I don’t know when
you became a
on the sidewalk
when you once
through the cracks.
A drawing taped to my trunk forever.
Sorry I Was Boring
We split at the fork;
you had chosen the other
and now you’re both dead.
I wish you’d chosen me–
I had been doing a good job
of keeping you alive.
Me, on Laura’s friends in the aftermath of her death: It’s as if all her most reprehensible traits broke away from her body and became individual people.
Laura and I met while I was on a date with a friend of hers at Rocky’s Replay. Laura and I began making fun of this guy together. We were both kind of shy, but in that moment, we wanted to hear each other. We (Laura, me, and some boys–like always, haha) then spent the entire weekend together drinking beers, smokin’ cigs, playing RISK, and watching Donnie Darko on repeat, for some reason. She was 19. I was 23. Laura became THAT girl friend to me when we walked to the store together the next day, our first time alone. We were trading hats and yelling at cars and loving everything about the other.
Oh Laura. The adventures we shared. You may not have always been a “good egg,” but I loved you so much and only ever wanted to keep you from getting hurt any further. I’m sorry for how I acted at the end of our friendship. I was a woman scorned. I don’t know how to live with the fact that you died hating me when you were such an important part of my life.
She was always losing her ID.
On my way to work this morning, driving to some damn middle school on the other side of town, a Laura memory came to mind. It was probably 2006? I don’t know. I had broken up with and kicked out my live in boyfriend and my roommate decided to go live with the first girl who’d fuck him after losing all that weight (we broke the lease), so I was all alone, living in a two bedroom apartment. Oh, and I had quit my job, was moving back home, and going to finish my degree, so I was riding out the last couple weeks before I had to return to “real life.” Naturally, Laura was living there too and we went on a bit of a bender right up until the morning my parents would be there to help me move home. I was also kind of dating this idiot guy I met online. He’d come over occasionally and buy me things, but he was pretty terrible so Laura and I convinced him to buy us acid one night (and he got to DO the acid with us–everybody wins).
Now the thought that always comes to my mind takes place early the next morning, coming down. We were sitting, huddled under a blanket together (because it was freezing outside) on the “floor” of my balcony on the third floor that overlooked the complex retention pond. I remember the sky was so blue and clear and so full of stratocumulus that it made the sky look freaky. It was beautiful and amazing, but all Laura and I could talk about was how we could murder and hide the body of the doofus guy who bought us drugs. He needed to go. He wasn’t fun and we had been making fun of him the whole evening. We were outside, in the bright and the cold, trying to get away from him. The sick/hilarious part was how serious we were in whispers. And then it became hilarious and somthing we could totally do. We had to come up with a convincing lie to get him to leave, while he was still on acid. We did not care. He was ruining our good time and I realized I hated him at some point during the night, like you do on drugs. I don’t rememeber what we told him, but he left and the rest of the day was spent (on acid) running errands and going to the DMV to replace Laura’s ID so we could end our week with piercings.
Later that night, my car was broken into and my stereo/ipod stolen. But that’s…another story. I’ve never had more adventures then when Laura was around. Her and I had a way of making even the worst ideas sound great.
A very old story I wrote for a class I couldn’t even attempt to edit now. I hope my writing has improved. Stop me if you’ve heard this one, but it’s important.
No Time for the Hemingway House
We had four bags of grass, three pounds of mushrooms, a small baggie of Ketamine, one MDMA double stack, an infinite supply of Ohio acid, a pack of cigarettes apiece, and one indiscriminate chill pill (because when you’re jumping out of a plane, you should always pack a parachute). All this in my fucking aqua LeBaron, along with pipes, papers, a large, ornate, bongo, and a hippie named Weebles who had successfully conned two naïve girls into an impromptu trip from Orlando to the Keys in the middle of the night. The decision was obvious after seven hits; we would go, we would stay, we would be taken care of, we would go in my car, we would be home in a few days, and we would never get this opportunity again.
