I like having a contagious smile on my face
I like wearing things that people notice
I like breaking the monotony of daily life, if only for a moment
I like acting goofy in public
I like speaking my mind
I like saying absurd things
I like the unexpected
I like colorful things
I like colorful people
I like making friends in unconventional ways
I like having dinner with my parents during the week
I like classical music
I like art films
I like philosophy and poetry
I like reading books that make me think
I like writing thought-out stories
I like writing nonsense
I like nonsense in general
I am my passions, and I don’t need to meet anybody’s standards but my own, for my benefit.
Love it or leave it.
I am endearing.
Killing the Elephant
On that day – the one on which he killed the elephant, but before he actually shot it dead – he found himself in the passenger’s seat of his mother’s car as she drove alongside a wheat field down an old rural road on their way home from the market. He sat there staring at the black screen of the phone in his left hand, fiddling with the window controls under his right hand, trying to ignore the silence. His mother sat with her hands intently on the steering wheel, her eyes shifting over to him with each periodic fluttering of her hair. The corners of her mouth shriveled downward as she watched him stare blankly at his phone.
“Has she messaged you back?”
Her son wouldn’t respond. His head just turned for his eyes to look out the window as he cracked it open and shut it at slow, tedious intervals. She looked back ahead of her, over the steering wheel at the road.
“I think I’ll just go see her. Just show up and try to figure things out,” he mumbled. Most of his words slipped out through the window into the passing countryside, carried away from his mother’s ears.
“Look, hun,” she said with a bit of enthusiasm. Her gaze was focused at and upward angle above the road. “A hawk.”
He looked over and there – above the road, sitting on a power line – was indeed a hawk.
“God, I love hawks. They’re so gorgeous…”
The predator spread its brown wings, exposing its ruffled white breast before dismounting its perch, and dove down towards the golden field below.
“…graceful but vicious,” she finished.
When the bird reemerged from the wheat there was a small furry animal clutched in its talons. The hawk seemed to make a point of flying by the car for the mother and son to observe its majesty. Neither he nor she could make out what sort of poor creature the hawk had caught, but as it flew away they could both see the reflection of daylight in the little mammal’s eyes. They seemed to look right at them. The eyes looked right at the two voyeurs in the car with an expression of what they both assumed must be the rodent equivalent of indifference, as if to say “yes, well, here we are. I suppose this all really was entirely inevitable. After all, I am a rodent and she a hawk. This sort of thing happens all the time. Anywho, enjoy the rest of your drive. I’m off to be eaten. Probably atop a tree branch somewhere. I do hope it overlooks a lake at sunset. I do love lakes at sunset…”
Once the predator and its prey had flown out of sight, the mother looked back at her son who had resumed staring intently at his inactive phone. He had stopped futzing with the window controls.
“Have you talked about her with the doctor at all?”
“Shrinks aren’t doctors, Mom.”
“If they can give you drugs, they’re a doctor.”
“So Sam in the dorm above me is a doctor? Here I thought he was a philosophy major. Or was it communications…?”
“Don’t be a smart ass.”
“Better than a dumb ass.”
She looked at him as the corners of her mouth curled down and inward once more. “Why do you do that?”
He turned the phone over in his hand nervously and said “because. Talking with your mom about girls at my age is… weird.”
“Hunny,” she smirked. “I hate to break it to you, but… we’re weird.”
He didn’t really respond to her attempt at humor because the comment was more true than funny. Instead, he finally clicked his phone on and watched the screen flicker to life. There were no notifications, no messages, so he sent a quick text to a friend and clicked the phone off once more.
The silence grew tense and awkward. They both felt it. Then his mother went to turn the radio on just as he began to speak.
“Shit,” she fumbled with the car stereo to turn it off. “What?” She found the right button and turned it off. “I’m sorry, hun. What was that?”
But it was ruined. He forgot what he was going to say.
“At any rate,” he thought aloud. “I figure she’ll probably be at the party tonight. She’s usually at those things…”
But she wasn’t, and after the boozed-up twenty-somethings and uninvited high-schoolers had left their mess, he and his roommate began to clean their crime scene of an apartment. There were plastic cup castles on tables, cloudy swamps of bong water and spilt rum on countertops, and a badlands of chips, shake, and beer cans littered across the carpet. It was three in the morning.
