currently listening to: all apologies -nirvana
i shivered uncontrollably while waiting on my mom to pick me up. scouring serramonte boulevard, there was no sign of the red minivan that would take me home. it was a place i was looking less & less forward to returning to as the years had gone by. the purple & green longsleeve shirt that my cousin bernie had lent me the night before did little to keep the chill out. i took another deep drag off my newport to distract me from the cold & the inevitability of my circumstances. the kid that seemed to steal the show at our AA meetings came sauntering out, more graceful than i'd expected him to move for someone who's world seemed to have been turned upside down. throughout the whole meeting he did nothing but express his admonition for how fucked up his home life was. he could have been physically beautiful to me, had i dropped the implicit ideals that had been forced down my throat throughout my adolescence about what truly defined beauty. alas, his face was covered in scars, from what i gathered was acne; & he wore a plain black jacket that was 2 sizes too small for him & at least a decade out of style according to the members only club. he wore baggy jeans & his baseball cap twisted backwards, with some shirt he probably lifted from goodwill. this was typical fare for the skater scene back then, something i had not been a part of since i gave up riding bikes & playing nintendo for smoking out of bongs & getting dick.
something about his voice turned me on to him immediately when he spoke. he spoke with such confidence, such conviction ... about how much of a fuck up he was, & how his only plan in life was to continue to fuck up until he managed to sabotage everyone around him in his life that played a part in fucking up his life. i wanted to be him. i wanted to hold his hand and tell him everything was not going to be okay, but that we could maybe be together & that that would maybe make things okay in the end.
i was continually possessed wth fleeting thoughts like this about so many people that came in and out of my life, & if i had any regrets, i had wished that each & everyone of these individuals that i had fantasized about knew this about me. my ego had me believing that somehow my offering of sexual obsession would make up for every shitty thing that had occurred in a stranger's life, & that everything would be magically perfect once they got an opportunity to get a taste of me & mine. i guess i was just that fucking clueless sometimes.
his voice was surprisingly deep. he kept his head down as he spoke for the most part. i allowed my gaze to linger any time i saw a chance that his eyes might meet mine, but the connection never took.
yet here, outside kaiser permanente, opportunity struck. he lit a cigarette, & offered me his jacket when he saw me shivering like a dope fiend. my braids were flying everywhere in the wind, & i could smell the freshly dyed aroma of clairol brand's blue black still permeating itself into my scalp. i told him no thanks, it was an ugly jacket & again, 2 sizes too fucking small.
but he insisted & i wanted some part of him to be with me. i wanted his name to be something majestic, like ocean or some shit. he lived in pacifica, or at least that's where he claimed his stomping grounds to be. if i'm going to have a ritual fantasy with this stranger, his name's gotta have a ring to it.
he made eye contact with me, for a long time. i looked down nervously, suddenly becoming self conscious of what he might think of me had he knew what was running through my head.
"i really like your outfit", he gestured with the cigarette still in his hand, waving casually at my dickies pants & striped shirt getup. "do you need a ride anywhere?".
i would have loved to jumped in whatever vehicle he was going to be in & be taken to his world, but instead i squeaked that i was waiting on my mom to pick me up as i shoved my hand through the jacket he handed me. it smelled like smoke and nothing more.
i kept that jacket & that secret with me for years, & i bet if i looked long enough i'd probably find it stuffed away with the million & one other articles of clothing i have stashed away in our attic.