We had nothing else going on. Laura and I were mirroring each other across town, both moving back in with our parents after separate attempts at self-reliance. She was 19 and could be excused. I was 23 and relegated to my little brother’s old room. No jobs, no school, no boyfriends.
Laura’s new internet friend said he was walking to the Citgo for cigarettes and if she wanted to hang out, she should meet him there. I’d never let her go alone. When I find one of the few girls in the world I can stand for more than five minutes, I’d like for her to not be brutally raped and pillaged. Plus, recreational drug use was mentioned in the evening’s itinerary and Laura and I form something of a symbiotic relationship in those situations. Some people freak out when they do drugs in an unfamiliar environment; we freak out if we’re separated for only a car ride.
I pulled into the Citgo and we immediately spotted him. The patchwork bags he lived out of were slung over his shoulders, a faded tie dyed shirt and cargo shorts hung off his 90 pound body, a glass-blown turtle hanging from the fattest hemp necklace I’d ever seen, and those God damned Crocs. His hair was messy and stupid looking, growing back from the dreads he destroyed while tripping one night. The character of the hippie was always such a romantic historical figure to me. I always wanted to be a hippie; always thought I was born in the wrong time and place. I don’t like wearing shoes or washing my hair and I really only shave my legs when I have to. I have no problem living out of my purse and I couldn’t pass a drug test if a grown up job at a psych hospital depended upon it. But they wouldn’t have me; I would gnaw a freshly killed gazelle on the Serengeti Plain if given the chance, I love my bed and shower, and I would rather puree cochlea than listen to Phish, The Grateful Dead, and especially Dave Matthews.
After a violation of my personal boundaries with stranger hugs, we decided Starbucks would be the evening’s headquarters. Venti everythings with four hits on a patio in the dark. Gel tabs taste sweeter than blotter, easier to eat and have catch up with you later. Then we were in my car, smoking pot in a parking lot.
“Eat this.” Three more hits.
“That guy sees us.” We moved to another parking lot.
“You want to do me a favor and drive me to the Keys to sell some shit and get a brother out of jail?” We’re not prepared.
“I’ll buy you everything you need: gas, food, cigarettes.” Prostitution came to mind.
“It’ll be cool. I’ve got friends there we can stay with.” This seemed like a bad idea, but a fun idea. Laura and I have a history of plotting and can make anything look like the master plan. The deciding conversation was telepathic, because thinking alone was hard and speaking words was harder. He drove first because I couldn’t and Laura never learned how.
I don’t remember much of the ride, only that my car had no stereo since it had been stolen the week prior and the wires snaking from the dashboard made us sad and turned us inward. I sat in the backseat, star gazing and watching the water, while Laura rode shotgun, lost inside the trails of peripheral lights and a whirling CD walkman. By the time I was ready to drive, we were there.
Seeing fucking dolphins jump out of the water against the horizon while driving on a two lane bridge, on acid, at sunrise, over water so many colors blue your head would explode is very distracting and makes you cry and almost believe in God and your heart feels like it’s going to launch from your chest and lodge itself under the brake pedal and maybe you’ll plunge into the water and get to die there in that moment.
It was as if I had never been to the beach before. I climbed the rock jetty out into the ocean and smoked a cigarette while Laura made trees in the sand. My cell phone had died. Weebles couldn’t get a hold of “the family” on his. We were marooned and the drugs were wearing off. The situation was getting tense. Reality was setting in.
“Let’s go get you two some bathing suits.” Consignment shop. Back to the beach. More hippies, a loud girl with a straw through her ear, key bumps, guitars, and sing alongs. I never knew hippies liked Poison so much. There were cute boys with dreads everywhere and they all seemed to have blue eyes.
“Eat this.” We may never go home. We may die here. We might die here. I wonder if our moms are worried. We could live like this, right? Sleeping outside and panhandling in downtown Key West? Casting off the doldrums of civilized society and emulating our Haight-Ashbury brethren, spreading the word of love and peace? We could be Generation Y hippies of the new Vietnam era.
Res ipsa loquitur.