Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Here is what they don’t talk about…
Him and her sitting on the couch together, him leaning back and relaxing and her leaning forward back curved as she stared straight into the TV fascinated with the film they were watching. They had been drinking, smoking, laughing, but none of that can be held as an excuse for what happened. He knew full well and good what he was doing. And when she turned to ask him to light her cigarette or to pass the bowl or to get a drink or whatever she was doing. He was there and he kissed her. He knew her well enough that he knew where her lips would be and he caught them. She didn’t recoil, she didn’t gasp, her body slipped into a natural comfort that he had not ever seen. In that moment they both explored the things that they had never known about each other. But it was just a moment and as suddenly as he had taken her into his arms he sent her back out. He leaned back smiling but nervous. Her body returned to its natural posture and they felt the silence waft around the room, the memory of their kiss sill floating above their heads like a friendly ghost.
When the silence was too much to bear he asked her to pass his drink. She did and asked him for a light and he accommodated. That night they talked about video games, and TV shows and what famous people they would fuck. But they would never talk about what had happened. Not that night or the next or ever.
They wouldn’t face each other.
Not because they couldn’t look into each other’s eyes but because they weren’t ready yet and when they were they would know. Until then they lay facing away their backs together, the curve of her ass against the small of his back. He could feel her deep breathes that pushed against his body like waves and she could feel his shallow pants that could have rocked her to sleep.
Neither of them spoke. Not because they had nothing to say; that had never been a problem for them they could both speak at lengths on any subject and both adored hearing the others opinions on anything. But tonight was different. Because tonight was the last night before she left. She had finally gotten the break she had been looking for a small time job at a big time magazine and she was heading out. They had known for a while and decided it best to ignore the future and live in the now. But now the future was only hours away definite and immediate. It was ever present and heavy in the air. To him it felt as if they were waiting for some beast to beat down the door, tear it to pieces and drag her away. But she wasn’t being dragged she was going and she was happy. And he was happy for her he supposed.
She was excited. She looked forward to working under some of the best in her field and learning from them. She had always had talent and felt this was her chance to blossom fully as an artist. But she would miss him and it was affecting her. She would be walking and taking photos of the world around, trying to catch beauty with a box and a button. And suddenly she would feel an intense sadness come over her. A feeling of longing and emptiness that would cause her whole body to tense in her back and shoulders and hands. Tears would form in her eyes and while she did not weep, the tears that fell were bloated and heavier than most and stained the sidewalk when they landed.
He had not cried. And he would not cry until she was gone. It was a promise he had made to himself when she first mentioned she was leaving and so far he was keeping it.
He was the first to speak. He turned to her and asked if she wanted to smoke a bowl and she smiled and said yes. While he packed the green, they talked about old things. The past, things they had done or said, old jokes that had made them laugh, people they had loved or who had flaked out on them. And then she said. It’s going to feel different having to get used to you talking on the phone. And he said that talking on the phone isn’t as bad as she made it out to be. But as he said the words he thought of the things a phone could not provide, he wouldn’t be able to see her when she spoke, wouldn’t be able to watch her lips move to form the words or watch her hands as she played with her hair. Small things he enjoyed about her as a person he wouldn’t be able to see and his heart sank. She saw him retreat inwards and lured him back out with the first hit. They smoked and coughed and laughed. After the final hit she fell back and stretched out, her back curved up off of the bed her legs straightened out and her whole body tensed and it reminded him of the poses the girls make on magazine covers. Her feet were near his lap. Pressing and poking against his knees the way cats kneed at new couches with their paws. He hated feet but before he could think hers were in his hand and he was rubbing his fingers over them. She enjoyed the rubdown as it happened, as did he. His hatred of feet hadn’t left and it wasn’t that he thought hers were different, he simply didn’t mind. When it was over she smiled and said thank you and he was silent. The hours ticked by and they were together and happy. But finally she could not take it. She loved him but resented his inability to talk about what was on his mind. So she sat up and looked at him. His eyes were heavy and she could tell he was sad. He didn’t know it but his extremes of happy and sad were so different that when experiencing them he looked like two completely different people and she knew them both well. She broached the subject carefully, running her fingers down his back to bring a simple smile to his face before she asked.
