Fun with words and words for fun

Fiction Outtakes 231: Bill Wynn 218


“What do you have to do for the afternoon?” Bill asked Mary. He stood close by her by the screen door, close enough so that she could feel him against her. He felt her shift on her feet so they were not touching.

“Nothing too much,” Mary said. “I got enough of just about everything until tomorrow and I’d rather start fresh tomorrow when we have more business. This way you can throw away a lot of the leftovers tonight without wasting much.”

“Think we have enough prime rib?” Bill asked.

“I think we should use up what’s there. If we run out, we run out and that’s best.”

“Henry Lee and I don’t even have much meat to cut,” Bill said. He leaned in close to Mary and whispered in her ear. “I think I’m gonna trip.”

“I think you are tripping,” said Mary. “And don’t be coming around rubbing all over me, either.”

“What you  mad at?”

“What was you and Bea doing in the store room?”

“She was getting salad dressing. I was rotating stock that should have been rotated and re-stacking what I had to move to get to it.”

“Yeah, I bet.”

“Well you can bet on it.”

“The bitch.”

“It’s not her I like.”

“But you still hit it, don’t you?”

“It’s easier than not. Turning her away is gonna make a fight I don’t need to fight in here right now. Give me a little time to  put her off.”

“You would do that?”

“Of course. You’re the only one I care about. You know what I mean. I care about Lorraine, but that’s different. She’s different.”

“Why you care about me?” Mary asked.

“If you have to ask, you really are stupid,” said Bill. “And I know you’re not stupid.”

The snow started to fall again as the lunch was ending. The lunch was abysmal and Tommy was clearly unhappy. He came to the table where Bea, Henry Lee, Mary and Bill were eating. His first question was quite simple, about how much food they had left over. Mary looked down into her plate when she told them they hadn’t sold much of anything. The steamship round, she told him, would be enough for the next day so that they didn’t have to cook another one. The lunch special was hardly touched. She was thinking about what she could make it into for a special for the dinner.

Henry Lee reported that they hadn’t sold many steaks either. He said he didn’t have to cut much for the evening and that he would talk to Robert about what they needed over on the west side. He said he couldn’t imagine they needed much over there.  He said he didn’t want to get too far ahead in the inventory, but that they could probably make up some of the lost business over the weekend when Ohio State was playing basketball at home. That of course would depend upon whether or not it snowed anymore.

Bill, as usual, ate very rare roast beef with lettuce, tomato, pickle and mayonnaise on a hamburger bun. Mary and Bea ate tuna fish salad sandwiches. Henry Lee ate a steak. Like any good meat cutter, he would make sure to get an extra steak out of one of the top butts to make up for the one he was eating. Here, at Suburban, the cooks really looked out for the owner. Altogether, this was a small operation, two stores, and the kitchen crews were pretty much interrelated. They knew as a unit that their livelihoods depended upon the success of the restaurants. None of them wanted to lose their jobs. They might complain about how hard they worked, how little they were paid and what a pain in the ass Drenovis was. But despite the snow, life was good.

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Fiction Outtakes 230: Bill Wynn 217


Bill should have supposed that Mary would get pissed. It started when he and Bea came up the stairs together even though Mary knew Bill was helping her. Bea was simply gone too long for her liking, and she supposed, she would tell Bill later, that they were fooling around in the storeroom. Whether it was actually the case or not didn’t matter at all.

Being pissed didn’t stop her from getting high or from sitting on the counter with her legs crossed at the ankles watching Bill and Henry Lee make the hamburgers. She swung her legs as always, and at one point she got up to get herself a good drink of bourbon. While she was up she handed Henry Lee the bottle and waited while both he and Bill drank so she could put the bottle back in the drawer before she sat down.

Then it was time for lunch. Or, it was almost time for lunch in that Bill and Henry Lee still had to cart up the meat for the service and Bill still had to do the inventory of French fries, fish, onion rings and anything else that was needed for the service.

“You did start the potatoes baking, right?” Bill asked Mary.

“No I’m stupid,” said Mary.

“Well we know that,” said Bill.

“Keep it up, boy.”

“You two gonna fight?” Henry Lee asked.

“I ain’t fighting,” said Mary.

“Me either,” Bill said.

“Good,” said Henry Lee, “cause I don’t want to hear no shit.”