National Bring A Flask To School Day
Everyone loves to see an underdog win big and they have nothing to lose, unlike the actual player.
The real question is not should you/not ask.
The real question is: “Are you still an honest gambler, kid?”
- by Michael -
Once upon a time, in an unpleasantly warmer place and a darker place than this, we were all so very hopelessly in love with our own destruction. And we knew it, too.
But we didn’t hate it - as much as we said we did - and the fact of the matter was that we didn’t know how to feel completely full without it. It was, after all, the most interesting part of ourselves. It was dirty and it was gritty. It clung under our nails when we’d bite and claw at one another from behind sad and calm eyes. It was a rush! The Hurt was so easy to get and give and burnt everyone’s nerves like an easy drug, and it was so powerful and so colorful - that blend of self-inflicted feelings - that none of us even bothered to figure out how not to get drunk off of it. It was every shade of red, from a hot coal to the dried scabs on our arms and legs. It was a passion so easily consumable, even easier to feed.
That swelling in our heads when we sat alone.
The purging of festering heat from behind our poorly crafted masks of civility when we’d scream at each other.
The taste of bitter tears and the salt-crusted veins they’d paint on our faces.
That hollow, aimless staring at the dark without a thought in our head as we lay there motionless, absorbing the harshness of the fact that we willingly did this to ourselves and the universe refused to stop us because it was just as empty and cold as we were in those moments.
What contrast. What break in the monotony. How profound we were. How special. How vacant.
If that wasn’t love, it sure as shit would do until the love finally got here.
So, this is… my last post before the new year. Before the overhyped “ab day”. Before 2013 rolls in. Before the holidays.
We’re all still here. World didn’t end.
Didn’t expect it to, but you gotta sorta sigh in relief because you never really know what paranoid nut might launch a nuke. At the same time you kinda gotta groan and say “well. fuck.”
Well… YOU don’t have to. But I did.
Not because I really want the world to end - no. I have too much hope for the future. Things have been looking up and I plan to keep doing my best at, well, everything. But with a year as confusing as 2012… I can’t help but sort of dread the turmoil that might await this next year.
This past year was brilliant and awful all at the same time.
I took the time I needed to reevaluate myself and begin becoming a better person. I’m still an asshole, but I’m an asshole who knows how to deal with [most of] his issues.
I almost sold a script for a lot of money. …Almost.
I’ve been offered a job as a Director’s Assistant on a movie that should begin shooting early in 2013.
I started going back to school and actually learning interesting things. Things I’ll use. Things that further my capacity to think creatively. Learning a language as tricky as Japanese is a daunting task, but new languages are incredibly rewarding.
I finally let go of a girl I should have never gotten involved with. And when I say “girl” i mean “child”. We both knew we are/were awful for one another but I finally came to terms with the fact that I don’t need to be involved with insecure little bipolar kids who can’t figure out what they want other than sex, weed, and single parenthood.
The biggest thing… the hardest thing… was that I fell in love this year. I know. I know. We’ve all had enough of hearing it. But it was… a big turning point. I’ve been obsessed with other girls in the past. I’ve cared deeply for them, but it was obsession that ruined friendships and lead to very unhealthy places.
This is/was different. Honest to god, clear headed love. Not an obsession… at least… not an unhealthy, compulsive one. I loved her. She said she loved me. We had something that could have been fantastic if I didn’t manage to make a giant ass of myself by pushing too hard to scare her away. But she almost DIED… literally. I’ve never once been more terrified in my entire life, and it drove me crazy not being able to be there for her. And when she got out of the hospital… I didn’t know how to behave. To be distant or to fight to be by her side and never take life for granted ever again. To never miss a chance to hug her. To kiss her. It was a lot. And I wasn’t ever sure how to handle it. I was just so scared of losing her. And that’s exactly what ended up happening. By my own hand.
Not a day goes by I don’t sit back and try to think of a way to fix it.
The timing was wrong. I was still just a kid. Now i’m not so much a kid as I am a manchild, but if she ever gave me the chance… I’d like to start fresh. Literally from the beginning. Introductions and all. Start of as friends and see where things go.