“Are we ever going to talk about what happened?” She asked. Under her fingers she could feel his spine straighten. “We don’t have to she said, I just want to know if we’re going to talk about it?”
Her words had surprised him but in the way that Christmas surprises us, how we wait for it for what feels like forever but when it finally comes the relief is astounding.
She watched and he was silent for a moment. He was thinking. She thought he was thinking about whether or not to talk about it. He thought she was wishing that he didn’t want to talk about it. Didn’t want to ruin the night.
She was actually thinking about the nights she spent alone unable to sleep wishing only for the quick pants of someone breathing next to her to rock her to sleep.
He was thinking about all of the times he had been angry and was left wanting nothing more than soft fingers down his back to bring a smile to his face. He thought of all of the things he wished that he had said the night he had kissed her. And they flooded his mind so quickly the words jammed together and created nonsense.
She watched him as he struggled to put his words together, but nothing ever left his mouth. Finally he let out a sigh and simply smiled.
Before they knew it the sun was shining through the window and it was time for her to go. When she left he held her and he held her long. She cried her tears were silent but she left stains on his shirt. When he held her he didn’t let her go until he felt her finally pull away.
They didn’t say goodbye, instead they said see you soon. And though she was ready to leave her feet didn’t move towards the door until the cabdriver slammed his heavy fists on the horn of the car.
She turned to leave and he said that he would miss her. She knew he was crying inside his body nearly shaking holding it in. She leaned in one last time and kissed him on the neck. He kissed her back and they both felt what they felt at the same time. But she still turned and got into that cab and went to her small time job at a big time magazine. And he still closed the door to his place and cried like a baby.
And they would talk and stay close. And they were successful and happy. And she explored the world and he got married. And sooner rather than later that night was lost to many other nights in their pasts. But not lost. For sometimes when she sat looking over her newest photos or smoking alone her mind would turn to that night she turned to ask him a question she couldn’t remember and was surprised by him. And she remembered how the stresses she kept in her had melted away. And even though he had a wife and kids and was successful and happy. Sometimes when he was alone driving to and from work. He would think about how she tasted, and how soft her skin was under his hand, and how strong he felt in that moment. When for the first and only time they both knew what it felt like to be home.
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
My Great Grandfather, Allen was not white
but his clothes were white, his job was white, his skin was white
But his eyes were brown like mine
At Marshall Fields he controlled the elevators
he would laugh with the men and wink at the girls
where he broke bread with the rich in their privileged world
but at the company picnic
when everyone else was pulling out their family pics
ghosts, pale as ghosts they looked when he pulled out his
dark black skin, lovely thick brown hair, full lips
the manager broke the silence
YOU'RE MARRIED TO A NIGGER!?
Allen threw himself into a rage. Don't you know he screamed his face turning red
That I, who you said was your friend; am black
We'll shit... said the manager
We never would have Hired you If we had known that.
My Mother was not white
her school was white, she spoke white and yes her skin was white
But her eyes were brown like mine
she was trained to be the perfect secretary
Could do everything for every need
she worked there for five years and then she wanted more
she said promote me and see what i can do
her bosses who loved her so would do no such thing
they loved her as a secretary saw her as nothing else
My mother exploded
I will not, she said
spend my life working under you
making up your papers when there are things that i would like to do
when i took this job, I was told that i could advance
and now that I'm ready you won't even give me a chance.
her bosses looked puzzeled after my mothers loud attack
Well Shit...they said
we never would have hired you if we had known that
I am not white
I don't rap or dance or dress like blacks are supposed to dress
but my skin is plenty dark
I work at my school, toiling behind a desk
My boss will once and awhile pop in and during one of our chats
Look at you and the way that you talk
Look at how you dress and the way that you walk
You act far to white to be a black man too
Hell even I must be blacker than you
The anger that I feel as my face turns red.
This will not stand i scream
You will not steal my race No not today.
I've spent too much time for it to be taken away
I won't tolerate a white man telling me I'm not black
We'll shit...said my boss
We never would have hired you if we had known that.
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
A aspiring musician, now with myspace can literally watch his fanbase grow on a fan by fan basis. He can contribute to his fans and effictively increase his own success and how he is viewed by those fans.
