Phoenix Chapter Eleven: Turbodog Tuesday

Phoenix Chapter Eleven: Turbodog Tuesday

A Chapter by SweetNutmeg
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Turbodog Tuesday

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Chapter Eleven: Turbodog Tuesday



  

A week later, on a Friday evening, Rogan was struggling home with his groceries. It was a two block walk from the bus stop. He honestly thought about one of those wire fold up carts he saw old ladies use. It had to be better than this. The bags were bulky and banged against his legs as he walked, the handles of the plastic bags cutting into his palms. It was ridiculous he worked on cars all day and didn't have one of his own. 


The next day, he voiced this idea to Ryan over lunch.


“If you hear of anything good for sale, let me know.” 


“Tim Hagen is selling his old Toyota pickup. I think it is a 2003 Tacoma.”


“Who's Tim Hagen?”


“Guy who used to work here. Good guy, honest as the day is long. He'll give you a reasonable price, if you're serious.” 


Rogan thought this over. A truck would be good for his equipment. He liked riding with Buzz, but it would be good to be independent. 


“I'm serious.”


Ryan said, “Tell you what, I'll give him your number and he can call you if it's still for sale.” 


That night Tim called him and they made an appointment for Rogan to look over the vehicle the next day, Sunday, after band practice.


Sunday, Rogan followed the directions on his phone to Tim's house. He was a little early, so he looked around for the truck. It was parked at the curb, and it was gray. He was surprised no one mentioned the truck had a camper top. Nice, it would keep his gear dry in the rain. Rogan began his minute inspection of the exterior. 


While he was groping under the side panel, checking for rust or crumpling, Tim came out and introduced himself.


“I see you found it.”


“Yep. It's a 2003?” 


Tim confirmed that and explained he bought the truck new and mainly used it for fishing trips.


“How many miles?” Rogan asked. 


“158 K. Garage kept. I've taken good care of her and she's in good shape,” Tim assured Rogan. “I'll let you check her out. If you want a test drive, I'll ride along with you.” 


Tim unlocked the cab doors and showed Rogan how to open the rear with the camper top. 


Rogan completed his inspection of the exterior and asked Tim to pop the hood. He looked for the obvious things, worn belts, low fluids, corrosion. Then he checked out the interior. Tim's claim of light use and good care were evidently true.


“I'd like to test her out, maybe take her on the highway?”


“Sure. I hate to ask, but could I see your driver's license?”


Rogan displayed it and they got rolling. Rogan liked the handling on the side streets and then on the highway. As he drove, he decided that if he can talk Tim into a good price, he would buy it.


When they returned to Tim's house, they began haggling. Rogan finally agreed to $9,000 plus tax and fees. It was a damn good deal.


“That's a reasonable price, but I'll have to think this over. Can I get back to you tomorrow afternoon?” The deciding factor will be whether his credit union would give him a small loan. 


Tim agreed to this and they shook hands. 




Monday morning Rogan asked Ryan if he can take off at noon to take care of business. It was not a problem, so he headed over to the credit union immediately after clocking out. When he was approved for a loan, he called Tim.


“I'll take it. Can we transfer the title today?” 


They worked out the details of payment and met at the plate office. When all was done, Rogan was the proud owner of a 2003 Toyota Tacoma. Driving it home felt like freedom.


Next Thursday, Rogan arrived at the warehouse before the others. Buzz pulled in as Rogan was getting out of his Tacoma. Buzz came over to admire Rogan's new possession. 


“Very nice, you can fit plenty of gear in there. Congratulations.” 


J.D. and Roy arrived soon after and checked out the Tacoma too. The general consensus was, Rogan did well on his first vehicle. 


Once inside, J.D. said, “OK. Let's try out this new one Buzz and I have been working on. Roy, follow me.” 


They plunged into the intricacies of building a budding song. 


Two hours later, Buzz called a halt. 


“You young guys can go on all night, but I can't. Let's get a beer at Molly's.” 


Driving was still a novelty and Rogan was thrilled to have his guitar safely stowed in his very own vehicle. He could leave when he wanted, he could stop off somewhere on the way home, he was free of the bus line, he no longer depended on others.


 


*** 




A month later, in the middle of March, J.D. had another announcement at Sunday practice. 


“Benny said he'd keep us in mind and he has. He wants to know if we can do a gig Tuesday, March 14th.”


“But that's day after tomorrow!” Roy said.


“I know, it's sudden. But it gets our foot in the door. That's Turbodog Tuesday, so there will be a decent crowd. It gets our name out there.” 


“What the hell is Turbodog Tuesday?” Buzz asked. 


Rogan and J.D. began speaking at once, but J.D. deferred to Rogan. “You explain.”


“Benny is from Louisiana and has connections with a New Orleans brewery, Abita. They make a dark beer called Turbodog, and it's two for one on Tuesdays. Pulls in a crowd on a normally dead night.” Rogan has drunk his share of Turbodog.