Bill was busy breaking off the bleu cheese and gouging holes into what would become the bleus. Not only did he not like eating bleu cheese, but he did not like touching it either. He did not like the smell. He did not like the feel. He did not like anything about it.

Bleu cheese would not be the only food he did not like to eat in the kitchens. However, he would discover that if he wanted to get his paycheck he not only had to handle the foods he didn’t like, but he also had to prepare them and even taste them. Sweetbreads and liver were two of the things that could easily make him puke if his paycheck had not depended upon him tasting them. Then there would be other things he disliked doing, like messing with live stuff such as lobsters and trout from a live fish tank. Regarding those, he would learn that the best and most efficient way to deal with them was to do the killing quickly and cleanly.

Killing trout was a whole story unto itself. One was not accepted as a cook in one of the restaurants he would work later on in his career until one could easily capture the trout and artfully kill it without mangling it. In another place he worked, one was not accepted as a cook, stupid as it seemed, until one could open a beer bottle with the backside of a knife.

Bill learned all of these things. Bill, as a cook, learned many things, most of which he would have been better off never having to learn.

As always of late, Bill pulled the baked potatoes from the convection oven two at a time in each hand. As always, since that first day as cook when he burned his right hand, he felt almost nothing in his fingertips there. But the potatoes were the proverbial hot potatoes for his left hand. Meanwhile, Bea, Mary and Henry Lee were out in the hall. Henry Lee was telling Bea to close her legs when Bill walked out. Mary was standing by the screen door looking out into the snow. The snow had finally stopped, but the weatherman, as per the radio, were predicting more snow later in the day. They didn’t think, as Mary related it, that it would be another significant accumulation.

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Fiction Outtakes 229: Bill Wynn 216


The menu called for a nice, thick cream of broccoli soup which Mary started as soon as she got upstairs and finished her coffee. Bea sat longer than usual on her stool sipping her coffee and reading the racing page in the Dispatch. She asked Bill if he wanted to place a bet or if he wanted to play a number. Bill did not play the horses, but he did play the numbers for both himself and Mary. Those number bets would end up in the hands of Robert who would hand them to Mr. Bowman. Robert was the numbers runner, why he had been busted in the first place and how Bill had met him when Robert was on his work detail. Mr. Bowman ran the game. He was the money man.

By 10:00 AM just about all the work for the day was done. The snow had settled into a flurry pattern and the streets were well plowed. More than a foot of snow had fallen. The University was on a delayed opening schedule, so morning classes were canceled. Bill had still not heard from his fiancé. He tried to call home several more times but to no avail. She could have called the restaurant, but there were no calls for him. Any call would’ve been forwarded to wherever he was at the time.

Bea met Bill downstairs while he was straightening up some things in the storeroom. He had brought up everything Mary needed for the rest of this day and for tomorrow as well. He and Henry Lee were about to start grinding meat for hamburger and making the patties and the bleus. She snuggled on him from behind while he was bending over straightening up a stack of stewed tomatoes cases. He’d had to move the stack in order to get to some things that should have been rotated forward but were not. It caught him by surprise when she goosed him, so much so that he almost dropped the case of tomatoes in his hands.

“Goddammit,” he said. “What the hell?” He turned to see it was Bea. She was already chuckling, her throaty chuckle, and she was reaching out to take a more intimate feel of him.

“So you slept  at Mary’s, huh?”

“It kind of seemed like the best solution given the weather.”

“Yeah, I’ll bet. Where were her kids?”

“They stayed by her mother. Don’t ask me anything else cause I don’t know nothing.”

“I suppose all you did was go to sleep.”

“No,” said Bill. “We got high. We took some Quaaludes. I took a shower and then we went to sleep.”

“And that’s all you did?”

“Nope,” Bill said. “We slept, we got up, we cleaned all the goddamn snow off my car and we drove here.”

“So I guess you got some left for me,” Bea said.

“Some what?” Bill asked.

“Some something,” Bea said.

“I always got some something. But I got to help Henry Lee make the hamburgers. So maybe we could meet sometime later.”

“You putting me off boy?”

“Not at all darling. I just got some stuff to do.”

“Well I need some salad dressings,” Bea said. “Want to help me carry them upstairs?”

