“Why are you here?” demanded the Sikh gentleman. “Did you follow me? I will sue you for harassment, buddy! I promise!”
Giving no quarter, Vinny started walking towards him. “You try it, pal! My union’s lawyers will eat you alive!”
I looked at Rhonda and mouthed the words What the fuck? as we tried to understand the situation unfolding before us.
Raymond quickly placed an arm against Vinny’s chest in order to prevent any escalation. “Whoa, whoa, hold on a second, Vinny. Gentlemen, surely we can come to some sort of understanding.” Calmly, Raymond redirected his attention to the newcomer. “Excuse me, sir, who are you?”
In response to being addressed in such a civil manner, the Sikh gentleman ameliorated his stance and regained some of his composure, though the anger never left his eyes. “My name is Babbu Singh, and I apologize for my outburst…but this maniac deserves no respect. He should be stripped of his rank and thrown out of the police force!”
“This,” shouted Vinny in response, “is the lunatic that I was talking about at the bar! Some cute, drunk chick squeezed his butt and gave him a little wedgie…and he yelled at her until she broke down and started crying. What kind of an asshole does something like that? I almost whipped out my mace!”
“She touched my Kachera!” screamed Babbu, with his eyes glazing over with a slight madness. “They are holy undergarments that should not be ridiculed or disrespected! And I still demand that she be tried and punished for hate crimes!”
I surreptitiously questioned Rhonda. “You still think that he’s a nice guy?”
“Hate crimes? What the hell is wrong with you?!?” shrieked Vinny. “She was flirting with you, dummy! She was probably trying to fondle your junk…you were gonna get laid, towelhead! Who gives a shit about getting a skid mark in your magic underpants? So fuckin’ stupid…That’s it! I’m gonna tase him just for being a goddamn retard!”
“Jesus,” confided Rhonda, “Can you believe that this guy carries a gun?”
“She was oppressing me…just like you! You heard him! He’s going to murder me!” proclaimed Babbu, swiveling his head in order to address all of us. “I’m going to bring you up on charges, buddy! And I’m going to record all of this!”
As Babbu opened his suit jacket and retrieved his phone from an inside pocket, I saw the shimmer of something metallic, dangling in the clutches of a holster. I couldn’t exactly make it out from my angle, but Mike appeared to have the best view. Upon identifying the mysterious article, the girthy gangster was suddenly infected with the spreading contagion of insanity. He placed a protective arm in front of his girlfriend Lisa, and he pushed the both of them back as he pointed towards Babbu’s mid-section. “Woah! Check it!” bellowed Mike. “Bin Laden’s got a knife! He’s gonna start slicing us all any minute!”
When this heated argument had begun, the pleasant candor from the start had quickly become evanescence, as the paroxysmal debate compelled the diameter of our enclosed circle to slowly widen. In particular, the various homeowners had begun to put distance between themselves and the two combatants. Now, with Mike’s proclamation, our tense gathering began to teeter on the edge of panic.
Noticing that the entire room was now focused on his every move, Babbu turned to face his accuser. “What are…are you talking about my Kirpan?” With a flourish, he pulled back his jacket in order to display an ornate sheath and blade in a tight holster. “You mean this? Do you even know what this is? And did you just call me Bin Laden? Just for that, I’m going to bring you up on hate crimes as well!”
“Put the knife on the ground,” commanded Vinny, in a tone without any jest. “Put it down, now.” Vinny slowly moved his hands down his sides, creeping smoothly towards his sidearm.
Babbu noticed that the situation was becoming serious, and the tone of his voice softened a bit…but only a bit. “Listen, you ignorant rednecks, my Kuchera isn’t even sharp. It’s a holy relic that I must keep on my person. And if you don’t back down right now, I will call my lawyer and have the both of you in deep shit!”
I grabbed Rhonda’s hand and gave it a firm squeeze. “Rhonda…I’m thinking that we might want to get out of here…”
From my peripheral vision, I noticed some movement from a couple to my left. A petite woman had been flanked by her giant husband since the onset of our gathering, and at this moment, the giant firmly moved his wife to the side as he stepped forward. His pallor shockingly shifted from a normal shade of pale to a seething cauldron of red, as the boiling in his mind seemed to sublimate the sweat from his bald head. He used the both of his hands in order to point at the two parties of this ridiculous debate.
“That’s it! I’m gonna kill everyone here!”
Peter Bolton is the author of Blowing the Bridge: A Software Story and has also been known to be a grumpy bastard on occasion.