A Date With The King

respects. The year earlier was the Rodney King verdict, and as I drove into Simi Valley, wildfire smoke was coming in over the hills, and all I could think of was how ugly this little piece of shit town was. I went in and met with the Metal Blade dudes, made small talk, met the owner, ‘the guy who signed Slayer,’ and made a quick exit.

The next day we realized that we needed to secure a location where we could have fire blazing, and that was a tricky situation. It was summer in one of the driest years in Southern California. Wildfires had been ravaging the coast, and a permit to have an open fire was damn near impossible. Nick told me that his biker friends in the Disciples owned land, east of Fontana, California. We could rent it for $500, It was remote so no one would ever see a raging fire.

We set up a location scout for this piece of land the night before the shoot. We pick up Nick in our production van and travel to Fontana to meet up with his ‘friends.’ Fontana has been described as the armpit of California, and I soon saw why. This town is known for crystal meth sales, crime is rampant, and it's uglier than fuck. If I were drawn to crudities, I’d say it’s the white trash capitol of the fucking world.

Actually I am drawn to crudities, so I’ll let that lay. We drive to the house of a Disciple named Red. He aint home. We drive around Fontana to different bars to find him. Finally, at the Salty Mouse, Fangster, the two-fingered Disciple with a ZZ Top beard, tells us Red, has just driven home to meet up with some faggots from Chicago who want to make some kind of a movie.

We drive back to Red’s place. Red stands about 6’8”, huge motherfucker with another one of them ZZ Top beards. Nick introduces us to Red’s Old Lady but not to Red, he won’t look at us. Nick and Red go directly to Red’s bedroom, and the door closes. We sit down in the living room, and immediately two diaper wearing junior disciples start crawling all over us. Red’s Old Lady is certainly chatty, she asks us all about the video, and what Chicago is like, tells us how much she hates Fontana. The TV is blaring, and an episode of ‘COPS’ comes on. This episode was filmed in

Fontana. “Oh my god,” she exclaims, that’s our neighbors house. We see five police officers ramming down the door on the television. Dave looks over at me, “When the fuck are we going to go to the location?” I shrug my shoulders. This is not my call.

I am beginning to wonder when Nick is gonna come out of Red’s bedroom, when Red’s Old Lady begins to tell us a story. “Well,” she says, “I had gone out for the evening - this was before I hooked up with Red - and I hadn’t had an evening out with the ladies in almost a year, because I had just given birth to a little girl. So I made my boyfriend at the time watch the kids, so I could go out drinking. Well I come home and the police are all over the front yard. I wonder what the hell is going on? Turns out my boyfriend had accidentally smothered my little girl. He fell asleep in the bed, and rolled over onto her, and she had died.” Our faces begin to contort in horror, as she continues. “So y’know it sucked, but what are you going to do? But then, and here’s the weird part, they did an autopsy on her, and it turns out that sonuvabitch pounded the baby with his fists until she was dead. I guess she had been crying something awful, and he was coming down from a three-day meth bender, and he wanted to sleep. Aint that a kick in the pants?”