From the full version of Sunnyside's Lousy Book.

It's hard to out-run a radio

As the colder weather approached in the fall of 95, I was anxious because I had several things I had on my mind. Not only was I in need of a place with electricity to park my trailer, but my patent application was suppose to be finished at any time. I was also considering what a fellow inventor/friend/customer of mine in Westport had said to me earlier in the week about incorporating. The inventor had tried using a business manager, but later opted just getting incorporated himself and taking a more control in the marketing of his inventions.
     Since my phone was tapped and I knew I had been tailed during the weeks prior to that day; I'm sure they knew where John and I were going to have breakfast together one Friday morning. I was wondering if someone would show up in Lakewood at the Bur's Restaurant to find out what we would be talking about.

Being without electricity and having a cold winter arriving soon, I asked John about the possibility of letting me move into the apartment above his shop. I also mentioned I was seriously thinking about getting incorporated and was planning to drive down to Olympia that afternoon to pick up the forms and find out more about the process.

It wasn't long before I noticed a man with charcoal gray hair. He sat down by himself in a booth -- kitty corner to the northeast of us -- just behind John's line of sight. The stranger looked as if he was about 50 to 60 years old and he was practically sitting on the edge of his seat trying to hear every word I was saying. I didn't say anything to John about him because I didn't want to scare John or let the stranger know I had noticed him.
     I was also wondering if John and the stranger were acquaintances.

I wanted to give the stranger the impression that I doubted a private inventor such as myself could succeed at securing a patent. I raised my voice a little and dumped a spiel on the stranger. I made it up as I went along, guessing what he might have been anticipating, or even wanting to hear. I spoke about the problems that could result from a simple thing like a patent search. I got into a spiel as if the whole patent industry was as crooked as any industry could get and how easy it is for phony paperwork to happen.
     I spoke about how different law firms across the county could have their own versions of a patent application for my truck and how certain ones could be the good ones and the others no better than the paper it is written on. I spoke as if the industries supporting the law firms could decide what kind of application I would get and that I had to wonder if the law firm I using was going to give me a good application or a bad one. I said it was probably best for me to get incorporated and set up shop with a few jigs before other shops did the same. I said, "Who else would be able to build it better than the guy that invented it?" Saying I had one up on all the other guys because I had the prototype and I knew the changes that needed to be done.  
      I'd given John a doubtful testimony and he appeared to be influenced by it. Most of all; I wondered if my act was successful at giving the big guy sitting on the edge of his seat, the same impression. I was hoping I'd sounded quite discouraged, but unfortunately I've always found it hard to lie to John and I might have gone a little too far when I lowered my voice and told John, "I'm still going to file."

I felt I did a pretty good job of putting up a phony act in the way I presented the information, because when we got up to leave, John said, "Yeah, I saw a thing on television the other night about the patent industry. It seemed like it's pretty much a scam".
     That afternoon I got a call from Rodney. He said "Hay, I can sell a half ounce for you. Why don't you bring it by?" It was the call that kept me from having to go to the pawn shop so I drove up to Rodney's place in Federal Way to pick up the $180.00 I would need to get incorporated.
      Once there I discovered he didn't pay any attention to what I had told him after the time he set me up with a chick who appeared to be a nark. This time it was two black guys who were driving a nice car. They appeared to be true pot smokers by the way they handled themselves and since they were black this time around, they seemed like the kind of guys Rodney may even associate with. I sold the weed to the guys, but I still bitched Rodney out after-wards for having me meet the strangers. The experience made me decided not to make deals through Rodney ever again.
       In Washington it cost $175 to get incorporated, so I had enough cash to head down to Tumwater. When I climbed out of my truck in the parking lot at the Department of Labor and Industries, I noticed two older gentlemen wearing suits and ties as they walked past the front of my truck. As they walked toward the front of the building I heard one say to the other, "He's going to sell it."
        The other man said, "He sure did a nice job on it."
     I knew something was going down, but just what, I wasn't sure.

Once I was at the information desk just inside the entrance to the lobby, a guard and receptionist was eager to assist me. I asked the receptionist where I would need to go to find out about getting incorporated and it seemed capricious when she only had to point across the lobby to a counter. I'd been in the building before and since that day, and I've never seen a counter stationed in the lobby except for that very day.
        The counter lacked signage and didn't appear to be part of any office. It was my guess it had been staged just for me.

At the counter was an Asian lady and a guy who appeared to be there just to listen to whatever I was about to say. I asked for the paper work needed for getting incorporated and among the few small stacks of forms displayed on top of the counter were the forms I needed.
      As she picked out the forms and asked, "What kind of business are you going into, hydraulics?"

Right then and there I was sure something really mysterious was going on. I figured she was checking for her own curiosity if I was the person they were waiting for. They informed me that the official place I had to go to get incorporated was at the Department of Licensing in Olympia.

I couldn't help but notice that the Asian lady stationed at the counter wasn't the only Asian female around. There were other Asian women standing around at several locations throughout the lobby and they appeared to be staked out because they were just standing around by themselves. Even as I was walking out to the parking lot through the drive up loop, there was another one at the end of the side walk who in a fairly loud voice said, "Bye," as if she knew who I was.

I was well aware that people there knew who I was and I didn't know if it was a good or bad thing.
      I was puzzled by what I saw and it made me think: if Asians have assassins, why wouldn't they use women? I assumed they might use them because they may not look as suspicious. I couldn't help but wonder if the reason everyone knew who I was might be because they were watching out for my safety.

Even though it was getting late in the day, I thought I would at least try to find the Department of Licensing in Olympia. I thought if there was still time, I would find out more about incorporating and if nothing else just locating the place would make it easier for my return trip on the following Monday.

Trying to find an empty phone booth so I could use a map inside a phone book became a difficult task. It seemed like all the phone booths I saw along the roadside had people standing in front of them, and the strange thing about the people using the phone booths was that they all appeared to be Asian.
      I found myself wondering if I was in an international district or not, but area lacked signage that would indicate so.

Before long I noticed a white compact truck with a Native American inside off to the left of me at an intersection. I recalled seeing the same truck with the same guy over twenty miles away in Tacoma earlier in the day. He was heading me off at the pass at a traffic light. After driving around in circles for awhile, I confirmed that I was indeed being followed.

It was apparent that a car which had been behind me earlier could be waiting for me at the next corner.
        I noticed that almost every vehicle behind me had somebody either talking on a two way radio or a cell phone. Looking in my rear-view mirror I noticed a Department of Defense sticker on the top center of the windshield of several of the vehicles which just happened to be behind me. They too were having conversations on their radios or cell phones.
      On the highway on my way home, about two or three hundred yards in front me I noticed a red medic truck with its red strobe lights flashing. I couldn't help but notice that the traffic was more congested behind the medic truck than in front of it. Traffic seemed to be backed up as if they were traveling along with me.
     I wondered if people were informed that I was going to get incorporated and were ready to jump on the opportunity to invest in me. I have to admit I still have mixed feeling upon what was going on and I may have imagined it all because of the paranoia experienced from sleep deprivation. The more I looked the more I had to ask myself if I was truly seeing what I thought I saw. Even the looks from the people in their cars in the lane next to me puzzled me. I checked it out; and checked it out twice. I even pinched myself, but it looked too dam real for me.

If you've made it to here, you are going to be amazed that it wasn't just the paranoia getting to me, because the next couple chapters is when things actually go down for real.

The next chapter of Sunnyside's Lousy Book is:
Boom, boom,
it's going to blow

Have you seen the other Book Excerpts?


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