06:18:16 pm on
Thursday 25 Jul 2024

F***king Salesmen 1
Joe Vitulli

This part one of a three-part series.

Chapter One

This Stuff Happened Before the Other Stuff



They came in waves; it seemed the hordes were crashing along the gates of Paradise, leaving the homeland empty. Thousands, hundreds of thousands left. They came from Ireland; they came from Italy, Poland, Eastern Europe, England, Spain, Grease, Egypt and points east and west. The great portal flung open and the immigrants flooded ashore, each with a dream, each with hope in their eyes, each coming to this land of freedom, where it was said the streets were paved with gold.

They landed in New York, in enclaves, in little hovels, families jammed together in small spaces and they set out to make their mark upon the world, this exciting and terrifying new world. Some left the bustling city, moving away, trying to find space, to find room to grow and prosper.

Many came to the next Big City. Those who would, after a time, form themselves into a group, and with this group would forge a sprawling enterprise, a business like no other, controlled by these man of Italian descent. They worked hard, seven days a week, struggling to build a business, the carting of refuse. They conspired to drive out the city crews, pushing them aside, their onrush of hard work and the imposition of fear drove all before them. After a while, they were the masters of their craft, controlling a small but growing industry.

Then friction.

Then the great unsettling, a war, the fight over rights and territories, the struggle to live and expand, the infighting, men died, businesses were smashed one atop another.

One man, later to become, The Big Fella, The Old Man, he saw the way and he worked hard to make the others see the wisdom. They were crooks, they knew that, but he taught them to survive by working together, keep outsiders out, divide up and settle disputes with a meal and some wine.

Prosperity came, they lived well, they protected their little corner of the world, and slowly seeped into the outskirts, the suburbs, the bedroom communities. The Old Man discovered Havens Cove, saw what was happening in Silver Shores, a housing development on a barrier island, just across the bay from Finchville. And he liked what he saw, and he went to the man, said, “Listen, we like this, what you are doing, and we want to buy some of their fine houses.”

Havens smiled, thinking to himself, look at this guy, can’t hardly speak English, what does he know about this stuff? Maybe, he thought, I can shake this guy down and whoever is tied in with him. He took their money and proceeded to do what swindlers do with money and soon the Old Man was mighty sored up at Havens.

On a Friday afternoon, the Old Man and his “assistant” rode up to Silver Shores, maybe a week before the gate was to be built to keep the riff-raff out, much to the displeasure of the citizen of Finchville. It was raining; it was cold, a dark sky, grey clouds scuttling across the horizon, the sea a steel color, waves pounding the shore.

They found Havens in the garage of his own house. They quickly explained to him the error of his ways, and Havens was fast to understand. Maybe it was his scrotum, encased in a metal clamp, that produced the desired effect, but shortly the deed to the entire Silver Shores, lock, stock and scrotum was signed over.

Not one to leave any stone unturned, the Old Man, and his “assistant” elected the best place for Mister Havens would be at the end of a rope, hanging from one of the cheap cross beams in the garage, a suicide note on the hood of his running car. With the garage door closed, the cold body of Havens absorbing enough carbon monoxide to kill the entire population of Finchville, the Old Man and his “assistant” left, headed back to their Big City and brought big, exciting news to the other “fellas” in the trash business.

“We work hard all week, running these mighty big businesses, settling beefs, keeping’ other guys out of our way, we need a place to relax after the strenuous work we do, and I have found the perfect spot.”

Within a few months, the fellas, all, owners and operators of the businesses, moved their families into the cheap homes along the water at Silver Shores, all the while cursing the cheesy workmanship, thinking, we’re crooks, but that Havens guy musta been a bigger crook, looka’ these paper thin walls. Why if I was torturing somebody, shit, everyone would hear.

Repairs were made to the houses, torture was kept to a minimum, but when employed, was relatively quiet. The gate was erected. That guy in the black suit, white shirt, bolo ties, wide brim hat, delivered the gate. He smiled at the Old Man before driving away, thinking I have a pretty big beef with these guys, and when the time is right I’ll come back to settle things up.

He sure did.