With this comes something new that maybe no other generation has had to deal with before. The knowledge of our own possible success and the choice to stand up and take it or let it pass.
Now our generation of hero can see how the world will view him before he saves the day, and thus make the decision maybe to not save the day. Or (and i find this to be much more common) have an anxiety over what it would mean to save the day. And thus fail to save the day.
We can experience an anxiety over our ability to succeed and thus scare ourselves from succeeding. Many friends and improv companies I know, suffer from this very affliction of anxiety.
But what to do. I believe if you see that path, following it should not cause anxiety only an excitement. An excitement in history making, how does Barack Obama feel knowing that for the rest of America's History, He will be one of the most important figures of our country. Right up there with George Washington and Abe Lincoln. Now all he has to do is not screw it up.
What happens when an improv company has the chance to be the next iO or Second City. When people have the chance to be the next Del Close or Bill Murray. What happens when you get the chance to make history.
I say take it.
Always Take it.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Holding his breath for a minute and then letting it slowly creep out for the next two. The breeze blew over him and the grass swayed back and forth under its power crashing into him like waves. He was completely frozen, unmovable. The dirt on his face crinkled and cracked like a hard mask. He kept his eyes closed making his complex blue eyes invisible, along with the world which disappeared into his darkness. His ears perked up. Besides the breeze there was little noise to distract from the happenings of the world around him; the sound of the birds in the trees as they called to each other, the buzzing of the flies and nats that flew around and landed on his head so still it could have been mistaken as a rock or dead animal. He listened for the sound of cars to whiz by on the nearby highway, he dreaded hearing the sound of a car decelerating. Of the engine clicking off and the sound of car doors opening and slamming shut. But not only had he not heard these but he hadn't heard the sound of a car for nearly 4 hours. Warrenville was a small town and after 11 the streets and businesses went dead. So much so that it had become a local town saying that anyone out in Warrenville after 10 had nothing but mischief on his mind. The guilelessness of the saying was overshadowed only by its truth.
For he was up to no good.
Slowly his hands pressed down on the Earth as he pushed himself up. Revealing his features slowly to the moonlight. First his shortly cut black hair, then his sharp shark fin nose. His thin neck which branched out to a small frame supported by wiry legs. As an alpha male he was unimpressive but when he finally opened his eyes, it was as if someone had just turned on a lamp. His surroundings became lighter, the darkness of the wilderness lost some of its mystery as things came into a soft focus.
His eyes fell immediately on his goal. Ahead of him by a football field he could barely make it out but he knew it was there. Six by Ten feet long 13 feet deep, he had been there before. He knew the land around it perfectly down the gopher hole he had fallen into on his first visit twisting his ankle in the process. Now the land was as familiar to him as his dreams and like his dreams he ventured here at will and without fear or reluctance.
He lifted his feet and began the march. He steps sunk into the ground and he left imprints of his feet in the soil. He knew that by tomorrow men in suits with badges and dogs would be examining these prints. Following his actions now in the future wondering what was going through his head. They would be surprised to learn he wasn't thinking about his family or friends, but their work and how futile their efforts would prove.
His march picked up speed, he was losing patience for the show and wanted the act done and over with. He was tired of thinking about it and simply wanted it. His feet clomping down hard with each step, hard steps; tomorrow they will think someone (or thing) was chasing him. And perhaps they would be right. Perhaps he was running from what his life had been. From the hour to hour day to day routine of life and from the obligations he no longer wished to have. From the pressures and pains of the past that had cut him so deeply that he could never seem to be far enough away from them. From the insecurities of himself that were constantly holding him back from his true potential. There was no question about it, he was certainly running. And if everything went to plan nothing would ever catch him and he would be free forever.
Sweat poured down his face and turned brown from collecting the dirt that had caked on his face. He was scared. Tonight would be the end of a life he dispised. Tonight would be the last time anyone looked at him and called him Fred Turner.
Tonight Fred Turner was going to die.
And he couldn't wait.
