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i Kill Strangers, Stay Away From Me

Today I was waiting for a parking spot in the alley behind South Beach's Lincoln Road. This was not unusual. While I was waiting, a woman who appeared to be in her mid-fifties collapsed, lacerating her head on a concrete parking control post on the way down. This was not unusual either

I average two random stranger's deaths every year. Let me repeat that, it sounds improbable. I see an average of two people die every year. Fortunately, they are all strangers, or the police might have to call me in for serious questioning.

Okay, I got out of my car, her friend was trying to giver her CPR, but incorrectly. She was yelling her name and making out with her. I stopped her from doing so, called for Emergency Response, and took over. Long ago, my work kinda required I know the basics of life-saving. She was breathing, but spasms wracked her body. She spit up a lot of bubbly gurgle drool, so I was happy to not have to give mouth-to-mouth

By the time ER arrived, I had begun applying pressure to the gash on her head, but lost the pulse quckly. With no other ideas handy, I started CPR, which was taken over by the paramedics. I think she was dead when I was working on her, which wasn't long. They drove off in no rush.

I was late for my 10 A.M. appointment, but had a good excuse. He has a cecurit camera in the back of the restaurant and the whole thing was caught in the corner of the alley delivery camera. We rolled the tape back about si or seven times. The client wasn't upset , i was unphazed, and continued my day.

Does this sound callous? I have become innured. One very drunk biker slammed into a moving car, whose passenger was racing to South Shore hospital to deliver a baby. The dying man, whose back was visibly broken in half, tried speaking to me, but only managed to spit blood and die. Years later, strangely enough, I met a girl who was leaving the bathroom in the Shell and saw the same accident. We compared ntoes. She also remembers a huge black guy pick up the crotch rocket and toss it aside. She didn't remember me admonishing him not to move him.

Two other motorcycle accidents, one involving one of the Triumph brothers laying his Tiger down and getting his head rolled over by the tire of an 18-wheeler. The helmet didn't help. His head popped like a pimple. Blood smears thickly.

I have videotaped several deaths as a video newsman. One time a man in Little Havana barricaded himself into his hosue with his wife and two children and was threatening to kill them all. After the mandatory shots of the SWAT team surrounding the perimeter, i had the urge to roll tape on the front door. After swapping tapes out, perhaps fifty minutes into the same shot of the door, the barechested man burst out the door, brandishing a machete and yelling obscenities and threats in Spanish. When about two dozen police shot him at the same time, the sound was perhaps best described as one big boom. I guess they all had about the same reaction time.

And so on, the list grows. One day, I interviewed a local businessman, cut the piece, aired it, and a few days later was covering a new story; businessman found stuffed in the trunk of his car, which was parked at the aiport and starting to smell.

The dead I immortalized on tape in Afghanistan I couldn't count.

They found a bloated corpse in the canal, about fifty feet from my property line five years ago.

I was there but not rolling tape at the Atlanta olympics when the bomb went off. I was off, just millin garound looking for pussy.

One time in Amsterdam, I found a corpse. Upon further inspectiion, hoever, it turned out to be a drunk. Thank god, it would've ruined my high.

i Kill Strangers, Stay Away From Me

...but it's not my fucking fault.

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