Haha… I’m still that hopeless romantic, but at least I’m clear on it. And at least I’m bettering myself FOR myself.
If I had one christmas wish, corny as it may be, it would be to see her show up to my christmas party tomorrow (saturday). I wouldn’t mind a chance to ring in the new year with her, either. Last new year’s eve was a mess but the best mess of my life. I’d like to give that another shot. I’d like to spend time with her, just us… as adults… before she’s gone forever.
If I had to make a few New Year’s Resolutions? I’d resolve to be even more productive. To make some money whether or not I end up on a film set. To move out and be independent by Fall 2013. Well… MOSTLY independent. And I’ll keep my fitness routine. I have an ideal build in mind and I intend to achieve it. Oh, and sex. Lots of sex with someone I can just spend casual time with on a regular basis. And whom I can cook for.
I know it probably won’t be HER but that doesn’t mean it won’t mean just as much.
And you’ll shake your head and call me an idiot, but I really have actually learned from the past.
I’m still a work in progress, but progress… progress is definitely being made.
So, my dear and many loyal followers… I shall update you on things in January 2013. Abs. Wom(?)n. Career. Maybe even a new short story or two.
Wish me luck.
Love you all.
…catch ya on the flip-side.
sometimes i stop and think and realize that my blog is totally accessible to the world at large.
my saddest moments. a majority of my thoughts. my endless bullshit.
then i realize that… you can still read all of this. if you ever wanted to, you could find out exactly how i’m doing without ever having to deal with the potentially awkward action of speaking to me…
and i can’t do that with you. which sucks.
i ran into your sister the other night at the bar. it was nice seeing her. she says we’ll hang out but i’m not holding my breath. she says you’re doing better. that made me smile. and getting even the smallest response from you on thanksgiving… it was a weight of my soul. refreshing. like being reassured that i actually exist.
i’m not sad anymore. and i’m far from obsessed. that’s never what this was. i’d hoped you’d known that. i just think a lot. always thinking…
…sometimes I hope one of the anonymous messages in my inbox will be from you. no name. nothing big. just something nice. just the slightest, most impersonal interaction. like you don’t actually resent me for going completely insane over the summer.
haha… i DID tell you i was crazy about you every night, though (; bet you never assumed it was literal. haha, and i DID warn you that you’d get tired of me first ;P
I do miss you. I’m not drinking. I’m not depressed. I’m just saying.
I miss you. I miss my friend.
Sometimes it just feels better to put that out into the world.
And you still owe me a Marvel vs. Capcom 3 rematch, hooker.
It’s that heartwarming time of year where we get to celebrate life, the harvest, and things we are grateful for, all in an attempt to ignore white privilege and manifest destiny.
I like to take this day to reflect on the year in remission and list the things I am grateful for.
…okay, so maybe i’m just thankful for the first 5 things…
Christ, I hope the Mayans were right.
Once a year on February third for the last ten years or so, a man named Martin walks down the path that cuts through the graveyard here at Beacon Hill. He carries a folding chair in one hand and a single water lily which he cradles in the palm of the other. He gently carries these two items and deliberately paces himself steadily up the hill; steadily up and through the grid of memories belonging to other people until coming to rest at a headstone with a marble water bowl before it. He cleans out the dead flower from the water in the bowl and replaces it with the new, brilliantly pink water lily. He then sets up his folding chair a reasonable distance from the grave and sits himself in it. On years when it rains or on years when the given February third is too sunny, he looks five plots to the left and confided to me that he does so in regret of not spending the extra money to buy the resting place under the oak tree.
“I’m not gonna give a damn if I’m under a tree or not when I’m dead,” was his reasoning. “The tragedy,” he said, “is that I didn’t go first.”
But he sits regardless of the weather and admires the grave and talks with her while fiddling with the gold band on his left ring finger. I’ve seen him laugh to himself in that folding chair of his. I’ve seen him cry, too.
The love of his life died of cancer on February third. Martin says the only reason it was so sunny on the day that she died was because all the thunderclouds and rain in the world were inside of him - inside of his heart and soul - that day. He told me he’d fallen in love with this amazing, smart, unflinchingly kind and incomparably beautiful woman the very moment he’d laid eyes on her. Most people say that, though. But that’s okay, is what he said, because she didn’t love him back. Not right away. He says it took him five years to become the man he needed to be to be loved by a woman like her. Said she was worth every second of it.