Friday, October 17, 2008
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Years ago, this nation was torn on an issue. Back then that issue was "state's rights" to be more specific it was about State's rights to own slaves. This argument which now is an ethical and moral argument at the time was simply an economic issue. The issue being that the South's economy was based on the bedrock of free labor. Well you don't have to be a historian to know how this argument was ended. With war.
I feel like now as a country have found ourselves at another ideological argument. That argument being something that might even be more important than the one that took place 200 years ago. This is an ideological argument about the future of our country. It is an argument that has been brought up and kept in the air by this upcoming election.
Among all of the mud that has been flung back and forth during this campaign season, we can really see that McCain actually hates Obama. I constantly get a feeling that McCain looks over at Obama and you can literally feel the hate shooting out of his eyes. It's like he looks over at Obama and in his head he's saying "What the fuck is going on. I'm an old white man I shouldn't have to fight this hard to become President."
This statement this sense of entitlement is something that has held back America for years. Women, Different Races, Gays, there is a whole country of people who believe that at the end of the day this country does not have their back. And the truth is that at the end of the day, it doesn't. We are a country so good at discrimination that many Americans still have the audacity that say that it is no longer an issue. Many times I have heard people say that the very fact that Obama has gotten this far is a testament to the progress that this country has made. And I agree completely. However, Many times I have been told during this election that America simply isn't ready for a black president, despite the fact that he is a man who is more intelligent and more thoughtful than a President that as a country we voted for TWICE.
Right now America is at a stand still. Because though it has been working slowly the system of thought that "you can achieve whatever you want in America if you work hard" is finally working. The walls that were built all over the social and political map of America have been torn down enough that this is something we can actually think about and now those with the power are scrambling to stop it from happening. Over these past months we have seen every dirty trick possible played to try and stop the Speeding train of Obama. Anything that could have been said or done to stop him from succeeding has been done. Because if he wins, that means they lose. If he wins, it means that finally the country is in the hands of Americans instead of being in the hands of big business. We have for years lived the lie of believing that this was a country where we could effectively change the way we live our day to day lives making it so that the poor on the street were more important than the rich in the castle.
For years in France the rich let the poor pick food off the streets while they enjoyed every luxury. Eventually the people revolted. I'm not calling for a Revolution but I think that it is already here. And we are all involved, we just don't know it yet.
We finally have a chance to make this country everything it should be. We finally have a chance to shut down a history of lies and repeatedly being ignored by those in office.
I don't know what my point is. It isn't a call to action. But it is an exasperated sigh. I am sick of lies. I am sick of watching women suffer under a system that favors men. Of watching an unintelligent woman be turned into a political pin up girl for people who tell us that masturbation is wrong. I'm tired of the racial, sexual and social ignorance of America.
McCain said it over and over again in the debates he said the American people are angry. And we are. I am. I'm pissed. It's why the average American doesn't want to talk about politics at parties, we're all pissed. But I think we'd be much less pissed if we just took the time to take chains off and live, all of us as free Americans.
The truth is...that I have no fear that Obama won't win. But I do fear that this country will forever have this big issue of fearing intelligence of celebrating the average and of taking a nihilistic stance in a country that demands for the involvement of everyone. We don't have to be slaves to the system. The tools are there.
I'm just sick of being disappointed.
So I was talking to my dad about this. Kevin Smith is catching shit because of the title of his movie. Apparently people can't over the fact that the word "porno" is in his title.
"According to CNN, Fox Sports decided to drop a series of ads which were scheduled to run during Los Angeles Dodgers games. Apparently the spots were dropped at the team’s request when viewers complained. A child-development expert filed a complaint in Boston. The city of Philadelphia refused bus stop advertising, deeming the word porno “highly sexually suggestive and not suitable for general audiences.”"
ARE YOU FUCKING KIDDING ME
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
The four girls handed us white bags to hold whatever items we might want to take with us throughout our night. One look around the place was all that was needed to let me know that these bags were not being used by anyone and they were promptly thrown out. The girls whose smiles were as soft and beautiful as rose petals also had a short attention span as their attention never lingered on any man for too long. We made our way around the club. Music, provided by a fat light skinned rapper who would have as much trouble getting attention from any lady as anyone else, filled the club. The few women that were present that weren't working, danced in the center of the dance floor. The men stood shoulder to shoulder on the outside of the dance floor, watching, drinking, nodding their heads along with the beat.
