p 151-156

YDAU [2009] Oct 15
place ETA
narrated in third person

It is one of the quarterly urine checks for drug use at ETA, conducted by the ONANTA on all players in the top 64 in their division, which an impressive percentage of ETA players are. Pemulis is now selling 'clean urine' to the same 1/4 of the students to whom he sells drugs. He collects urine from the younger students and sells it from a hot dog vendor's tub during the tests. The urine is stored in Visine bottles which he employs Mario to rescue from the dumpsters the day after the drug tests. It's revealed that in addition to the regular janitor, Dave ['fall down very'] Harde, some of the janitorial work is done by 'sullen and shifty eyed residents from Ennet House, the halfway facility at the bottom of the hill.' In the months between the testing, the hot dog vendor rig and visine bottles are all stored in the refurbished tow truck that Pemulis and his urine sales partner Trevor Ashford co-own with Hal and Jim Struck. The truck is painted in school colors [red and gray] and features the ONAN ensign- 'a snarling full-front eagle with a broom and a can of disinfectant in one claw and a Maple Leaf in the other and wearing a sombrero and appearing to have about half-eaten a swatch of star studded cloth.'
Mario, who although he cannot even play recreational tennis, is allowed by the dean to bunk with Hal [in a double room], holds up his weight at ETA by recording matches and drills for the staff. Today, however he is filming the urine sales using his 'strap-attached head-mounted camera and thoracic police-lock and foot-treadle.' Pemulis and Ashford aren't worried because no one except Mario will see the footage, which Mario will edit into a 'Himself-inspired conceptual' cartridge. It's revealed that Pemulis is a scholarship student who was discovered playing in a 'grim section of tract housing and vacant lots' in nearby Allston, who is known less for his rather mediocre game, than for providing reasonably priced narcotics to a good portion of the junior-circuit. He is also on academic probation, because even Hal's best attempts at tutelage barely get him through Avril's rigorous grammar classes. He is however a math and science whiz, and for this he is the JOI geometrical optics scholarship which allows him access to all of 'the late director's lenses and equipment, some of which turn out to be useful to unrelated enterprises. Hal and Mario both consider Pemulis a good friend, and Hal gets his urine for free, an account of his assistance with grammar. Hal, who has always been a lexical prodigy is now turning out to be something of an 'erumpent' tennis prodigy, now rated 4th best in USA. Pemulis is not ranked high enough to get sponsorship clothes, so he wears T-shirtsand a painter's cap. He fears the potential of being wiretapped, so he has developed a system wherein the caller in search of drugs has to ask him to commit a crime and threaten him if he refuses, then Pemulis makes an appointment to plead for his safety, thereby allowing him to claim entrapment if the phone is tapped. Those substituting the clean urine are encouraged to stow the Visine bottle in their armpit to bring it up to body temperature.

We see in this section how the Ennet House thread might overlap with the ETA thread of the story, by way of drugs, proxity and perhaps the Ennet House residents working at ETA. Also we start to get more of an idea about Mario, and what he inherited [if not the athletic ability] from his parents. Is he somehow carrying on the work of Himself? And what other activities might Pemulis use the optics for?

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