Bill could see no way out of it. So he finished straightening up while Bea watched him work. Then together they carried up the gallon jugs of salad dressings that Bea needed for her station. When he had helped her put them into their place, he checked the steamship round and checked to see that Mary had put in the baked potatoes. The potatoes were not in yet. He washed them and put them into the convection oven. Then he told Mary all she had to do was turn the oven on when she wanted to.

“What you doing, boy?” Mary asked.

“Going down to help Henry Lee make the hamburger. You want to get high come on down.”

A moment later Mary joined Bill and Henry Lee in the meat room.

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Fiction Outtakes 228: Bill Wynn 215


They woke up at five. The first thing Mary did was call Bea to let her know that Bill would be taking her to work. While she was on the phone, Bill started with her. He pulled the covers from her and started kissing up her thighs from the back. They were both naked and so Bill had free access to all of her.

“Cut that out,” Mary said.

“Never,” Bill said. He laughed and kissed in the places he knew Mary loved to have kissed.

Mary wriggled and tried to make it more difficult for Bill to do what he was doing. Bill just laughed more and tried harder, making sure he could get to all the places he wanted to get to.

“Goddammit,” Mary said, but even if she was saying it she pushed her body closer to him making it apparent that she wasn’t really opposed to what he was doing.

Once she was off the phone, she turned toward Bill and removed the covers from him but he pulled them back up and made her yield to what he wanted to do.

“Let me make a call,” he said, stopping.

Mary handed him the phone and he dialed his home number. There was still no answer. He knew he was off the hook, that he would not have to explain much to his fiancé. This was a comforting thought, and then he thought maybe she would have to be explaining something to him. Maybe not.

“Quaaludes won’t kill you,” he said. “Heroin and shooting stuff will kill you.”

“You ever shoot anything?” Mary asked.

“Nope. I snorted heroin couple of times and smoked opium a couple of times too, but that’s it. Something about sticking myself with a needle really bothers me,” Bill said.

“Still, you drink way too much and use too much stuff. That LSD will mess up your brain,” said Mary.

Bill was busy licking and kissing Mary again and did not stop what he was doing. Still and all, he told her about the person he knew who had used LSD more than a year straight, more than 365 consecutive times. He also told her about someone he knew who had fried his brain on LSD. That person spoke only in terms of his trips. Trip number 57, he would say, that was acid and we did it at the quarry.

When Mary was tired of the kissing and licking, even in those most intimate of intimate places, she asked Bill if he was going to waste their time doing just that. Bill told her to keep quiet and made her put her hands over her head and hold onto the headboard. That’s when he pinned down her legs and concentrated only on the one spot he knew she loved the most. Only later did he please himself. He did this quickly and efficiently, just the way he wanted.

Mary didn’t bother to make coffee. No phone call had come from Tommy and so they assumed they would be opening on time. When they were done showering and dressing it was time for them to leave. Bill spent a good fifteen minutes cleaning the snow off the car. He could see that the roads had not yet been plowed, at least on the side streets. He made sure that they left plenty of time to slip-slide their way to the restaurant.

Tommy was there when they arrived. Bea arrived a few minutes after them. They were already inside the restaurant and were waiting for Bea to come so they could change into their uniforms. Tommy told them he thought they would not be very busy for the lunch and if the weather didn’t improve much it wouldn’t be busy for the dinner either. Both Mary and Bea were happy about this. Bill thought it would be a perfect day to trip.

In A Few Short Days 

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Fiction Outtakes 227: Bill Wynn 214


You never did know. The snow started early and came faster and heavier than expected. At eleven, when Tommy locked the doors and they headed into the parking lot to their cars, Bill told him he was sleeping at Mary’s and would bring her in in the morning. Tommy said he would call Mary if they were not going to open on time, but if she didn’t hear from him, all would be regular. He asked Bill if he wanted to stay over by him. Bill declined. He also offered for Bill to sleep in the office. That would have been the best choice.

Mary did not wear purple. She met him at the door barefoot and in her pajamas. But she hadn’t been sleeping. Her hair was done and her face made up. She wore deep red lipstick. Her toes and fingernails were deep red too. They kissed hello then she led him to the living room. Bill saw immediately that she’d been drinking and he knew she was high because there was an ash tray on the coffee table with two roaches in it.

“Sit down and fix your head,” Mary said. She pointed to a bag of weed and some Bambú also on the table.

“I need to call home,” said Bill.