It was a sausage fest there was no doubt about that.
The dance floor went up 3 floors. The second and third floors not so much full spaces, as they were a gated off walkway that ran along the perimeter of the floor. These gates would sometimes protrude outwards allowing for a small platform where people could stand out and look down on the party while they danced above it. The few women who could not make their way to the dance floor would stay at these platforms for the whole night. Hanging off of one of these platforms was a large sign which had the American flag painted on it. Over the picture of the flag in big black letters it read: "SUPPORT YOUR LOCAL SEX WORKERS". God Bless America
A fog machine which expelled far too much manufactured fog every 20 minutes or so, solidified our decision to leave the dance floor and check out the rest of the party.
The Rest of the party as it turned out, was a sit down bar. Where couples and groups sat together and conversed in conversation at such a low volume that the room although completely full, always seemed to be extremely empty.
Next to the sit down bar was the artists room. Where you could buy art from tattoo artists or enter a raffle to get a free tattoo right there on the spot. This quickly became my goal for the night.
Next to the artists room was the EXPO floor. Which was actually the same room as the front room where we were met by the four lovely girls. The room was filled with (besides the girls) two tables. That's right. One table was the "sex table" which was filled with mostly vibrators; including, "The Challenge" AKA the worlds largest usable vibrator. Which was roughly the size of those gigantic crayon banks that parents give their children. It was a dark purple and was being eyed and weighed by a portly bald man in dark clothes and round glasses. He looked exactly like the guy you would picture alone at the SEXPO holding and admiring the worlds largest usable Vibrator. The rest of the table was filled with whips and anal-beads. The table was being run by two women both of whom were wide set and wearing blue button up polo's. A dangerous blond wearing a leather get up which lead your eyes to her Ass walked around the outside of this table trying to get people to subscribe to Hustler. As she walked men would stop and talk with her. They would get their friends to take pictures with her while they pointed at her breasts or cheered. Some men would wrap their hands around her waist so she couldn't keep moving. Skillfully she would slink into their arms and twirl her hair while they pretended to live the life where she was a woman they could go home with. But by the end of the conversation (if you can call it that) they were all signing their names and becoming members of HUSTLER VIDEO and then she would send them on their way.*
Across from the sex table was the smoking table. A whole table filled with nothing but pieces, bongs, bowls, one hitters, and pipes. All glass all beautiful all expensive. This quickly becomes my favorite table and also leads me to think I should cut back on smoking when I'm at the Sexpo but the idea of getting high is what has gotten me excited. The two men running are dressed in suits to look professional, but are so stoned that it has about the same effect as someone driving a Ferrari with a booster seat. Apparently these two guys are college drop out best friends who decided to open a smoke shop in the suburbs and have been doing pretty well for themselves ever since.* The men were so stoned that I considered pocketing one of the pieces while they stared off into the secrets of the universe but decided it went against the basic code of things.
Next to the bar was a table for Lovers Lane which was watched over by five ladies in nighties and that table was placed right next to another table called NORML which you can check out here http://norml.org/ All they gave out were bumper stickers and chains. I did have to question whether or not 4 tables justified an EXPO. But after 3 rum and cokes the question quickly left my mind.
We searched upstairs to see the whip and chain section. A section which was roped off and not ventured in once by me or my company. Watched over by three women who can best be described as the witches from Macbeth dressed in leather tied up willing victims and whipped and punished them to their hearts content. One woman, whose face I never saw was bound up almost completely with leather and electrical tape. She hung in the air spinning slowly all of her body bunched and contorted, looking more like a corpse in the movie seven than someone having a good time at a club. She wouldn't be untied until the end of the Expo 4 hours from when I first laid eyes on her.
Making our way downstairs we found ourselves back at the dance floor where someone had set up stripper poles. Three of the four women who greeted us at the door were dancing and spinning around the poles while men circled round and snapped pictures. Seedy cheers rang up while the girls spun around the poles, having fun and pretending that no one was there. One girl tried to do a particularly hard move. Spinning around the pole with no feet on the ground, sending her feet to be parallel to the ground. But the makeshift stripper pole wasn't made for such a talent. The pole slipped and fell sending gasps through the crowd as she spun and barely saved herself from falling over her extremely large heels. This lead to them climbing on the ceiling which is when i took the picture that I described earlier.