Chapter Two


The Old Man worked hard, harder than most. Some got a bit jealous, and that festered for a while. His business grew, faster than the others, he was a bit more aggressive than the others, and he made acquaintances, people who controlled aspects of the community nobody spoke about in public. The Big City grew, and with it, the Old Man’s business, and the others trailed along. Soon, the Old Man had the lions share; the others had nice, well run organizations, they all made money, tons of money, raised their families, prospered, and that seed, that vague idea, the envy took root.

They, as a course of business, competed with the big boys, the National Brands, and in most cases came out on top, they were agile, the big boys bogged down with red tape, unwilling to do to the Independents what the Independents did to those who competed with them. The non-Italian trash men, those few, were driven out of town. Ben Stein, the last of the lot, his hands stapled to the wall of the Old Man’s garage, his testicles attached to electrodes, finally, with tears in his eyes, signed over his routes, and the end of what had been a home grown business had arrived.

The Old Man became powerful. His contacts were like fingers touching many aspects of the Big City. Tension arose. Freddy Nocoscia, himself, just liberating one of the final non-Italian routes, eyed the money and power residing with the Old Man. He’s got the goods, he’s got the fuckin’ town tied up, and most of what we got, is either crumbs he tosses away, or the little bits he lets slip through his fingers. This, he thought, is bullshit.

Fair is fair, he thought.

Some of the others sided with Freddy, some with the Old Man, and for the next months and almost a year, the war to settle everything was waged.

Trucks were burned, buildings bombed, a few guys, leading citizens in the trash business, somehow disappeared. Wives and children were sent away to keep them safe.

September rolled around; things were not good. Disruptions in services were causing large headaches to the politicians in town, many of whom were on the pad with the Old Man and his associates. The citizens of the Big City were up in arms, and finally, the Mayor, his back to the wall, called a meeting, him and his deputies, the phony Chief of Police and the Old Man and a few of his associates.

“We got the people yelling at us, we can’t walk the fuckin streets, people tossin’ rotten food, tomatoes, at us, I gotta’ run to the fuckin’ cleaners twice a day.”

“Mister Mayor, this is a situation not of our making.” We pay you enough to BUY the fuckin’ dry cleaners, stop the horseshit.

“Well, you gotta’ do something. The streets are startin to smell, the fuckin restaurants, a few of which we own together, got garbage stacked like bales of fuckin’ smelly cotton in front of the joints.”

“We will bring it to an end.” The Old Man stood, smiled, doffed his hat, slipped a small envelope to the smiling Mayor, and he and his associates left the meeting.

They went back to a safe house, somewhere near the water, an old, empty building, which some day would be a big, gleaming office tower, the Old Man’s trash compactor in the basement.

“Fuckin’ Freddy’s gone too far.” Nunzio, an up and comer spoke, a fat stogie in his big mouth.

“This has to be settled, the crooks in City Hall are getting’ nervous, can’t have crooks getting nervous, they might do stupid things.”

They sat, espresso was poured, Anisette sipped, a plan was hatched to end this war, and bring, as the Old Man said, peace to the valley and we can get back to doing what we do best. They all knew what that was and they all smiled.

They had a guy, a guy they used to settle big beefs, quietly, the beef going away pretty fast. This guy, all six feet, three inches of him, sometimes drove a truck for the Old Man, but mostly hung out in the garage or office, and waited for his number to be called. They called his number. This would be special they told him, very special and big deal.

They explained to the guy what needed to be done once and for all. He grasped the meaning, and set about to finally cure the itch which was drivin’ everyone fuckin’ nuts: Freddy Nocoscia.

He recruited two helpers, the men who would later on father two very well established top earners and “special assistants”, Nick and Natch.

The two men, dressed like cops, the uniforms stolen right under the nose of the phony Chief, the bogus cops drove around town, looking for one of Freddy’s trucks. The guy, THE GUY, waited, tailing the two “cops” as they cruised the streets, and finally, down near the water, a route truck, KING SANITATION, Freddy’s outfit, backing up to a trash can, near the shipping office of some ocean line.

The two “cops” rolled up behind the truck, and using the stolen police car, turned on the bubble light on the roof. The KING SANITATION truck slowed down, the driver thinking, what the fuck, don’t we pay off these clowns?