He had tried three times to call his fiancé from work but she wasn’t home. He wanted to tell her he wasn’t driving far due to the storm. Mary led him to the phone in the kitchen and left him alone. He returned to the living room quickly, having discovered that she still wasn’t home.

He rolled two joints from her bag of weed. They smoked the first one together and sipped red wine. Mary told him to get comfortable, to take off his shoes and relax. Bill said he wanted to take a shower. He also told her that he brought some Quaaludes and that Tommy would call her in the morning if there was anything unusual about the opening.

While Bill showered, Mary fixed herself in red. She wore red high-heel pumps, red nylons, red garter belt, red panties and red bra. Just for fun, she put on a black mini, mini skirt and a very low cut white blouse.

“I need to keep some clean underwear in the car,” Bill said coming back into the living room. He was still wiping his hair with a towel and he was barefoot, but he had put on his jeans and his shirt.

“I have some skivvies for you,” Mary said. “They’re not new, but they’re clean.”

“Okay,” Bill said. He sat down on the sofa and tossed the towel on a chair a little bit away. Sitting there, he studied Mary as she had dressed for him.

“Remember what I whispered?” she asked.

“You bet,” Bill said. He filled each of their glasses with the wine then opened the pillbox he carried with him. Mary could see that there were black beauties inside along with the Quaaludes she liked very much. Bill gave her two Quaaludes and took two himself. Then Mary sat next to him and they smoked the other joint that Bill had rolled.

“You gotta stop giving me this shit,” said Mary. “This crap killed Yulie and it’ll kill you too if you ain’t careful. And you ain’t careful, I can see that plain as day.”

“Don’t mean shit to a train,” Bill said.

“Does to me,” said Mary.

They sat awhile like that. They drank more wine and waited for the Quaaludes to take effect. Bill did not touch Mary or even try to and Mary, for her part, sat beside him feeling extremely content. Most often there was that nervous tic-like sensation in the pit of her stomach. It was there now, but the Quaaludes calmed it considerably.

Bill tried twice more to call his fiancé before he and Mary started into anything. She still wasn’t home and Bill didn’t think much of it. She was probably staying over at a friend’s, he thought.

Coming Shortly

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Fiction Outtakes 227: Bill Wynn 213


“Ain’t nothing wrong with fat girls,” Mary said. Her work was mostly done for the day. She and Bill had locked themselves in the staff bathroom. Bill was leaning against the vanity, Mary was in his arms. They were kissing.

“You ain’t fat. Bea is getting toward really fat.” Bill’s hand had found its way there, or sort of there because he had stopped short of there and was teasing.

Mary shushed him. She spread her legs some so getting there was easier. “Meat on the bones is good,” she said. Then she reached around his head and pulled his lips to hers so she could kiss him and control the kissing.

“It’s supposed to snow,” she said.


“Promise you’ll be careful driving home.”

“Maybe I should come over by you.”

“Maybe you should get with them fat girls. You could get paid and laid and kept plenty warm.”

“That is very cold.”

“You bet your ass it is. Now make me warm and creamy.” Mary stepped away slightly and lifted her dress. But just when she was about to settle Bill how she wanted him, there was a knock on the door.

“You got a call,” Henry Lee said to Mary.

“Goddamn,” Mary said. “Take a message.”

“It’s your mom.”

“Lord have mercy,” Mary said. “I got to get this.” She let her dress fall into place and opened the door. Bill followed behind her. She turned off to the party room where she could talk in private. Bill went into the meat room.

“What you need cut?” he asked Henry Lee.

“Nothing, really. Everything’s done. We could start on the inventory for tomorrow,  but I think it’s gonna be real slow tonight.”

“You know, Columbus has some of the ugliest winters I’ve ever seen,” said Bill.

“Yeah well, what it is. Still if it snows like they saying, you gonna be sitting around.”

“So what should I cut?”

Tops. But not too many. Then see what Mary needs besides what you were doing in the bathroom.”

Bill cut five top sirloin butts which yielded enough Boston strips and Tops for them for the next day. When the steaks were neatly trayed and fully wrapped, he cleaned up where he’d been working and went upstairs. Mary was sitting out in the hall. It was almost time for Marie to be coming in, almost quitting time for her and Bea. All her work was done except taking out the baked potatoes and putting the food items on the line. The prime rib was still in the oven.

