JUNE 23, 2015:
So there I was… about to win $80,000 US dollars sitting in perfectly counted stacks in a snakeskin briefcase in front of me. It belonged to supposed oil billionaire from Brunei named Mr. Razak Aziz. He sat there smacking his lips in greed, wriggling his stubby fingers together in furious anticipation, sitting like a big ol’ overripe tomato in the sun, just a foot and a half across the table from me with greased-over black hair.
“I’m feeling like my luck is about to turn around” he says, as a fleck of his spit hits my left hand that’s shaking methodically against the table. My right hand is holding a perfect 21, a 10-5-6, and considering this is my first ever Blackjack game on my first ever night in Cambodia–and that I’d been forced into the whole thing against my will—the stakes are pretty fucking high.
How did I get here?
I’m sweating. I can feel beads of sweat running down the bones of my chest, trickling all the way down my stomach under my dusty black T-shirt.
I feel ravenous, I feel mad. I feel like Kafka’s Hunger Artist. I feel like I’m anyone, anywhere but me. I wonder what my pals back home would think if they saw me now. One thing I am sure of though…
I shouldn’t have eaten that goddamn spaghetti…
work in progress
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