Using the bullhorn, he said “STEP OUT OF THE TRUCK!” The “cop” smiled, turned to his partner, these dumb shits have no idea.

The driver shut down the engine and slowly opened the door, looking at the police car. “This better be good.”

The driver of the police car, the man who would one day become Nick’s father, exited the car and walked over to the driver. The other “cop” stepped out of the police car, but stayed back, his hand on his pistol.

“What’s the beef, officer.”

“Shut up.”

“Whoa, what the fuck?”

“Who owns this truck?”

“What, you from fuckin’ Mars, you don’t know who belongs to this truck?”

“Listen, dip shit, we ain’t got a lotta’ time. We got reports you guys selling dope outta’ this truck.”

“You’re crazy. We don’t have no dope.”

“We gonna’ find out.”

“I’m gonna’ radio the boss, let him come down here, maybe you don’t know who the fuck he is, Freddy Nocoscia?”

“Yeah, get Freddy down here.”

The driver went back to the truck, sat down, grabbed the radio, got Freddy, told him what was happening, and Freddy, never one to let moss grow on his stones, took off. At the same time, THE GUY, rolled to a stop behind the trash truck. The driver, tossing the radio to the seat, slid out of the cab. The route helper, sitting in the passenger seat of the truck was yanked out, THE GUY, stabbed him in the heart, then dragged his body to the rear of the truck, dumping him inside.

The driver was thinking two thoughts, wait till these fucks run smack into Freddy, and where the hell is Jose? The driver found out where the hell Jose was, having just landed there himself, his heart punctured, his lifeless body tossed into the hopper of the truck.

Benny rolled up, eyed the two cops, not seeing THE GUY, who was now standing on the side of the KING SANITATION truck.

‘HEY! Ass-” The bullet slammed into Freddy’s mouth, teeth flying, the shot tumbled around, cascading into his brain, severing nerve endings, blood exploding from the wound. The two ‘cops” dragged Freddy to the rear of the truck, tossed him inside as well. The man who would one day be Natch’s father, ripped off his police uniform, jumped into the truck and drove away, the sweep blade in the hopper gliding the three stiffs deep into the rear of the truck.

The KING SANITATION truck went to the water’s edge, a pier on the west side. The hopper was raised, the blade pushed the trash, which included the Driver, poor innocent Jose and Freddy into the river, the current taking the bodies upstream as they sank below the steel grey water.

The KING SANITATION truck was taken to the Old Man’s garage, where quickly it was taken apart, bolt by bolt, steel beam by steel beam, and turned into spare parts.

About a week later, with peace in the valley, papers were signed and KING SANITATION was split apart, acquired by the other owners. A large dinner was held to celebrate, everyone was happy, peace had returned, and Freddy was fish food, which everyone enjoyed, since on the menu that night, was fresh fish.

Chapter Three


John Collins, sixth grade teacher, remembers Nick:

“The kid was a, excuse the expression, a real dick head.”

Peter Sloan, seventh grade teacher, remembers Natch:

“How should I put this, let me just say, that, ah, er, well, he was a special boy, liked throwing his weight around, caused a lot of trouble, and, I’m sorry to say, he broke my nose.”

Nick, real name Nicola Tedesco, the only child of Angelo and Maria. Angelo was a driver for one of the trash routes, did a pretty good job, loved his wine and from time to time beat the crap out of Maria. Slights were imagined, wine was consumed in great quantities, and regrets, shit, I coulda’ owned this damn company, and sure enough, Maria would ask him to please do this or do that, don’t talk too loud, whatever, and slam, his fist, her head.

For years, as he grew up, Nick thought, was absolutely certain, the way you treated women was with a an open palm, slammed against a cheek. This lead Nick to many interesting encounters with girls, in school, various trips to the Principals office, threats of law suits, and by the time he was in the eleventh grade, they somehow figured out a way to give Nick a diploma and out the door he went.

Angelo was quite proud, Nick being the first in the family to finish, more or less, high school.

Nick got a low level job, working on the back of a trash truck, making pennies, throwing eight to nine tons of garbage each and every day, six days a week. Nick said, hey, this ain’t too bad, I get to be outside all day, I’m getting’ exercise, and what the fuck, a new word he had just discovered, the money ain’t so bad.