“You got any weed?” she asked Bill as he got to the top of the stairs.


“Let’s get high.”

“Everything okay?”

“Yeah. My mom’s keeping the kids overnight. They’re saying it’s gonna be a major storm. Gonna start soon too. They’re saying we could have like a foot of snow by morning. You really should think about staying close by. Maybe Tommy close early.”

“Maybe I should come over by you.”

“Maybe you should.”

“What I get for it?”

“You might find me in purple.”


“Maybe.” Mary stood up from where she was sitting. She blushed red over her dark chocolate skin. “What I get for it?”

“What you want?”

Mary leaned in and whispered in Bill’s ear. When she was finished, she kissed him once on the cheek. Before he could see her face, she gingerly stepped down the stairs. Bill followed right behind her. He was calculating and scheming.

After they’d all gotten high in the deep freeze and helped themselves to a generous amount of bourbon, Mary sat on the stainless steel counter like she always did, legs and feet hanging over the edge, feet crossed at the ankles.

“Think they close early?” she asked Henry Lee.

“Just might if it starts real soon and comes down heavy.”

“They done it before,” Mary said.

“Never know,” Henry Lee said. “Never know about a lot of stuff,” he added.

Coming Shortly

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Fiction Outtakes 226: Bill Wynn 212


At Suburban the walls had eyes and ears. The next morning at 10 o’clock when they were sitting out in the hall, Bea looked at Bill and gave out one of her throaty chuckles.

“I heard that dishwasher tried to pimp you yesterday,” she said.

“Say what?”

“You heard what I said,” Bea said. She sat like always, up high and with her legs spread wide. Bill sat down low, smoking a cigarette. He had just popped a black beauty and was waiting for it to kick in.

“Oh that,” Bill said. “Wasn’t nothing.”

He had been stunned by the dishwasher’s words, totally taken by surprise. At first he hadn’t realized that the dishwasher was in fact trying to pimp him. But when he’d thought about it later, that surely was what was happening.

Luckily, and happily too, Bill’s being naive kind of saved him. The idea as presented was anathema to him so he’d just politely declined the offer. The dishwasher had told him that if he changed his mind to let him know.

That was something Bill would pass on but it was something he would wonder about every now and then, especially as he got older and tried all different kinds of women.

“They’re just a little fat,” the dishwasher said.

A little fat was probably really fat, Bill generally thought when he thought about it. Bea  was fat and she was fun. Mary was plump. She was like a ripe plum, smooth and sweet and very juicy. Lorraine was kind of like Mary, equally juicy, just as sweet. Lexi was a tigress, ready to spring at any moment. Sooner or later, Bill would meet all kinds of women through the course of his career, from shameless witches whose intentions were to ruin his marriage to Marilyn Monroe wannabes. Really fat would not have been bad, he would eventually discover.

“Goddamn but that cool air feels good,”  Bea said. She was flapping her dress up and down.

“Put that shit away,” Henry Lee said. He was standing next to where Bill was sitting. “I can see much more than I want to.”

“No one asked you to be looking.”

“You crazy, girl,” he said.

Mary, who had not sat down anywhere, laughed. She was standing next to where Bill sat, on the other side of him than where Henry Lee was. “I’m sweating up there too,” she said. “It’s different for a woman.”

Henry Lee didn’t say anything. He finished smoking the cigarette he held and shook his head scornfully.

“Want me to cool you down?” Bill asked. He reached to the hem of Mary’s dress and started fanning it like Bea was doing to hers. Then he reached under and up from behind and fondled Mary’s butt.

“Get the hell out of there, boy,” she said. ” What the hell is it with you?”

Henry Lee guffawed. He walked to the back door and flicked his cigarette butt outside. “We got to make hamburg,” he said. Then, to Mary, after he’d walked back to where she stood, he said, “Ain’t nothing wrong with the boy. He got him some good taste in women.”

Mary smacked Henry Lee on that he arm about the same time Bea stood up. “Love them white boys,” she said, licking her lips.

Bill stood up too. “I’ll kiss all over that beautiful ass,” he whispered in Mary’s ear. “And  a lot more too,” he said.

“I’ll bet you will,” said Mary.

“Count on it,” he said. He winked at her.

“Fat girls, huh?” Mary said.

So, Still Coming Shortly

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