Insert Chassis Albuquerque: Lunch.

22 December 2016

Lunch.

"That's him there," the CIA Director said, nodding over his coffee in Albuquerque's direction. "Chassis Albuquerque, take a close look, Northfields, that's an anarchist. Jesus Christ! Look at him, out here, mixing with the people, in public - my god! This is dangerous, any moment we could have some kind of overspill...!
Albuquerque looked an incredibly complicated man, filled with all sorts of vices. The author sits, reposed, apparently making notes on what looks like could be a napkin; he drinks a latté (contentious because yet again here was another word - latté V. latte - that could be spelt with or without diacritics) occasionally watching the moving world. But then, to put it in some perspective, a man with a turkey on his head for a hat drifted by, hey - it was Christmas, people were trying all kinds of shit trying to sell all kinds of shit and this turkey-asshole was selling Christmas trees. But, looking closely Northfields could see a number of things, including that the Director was wrong, the Director made Albuquerque's vices seem insignificant. Northfields had heard he'd filled out a requisition form for a new toilet seat for his office en-suite. A few weeks later he'd received a notice it had been declined, he was too big an asshole for any of their products.
"You read Albuquerque's latest?" the CIA Director said.
"The Sundial Salesman?"
The Director nodded. "I had the technical team hack his shitting laptop and download all the drafts."
"Really? I downloaded my copy in e-book format from one of several popular online stores."
"You did? What you make of it? Real subversive shit, don't you think, Northfields?"
"Make of it? I'm not sure I understand, but I couldn't get enough of it, goddamn if I didn't read it twice!"
The Director regarded him suspiciously.
"Just the idea any working man should blackmail his boss as some form of retribution should be made a criminal offence! How would it look, people like Albuquerque mouthing off and us with no recourse? Soon everybody would be doing something illegal with no care for consequence because we’d let him get away with it - good god almighty man, the entire system could fall apart! That Chassis Albuquerque, we need to double up the man-hours on him and stop that bastard in his tracks!"
"He writes fiction, sir, very funny, very literary."
To be honest all the hyperlinks were starting to get to Northfields a little. No matter what was said he was convinced the Director was a fucking moron, simple maths told him he was an idiot. He wasn't saying he was stupid but, man, it had to be close a close call here, you know, the director's mental capacity seemed completely desaturated. Whereas The Sundial Salesman wasn't Hitler's Mein Kampf or Watership Down with its communist underpinning or any such seditious literary piece, truthfully Northfields thought it nothing more than what anyone wouldn't want to do to their own boss. It was a little bit of Charles Bukowski or Hunter S. Thompson, mixed with a little Chuck Palahniuk.
"We've been monitoring his calls and online activity," the Director said, eyes on Albuquerque.
"Isn't that illegal?"
"Illegal! Holy shit, Northfields, are you even taking this seriously? This is a democracy, people voted us in - voting's a fundamental human right providing opportunity for any majority of people to suppress the rights and beliefs of others! We're the goddamn government!"
"Find anything?" Northfields wondered.
"He writes a lot. And there's a maid that comes once a week. He's also got a team of lawyers, Bunsen & Bunsen - that's very suspicious, too many lawyers. Why?"
Northfields was less convinced, he wasn't so sure and frankly he didn't give a shit about Albuquerque or his `subversive' writing.
"Any hard data to back up that assertion, sir?” and when the Director hadn’t answered Northfield said, “I wanna see America, all its vastness, how fucked up it all is!" a line from his own novel he was working on.
"You say something, Northfields?" the Director wondered - he couldn't tear his eyes away from Albuquerque. Really Northfields wanted to be listening to author podcasts and researching Marketing techniques for his book, trying to gain traction.
"Yes, I said why don't we find out what he's writing. I just happen to have Albuquerque's new book, The Sundial Salesman, right there in my coat pocket - why don't I approach him for an autograph and we can see what he's writing?"
"I thought you said you downloaded it?"
"I also ordered a hard copy - for evidence..." Northfields explained.
Northfields approaches Albuquerque, showing him the book. "Would you mind...?" he asks the writer.
"Of course, of course - to whom should I address it? Nancy? You look like a Nancy."
"Nancy's fine. Did you know John Lennon from the Beatles was under surveillance by the FBI?"
Albuquerque doesn't seem suspicious and says: "Of course! Lennon was a good friend of mine, in fact it was me who pointed the FBI out to him - got a fucking nose for that kind of shit," Albuquerque lied. Northfields looked at the napkin: "THINK, MAN, THINK! YOU ARE A DOCTOR, AREN'T YOU!" it said. Northfields didn't know what to make of it.
"Working on something new?" he asked.
"I don't like to talk about my work unless there's some pussy or other payoff on the table," Albuquerque replied, quickly covering the napkin.
"I understand, well, have a good day, Mr Albuquerque, and thanks for this," Northfields said, gesturing with his copy of The Sundial Salesman.
"Alright, Nancy, why don't you run along now..."
"So, what he say?" the Director asked. Northfields had a look at the dedication Albuquerque had scrawled but deciphering what’s written is difficult. Albuquerque's tragic handwriting, the terrible prosaic scrawl of an arthritic child is lopsided and crooked, deformed. Northfield's showed it to the Director.
"Holy Jesus! It's written in a code, we need cryptanalysis on this immediately...!" the Director cried.

Later:
Dear Nancy,
Yesterday I threw hot coffee over a colleague and you know what we all think of yesterday!
Yesterday we were all younger, different men!

 Ps. Nancy, you remind me of my mother.

Regards,
Chassis Albuquerque