Not much later, Gus the man that ran the whole show got up on stage and along with a air horn announced that the party had started which was news to me since I had been there for two hours. It was time for the raffle, we all had tickets in the audience and had the chance to win, free clothes purchases from lovers lane or my coveted free tattoo. However after calling a ticket which no one responded too, Gus decided it would be best if the hottest girls in the building came up and shook their asses for the prizes. Now I want you to think about this...
The hottest girls in the building, at the sexpo. All of them are working. So the girls who were handing out bags get on stage and start shaking their asses. In effect they win every prize leaving the other 1000 people with tickets shit out of luck. Apparently spike and I are the only ones who realize this or care.
PART 3 or What Happens when Midwest turns to West Coast.
Monday, October 6, 2008
Monday, September 29, 2008
2. Diamonds or pearls? Can't I have both? Ok, diamonds, then.
3. What was the last film you saw at the cinema? Double feature....Nights in Rodanthe and Burn After Reading
4. What is your favorite TV show? Grey's Anatomy...yeah, that's right!
5. What do you usually have for breakfast? Coffee or tea and a Nutrigrain bar
6. What is your middle name? Michelle
7. What food do you dislike? Cow brains
8. What is your favorite CD at moment? One my son made for me of my favorite songs...and I'm pissed someone took it out of my car!
9. What kind of car do you drive? A PT Cruiser that has been a lifesaver for us.
10. Favorite sandwich? A reuban, if it's made right.
11. What characteristic do you despise? If I can't trust you, you're not worth my time.
12. Favorite item of clothing? Soft, large sweaters that I can wear in the Fall.
13. If you could go anywhere in the world on vacation, where would you go? If just me and my husband, Paris. For my entire family, a week at Disney World, and then another in Key West.
14. Favorite brand of clothing? Anything from Anthropologie.
15. Where would you retire to? Sea Island, Georgia
16.What was your most recent memorable birthday? 50 -- my whole family was there.
17. Favorite sport to watch? football or track
18. Farthermost place you are sending this? Georgia
19. Person you expect to send it back first? Maybe my niece. Definitely not my sister, Karen. (Yeah, you Karen!)
20. When is your birthday? June 20th
21. Are you a morning person or a night person? Definitely morning, watching the sun rise and feeling the cool air. Nothing better in life.
22. What is your shoe size? 10
23. Pets? Buddy, the dog (who looks like a mop)
24. Any new and exciting news you'd like to share with us? Starting my Master's program Thursday evening!
25. What did you want to be when you were little? Someone who was loved.
26. How are you today? Still looking for it.
27. What is your favorite candy? Baby Ruth
28. What is your favorite flower? Rose, like my best friend
29. What is a day on the calendar you are looking forward to? Oct. 25th, pumpkin carving party I'm putting together for my block
30. What is your full name? Katheryn Michelle Marie Edwards
31. What are you listening to right now? People working on the other end of the office.
32. What was the last thing you ate? A danish from Starbucks
33. Do you wish on stars? Sure do
34. If you were a crayon, what color would you be? Claret
35. How is the weather right now? cool and overcast
36. The first person you spoke to on the phone today? Someone looking for my boss who was late for a meeting. Again.
37. Favorite soft drink? A&W Root Beer
38. Favorite restaurant? Ambria's, but its closed now.
39. Real hair color? Dark brown
40. What was your favorite toy as a child? Easy bake oven. Always wanted a Barbie, though, but we couldn't afford it and the accessories.
41. Summer or winter? Fall
42. Hugs or kisses? Hugs
43. Chocolate or Vanilla? Chocolate
44. Coffee or tea? Hot chocolate
45. Do you want your friends to email you back? Only if they want to.
46. When was the last time you cried? Watching Nights in Rodanthe
47. What is under your bed? My wedding gown, covers for folding chairs, and I'm starting to suspect a present from the dog!
