Mr. Monk is Cleaned Out

Mr. Monk is Cleaned Out by Lee Goldberg Read Free Book Online

Book: Mr. Monk is Cleaned Out by Lee Goldberg Read Free Book Online
Authors: Lee Goldberg
go,” I said. “You have a murderer to catch.”
    I managed to get him on his feet, hydrated, and out to the car within a few minutes. I had bills to pay that night so we made a quick stop at the bank to deposit my check, and then we headed downtown. Monk glanced over his shoulder at the bike in the backseat and frowned.
    “What’s that doing in here?”
    “There’s something wrong with the gears. I’m going to take it to the bike shop on my way home tonight.”
    “Did you wash the bicycle before putting it in the car?”
    “Do you know where those tires have been?”
    “On the road. On bike trails. Maybe a few sidewalks.”
    Monk nodded, took a handkerchief from his pocket, and covered his nose and mouth. “Those wheels are caked in decay, disease, and death.”
    “All the big Ds,” I said.
    “You’ll have to get the car fumigated.”
    “I’m not fumigating the car because of a bike.”
    “It’s not the bicycle itself that’s the problem. I love bicycles. It’s the wheels. They are unsanitary.”
    “No one is asking you to eat off them,” I said. “I didn’t know you loved bikes.”
    “Riding a bicycle is one of the few times in life when it’s possible to experience perfect balance.”
    “Then how come I’ve never seen you ride one?”
    He sighed and slumped sadly in his seat. “It wasn’t meant to be. I had a traumatic experience on a bicycle before I finished learning how to ride.”
    “Everything for you is a traumatic experience,” I said. “What made this one any worse?”
    “The kids ridiculed me for using training wheels.”
    “Everyone uses training wheels at first,” I said. “That’s not unusual at all.”
    “That’s what I thought, but kids can be so heartless and cruel,” Monk said. “Every time I tried to ride my bike, they’d point at both sets and hurl nasty insults at me.”
    “Both sets?”
    “Of training wheels,” he said. “Front and back.”
    “You had training wheels on the front of your bike?”
    “Of course I did. It wouldn’t be symmetrical or safe otherwise. Anything else would be suicidal.”
    “Didn’t you notice that the other kids only had training wheels on the back?”
    “They’re lucky they survived,” Monk said. “They’re probably all dead now, unless they gave up the risky lifestyles they had as children.”
    I could see why the kids made fun of him. If I was a kid on his street, I probably would have ridiculed him, too.
    “It’s never too late to learn to ride a bike, Mr. Monk.”
    “It is for me,” he said. “I’m too late for everything worthwhile in life.”
    There was no point in arguing about it with him, though that was true of all of our disagreements. Monk had his set view of things and nothing was going to change it, particularly if doing so would detract from his wallowing in sweet misery. Charlie Brown was a happy-go-lucky guy compared to Adrian Monk.

    Mr. Monk and the Rerun
    D isher was at his desk outside of Stottlemeyer’s glass-walled office in the Homicide unit when we came in. The blinds were closed on the captain’s windows, which usually meant he was taking a nap, sneaking a cigar, or talking to his ex-wife.
    “What’s the captain up to?” I asked.
    “I don’t know,” Disher said. “He’s been locked up in there since he got in this morning.”
    Monk licked his lips. “My throat is so dry.”
    “Have something to drink,” Disher said.
    “Don’t taunt me,” Monk said. “It’s cruel.”
    “I mean it. Have a drink.” Disher motioned to the watercooler. “It’s Alhambra.”
    “It’s distilled water,” Monk said.
    “Isn’t that clean and healthy?” Disher asked.
    “It’s tap water that’s been vaporized into steam, cooled, and recondensed into water again.”
    “So it works on the same theory as a transporter beam,” Disher said. “Only with water instead of a landing party from the Enterprise .”
    “I have no idea what you’re talking about,” Monk

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