Monday, October 15, 2007

We Interrupt This Ramble

I was going to post about other books I have been in overseas, also bring up the fact that, for the life of me, I can't figure out why "doing a Dutchie" is police slang for suicide. I see it in slang dictionaries, but with no explanation. It's like looking up "urinate"--not that I did, it was, ah, someone else--and finding the phrase "teach a Chinaman how to tap dance." But circumstances beyond my control compel me to tell you all of a tale of two severed feet. With socks on. They were found Saturday night in Matteson, somewhere south of me, the suburbs just kind of roll into each other like drunken clowns in bumper cars. But you see...last night the rest of the body was found. Within a few blocks of where I work, in yet another industrial park strip that starts over dere by the motel. On clear nights, I can see the rim of the bright pink sign as I walk that winding street towards 127th. Past the motel is a deserted strip that goes past the Onion Field restaurant, long closed, and the failing Condessa Del Mar. 123rd and Lavergne. I talked with Bart over by the DocuColor 8000 and we tried to consider the scenario of a person hoping to hide the identity of a murder victim by cutting off only his feet and taking his shoes. The person might be homeless, as you can see by my other photos (going back to 1990), there are many out of luck in the land of the free, and certainly some are complete meltdowns, but most are being fucked over by the American Dream. It is hard to understand, if the killer was startled, why did he start with the feet in the first place? It wasn't an industrial accident, and there were no railroad tracks; Bart suggested the guy might have been a train-hopper and has his feet severed and finally bled out and fell off the train in Alsip. There's a story somewhere in this tragedy. When people ask why I write what I do, I want to say "do you ever watch the farken news?" The sad thing is, this event barely made the news. A young kid was buried today, a John Doe, unidentified for two years. One in the ground, another one found. Chicago, the city that rhymes...Wayne


Charles Gramlich said...

Seems like I read a story recently where the killer cut off a foot of his victims and left them in their shoes beside the road. I know I did, and I think it was by Morrell but I'm not sure.

We had six murders here in NO over the weekend. Glad I live out of town now.

kuroshii said...

nothing so glamorous in real life, i'm afraid: police are now saying it was a "simple" hit-and-run. anything over 40mph would be enough force to sever limbs. why the driver waited to dump the body is a question they've yet to answer, though they do have a lead on the car.

i like your "what-if" better, though.

HemlockMan said...

Yes, that's certainly strange. Who knows why people end up dead like that? Maybe an accident. Maybe a murder. Could you imagine it as a suicide?

Nobody writes about that stuff the way you write about it. Your next crime novel, the one that comes after the first memoir...that's going to be worth waiting for.