48. What did you do last night? Made dinner, washed dishes and watched TV
49. What are you afraid of ? Losing anyone I love
50. Salty or sweet? Sweet...a big piece of chocolate cake
51. How many keys on your key ring? Which one?
52. How many years at your current job? Only 3-1/2 months.
53. Favorite day of the week? Friday nights. The possibilities are endless.
54. How many towns have you lived in? Over 20
55. Do you make friends easily? yes
56. How many people will you send this to? 7
57. How many will respond? Respond?! Heck, they might not even read it!
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Friday, September 26, 2008
I have a picture of this event, only one picture. I can't post it online because frankly I don't know how to get pics from my phone to my comp, but I will do my best to describe the picture now. Everyone in frame is in silhouette including the crowd, which sifts around the outside of the picture like ghosts, the whole shot made possible by a single white blast of light coming from the direct opposite side of the room as my camera phone. This would have caused a white out effect if it hadn't been for what lies in the center of the frame. Blocking out the main source of light and yet at the same time being bathed in it, are two beautiful, curvy women. The first woman hangs from the rafters of the ceiling, her muscles tight, her back curved, her legs pulled up and wide open hanging on either side. In between those legs is another woman, even in the dark the swell of her breasts is evident. Her face is leaning down towards the woman's crotch with the shadow of a tongue bridging the gap between the two.
Even though this picture was taken on my cellphone, the epic nature of the photograph can not be disputed, it single-handedly captures everything that we would expect sexpo is and should be. It has the perfect balance of dramatic staging, lighting, and a broad sexuality without simply being a picture of a flashed cooze (cause let's admit it, in a picture, the come-and-get me-eyes is always hotter than the exposed vajayjay).
Needless to say I'm pretty proud of this picture.
What makes me even more proud of said photograph is the fact that it in no way represents how the sexpo really was; which if it had to be described in a word that word would be...disappointing.
First it needs to be stated that I paid no money whatsoever for these tickets, I literally stumbled upon them and it was my curiosity that lead me there that night. I understood fully that this would be the only Sexpo I would ever go to, so I saw a chance and I took it. However, like someone brought up under a strong Jesuit education I did my research first. The myspace ad, plus multiple flyers, promised the top strippers, escorts, gentleman's clubs, sex stores and clothes that the city had to offer. A flyer that I found on site promised, FREE full nude, full contact dances where you could and I quote:
"Grab tits and ass and lick whipped cream off of the nipples of the lovely ladies."
Now I am one who loves to exaggerate, my mind likes things to be Big and Loud (thank you darla dimple). And so in my mind I painted a picture I'm sure many of the men reading this blog have already painted for themselves. I saw huge floor room filled with red velvet. I saw Eyes Wide Shut, beautiful women everywhere, walking in outfits pulled from men's dirtiest fantasies: schoolgirls, librarians, Cheerleaders, naughty nurses, cops, judges, vice presidents. Women covered in leather, feathers and masks.
I was expecting to walk into backrooms and see piles of flesh squirming together, stomachs and thighs, and asses and hair tangled with other hair. I expected for the floors to be carpeted making it easy for people to kneel down and go at it wherever they saw fit. I expected the place to smell like vodka, sweat, sex and cigarettes.
These expectations killed me.
When I first arrive at Excalibur, Spike and I give each other a look. We have recognized the fact that this is a party being thrown in a club which hasn't been relevant since the day it first opened. But on the way to the club we pass by beautiful woman after beautiful woman and I don't mean beautiful as in Penthouse beautiful, I mean that I'm wearing a T-shirt and green sweatpants and still look good kind of beautiful. That I don't have to show half my tits to get your attention kind of beautiful. And for some reason I think,
"Well look at all these gorgeous classy ladies, surely they are coming from the Chicago Sexpo."
Needless to say they weren't.
When we get to Excaliber, there is no line, no fuss. A few frat boys in button down striped shirts are out front smoking. Spike and I flash our ids to get in. We stroll through the revolving door to see...absolutely nothing. There is music playing and lights twirling, but the chairs the tables, the couches all of them are empty.
"This is the Sexpo?" I think to myself. But my eyes wander to the top of the stairs, leading to the second floor, A set of stairs I failed to observe because of the overwhelming emptiness of the first floor. A big white sign with big red sinful letters reads: Private event upstairs.