After a while, Nick’s penchant for violence would come into play, and on one occasion, he was watched, by a fairly important person in the business, turn a guy upside down, and dump him into a four cubic yard container. The guy was unhappy with the service he was getting, unhappy with the price he was paying, and he wanted to change to a different trash hauler. After a while the guy changed only his mind.

This kid, he’s got some fuckin’ potential, the fairly important guy in the business thought as he watched the performance. Why, I think we could use a fella’ like this for various things up and around town, things which otherwise might cause some agita. So, to prevent some things up and around town which might cause some agita, Nick was spoken to, and they kept theirs eyes on him. Each day, after the route truck came into the garage, the fairly important guy in the business would snatch Nick up and drive around town. They would talk about business, and what to do to protect the business, and how to dispose of bodies, how to torture a guy who’s tossing unfounded beefs around, and to generally prosper and become an upstanding member of the community.

At this time, THE GUY, nursing a bullet wound in his shoulder had decided, well, it’s time we hit the road, cure up this big hole I got here, and don’t it seem nice this Florida place? There was many a sad eyeball as THE GUY said his good byes, well not everyone, a fella who happened to park the bullet in THE GUY’s shoulder was not all that broken up.

After a while Nick came to the attention of the Old Man, who in turn brought Nick to the attention of his son, Joseph, the Old Man having big plans for Joseph and this Nick guy would be a large boost to those plans should some agita be up and around town.

Nick continued to work on the trash truck, but everyone knew, do not fuck with this kid, he’s got a fairly important guy in the business watching out for him, should agita be up and about around town. After a while, Nick wanted to stop working on the back of the truck. They said, okay, it’s time you learned how to drive, since that is a very important part of the trash business, this driving thing. He quickly became the youngest driver in the Old Man’s fleet, a relief driver, so he got to work not all the time, which Nick thought, fuck, this ain’t so fuckin bad.

During the times he wasn’t driving the trash truck, or being driven around by a fairly important guy in the business, Nick joined a gym and spent his days working out. He noticed, quite early on, that babes, hard bodied babes, spent time in the gym. He also spent some time thinking about slammin’ them around and figured there’s no edge in it for me, unless, of course, they start runnin their mouth, then, fuck it, slap city. The babes, the hard bodied babes took a note of Nick, he was after all, good looking, dark hair and eyes, and after a while had a pretty awesome body.

He learned about sex from the fairly important guy in the business, not sure if everything he was taught was the right thing, that blow job thing was pretty stupendous, however. Maybe, he thought, one of these hard bodies would love to clamp one on the old shooter for me, and fuck, she’d probably enjoy it more than me. So with his fairly distorted view of sex and love, taught to him by the fairly important guy in the business, Nick moved on, and did for a very long time had quite the sex life.

For his nineteenth birthday, the fairly important guy in the business bought Nick a pinky ring.

Natch on the other hand was raised by an insane mother, Elena, a psycho born in Italy, Sicily who figured any son of mine has got to go to church every morning, get on his knees and confess his sins and beg God for forgiveness. Natch had a few other ideas, which lead to some agita up and around the household, the Colangelo household. Beatings, religious based beating, were a regular occurrence, especially when demented Elena found out, much to her dismay, that Natch, her pride and joy, was walking in the front door of church in the morning and walking out the back door two minutes later.

Natch had discovered some guys who didn’t also like to go to church, and whatever else, maybe some were supposed to go to work, so they gathered near an old run down gas station, the owner, Vito, Vito who, nobody knew, but who took numbers. The kids came in handy, hustling betting slips down to the big bosses running the numbers racket in town, which was soon to be “acquired” by a fairly important guy in the trash business. On more than one occasion, the young Natch, Giovanni, the real name, was confronted by folks who wanted to know what was in the little satchel he carried on the bus

“None a ya fuckin’ business.”

One thing lead to another, words were exchanged, and one of the guys ended up being tossed, head first, through the rear window of the bus. His two friends realized they had missed their stop and quickly got off the bus. The bus driver, a cousin to another fairly important guy in the trash business, told his cousin and shortly thereafter Uncle Vito’s prized messenger was noticed.

“We‘ll keep an eye on that little jerk off, see what develops.”