They were married and passionately in love for two years before the cancer came out of nowhere and killed her in under six months.
The first time I saw Martin crying and talking to her and twisting his wedding band around his finger, he looked up at me and smiled and said “you know, I’ll never love anyone the way I loved her. Not ever again.”
Every year I watch him clean out that bowl and put in a new flower and sit in that chair for about an hour. Sometimes he stays longer, but he never stays less than that. Never less than an hour.
Then the god damnedest thing happens when he’s done. A woman - pretty thing - walks up the same way he’d come in, and she approaches him slowly and puts a hand on his shoulder. I see him fiddle with the ring a bit more and he takes it off and puts it in his pocket. Then he reaches into his other pocket and pulls out a similar but more modern wedding band and places it over the white tan line on his left ring finger. The woman behind him takes her hand off of his shoulder, lets him take his time in getting up from the chair, then she kisses him and hugs him for a good long while. I don’t think I’ve seen a year in the past six where she didn’t hold his hand and stand with him in front of the grave where he buried his heart. I’m usually too far back to hear the last thing he says before leaving, but I see him look at this pretty woman and mouth words that look an awful lot like “thank you.”
A couple years back, that woman was carrying a baby in her arms up that hill between the grid of graves, up towards her husband Martin. That baby is probably the most adorable little girl I’ve seen; must be almost five years old now. When Martin was walking down the hill with his folding chair in one hand and that pretty woman in the other - this was just yesterday I saw him - that little girl was smiling the most wonderful smile when Martin lifted her up out of the car to hug her after she says “Hi daddy.”
I asked him about his two pretty ladies - last year, it must’ve been - and I remember saying, stupidly enough, “I thought you’d never love anyone like you loved her.”
He said “I don’t. And I’ll never love anyone like I love them.”
I wake up each morning
With unrelenting apathy
And a viral need to
Inhale fire and exhale
Between my shoulders
Is it that throughout the whole day
Or the year
Like there’s no fucking way
That it’s just better to say
“I love you”
“This is so fucking hard but I swear that I’m trying”
So “I’m fine” but I’m not
And this huge fucking rock
Like a boulder of tension
Each day it weighs me down
Dragging me to my feet
And I swear
If you’re there
What’s your price
I’ll pay it
Fuck it I’ll say it
Without meaning or meter
And I know when you meet her
You’ll want to inhale that fire
And exhale the same frustration I feel
When I end every day
Imagining a way
In which I could possibly fall down and kneel
At her feet
Just for a beat
Philip Marshal (Philosophy Professor): I ask my students every semester how they believe the world and its societies would react if we all found out that everything would suddenly come to an end. I asked “If we knew the exact date of the apocalypse, what would happen? How would the world react? How would you as an individual react?”
Alex Kidd (Undergrad): Dr. Marshal was always making us think about mortality and theology and human nature. Philosophy, right? But I don’t really think he ever anticipated Doomsday the way it went down. I mean, look me in the face and tell me you anticipated it at all, yaknow? None of us did. Not really, anyway. But Doc Marshal was just there to make us think about that shit, not plan for it.
Silvia Beaton (Head of Operations, Icarus Project): Of course nobody was to plan for it. Nobody but us at Icarus. For what good? What benefit? If the project would have failed there would have been nothing left and we’d’ve had mass panic, rapes, murders… total chaos. The whole world going to hell right before ending? Obviously the governments of the world didn’t want that. Ignorance is bliss. Agent K said it best when he said “A person is smart. People are dumb, panicky, dangerous animals and you know it.” And yes I just quoted Men In Black, but the point stands.