“What do you guys think?” J.D. asked. “I think we are ready.” 


Roy said, “I guess you're right. We've been working on this setlist long enough.” 


“I'm in,” said Rogan.


“Buzz?” J.D. asked. 


Buzz nodded and they were unanimous. 


“We need to be there by 8:30. We'll get started at 9.” J.D. looked at everyone. “Let's get this mother on the road.” 


They spent the next two hours working their way through the setlist they prepared so many weeks ago. It would only produce two 30 minute sets, but that's plenty.


  

***




Tuesday after work, Rogan had time to take a quick nap before meeting Buzz at the warehouse to collect his amp. It took him very little time to load his amp into the Tacoma. Buzz was still going back and forth to his own truck with pieces of his drum set.


“Buzz, you know I love you man, so I'm going to help you hump your drum kit,” Rogan said as he picked up one of the many cases Buzz had packed. It was one way to show his gratitude for all the rides Buzz had given him over the many months. 


Together it took them almost 10 minutes to load Buzz's truck with his kit. Despite the cold day, Rogan took off his jacket and was running with sweat by the time they got it all loaded. Then they had to unload at Benny's. Rogan carried in his own equipment first, then pitched in again. Roy and J.D. showed up as Rogan was carrying in the last case of Buzz's kit. The three guitarists got busy, each setting up their own equipment. Eventually everything was in order, good to go. Rogan was starting to feel nervous. He had never performed outside a band practice.


J.D. beckoned Rogan to follow him, Roy and Buzz, through a door that led to an alley. Benny's wasn't big enough for a room backstage, but the alley had been equipped with a few cast off chairs and an ashtray on a tiny peeling table. Buzz was sipping a beer. When Roy produced a joint, Rogan understood the pre-show gathering. J.D. and Roy didn't bother offering to Buzz, but when it came around to him, J.D. tried to hand it to Rogan. He shook his head. He never liked doing drugs much.   


Then they were ready to go. There were maybe 8 or 10 people drinking at the bar, and a group of about 6 around the single table Benny's had. Rogan had already taken off his jacket and was sporting his Anthrax tour shirt. He had also loosed his hair from its normal hair tie, so as to deploy it to maximum head banging effect. They all looked at each other, J.D. nodded, Buzz tapped a cymbal four times and they plunged in.


Rogan got so caught up in the music, he didn't notice the bar was half full until they started on the third song. Not a bad turn out, it being an ordinary Tuesday night.  


After the first set, Rogan went to the bar to get a beer. There were about 30 people in Benny's and it wasn't hard to reach the bar. Hmm, free beer was a perk of being in the band, it seemed, because the bartender waved away the money Rogan offered. He left a nice tip instead. 


He turned to go back to the alley behind the stage, and bumped into a tall blonde. Her hair was almost white and her plump body was squeezed into a very small amount of denim and leather. The makeup she was wearing made her look a bit sinister, eyes circled in shades of smoky gray and black. But Rogan knew who she was. It was Brenda. She slept exclusively with musicians, but wasn't too picky about which one. There was a rumor she did an entire band in one night. Probably not true, but within the realm of possibility. Well it was her life, she can enjoy herself however she wanted, no comment from Rogan as it was none of his business. He was not particularly chaste himself.      


But he had no desire to sleep with Brenda, or even really talk to her. She was vapid and he found her obsession with musicians creepy. Plus she was not his type. He quickly sidestepped her and dashed for the men's room. Not that the gent's was necessarily a safe haven, according to stories he'd heard, but it was the closest refuge. He splashed some water on his face and combed his hair, then checked to see if the coast was clear.


Rogan made it to the alley safely, where he found the guys drinking beer and Roy and J.D. passing a joint. Buzz gave him a heavy slap on the back and rumbled with laughter. “You escaped Brenda pretty well, Rogan. Never seen someone deal with a woman so expeditiously.”  


There was no encore, and the audience seemed content with that, dispersing as J.D. wrapped it up, saying good night to their audience.  


After packing everything up and stowing their equipment in their vehicles (the drum set again takes forever), Rogan was handed his share of their cut from Benny. $25. It was a bit comical, actually, and he caught Buzz's amused look as he stuffed the cash in his wallet. Well, he wasn't planning on quitting his day job any time soon.



© 2021 SweetNutmeg


Author's Note

SweetNutmeg
Thank you for reading. Any and all comments are welcome and much appreciated.

My Review

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Featured Review

New car! First gig in forever! It's refreshing to see that Rogan's life isn't all about Allison. Like, he's head over heels for Allison and all that, but he still has a life. Brownie points from yours truly!

Answer: The first paragraph feels like it belongs to the last chapter, but the line you used to end chapter 10 was also good. I think it feels a little strange simply because you usually have several events, over the course of several days or even weeks, in one chapter. I think this is the first time you cut off a part of an event at the end of a chapter and continue it in the next.
To sum up, the first paragraph doesn't really belong here because it's different from your usual writing style, but having it here doesn't hurt.

