Doc Hata recalls an incident when Sunny provoked Sally Como’s anger. Sally had parked her patrol car outside of Sunny Medical Supply, and Sunny sat on the hood, waiting for her to come out of the deli where she was buying lunch. Sally returned and ordered Sunny to get off. She reprimanded Sunny for her bad attitude and consistently irresponsible behavior. Sally also accused her of staying out at night “with all kinds of sleazy men,” including a local delinquent named Jimmy Gizzi who’d been known to sell cocaine to local high schoolers.
Doc Hata looked on as Sally publicly scolded his daughter, not knowing what to do. As tensions rose, Sally baited Sunny. She said that Jimmy, who she’d recently arrested, told her how “generous” Sunny had been with all the guys at his house. Sunny cursed Sally, and Doc Hata stepped in to break up the argument.
After Sally left, Sunny confessed to Doc Hata that she had been spending her weekends at Jimmy’s house and not going to the city with her friends as she’d told him. Doc Hata asked her if she’d been sexually active. She said yes, but then she rejected his concerns, accusing him of only caring about whether she’d hurt his reputation. Doc Hata responded that there was nothing wrong with being respected and admired, but Sunny insisted that the people of Bedley Run only heeded his words because he constantly performed gestures that made everyone feel like they owed him something.
With his authority rejected, Doc Hata told Sunny she could no longer stay in his house.
Doc Hata didn’t see Sunny for three weeks, at which point he decided to visit Jimmy Gizzi’s house on the edge of town. The house looked decrepit, and as he approached, he could tell that there were many people inside. He encountered two young men on the front lawn, sitting on a sofa and smoking marijuana. Doc Hata asked if they knew Sunny, and the men indicated that she was in the house with everyone else.
Doc Hata entered the house and noticed that many of the people dancing inside were black and Puerto Rican, and though heartened by the display of diversity, he also wondered whether Sunny was only living with people of color.