What developed was a violence prone, very strong, knock around guy, with no idea what life had in store for him, other than running these numbers slips on the fuckin’ bus, which I ain‘t too much fond of too much any more.

A pretty nice restaurant, a place where a fella’ who was mighty tired up from running the trash business could wrap himself around a large portion of Pasta, or some other thing, to warm his soul and fortify his being. Wine, which they say goes with everything, went well with the tired up guys wrapping themselves around a large bowl of Al-dente pasta.

It was raining outside, a crappy day for the guys working the trucks, not so crappy for the guys not working the trucks, but who were mighty tired up anyway. Two fellas, one a fairly important guy in the trash business and the other, another fairly important guy in the trash business had settled in for a fairly important date with Rigatoni, Broccoli Rabbe and Sausage. Garlic, and Olive Oil was clinging to the pasta, a sweet smelling meal to help some guys who were fairly important in the trash business relax away from the stress and strain of running those trash businesses.

“This is good.” Big smile, eyes watching the other guy.

“This fuckin’ guy can cook, looka’ that sausage!” What’s he lookin’ at?

All was good, however, the meal passed without any dust ups, since the potential for beefs being tossed around was always there when two fairly important guys in the trash business got together.

They discussed things in general, the state of the business, the fact that outfit, you know, the one with the big fuckin’ green trucks, those national guys, was startin’ to nosey around town, causing some grief to the two fairly important guys in the trash business.

They decided to sit with the Old Man, and now with his son, Joseph, an up and comer in the trash business, more than fairly important.

Nick ran into, literally, Natch pulling out of a grocery store, backing into Natch’s car, placing a pretty nifty dent in the front bumper. Doors were opened, temperature rose, face to face, but somehow they figured out they were both sorta’ involved with the trash business, more or less. Nick smiled, shook hands with Natch, Natch telling him “forget the fuckin’ bumper”

Two weeks later they met again at the gym, Nick eyeing a very hard bodied blonde with some sorta’ pants on made him think they were fuckin’ spray painted on her, Christ, looka’ them fuckin’ thighs! He had this vision in his mind of this girl, a hot bicycle, cold water and, well, he thought, none of your fuckin’ business what happened next.

“Hey, how you doin?”

Nick turned, there, smiling was the crazy fuck with the busted up bumper.

“Hey, how you doin?” Nick smiled, Natch moved over and shook hands.

Natch took a peek at the girl, the hardest of hard bodies, and spoke to himself, man I could fuck that right now, and she’s love every fuckin’ minute of it.

“You come here? To work out?” Natch thinking, he’s got a pretty good lookin’ body, must get a lot of pussy.

“Yeah, three times a week, gotta’ keep the shit nice and tight, the babes dig it. Wanna’ touch this here bicep?”

“Not today, maybe not never. I don’t like too much touchin’ other guys, you know, maybe those others guys get funny, not haha funny, but funny ideas.” This guy, he ain’t a fugazzy is he?

“Whoa, I ain’t no fugazzy, Natch, just was trying to show you what the fuck happens when you work out all the time.” This guy, he ain’t too solid I think, a few rough edges. “So, lemme’ ask ya, where’d you get the Natch from?”

“I was workin’ with Vito, down at the gas station, running them slips downtown; every time he asks me to do something, and do it fuckin’ quick I said, sure, natch, it’s done.” Big smile, big question mark on Nick’s face. “So, Vito, from the fuckin’ gas station, started callin’ me Natch, and it stuck“.

Nick thought, gee, this fella is pretty handy, I heard a story about him tossing some jerk off through a bus window, maybe we can team up and do a little business, he’s a solid citizen, Vito says he’s a straight shooter.

So, they did team up. They became a dynamic fuckin duo of immense proportions. When they weren’t doing their normal jobs, they began doing “not normal” jobs. Little things, breaking and entering, knockin’ off a mailman or two down in the big city, they got their hands on some “reefer” and sold some of it around town, both swearing to each other, we will never touch this shit, which they never did.

They were very respectful, always kicking up part of what they scored to the fairly important guys in the trash business, who passed some of that good stuff over to the Old Man, who gave some to Joseph.