Technical stuff:

1 + 2. “Benny said he'd keep us in mind and he has. He wants to know if we can do a gig Tuesday, March 14th.”
“But that's day after tomorrow!” Roy says.

I think you meant "...on Tuesday, March 14th." and "But that's the day after tomorrow!"

3. When Roy produces a joint, Rogan understands the pre-show gathering. J.D. and Roy don't bother offering to Buzz, but when it comes around to him, J.D. makes to hand it on to Rogan.

I know they're smoking weed here, but I don't quite understand the last part: "...J.D. makes to hand it on to Rogan." I didn't know the idiom "to make to," so I looked it up on Cambridge Dictionary. It says "if you make to do something, you are just going to do it when something interrupts you," but I still don't get it.

4. Rogan gets so caught up in the music, he doesn't notice the bar is half full until they start In on the third song.

In the last part, the "in" in "...start In on the third song" is capitalized.

5+6. He quickly side steps her and dashes for the men's room. Not that the gent's is necessarily a safe haven...

Technical: I think you meant "He quickly sidesteps her..."

Stylistic: I think "that" or "it" can easily replace "the gent's" because we already know you're talking about the men's restroom.

7. Well, he wasn't planning on quitting his day job any time soon.

Stylistic: the past tense in this sentence stands out from your normal present-tense narration.

As always, looking forward to your next chapter!

Posted 1 Year Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

SweetNutmeg

1 Year Ago

For several of your comments, I think we have run up against idiom and colloquial usage.
read more
Wathanya.5KY3

1 Year Ago

Interesting. I'll keep that in mind next time I run into something like that.

I see. .. read more



Reviews

I would omit "home" in this sentence, since it was used in the previous-"It's a two block walk home from the bus stop."
Comma after loan--"When he is approved for a loan he calls Tim."
I can't recall, but has the band auditioned for the gig? That would be the normal way things are done--“Benny said he'd keep us in mind and he has. He wants to know if we can do a gig Tuesday, March 14th.”
This sounds wrong--"J.D. makes to hand it on to Rogan"
This Brenda character reminds me of Connie Hamzy. Notorious for screwing rock stars, she was.
This is a good chapter. Easy to read and understand. The mileage on the pickup isn't mentioned, but probably should be. If it's 16 years old, it would likely have been driven 10,000 miles per year, but perhaps less if its use was limited to fishing trips.

Posted 1 Year Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

SweetNutmeg

1 Year Ago

Thank you for your careful reading and detailed review. Haha, I had a whole conversation with someon.. read more
New car! First gig in forever! It's refreshing to see that Rogan's life isn't all about Allison. Like, he's head over heels for Allison and all that, but he still has a life. Brownie points from yours truly!

Answer: The first paragraph feels like it belongs to the last chapter, but the line you used to end chapter 10 was also good. I think it feels a little strange simply because you usually have several events, over the course of several days or even weeks, in one chapter. I think this is the first time you cut off a part of an event at the end of a chapter and continue it in the next.
To sum up, the first paragraph doesn't really belong here because it's different from your usual writing style, but having it here doesn't hurt.

Technical stuff:

1 + 2. “Benny said he'd keep us in mind and he has. He wants to know if we can do a gig Tuesday, March 14th.”
“But that's day after tomorrow!” Roy says.

I think you meant "...on Tuesday, March 14th." and "But that's the day after tomorrow!"

3. When Roy produces a joint, Rogan understands the pre-show gathering. J.D. and Roy don't bother offering to Buzz, but when it comes around to him, J.D. makes to hand it on to Rogan.

I know they're smoking weed here, but I don't quite understand the last part: "...J.D. makes to hand it on to Rogan." I didn't know the idiom "to make to," so I looked it up on Cambridge Dictionary. It says "if you make to do something, you are just going to do it when something interrupts you," but I still don't get it.

4. Rogan gets so caught up in the music, he doesn't notice the bar is half full until they start In on the third song.

In the last part, the "in" in "...start In on the third song" is capitalized.

5+6. He quickly side steps her and dashes for the men's room. Not that the gent's is necessarily a safe haven...

Technical: I think you meant "He quickly sidesteps her..."

Stylistic: I think "that" or "it" can easily replace "the gent's" because we already know you're talking about the men's restroom.

7. Well, he wasn't planning on quitting his day job any time soon.

Stylistic: the past tense in this sentence stands out from your normal present-tense narration.

As always, looking forward to your next chapter!

Posted 1 Year Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

SweetNutmeg

1 Year Ago

For several of your comments, I think we have run up against idiom and colloquial usage.
read more
Wathanya.5KY3

1 Year Ago

Interesting. I'll keep that in mind next time I run into something like that.

I see. .. read more

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Phoenix Phoenix

A Book by SweetNutmeg