There were no Turks in sight and no beast showed its hairy face. Not in this fucking weather. It was minus twenty. Easy.
I was on the corner with Mica Spirelli (Mica wrapped in woolly layers). She kept whispering vapory Lui's in my ear – Lui, lets go, Lui – until her teeth chattered and she fell silent again.
Minus twenty. The pavement hard as steel. The sky solid blue. Even the pigeons slowed their pecking. For a second I though of those yellow-eyed hares that’d eyed me underground, how they must be freezing their little rabbit butts now; and that demonic pulse further down – that crazy, maniacal pulse – I figured it too must slow its beat in this glacial cold (not so scary now, are we?!)
Mica whispered more vapor – Lui-Lui – and then off we went, through the salt-slush, through icy air, through the glare of snow downtown Rotterdam. We didn’t stop until we hit the river, and there we stood as still as stalagmites. It was frozen solid – the river – a beam of ice miles in length.
In the distance a man on skates slid towards us. A crazy bastard in a linen suit. It was JK. Of course it was JK. His jacket fluttered. His cigarette smoked and his body fumed with vapor.
Your lips are blue, JK! Put on a jacket jesus christ!
I’m wearing one, he said as he turned a ¼ pirouette.
That’s linen. That’s a summer jacket.
You mean this old thing, and he thumbed the lapels as if complimented.
Then I noticed his crotch-zipper wide open and my balls made a painful fist as I imagined his manhood chilled by these glacial winds. I was gonna say something , but he turned to Mica and cut me off:
You look beautiful in red wool Ms. Spirelli. Your eyes especially.
And you in linen JK.
He puffed smoke, finished his pirouette and skated off, unaware - this crazy bastard - that it was minus twenty and that as he puffed and sweated, most of Rotterdam stood completely still.