From the new apartment!

14 05 2008

Writing from the apartment now. Very strange to be sitting out here on a concrete balcony in the middle of a foreign town not seventy miles from home, chain-smoking cheap cigarettes and waiting for Life to catch up to me. Strange stuff, kids.

 

Stranger still to be smack in the middle of a group of long-lost and long-abandoned friends and acquaintances all huddled together in this very same town, all brought here by design or circumstance. People have a way of spreading apart like ocean-top detritus; like that same stuff, they have a way of converging where the breakers rise up and the driftwood settles. It’s unsettling to know that I landed here a mere victim of Life.

 

Bills, bills. Even only five days in, the looming black cloud of Responsibility hangs low. Electricity, cell phones, rent.  Christ, Almighty. Jobless, too? You bet, kiddo. I’m a longtime resident of the Uncomfortable Edge of Poverty. I’m never completely in my element until there are ludicrous amounts of Unsettled Debt hanging in the balance.

 

Odd neighbors coming and going like German cockroaches. None of them seem to have any direction, but damned if they’re not rushing off to…somewhere. Most look like college students or fuck-struck newlyweds. Maybe both, but who knows? Either way, they don’t pester me much, which is all I that can ask.

 

It’s slightly uncomfortable to be surrounded by so many damn people after the relative solitude of the country. Cars coming and going, people milling about, the constant stench of gasoline and bad weed. No stars at night, only close, pink-black sky, like a 100x view of late-stage lung cancer cells. Or maybe colon polyps. Fuck, who knows? I’m no oncologist, not in any medical sense. I’m a student of social oncology. I like the cancers of a crowd, the carcinoma of human herds.

 

What I don’t like are rumors of an old friend gone astray. Funny how that word looks so much like “ashtray” when you’re not paying attention. No sir, rumors of Old Friends burning themselves up on the old Ghetto Destroyer do not sit well with me. It’s a very close bet as to whether the rumors are true. Well, if they are, that man and I have a long-standing agreement: partying is one thing; Addiction is another. Louisville Sluggers cost a little more than they used to, these days, but the Reasons for putting them to use have stayed a relative constant. Beating sense into one of your oldest and closest friends is one of those static things that never change. Hope the rumors are wrong, for both our sakes.

 

Holy Mary motherfucker. You don’t really know what kind of feeling it is to be squealing down a windy wet two-lane in a car you don’t yet fully understand, roaring in third gear, tires spinning uselessly against slick blacktop…backwards.

 

You may say you understand, but I know the real truth about the matter: you fucking don’t understand at all. Until you’ve done exactly that, I’ll hear no murmurs of understanding. Fuck you. You don’t know.

Do you know what it’s like to look head-on into the oncoming rear bumper of some short-wheelbase Chevy monstrosity that go for around fifty grand and clock in on fight night at just near two solid tons of steel? all the while you are crippled by an ill-timed burst of torque, unable to do little else but scream and drift sideways into oncoming downhill traffic? DO YOU?

 

It’s not pleasant. 

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2 responses

14 05 2008
betme

I love your use of adjectives! “fuck-struck newlyweds” sums them up nicely. Seriously, you have a real talent.

14 05 2008
wahsatchmo

Here he comes
Here comes Speed Racer
He’s a demon on wheels
He’s a demon and he’s gonna be chasin’ after someone

You sound introspective. This can only lead to bacon with ranch dressing.

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