e said he was from the future but can’t remember the past. Hell, he can’t remember what he had for breakfast.., all the weed he smokes.., sometimes he doesn’t even remember my name..,


“It’s Jeffrey.”

“That’s what I said.”

“No.., You said Jeffery; it’s fucking Jeff-Rey. How hard is that to remember?”


“Show some respect.”

“Seriously? And we ain’t even had breakfast yet..,”

“Dude, it’s after two.”

Trevor is completely into the now; because now is all he can remember.

“But I thought you were from the future?”

"I live in the Now while others live in the past; therefore I'm from the future."

That certainly isn’t worth following.

Trevor is the kind of guy you want around if you have stories you like to tell but
everyone else you know has already heard them.., too many times. I’ve told Trevor the same Midget in the Mercedes story about hundred times.., he don’t get tired of hearing it, cause he never remembers hearing it..,

I tell him, once again, about how – and this is from back in the day – about how a recurring villain from the old Wild Wild West T.V. series pulls up in this big-ass Mercedes Benz, a ‘57 I think; to give my buddy and I a ride as we thumbed our escape from school while blazing - tripping beyond expectation - on some very visual 4-way Window-Pane that had been circulating metal shop.

“I mean.., you understand what I’m saying? It was this big fucking black Benz; with the Midget from Wild Wild West driving.., and we’re hitchhiking; all fucked-up on acid, and..,”

But Trevor tells me; in the future, little people don’t like to be called midgets.


“In the future, little people don’t like to be called midgets.”

“No doubt.” I says; “I would imagine, even in the present, no one likes to be called a midget.., you know, labels..,”

Trevor says, “They prefer, Little People.”

Man, this was early seventies, fucking decades ago, and I was hallucinating. I got no problem with midgets or little people, or whatever. Most people don’t even believe the midget to be real.., want to put it all on the L.S.D.., someone had to be driving, I tell them.

“Maybe you should call the story, The Little Person in the Mercedes. You don’t want to come off as.., I don’t know.., wait.., what was I talking about?”

“I’m not prejudiced against midgets, man!”

And doubled-down with..,

“Hell, a good friend of mine was a midget.”

I didn’t know he was a midget till it didn’t matter. This was back in third grade.., his
name was Bil.., almost said Billy.., that’s just what they started calling him.., like a
nickname. But his name was Arnold.

Being a late bloomer to his condition; nobody could tell he was a midget because, in third grade, we were all little people. As I recall he was starting center on our basketball team at the neighborhood YMCA.., that year.., the following year he played guard from the bench; then, in his last year, he was the mascot.

We remained friendly even as the summer-break growth disparity drew dramatic. I sort of ignored it, was allowed to deny it; and he sort of tried to ignore it.., but was denied by it. We never talked about it.

Then, finally, one year, without warning, he didn’t show back up to school and the
family phone number had been changed and no longer listed.., and when I rode by on my bike I found their home empty, and house up for sale. I didn’t know what happened. Heard rumors.., didn’t believe the shit about the circus..,

Rumors turned to whispers then silence; which was broken a few years later by the six o’clock news reporting that Arnold Andrew Donald stabbed three teens in Griffith Park; arrested for an alleged ambush along a horse trail; killing one, sending another into a forced coma; and last but certainly not least; the hero of the story; sixteen year old Davey Johnson; who required fifteen stitches across his left thigh; had dis-armed and held the suspect till help arrived.., reported an eye-witness late to the scene.

Neighbors interviewed expressed shock and wondered why.., some blamed it on the influence of anti-war hippies.., and Huey Newton. Drawn-out news coverage produced specialty doctors to explain proportional differences between midgets and dwarfs and blamed it on insufficient growth-hormone research; also commenting on the psychological impact that no one cared enough to agree on; gripped instead by graphic crime-scene photos that only news-radio refused to show.

PSA’s on PBS promised that all midgets weren’t mad; blaming such action on the
influence of commercial programming; and morality and ethics experts blamed it on the increasing use, and indulgence by the baby-boomer generation, in marijuana.., and rock-n-roll band The Monkees.

One popular network anchor coined the term The Midget Manson; stuck by design.., made into a four-part mini-series and at least five, not so true, true-crime novel accounts.

Arnold died in his cell; suicide is what they say, is what they always say; so he was no longer available for comment; and I didn’t believe what Johnson was saying; that wasn’t the Arnold I knew.., other kids didn’t believe it as well; still believing the story about the circus.., but I don’t know.., I mean we were just kids.., that’s the way shit is.., I blame the parents.


© 2018 by Stephen Ian McNaught