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Karen
4:10 A.M., Some Friday Morning in February
© 2017 James LaFond
MAY/2/17
Karen is a clerk in a Baltimore City supermarket. She leaves her house at 4:10 A.M. to be at work at 4:40. She drive across town, which can be harrowing at that hour with speeding drunks and door-crashing federal armored columns and the many deer now inhabiting Baltimore City, having followed the watercourses into the parks and greenways from Loch Raven Reservoir. When she gets to work a security guard and male employees will be at the store front. So the dicey part is getting to her car.
I stepped out on the porch and my heart sunk in my chest. Two young men—white—in their mid-twenties, were walking through my yard with bats in tehri hands. When they noticed me and stopped, I gasped and said, “Can I help you?”
The taller one looked at me and said, “Sorry ma’am. We’re just passing through.”
My heart was racing mile of minute, then it slowed as they walked on down the street. I stayed where I was until they were out of sight, and then thought twice about driving down to the Royal Farms Store for my coffee, since they were headed in that direction.
I got down there about fifteen minutes later and the store clerk told me that two white guys had just beaten up and run off this black guy who had been hanging around the store front and had groped the tall guy’s girlfriend while she was leaving with her groceries,
They were very polite to me.
I’m fine with what they did.
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