Stories of Akron

You Can't Handle the Truth

I was drinking with a few friends at the 3rd world racquet club. We were talking about financial planning for fuck’s sake.

So, I told them about one of our neighbors when I was a kid in Akron, Ohio. This neighbor never worked. He inherited what sounded like a fortune in the 1940’s. But it didn’t last.

By the 1980’s, he was reduced to living in the basement and cutting the trees in his yard to burn for heat. No electricity and probably no running water. There were holes in the roof and windows missing on the first and second floor. When he died, they just tore the house down and let the trees take over the yard — karma mother fuckers, karma. The trees will win in the end.

“That’s so depressing,” my drinking friends said. “We don’t even know what to say.”


These pussies flaccid penises can’t handle the truth. I couldn’t bring myself to tell them about my other neighbors like:

“Homer” the weird guy, who walked around town with a gun over his shoulder. He hunted rabbits for food, and you would often see him walk home with several “bloody pelts” strung over his back.

The dope-dealing teenager, who regularly took out his dad’s gun and threatened to shoot other kids in the neighborhood. He grew up to be a respected businessman.

Or the engineer who had 6 kids and beat at least 1 of them to the point when she had long-term mental and physical health issues.

Or the fucking shyster lawyer who ran through our yard every time there was a car crash on the corner. He sued my parents when one of our dogs bit him as he sprinted toward an accident, waving his arms like a mad man and screaming at us kids to “get the fuck out of my way.”

The street next to ours was called “Memorial Parkway” because in the 60’s there had been a huge mudslide and some kids and a cop were swept down the hill to their deaths.

Halfway down Memorial Parkway was a set of train tracks. When I was about 12, some maniac who lived close by killed a young woman, put her body in a VW bug, set the car on fire and rolled it in front of an oncoming train. (Or he may have rolled it on the tracks and then set it on fire — same result).

A group of us kids spent a week that summer being a mini-CSI-team looking for burned car and body parts that were pressed into the tracks from the tonnage of the train.

I swear we found a few of each.

Surprise, surprise, the murderer was not my worst neighbor.

The Worst Neighbor

Our worst neighbor was Jim Bell (click his name to read his “obituary”). He made a small fortune running a manufacturing business. He used that money for two things:

One, was to buy the big house on more than an acre of land to the north of ours. He threw massive outdoor parties with roasted pigs, kegs of beer and loud laughter until late into the night.

Two, was to run a pedophile ring. Not fucking kidding — how these fucking pedophiles form a “ring”, I’ll never know, but he had 10-20 of them colluding like Trump with Russians. It went on for more than 10 years. In Ohio, and then again in Florida.

And it gets worse…

Jim Bell paid the parents to bring their kids to him and his friends at various “sex houses” around town and in Florida (even pedophiles hate the cold).

When the story broke in Akron Beacon Journal, there were a lot of people who claimed they were never at a party at my neighbor’s house. But they couldn’t fucking fool us — we could pick them out any time they laughed.

See, my weepy 3rd world club friends, the guy using trees for heat because he burned through his parents’ money, was not a sad story at all… In that neighborhood, he was a fucking role-model. And for Akron in the 70’s, that was a good neighborhood with great parents.

I can’t begin to tell you the stories my friend Dave has about growing up poor in Akron with 7 (or 10 or however many children they had) and an alcoholic abusive father…

You pussies flaccid penises would never talk to me again.

Update March, 2023

I wrote this story back in 2018, but I thought now would be a good time to remind people that things have always sucked.  How bad it sucks just depends on your definition of “sucking” and who you are, and where you are in the space/time/cultural continuim.

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