Monday, November 21, 2011

Taco-Truck Tacos and Accuracy

Earlier, near the ranch home of Gus Carlisle, Eric Donaldson and Isaac Roberts pulled into an almond orchard. They shut off the 1968 VW Bug, grabbed their plates of taco-truck tacos and gobbled the food, taking care that nothing fell on the floor or seats.

“What time is it?” Roberts asked.

“Nine-thirty,” Donaldson said. He wadded up his paper plate and foil and threw them into the orchard.

“Better go get that,” Roberts said. “John said not to get sloppy. The cops could get your DNA off that.”

“John can kiss my ass. My DNA’s not in the system and this will be over in a few days anyway. I’ll be sitting on a beach in Fiji, where they don’t extradite.”

Roberts thought about that, threw his garbage out his window and said, “John can kiss my ass, too.” He had no idea if his DNA was in the system.

They checked their 9mm Browning Hi-Power Mark IIIs, removing and reinserting the magazines. While suppressors weren’t necessary in the country, they’d brought them anyway; there was money to burn and using them made the men feel like James Bond.

“Let’s go,” Donaldson said. “I’m sick of sittin’ in this shitty little car.”

They got out and walked through the orchard to Carlisle’s house. While doing surveillance, they saw Carlisle enter the house only through the front door, never the side door, which is closer to the detached garage. They would cover both doors to be sure.

Roberts took up his position in the back yard while Donaldson went to the front. They swatted at mosquitoes and waited.

When I first wrote this scene, I had Roberts and Donaldson grabbing their bags of taco-truck tacos. My wife read the draft and said “Taco trucks sell plates of tacos, not bags.”

I wouldn’t know that because I don’t dine at taco trucks. Growing up, we always called them “gut trucks” or “roach coaches.” I don’t know if they have to be licensed and inspected by the health department; if they don’t, I don’t wanna eat their food.

My wife eats their food, though, and she feeds it to the kids. So far they’ve survived. I chalk it up to their iron stomachs that undoubtedly produce copious amounts of strong hydrochloric acid.

Apparently taco-truck tacos have become so popular that local sit-down Mexican restaurants have put them on their menus. I ordered them once (at a sit-down restaurant, one clearly displaying the date of their latest successful health department inspection). They weren’t bad, but they weren’t anything special either. Meh.

My wife will eat taco-truck tacos but she won’t eat sushi. Go figure. Aren’t they about the same?

I had to change the text in my novel because I’m a stickler for accuracy. But really, who would have caught that? Would I have gotten angry fan mail that said “Hey Powers, taco-truck tacos are served on plates you moron! Get your facts straight!”

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