The Wheels Go Round | Cam Dang

A rolling stone gathers black eyes.

The Wheels Go Round

By Cam Dang

For The Evacuation Infatuation Award


I tell people it’s because I want to see the world, but they think I have issues. Deep, incurable, daddy-left-me issues. Why else would a middle aged man wander around Australia in a beat-up van for so long? No family, no job, no home. What else but some kind of childhood trauma?

Frankly I don’t give a shit what people think. I have a plan, and I have a job, okay. It says so on my van in big, bold letters: Handy man. Cheap. I am cheap but I do my job and I do it well. I fix drains, pump toilets, mend roofs. If it’s a female customer, I’d throw in a little free service if that’s what she wants. It doesn’t happen all the time but sure is nice when it does. Once it was with this real life Barbie complete with Playboy breasts and arse, and the whole time she was begging, ‘No, Bob, no!’ I said my name is Max, but she told me to focus and shut the fuck up.

And people think I’m the one with issues.

Unfortunately busty babes are rare. Usually it’s women whose bodies are so out of shape it’s hard to tell what I’m grabbing: boobs, or gut. I’m not complaining. I take what I can get, even if she’s over fifty. Oh yes I did! She lived in a mansion and gave me a huge tip, and she asked me to come back again and again. When I told her I had to leave, she cried and asked how much for me to stay for good. I promised I’d come back around for a visit in a few years, but she cried even harder and said by then I’d probably see her in a casket. ‘I’d still bone ya,’ I said. That made her laugh.

If you’re picturing Johnny Depp in ‘What’s eating Gilbert Grape’, let me stop you right there. I’m more like the ugly version of Sam Rockwell, messy hair and crooked teeth. But I guess the ladies don’t mind as long as the eyes are deep and blue and stare at them shamelessly the way their husbands used to stare. Once, the husband walked in while his wife was doing squats on top of me. The way he stared at us was nothing like I expected. He didn’t seem angry, just…disappointed, as if he wished he had peeked through the keyhole with a hand inside his pants instead. Nevertheless he did his job and I left that town with my face looking like a slab of rotten meat.

You’re probably thinking that’s why I’m always running. Free sex is awesome, and husbands are scary, yes, but that’s just half the reason. Here’s the other half.

Remember when I said people think I have daddy-left-me issues?

Well, this other half of the reason does relate to my old man. For as long as I can remember I have lived in this van with Dad until his death two years ago. Dad named the van ‘Beast’. He happened to know some, no, a lot of tricks to make the cards work for you, and being a great father he had passed them all down to his only son, me. I steer clear of Casinos, though, too risky. Private plays are my target. Before jotting down the next dot on the map, I do my research: who I’m up against, how rich they are. And when I arrive, by day I am Sam Rockwell’s ugly version housewife-banger; by night I am still Sam Rockwell’s ugly version, except this time it’s not the bored housewives I fuck.

Usually after three nights I’d pocket enough to live comfortably for a couple of months, and if I stay for a week I might upgrade to living like a king. But I’m not greedy. I take what I can get, remember? Nobody likes to lose, especially not once or twice but thrice. So I pack my stuff and take off in Beast as fast as I can, joining Lady Gaga singing Can’t read my. Can’t read my. No he can’t read my poker face all the way. Back on the road and see the world and fuck more people and back on the road again. The wheels keep going round.

In two years I’m moving to the US. See more places and perhaps get someone pregnant and claim the kid. Travel with him or her in the same old van. Pass down my knowledge. Do what my old man did.

Told you I have a plan.