Chapter Four

Two Fairly Important Guys In The Trash Business


They sat in the very small, very sparse office of the Old Man. Just a wooden desk, one window which overlooked the garage, four chairs, two of which had just been taken out of the coffee room to accommodate the meeting about to take place. Joseph sat next to the Old Man, sorta’ behind, though not yet DIRECTLY behind the desk. He watched as the Old Man’s sorta’ secretary walked in with two coffees, Joseph thinking, Christ she’s four hundred years old, look at those hairy assed legs, hey lady they invented razors a hundred years ago.

“Grazie, Rosemarie.” The Old Man smiled.

“Prego.” She finished placing the cups on the desk, and with a small flatulation, which jolted Joseph, made the Old Man laugh, Rosemarie departed.

Joseph took a sip of the hot, bitter coffee, what, this crap was made three days ago? When I take over coffee will be coffee, fresh, and maybe, what the hell an espresso machine, and sorry, but Rosemarie is toast. How can I handle the stress of running these very big businesses, settle beefs and make money when I got this cave woman serving soured up coffee to me.

The door to the office opened, and with Rosemarie leading the way, then tripping, the heel of her left shoe snapping off, the two fairly important guys in the trash business came in, shook hands with the Old Man, nodded to Joseph, which caused a slight steam up on his part, we’ll see about that shit later on he thought. All four watched as Rosemarie struggled to her feet, released some methane and waddled to the door.

“How are you Pete, Nunzio, all is well at home?”

“Yeah, the fuck stick wife is driving me fuckin' looney, but she cooks up a storm, so I keep the beefs to a minimum.” The first fairly important man in the trash business spoke, this being Pete.

“Things are good, Angela, the fat cow, is knocked up again, so this time she better be cookin’ up a fuckin boy son, otherwise she’s gonna end up washin’ dishes at the dinner in Hell. Either way all is okay, other than, than what we came here to speak on.” Nunzio smiled, removed his trade mark cheap cigar, lit up, the smoke drifting across Pete, the Old Man and Joseph.

“So, we got this problem.”

“Yeah, it’s sorta’ located more on the part of town where we operate, but I can see the day when those National fucks expand all over the fuckin’ place, leavin’ us workin’ stiffs beggin’ for scraps.” Pete inhaled a lungful of the stogie smoke, coughed, and gave Nunzio the evil eye.

Joseph stood, placed his coffee cup on the desk and walked to the window, opening it, waving away some of the stink and smoke from the two bit cigar dangling from Nunzio’s fat fuckin lips.

“They got two salesmen running around, shoving’ contracts under the noses of our customers, and they’re the first ones at any new work, how the fuck they know that is beyond me.” Nunzio, watching Joseph very carefully, thinking is this scum bag making fun of my cigar?

The Old Man sat back, thinking, trying to see a light in this darkness. These National guys, they got a ton of fuckin’ money, they can throw money and people at everything. How do we beat that?

“You fellas still got those two kids running around, the head bangers?” Joseph finished the horrible coffee, thinking I should toss the crap and Rosemarie out the fuckin window.

“Yeah, that one Nick and the looney they call Natch.” Pete, thinking, hey maybe there’s a way.

“This is what I think. Pop, listen. Send those two guys up here. We talk for a while, then I hire both of them, make ‘em salesmen. It’s their job to rustle up new customers, stay on top of what’s going on, and to generally make life fuckin’ miserable for the salesmen from the other guys, and those pricks running them big national companies.

There followed a brief discussion, Nunzio wanted to make sure the two sales pukes they were hiring would sell not only for the Old Man’s crew but all the outfits. The Old Man assured Nunzio and Pete that would be the case.

Smiles all around, and very shortly all four were wrapped about some very large steaks at a very “in” steakhouse, which later on would become notorious, with a few bottles of very nice wine.

Two days later Nick and Natch were summoned to see Joseph.

Chapter Five

Salesmen of the Fuckin’ Year

Nick and Natch waited outside the office of the Old Man. Natch was pacing, he paced when he was nervous and he was very fuckin’ nervous. What the hell does the Old Man want, ain’t we done the right thing, kickin’ up the do-re-mi enough. Maybe those selfish pricks want more?

“Sit down, you’re makin’ me dizzy.”

