Page:Manhattan Transfer (John Dos Passos, 1925).djvu/37

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Metropolis

25

Bud edged up next to a young man in a butcher's apron who had a baseball cap on backwards.

"Wassa matter?"

"Hell I dunno. . . . One o them automoebile riots I guess. Aint you read the paper? I dont blame em do you? What right have those golblamed automoebiles got racin round the city knockin down wimen an children?"

"Gosh do they do that?"

"Sure they do."

"Say . . . er . . . kin you tell me about where's a good place to find out about gettin a job?" The butcherboy threw back head and laughed.

"Kerist I thought you was goin to ask for a handout. . . . I guess you aint a Newyorker. . . . I'll tell you what to do. You keep right on down Broadway till you get to City Hall. . . ."

"Is that kinder the center of things?"

"Sure it is. . . . An then you go upstairs and ask the Mayor. . . . Tell me there are some seats on the board of aldermen . . ."

"Like hell they are," growled Bud and walked away fast.

"Roll ye babies . . . roll ye lobsided sons o bitches."

"That's it talk to em Slats."

"Come seven!" Slats shot the bones out of his hand, brought the thumb along his sweaty fingers with a snap. "Aw hell."

"You're some great crapshooter I'll say, Slats."

Dirty hands added each a nickel to the pile in the center of the circle of patched knees stuck forward. The five boys were sitting on their heels under a lamp on South Street.

"Come on girlies we're waitin for it. . . . Roll ye little bastards, goddam ye, roll."

"Cheeze it fellers! There's Big Leonard an his gang acomin down the block."

"I'd knock his block off for a . . ."