box every three months, even if he no longer comes by.

When I started my business, it was just coffee and churros. Now, it’s coffee and churros and many other things. People like to eat, and drink, but not everyone likes the same thing. If you sell things, that’s a golden rule. People are different, sell to everyone you can. Did you know, Elvis’s manager sold “I hate Elvis” buttons? That’s smart; but in my case, nobody hates my food!

I’m not sure I understand your question. Do you mean are there bad cops, or was our friend in the photograph a bad cop? I can’t say, because I don’t know. You can never know what truly lives in a man’s soul. Señor Green Tea, he was nice to me. But, there is always one or two… Look, my friend, I don’t listen to gossip. But I hear things, and I feel things. I have been insulted by people who buy from me, and our friend from the photo, while he has not done such a thing, I know he’s been there when things have been said, when things have been done, and he did nothing but tell me sorry when they are gone.

It is not for him to say sorry.

I understand that when you work, your co-workers become your family. Family is a tight bond, and with the police, it is one of the strongest. I understand this. But, we are responsible not for our family’s actions, but to their actions, if you can understand. If I am playing soccer, and my teammate plays dirty, it makes my team look bad. If I appologize, it does nothing and we are still a dirty team. My teammate won’t notice how it reflects on us, or how they feel. Everyone gets hurt from his actions except for him. With behaviour like that, the family bond only goes one way.

It’s the same with the police. The good ones suffer when the bad ones do bad things, but they say nothing. They think that their cancer should be ignored, not treated or cut off. I don’t understand that.

Still, my friend, we are all weak when it comes to family, no? Señor Green Tea is, I think, a good man. Who am I to judge? Almost everyone I serve is a good person, except maybe the woman, in that photograph.

Yes, now that I’ve been thinking about him, I remember her too. Her eyes were cold, almost dead. I remember our friend spilled her coffee, after I had given it to her. He was embarrassed, like she was a woman he really wanted to impress. But our friend, he was not like the pigeon you see there, who fluffs his neck and struts around to impress. He wass more like… a different bird. You know, the one that brings gifts to his potential mate. I don’t think he wanted to mate with her, but you know what I mean. He would fidget, like a little pájaro.

I think that is all I can tell you, I’m sorry. You won’t tell me what you want to know, or maybe… you don’t know what you are looking for? I am happy, at least, to have talked to someone like you.

 


 

Expect chapter 4 on February 25th!