Robert Schopher (Journalist): So we’re all crammed in that room with the blue curtains - American and other Nation’s flags and that jazzy patriotic shit - like sardines. Reporters with no elbow room get cranky, but… “Urgent matter of national security” we’d all been told. Room’s buzzing like a honeybee box full of speculation. Figured North Korea was finally gonna go off like a powder keg. Maybe Iranians. I joked about China’s inevitable coup - finally overthrowing us as the world’s SuperPower, right? Then Mr. President himself walks up to that podium with some stiff broad in a suit and introduces her as the head of operations at something called Icarus. Whole room goes quiet as a casket, right? First Lady’s in the corner holding back sobs ‘cause obviously she knows something we don’t. And I’m just taking pictures…
Carl Baker (Father): I was workin’ in tool and dye, textile things and that sorta labor, you know… an’… that day, on December 28th, two-thousand an’ twelve? I… well I come home from that work, grease on my hands, grimed up into between my fingers, and I go on into the kitchen for a rag and I hear the wife and the boy hollerin’ at me to come see what’s on the television. Grab myself a beer from the fridge. Sat down. And there’s the idiot I refused to vote fer at his podium, and he grabs his wife of his - the First Lady - an’ pulls her in real close. Says “Ladies and Gentlemen. Citizens of the world. I am so very sorry.” Hell, I didn’t know what to do. Kid’s sayin’ “daddy I don’t understand” and the wife starts sobbing, so I just throw my bottle at the damned television screen. Didn’t know what else to do. Wa’n’t nothin’ else TO do.
Silvia Beaton (Head of Operations, Icarus Project): No, I wasn’t scared. My team and I were fully prepared for all anticipated outcomes, positive or otherwise. I guess I just didn’t expect the dead silence of it all. Like we’d robbed them all of something by not informing them sooner, but - the looks? The blank faces on the journalists in the press room? - they understood. They didn’t like it, of course. But they understood.
Robert Schopher (Journalist): Not a single person in that room had it together enough to even clear his throat. Everyone’s too focused on how far his or her heart has climbed up into their throat, or dropped into his or her gut respectively.
Philip Marshal (Philosophy Professor): My colleagues and I used to get around a poker table every Saturday and just have at it. Full blown arguments about politics and religion - always calm and collected. Like serial killers but with better beards - and of course we’d argue about human nature in the face of adversity and… well, honestly, I guess I always that it’d be bloodier. I’m a pessimist. Either always right or pleasantly surprised. But I still figured that human nature would destroy us all with ego and pride and fear and war long before the nature of the universe ever would get a chance to touch us.
Sheriff Walter Owens: I was out on patrol, December 28th. You know. When the announcement was made. Radios were so damned quiet and at the time I didn’t think much of it. I get back to the station and most of the boys are stoic but plenty of them were crying right along with the women. Plenty of them were holding each other, too, and I thought somebody must’ve died. Everyone’s looking at me with big, wet, doleful eyes as I walk towards one of the other cops who was sitting at his computer, and I see this black and white image of a potato surrounded by darkness… it didn’t register right away, but when I realized what I was seeing? My blood went cold for an hour, I swear it.
Silvia Beaton (Head of Operations, Icarus Project): Ten years ago I was working for NASA as the lead engineer on a team whose primary objective was extraterrestrial projectile identification and collision prevention. Imagine the shot my ego took when it wasn’t us who discovered the PD462, but some kid out of a New Zealand observatory.
Jacob Gardner (Astronomer): PD462. A potential devastator. I’m an intern then, in 2003, sitting at the telescope in the Carter Observatory. I’m just a kid staring at the beautiful, vast sea of glittering diamonds in the sky, and then… suddenly… an anomaly. One of these kids was not like the others, you know? Sheer dumb stupid luck I saw it then. A damn shimmer o’ light wasn’t there before and suddenly… poof! It was. A fuckin’ potato the length of California and twice as wide! I tell you what, there were phone calls to be made about that.
Silvia Beaton (Head of Operations, Icarus Project): PD462 was going to hit us in a matter of years. We got the phone call and crunched the numbers Gardner fed us and no matter how many times we calculated and recalculated… impact was inevitable. So a secret summit was held and the Icarus Project was born.
Yamada Mitsuro (Engineer, Icarus Project): Offense had to be nuclear. The asteroid would hit Earth with enough force to virtually split the planet in half - vaporize it, more likely. We’re talking trillions of tons of rock and steel, like a cosmic bullet aiming for a head-shot. So my team and I were tasked with designing a fleet of probes that would carry roughly 30% of the world’s warheads out into space to meet PD462 halfway.
