It’s dusk and street lights are coming on and I’m walking up a backstreet near the freeway with Capone and Carleow. We’re about 13.
It’s a steep hill, and halfway up a skinny cat is rolling in the street. Without breaking stride, Carleow picks up the cat, lets it squirm, and without a word whacks full force down on its head with the ballpean hammer he’s been carrying. It makes a loud and hollow “ping” sound.
The cat drops and tumbles. It scrambles away, but its front legs keep giving out. It runs in a couple circles, and eventually out of sight into some bushes in the yard where it came from.
I’m staring at Carleo, wide-eyed. He’s looking back at the bushes. He starts laughing, in a perfectly happy way. Capone starts laughing, too. They look at me. I laugh also.
We start walking. Soon it’s dark. We spend the rest of the night breaking in cars, using the hammer and a the straight-head screwdriver I brought along, to jimmy the locks.
Carleow was shot and killed in 1995.