1. The 716 Grinch​​​

1. The 716 Grinch SITE VIEW
2. The Golden Ticket

2. The Golden Ticket SITE VIEW
3. Staring Into The Abyss

3. Staring Into The Abyss SITE VIEW
4. Therapy Sessions

4. Therapy Sessions SITE VIEW
5. Left For Dead

5. Left For Dead SITE VIEW
6. Job Interview

6. Job Interview SITE VIEW
7. Bro I Gotta Plan, Just Chill. I Gotta Plan. Just Be Patient

7. Bro I Gotta Plan, Just Chill. I Gotta Plan. Just Be Patient SITE VIEW
8. Liberal Enclave

8. Liberal Enclave SITE VIEW
9. Ticking Clocks​​​​​​​

9. Ticking Clocks SITE VIEW

The Long Flight Back Home (Again!) (Warning You About We_rner)

So this is the second time that I’m in this familiar position. Taking a flight back home to Buffalo after going off to gain, only to come back empty handed. The first time was when I moved to to NYC (Brooklyn to be exact) to purse a career in art. Well it didn’t work out and I have to take a long humiliating flight back home with my tail between my legs.I told myself that it wouldn’t happen again, but it did. This time I thought I had it all figured out. After enduring a rough 2 years since NYC I was able to pick myself up off of the ground  and get my Class-A CDL license. Only to my dismay, I’m back where I started.


This time I thought I had it in the bag. I have my license and was recruited by a major trucking company that is supposedly in dire need for drivers. I graduated from tractor trailer school with a 82.3 avg out of 100, and even won a perfect attendance award. I went to an accredited school and it was a 4 and a half month program. I thought for sure that I had this in the bag. I didn’t come to Allentown Pa with a idealistic vision of something that was barely obtainable like I did in NYC. My trip here was legit, it made sense this time. I was ready to come . . . get trained and work. I was ready to make the money that I needed to move down south and finally get my LONG awaited tattoo apprenticeship.


I got the bus ticket to come down to Allentown Pa via email. I had to catch 5 buses to get there because the company that I went to got the cheapest tickets they could find. That was red flag #1. The Greyhound wasn’t that bad but the ticket they got made it a long and uncomfortable ride. The Greyhound ride was interesting because I got to see so many upstate NY cities like Rochester NY, Geneva NY,  Binghamton NY, Ithaca NY, Scranton PA. They all look like Buffalo Jr’s but had their own style if that makes sense.


Then I finally got to the hotel that I had to stay in. I got a single room of course because I’m introverted and value my privacy. Plus who wants to live with some random stranger? The total came to $38 a night and I had to pay that out of my own pocket. The company had a corporate account so that I could get a discounted rate. It still adds up especially since I was getting training pay.


I went to training the next day and it was the usually corporate bullshit. The we are a “family” talk. They made us get a physical. After being looked at like a piece of meat by a doctor with god knows what type of thoughts in his head, I had to complete a bunch of e-learning courses that were a minimum of 30 mins each mostly. The videos can’t be skipped and some test require you to get a 100% score to pass. You have to take over any that you don’t pass the first time.


from the beginning. Some people failed the infamous Sexual Harassment video multiple times. That video was a beast. I think it was around 45 mins long and you have to take a 20 something question test and get a 100 score or you’ll have to take it multiple times.


I digress. So after the orientation presentation and your “free” lunch from some mediocre middle of nowhere Whitehall Pa fast food joint, you have to wait for a trainer. The problem is, We_rner strings you along. It’s obvious they don’t have enough trainers to fulfill the enormous amount of students that come in. They factor in that many will get frustrated and leave so they recruit heavily.


After I finished my e-training courses… I waited patiently for my trainer and of course they gave me the run around and told me to work on a new set of e-training to buy some time for themselves. It was busy work. We_rner is great at buying time by dangling the illusionary carrot attached to a string. They’ll give you more and more e-learning and make you sit in a small hotel room w/ you and your roommate going crazy probably ready to kill each other.


I only received $300 after taxes. I came on a Thursday so I’m not sure if that’s why it seemed so low. I had to pay $38 a night for my solo room so the pay wasn’t enough to cover my expenses. I had to buy my own food. This Ramada was out in the middle of no where so your food options will be limited. They have a indoor restaurant called “shooters”,Burger King, KFC and Friendly’s. I’ll admit that the fast food and service was the best that I’ve ever experienced.


I ended up paying WAY more than I intended to. My plane ticket was close to $400 because I had to make a last min flight.


This experience was another one of my life lessons. I know what I have to do. I mean, I always knew for a long time but I really know now. I gotta regain my patience and become sharper than I was before. I should’ve avoided this company since I’m so inexperienced at driving but I’m super ambitious and like to jump in head first. This time I’ll go slow and start off local and build myself back up.

Time Off (short story)

“Who Am I” the man said quietly to him himself as hes kenneling on the ice cold blood stained snowy ground, surrounded by Harlem’s beautiful brownstones. He remembers a time when the neighborhood was different. A time when he couldn’t even leave his block alone without the company of family or friends out of fear of being jumped by local “niggas” around the way. Those times were dangerous but to him, it was a time that had soul, excitement and his aspirations were new and yet to be explored. It was a time where he still had something to live for, something to believe in.

The man slowly removed his right hand from his face, leaving his left on. He split his middle and ring finger to peak out as if he was peaking out of a curtain. He looked up to the sky. The stars and moon was such a beautiful display of the magnificence of the universe. The combination of the street lights, mixed with the stars and moons gleam down on him like the lord was personally calling him home.

But hes not, because what hes done is the opposite of a good deed. Hes covered in blood that isn’t his own. But the question is how can such a usually calm and polite man end up in such a position?

He told the woman that he murdered not to “fuck with him” . But unfortunately the woman didn’t take his advice. The woman that’s laying bloody in front of him is actually entrepreneur Barbara May, his boss.

Earlier he complained about being stressed out because of home issues that he was facing. His child had just flunked out of school, another was pregnant at the age of 13 and he caught his girl cheating on him with her boss. They were 8 days away from being evicted from their 1 bedroom apartment.  He left his girlfriend and is fighting for sole custody of their youngest child. It doesn’t help that he suffers from kidney disease and the treatments are making him worst.

He asked Barbara for some time off to “sort some things out” and if he could have Christmas off next week to spend time with his kids. She told him “no” and that she needed him to cover his shift or he was fired. In a fit of rage he grabbed a sharp razor off the table and stabbed Barbara in her throat. While repeatedly calling her a “bitch”.

After the deed was finished he began to cry realizing what he had just done. He had a clean criminal history and this was his first offense. Barbara was on floor with blood pouring from her neck and he knew he had to finish the job. He grabbed a knife and stabbed in the pit of the stomach until she stopped moving.

He dragged the body outside of the restaurant and couldn’t keep his balance slipping on the snow covered ground.

In the distance he heard sirens and see blue and whites racing to the scene. Neighbors must’ve heard the commotion and called the police. The man took the bloody knife out of his coat pocket and slit his throat to avoid life in prison. That was the end of this young mans life.

As for his girl and children. She ended up marrying her boss and getting sole custody. Barbara restaurant closed down and eventually was renovated and turned into a vegan seafood restaurant that cater to younger “hip” crowds.

The End

By John C. Spain 12.6.18