Silvia Beaton (Head of Operations, Icarus Project): Five years of the most god-awfully stressful planning and building and remote rocket launches. Shuttle missions. Everything launched during the day out in the middle of nowhere. People asked questions, but it’s a miracle we were never found out.
Aaron Lloyd (Classified): All I had to tell the press was some bullshit about weather balloons and satellite retrieval. No muss no fuss.
Robert Schopher (Journalist): So the Beaton woman from Icarus just keeps talking while all us journalists stare in shock and silence in the press room, President off to the the side with the Wife, and we’re listening to this broad tell us how they’ve known about PD462 for damn near a decade. Tells us and the world that their attempts to neutralize the asteroid failed and that in 24 hours the thing’d tear through our atmosphere and effectively end life as we know it.
Jacob Gardner (Astronomer): We were hoping the nuclear detonations would at least break the asteroid up into small enough pieces that they might burn up in the atmosphere or fly off in opposite directions away from Earth. After detonation, small pieces did in fact break off, accelerate towards us and burn up in the atmosphere, but the large bulk of the thing was still headed right for us.
Carl Baker (Father): “May God have mercy on us all” and “I’m so very sorry” was the best Mr. President could do fer us. Ha. Just about told him where he could stick God’s mercy.
Alex Kidd (Undergrad): You know what we did that night? We didn’t go out and steal shit. I mean, yeah. Plenty of people did that, but a lot fewer than we’d have anticipated. There’s always going to be people who feel cheated and entitled to things they didn’t really earn or people with old grudges they felt they could settle, so yeah, there were gunshots all over the world popping off. Crime went up that night, but it’s not like it was total chaos. That’s what was so smart about the timing. Give people just 24 hours to live and I think they realize that they just want to have a nice time with the people they love most. So no, I didn’t go out and help cause a ruckus. I switched of the TV and told my roommate to pack us up a nice bowl of the dankest shit we had, and we blazed up nice and proper. Invited the whole floor to join us. Called up my ex and had an emotional conversation. Only girl I ever really loved, if you want to know the truth.
Sheriff Walter Owens: Cops got divided into two groups that night. Those who were ready for all-out war with the enraged and desperate public, and those who just didn’t see the fuckin’ point. The damned thing was, though, that after 1am, any sort of problems just died down. Worst of it was just a few evangelicals damning the gays, but even they decided to quit wasting their time around sun-up on Zero Day.
Philip Marshal (Philosophy Professor): There was this global, unspoken idea in the air on Zero Day. A sort of perfect unity that can really only come with the acceptance of total annihilation. People got down off their soapboxes and put away their protest signs. What a silly idea, bigotry. To still make an issue of the quantity of melanin in our skin? To be angry over the love shared between any two given people? Over theology? Please. Black, white, gay or straight; we would all make the same noise under the weight of PD462, and nobody cared whose god failed to prevent it. So what did I do on that morning? I kissed my wife and made love to her, then I made breakfast, cleaned up, and then I went outside to breathe in the air of my last day. Sweetest air I’ve ever tasted.
Carl Baker (Father): Never want my son to go soft on me but I hugged ‘im an’ told ‘im I loved ‘em anyhow.
Jacob Gardner (Astronomer): I spent all Zero Day in the observatory watching that carefree mass toss its weight at us with reckless disregard for a very large percentage of life in the universe. And as I’m sitting there with a bowl of ramen… haha, is that a strange last meal? I suppose so… well, anyhow, that’s when it happened.
Silvia Beaton (Head of Operations, Icarus Project): The structural integrity of the asteroid was severely compromised by the Icarus satellites. It took a terrifying amount of time, but the damned thing tore itself apart a few hundred-thousand miles away from impact. Plenty of pieces strayed away, a few adding new craters to the Moon. Others burnt up in the atmosphere. There was of course a meteorite that hit Atlanta, another in Nevada, and the biggest one off the cost of California. Hundreds of lives lost is still tragic, but we’ve dealt with floods before and the Earth keeps on turning.
Robert Schopher (Journalist): I mean, yeah. It’s all well and good. But everyone’s so docile now. How’s a journalist gonna make a living if nobody’s gonna throw a grenade somewhere?
