So I had a little drama this morning in New Orleans. I went to a laundromat on the edge of the French Quarter to wash some clothes. Place called the Clothes Spin.
They got a jukebox in there, I was surprised to see. So I decided to pass the time by punching up a few tunes. At four songs for a dollar, I picked two by the Isleys (“Summer Breeze” and “Harvest for the World”) and two by James Brown (“Hot Pants” and “Papa Don’t Take No Mess”).
It was sounding good to me. And there was only a handful of other customers in the place.
So I started playing some Ms. Pac-Man. And during the second song, the manager came over and turned the jukebox down. Like, way down... so that I could hardly hear it over the rumble of the machines.
Later, when my wash was finishing, I decided to approach the manager. I told him I didn’t want to sound like an asshole, but why’d he turn the volume down?
He said somebody complained it was too loud, “and I have to keep everybody happy.”
“If I knew you didn’t want me to play it,” I said, “I wouldn’t have put my money in it.”
Dude said, “I don’t care if you play it. Just don’t play it too loud.”
Number one, I didn’t set the volume in the first place. But, hell, I didn’t feel like arguing.
Except, after loading my clothes in the dryer, I went up to him again and said, “Can I have the dollar back that I put in it?” Guy says “No,” all brusque and shit. So much for keeping everybody happy.
Here’s the funny thing about it: That one dollar he wouldn’t give back... just cost the motherfucker at least fifty. Because I’m gonna be in New Orleans for another six weeks. And I won’t be going back to the Clothes Spin.
Except maybe to duck in, slip $5 in the jukebox, and punch up “The Candy Man” for 18 plays in a row... then walk out.
Fuck that peckawood.