“This is bullshit. They call us to come up and then they make us fuckin wait, what, we’re two fuckin’ school girls waitin for our first date?” He sat on a small, wooden chair and began to tap his hands on his leg. Tap, tap, tap, keeping time to the nervous jitters racing through his system. “This chair is as comfortable as a piece of fuckin’ wood.”

The door opened, they both jumped to their feet, eyes locked on Joseph.

“Come inside.” Joseph turned, and re-entered his office, Nick and Natch following.

The Old Man rose as they entered, walking around his desk and came face to face with Nick and Natch, Natch thinking’, should I kiss his fuckin’ ring, does he even have a fuckin’ ring?

The Old Man extended his hand, Natch thinking, hey, no fuckin’ ring; Nick shook hands, then turned and shook with Joseph. Natch, a few beads of perspiration on his brow, shook hands with the Old Man and with Joseph.

The Old Man walked to his desk and sat, Joseph beside him, Nick and Natch sat in front of the desk.

“We have heard a lot about you.”

“Well, sir, if this is about that guy, the one downtown-” Natch wiped some sweat form his face, thinking, they fuckin heard about the guy we hung by his feet out the window downtown.

“A guy, downtown?” The Old Man looked at Joseph, who shrugged, thinking I heard about tossing some clown through the rear window of a bus, but is this something else? He leaned back, thinking, please Pop, don’t get the fleabag Rosemarie in here with some coffee, we ain’t got all day.

“It’s nothing sir….sirs….nothing.” Nick kicked Natch in the shin. Natch began tapping his hands on his leg.

“What’s that noise?”

“Natch, stop fuckin tapping, will ya?” Joseph smiled at Natch, thinking the kids’ a bit antsy, which of course he was, more than somewhat.

“Look, you two guys got good some good reps around here, people say you are straight shooters and solid citizens, serious people.” The Old Man leaned back, thinking, I could use a cupa’ coffee.

Lucky for everyone, Rosemarie was in the coffee room, sound asleep, her snoring a shrill reminder to all that the Old Man was still in charge.

“Thank you, sir …sirs.” Nick thinking, what’s up, they gonna’ do what?

“We have an opportunity for two guys, guys like yourselves, for a special job. My son will explain it to you.” The Old Man stood, patted Joseph on the back, and left, thinking, where the fuck is Rosemarie?

Nick and Natch watched as the Old Man left. Joseph watched as well, hoping he would not return, especially not return with the bag of methane gas Rosemarie and the fuckin’ mud she palms off as coffee. He turned to his two visitors.

“We are having a serious problem. On the West Side, up and down, two guys representing that big national company, those pricks with the green trucks, they are trying to steal our work, and taking new work right from under our noses.”

“Mother fuckers.” Natch wanted in the worst way to wipe his sweaty hands on his pants, but was terrified of touching his pants with his hands. He started bouncing his left foot, up and down, a jerky motion.

“How can we help, sir.?” Nick turned, his eyes glaring at Natch. Natch stopped jerking his leg.

“We are going to promote the two of you to Sales Managers.”

“No shit? I mean, thanks, wow.” Natch got himself a little red in the face.

“We want you guys to canvas the area, cover it completely, make sure those ass wipes from those pricks with the green fuckin’ trucks, they don’t get any new business and let them know they can’t be stealing our customers.

“When do we start? I mean, I’d like to get on it right away.” Nick smiled, thinking, this is big shit.

It was big shit, and the shit would get even bigger.

Click here to read part two of this three-part series.



Joe Vitulli has two books, "Silver Shores (Arizona, 1867)" and "The Havens Core Horror (Lighthouse)," available on Kindle. "As you might see," Vitulli says, "both my books are the Horror category. I'm not sure if that's the genre or my writing skill." Vitulli lives on the East Coast, of the USA, very near the water, which he thinks is a great inspiration for his writing, "as both my novels have a lot to do with seaside communities. "I have a great family," he says, "that indulge me in my writing. I'm currently hard at work on a third novel. on which 'F***king Salesmen' is based. My new book has special meaning for me, as it stirs memories of my youth..though not exactly!"

More by Joe Vitulli:
Tell a Friend

Click above to tell a friend about this article.