Philip Marshal (Philosophy Professor): I don’t know. Has the Earth kept on spinning? It IS possible that we did all die and found a neat, manageable afterlife. Everything as we knew it only slightly better? Social evolution at its peak? The world singing kumbaya? Tell me you don’t question it every now and then?
Alex Kidd (Undergrad): I married that girl, by the way. My ex? Yeah, everyone just stopped taking everything for granted suddenly.People went back to work and back to school and society picked right up after only six months or so, and with gusto. All things aside, though, Dr. Marshal has become an asshole, handing out F’s just to keep reality in check.
Class is out. Check that, class has been out for 4 hours.
Might as well have been out for four years…
He is standing on the corner of Downer and Lockhart and has been doing so all these hour-years, swearing under his breath every other beat but patient nonetheless. He has been waiting, and almost stubbornly so, for a ride. He was prepared to catch a cab home until he received a text message. “I wasn’t sure if I’d really be able to come get you,” it read. “But don’t worry, I’ll definitely be there. Was gonna be there earlier but there were… complications.”
So he passed up three cabs and two buses as well as a few friends passing by whom had offered him rides. He waved them all on knowing his ride would soon be there to take him home.
He’d been waiting for four hours.
“Hey! Sorry! I’ll be a little late. I’m picking someone up on my way to you, I hope you don’t mind!” a new text read, and he let’s out a frustrated sigh.
Fifteen minutes pass and the sun is almost down. He’s standing on the corner by the lamppost and a car - a sandy coupe - pulls up and comes to a stop. The passenger-side window rolls down and a voice breaks the twilight with a playful “how much, stud?”
He smiles and shakes his head. “More than you can afford.”
The dark-haired driver raises a challenging eyebrow. “Now, how would you know what I can afford?” She smirks.
He doesn’t respond. He just smiles and admires the light from the dashboard reflected in her dark eyes.
“It’s cold as holy fuck out here,” she holds eye contact. “Where ya headed, handsome?”
“Home, hopefully. Anytime now.”
“Need a ride?”
He shifts his weight on one foot and says “I’ve been waiting for one, actually. She should be here soon.”
“Not exactly - I’m sorry - do you do this often?”
“Pick up strangers.”
“Only the really cute ones,” she winks at him. He chuckles and shakes his head in disbelief. “How long you been waiting?” she asks.
“Uhm…” he checks his watch by force of habit. “Four hours or so…”
“Or so.” He shifts his weight to his other foot and looks off down the road hoping his ride will finally show up and stop making him look and feel like an idiotic asshole.
“Well, stud, ya got patience. I’ll give you that much. But damn,” she shakes her head and shift-turns to face him a bit better. “Four hours? Fuck that.”
“And you’re offering me a ride?”
She takes a deep breath in and her eyes go wide with mock disbelief in herself. She exhales “I guess I am!”
“You don’t even know me,” he looks at her like she’s crazy.
She hits a button to her left and the doors click unlocked.
He looks off down the road. The sun is almost gone behind the horizon. The sky is dark and empty like the streets below it. “How can I trust you?” he says to her with playful doubt in his voice.
“You can’t. I might be a weirdo with a knife ready to cut your hitchhiking heart out.”
Their eyes are locked and his heart is racing with frustration and simultaneous excitement. He gnaws on the inside of his cheek and looks back down the street. He pulls out his phone and checks it again to find nothing.
“You can’t keep waiting out here all day,” the strange female warned him. “Something tells me you’ll freeze to death waiting for your scheduled lift.”
He tucks the phone back in his pocket and looks off down the road one last time. He opens the passenger door with a “eh, what the hell.”
“Yay!” she cheers him on as he takes his seat.
He tries to move the seat back but it’s as far as it’ll go. “Tight fit. At least it’s warm, though.”
She snickers. “I’ll not make a vagina joke.”
He laughs. “I think you just did.”
The car pulls away from the corner of Downer and Lockhart.
“Please don’t cut my heart out, though,” he says.
There’s a brief silence and his chauffeur replies with a wary “ditto.”
I’ve been watching Black Snake Moan and Silence of the Lambs a lot and getting real confused on how to properly go about relationships as of late but i’m starting to think these guys aren’t entirely off-base with their techniques….