A Treasury of Trash

A sampling of sleaze from your defunct corner newsstand:

Strip for Murder, by Richard S. Prather (Gold Medal, 1956)
"I cupped the glass in my hand and aimed it at Garlic's face like a small bazooka. He was just about to swing at me, so hot he'd undoubtedly forgotten where he was, when I wiggled the glass and said softly, "I'll carve up your chops like a Salisbury steak, Garlic. Maybe I can catch an eyeball with one swipe."

Vengeance Is Mine, by Mickey Spillane (Signet, 1951)
He laughed into the receiver. "How's the grocery business?"
"Booming, Pat, really booming. I have a large order for some freshly murdered meat."

"What's that?"
"Just a figure of speech."

The Big Love, by Florence Aadland, as told to Tedd Thomey (Lancer, 1961)
He put me at ease almost at once. I think he really enjoyed meeting me. I wore my gray nylon dress, nylon stockings, black pumps with medium heels and my harlequin-style glasses. I was 43 years old then, and I know he noticed the similarities between Beverly and me. I'm smaller than she, five foot two, but my hair, which I wear upswept, is blonde and my complexion is fair, like hers.

Errol glanced at my right foot, which is artificial--the result of an auto accident--but he made no comment about it. He knew all about my foot before meeting me because Beverly had told him about it. Being such a perfect gentleman and host, he simply ignored the matter, not that it was important anyway, and invited me to have a drink.

Out for Kicks, by Wilene Shaw (Ace, 1959)
She moved forward again, teasing him. "Why are you moving away from me? You said you liked me, Kinkie."

"I do. But we're going to be at Jeff's soon." He felt her lips brush his cheek again, smelled the perfume that was sweet, almost sickeningly sweet. He smelled the odor of something else, too; a kind of musty, warm smell. Girl-smell, he thought, and his flesh grew warm.

The Peeping Tom Murders, by Jack Baynes (Crest, 1958)
Without entering the room, Morocco said, "I'm looking for Bruce Kellogg. Does he happen to be around?"

"No, he doesn't happen to be around," she said, tossing her tousled hair defiantly. "The sonofabitch likes dirty old trees better than he does me in the morning." She drew a long, deep breath that made her ripe breasts lift and thrust out a little. "Imagine that," she said. "An old goat liking trees better than this."

"Must grow some dandy trees around here," Morocco said mildly, remembering the fags beneath the fig tree. Maybe they had fag trees?

TV Tramps, by Walter Dyer (Midwood, 1962)
Lotus grabbed the front of her flimsy costume and with a grand flourish, threw it aside, and lay there on the stage completely naked.

"Oh, Satan!" Artie moaned. All he could do was hold his head in his hands. The show went off the air abruptly, and then came the sound of noisy activity.

One of the musicians shouted, "Man! That show was cool

Hoboes and Harlots, by George Milburn (Lion Library, 1954)
Rolland shuddered violently. All at once he put his head down on his arms and began sobbing. Miss Manchester snapped her book to. Then she went back and stood by Rolland's desk. She could see that she was too late. There was a big puddle on the floor. But she said softly, "You may leave the room now, if you wish to, Rolland."

Shopping Center Sex, by Oren A. Lang (Signal Sixty, 1964)
Fred Rush, the civil engineer who had come to see her yesterday about the sewer line through her backyard, lived in an old house in a neighboring town.

Before the sewer was dug, she decided, she was going to know him better--and he would know her better. Not only would it be sanitary, it would also improve the relationships of people in the community.

Briefly, her house, her position in the community as Arthur's wife, ceased to be a dream, merged with the reality she was Sandra Chase. Her lip quirked in a small smile as she thought of everyone in the village being linked by their intimate wastes.

Prison Nurse, by Dr. Louis Berg (Bantam, 1959)
"It started in the usual way. The warden ordered the prison locked in after dinner yesterday because some of the men raised a rumpus in the mess hall."

"Was there any trouble?"
"No, nothing of any moment. The stew was slimier than ever, the scraps of meat harder to find and the milk tasted like flour and water; outside of that everything was fine!"

Strange Brother, by Blair Niles (Avon, 1952)
"Yes," Mark said to June. "I discovered sex in a hay mow in Floyd Halstead's barn."

KEEP PHOENIX NEW TIMES FREE... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Dewey Webb