At the restaurant, G, in preparation for his trip to Italy, has been reading every facebook post by every distant and forgotten relation. And finding disturbing clips, Italy, now overrun with African Immigrants, committing crimes, getting paid to do nothing, blighting the Italian Economy...

He's got a theory. Round 'em all up and send 'em home. He'll be the next Mussolini. The owner agrees, and the new Italian waiter, as liberal and kind as he is, depending on the "distinctness" of your ethnicity, agrees as well.

Me too, I'm xenophobic, I remember, as a child in a small town in Saskatchewan, an entirely white childhood, 12 years old before I saw my first black person (in full tribal regalia, I felt I had stepped into a National Geographic magazine...), the population of the country has increased by ten million, or a third, since then, mostly through immigration, visible minorities overwhelm you everywhere you go, "round 'em all up" I say, "Starting with the Italians...".

2 Weeks, 4 Shifts to go. I can be a little free with my opinions...

And, having been away over a year, some customers are curious enough to ask what I've been up to.

"In jail for credit card fraud." I tell them. "I was taking customers credit card numbers and using them to buy stuff on eBay...selling them off to Russians..."

Some laugh. A very few. Others laugh, nervously. And a few, well, there's just a double take while I ask "How would you like to pay again?...".

I mix it up. Try new lines....like ..."They never found the body, so they had to release me....". Somehow they find this funnier. more acceptable...

Coffee time, Beano as always, and while there's nothing new I meet the boy for a coffee. Trifling conversation, I tell him of the squirrel that burst into my apartment through the balcony...

"Had me wondering, I mean, what if it was one of those gerbils, I don't know that they were all accounted for, could have slipped out unnoticed in a fart, all mutated due to all the genetically modified corn I've been eating..."

- "...that's why you don't eat GM foods..." he parries.

And I tell him about my tdcs device, designed to make me a genius like Dustin Hoffman in Rainman, by running a low amperage 9 volt current over my head. Only I haven't bothered hooking in the resistors and potentiometers as my multimeter broke anyways, damn the amperage, I'll be all about the voltage...

- "you're sure it's not dangerous?" he inquires, by way of humoring me, he's skeptical and I just wish he'd do a bit of research before he rained on my parade...

"Probably I'll become Telepathic, or maybe even Psychokinetic, there could be a whole host of unintended superhero side effects..." I assure him. "..but not to worry, I'll live...I'll need to get a different set of clothes though..."

These conversations, inane and absurd as they are, they're his preparation for the real world...

The boys from the old restaurant have taken to calling and introducing me as "The Family Lawyer", an ironic stab at my fashion sense and the fact that I don't generally go out in track pants, a hoody and baseball cap. This is all fine, if the evenings young and still yet sober I can correct anyone that takes them seriously, although it should be noted the sad correction has cost me more than a few dates.

But when the evening's a little farther along and strung out it gets harder to refute them, the nephew cutting off my denials with "HE'S A LAWYER...THE FAMILY LAWYER", and I find myself cornered by a little crack whore who's stopped by on her evening rounds to grab a little pick me up on her way to work...the Nephew keeps the best company, and if I were indeed a  lawyer I would have no shortage of clients in this circle.

She's grilling me on what kind of law I practice, the Nephew answers "CRIMINAL", we have a short conversation without my saying a word, her merely asking me questions and the Nephew loudly in the background yelling out answers. It seems a bit cruel, but I take solace in the fact that I haven't said a word to incriminate myself.

Party over, think nothing of it, just another absurd night out with the boys. Then the phone calls start, unknown number, local, I answer:

"Hey, remember me...its ******* from the party...look, I got sideswiped on Deerfoot the other day and so I followed the driver until they pulled over...it was road rage, you know, and then they got out and threatened me and I got the plates...but by the time I got home the police were there charging me...it wasn't my fault and my passenger, he's got warrants, he doesn't want to testify that it wasn't my fault...."

She's speaking at a mile a minute, breathless,...

"What do you think I should do...?"

"Call Legal Aid" I tell her, she's thinking I'm making 6 figures and she can't afford me but has a theory, probably not misplaced, that she can work out some sort of "Pro-Bono" arrangement, although her understanding of the words "Pro" and "Bono" differ from the common Latin I'm pretty sure they represent an accurate understanding of the legal profession in general....

How did she get my number? I don't ask, I know, she called the Nephew who happily sold me down the river, there's going to have to be some form of creative revenge...

"OK...and I've been getting calls from the police, 3 times a day, because my girlfriend, she rolled a drug dealer, and he thinks it's me and is threatening to kill me, and I tried to tell the police and they wouldn't listen, they've been calling me three times a day and they refuse to give me their names or badge numbers...I mean, Constable Squirrel, does that sound like a cops name to you? Anyways, my parents, they're going to throw me out of the house and I don't want anyone to get shot, and the police said they're going to charge me with selling drugs..."

"Call Legal Aid" I tell her, I'm getting pretty good at this lawyering thing...I'm trying not to laugh at the "Constable Squirrel" comment...

"OK...now yesterday, I was at the bar with my friends and there was this Psych Nurse from when I was admitted last year, and she was telling everyone in the bar that I was crazy and an addict and we had a fight and, I mean, that's not legal, is it? I called the hospital to complain and they wouldn't give me her last name..."

"I think you have enough on your plate with the car accident and the drug dealer. Deal with those first...leave the nurse bit alone for now..." I tell her, this is turning into a long call...

Eventually, after dispensing more sound bits of advice all of which involve recommending legal aid, and straightening out and prioritizing her thoughts, I persuade her to hang up, excuse myself, I've things to do. She calls again the next day to tell me she's squared things away with the dealer, she's putting up $75 and her friend is putting up the other $75 that was stolen from him, she's hoping that will end the death threats, it's just the accident, she's waiting on legal aid to call her back, wants to leave the province, is going to get some Adderall and or Oxycodin, wonders if she can drive on it, I refer her to her doctor, and after I hang up I think to myself that lawyers, criminal lawyers at least, deal with these people all fucking day, and for a brief moment there's a small window of compassion for them, no wonder they're all such fucking assholes...