The rooming house pals
My only friend is an old black man named Leroy. He’s about 55 or 60. We meet when I moved into the room next his on Grace Ave. He was yelling at the landlord who sheepishly introduced Leroy as Roy to Leroy’s dismay whish Leroy made known.
“oh know Mister Gelding you don’t and go say that about me. It’s Leroy.” He said with a French Le not the English dirty Lee.
“I am sorry Lee-roy” Said the landlord. Leroy shook his head and opened his door.
Later that day after I had moved in my things I was sitting on the shared deck and smoking a cigarette. Leroy came out and smiled. “boy I tellya that Landlord ain’t got too much respect for an old man.”
“you aren’t that old.”
“I ain’t no women. That’s what I ain’t.”
“I know that.” I told him and then dragged off my smoke.
Leroy eased himself in to a chair that was on the adjacent side of the deck and looked over the rail into the street. “Women round her don’t give you nothing for nothing.”
“why Am I telling you. You know that.”
“I thought the landlord was a drunk.”
Leroy laughs and shouts “hey baby!” Over the railing to a young blond walking down below who wave back up and says.
“They all know me around here. That landlord ain’t no drunk, e’s just need a lay. When you don’t get the sexs..” He stops and looks at me as if he wants me to finish the sentence for him. When I don’t he laughs. “you special ain’t you boy.”
“yeah I’m touched.”
“not by me your not.” Animated. Exaggerated shaking his graying head.
I thought for a second I should explain that I did not mean it that way but then decided that he probably knew and that I did not care really much anyway. The rest of the evening we sat on the porch and he yelled at every attractive young women that walk by.