Spike and I rush up the stairs and after getting our hands stamped we are greeted by four half naked women. All but one is a blonde (the brunette is the most attractive) they are wearing white tops that are being stretched to the limit by their breasts and short black shorts which don't cover their asses at all.
"Now this is Sexpo"
To be Continued. ...
Tuesday, September 23, 2008
It's been about two full days since I have gotten any sleep and about ten hours since I have eaten anything. Too busy to sleep, too broke to eat. I think its funny that this semester was supposed to be when I beefed up and now its looking like this may be the skinniest I'll ever be. I've already lost 10 pounds.
I can feel myself dragging and that is bad. Good news is I haven't worked this creatively in my life. Everything I do is based in either scripts or Improv. It's my first full immersion year with nothing else to occupy my time. The bad part of that is that I am beginning to doubt my ablities as a writer/director/comedian. Its not that I feel as if my work is poor. But I do feel that it isn't great, that the work is average. To be honest, I don't do well with average. I want everything to be the best it can be so that would deep down murder me inside.
Working on this play for pH is exciting as hell. Its so big and so vast and so epic and out there that I don't think anyone is going to be ready for it.....I just fell asleep while writing this...that's embarressing.
Monday, September 15, 2008
"There's not a word yet, for old friends who've just met"
Everytime without a doubt this line makes me cry like a baby. I feel like in a short time I've found my old friends. Jim Henson always knew how to tug at the heart strings of a young chris edwards. It would seem 22 year old chris is no different.
Yeah that's Alan Alda!
Yeah that's Michael Jackson!
Yeah that's harry belefonte!
Yes it is awesome!
Wednesday, September 10, 2008
1. I am Asst. Coaching the new UIC pHarm Team with Sally Anderson
2. I am Directing the new pH skech show
3. I am Asst. Producing the College Improv Tournament this week (today actually) I have to contact 30 different college improv teams.
4. Re-cast and remember The Guy Show which will be going up at sketchfest.
5. Film the Sketchfest Documentary.
6. Go to School, I only have classes on Monday and Tuesday tho.
7. Get a job so that I can pay off my debts and raise some serious cash.
8. Do pH shows every friday and Saturday.
9. Go to LA by March.
10. Get my shit together.
This is my life right now. It's hectic but it's busy. I guess it means that people out there like what I do. Which is awesome.
Here is a quote I heard today...
You know what, we are all beautiful and unique snowflakes. But in a blizzard who gives a fuck.
Tuesday, September 9, 2008
Anyway, as a treat to those who still randomly check this blog here is a song. I've been listening to this pretty much on repeat since yesterday. If you see me with earphones in my ears this is what i'm listening too...yeah, cause I'm boring like that.
I won't lie. This song makes me think of someone. Not that it matters.
Thursday, April 10, 2008
Heather and I sit inside of a fake house it's blue and purple with pink window coverings. We are five and playing house. She is the mommy and I am the daddy. Her little white fingers wrap around the tiny plastic pieces of bread which I pretend to eat slowly. She asks me "How was work?"
"Looooooonnnnng" I say. "I don't want to talk about it" I say. She begins to tell me about her day and she fades off. I'm too busy feeling the hard bumps in the plastic bread. Stale and overcooked, heather was never a good cook. I look outside the tiny house to the real one, It's blinds are closed.
I put down the bread and say "That was delicious." I reach my hand down and pick at the grass beneath our feet growing in patches of brown and beaten down from our playing . I rip up the grass in bunches and let the little fibers roll in my hand until I drop them all on top of the bread making a tiny mountain of green. The ground of our floor is hard, dirt breaks beneath my tiny legs and the cracks in the dirt hurt my knees when I kneel.
"It's cheaper than carpet"I think and I tear up another handful of grass.
She is beautiful.
This picture was a gift to my father when my parents first got married. There was a time when it was talked about constantly but now we don't pay it much mind.
My name is called from the kitchen. I pretend not to hear so I can keep watching TV but it gets called again and this time my mom sounds angry. I shoot up from the bed and head downstairs to the kitchen.
"What is it mom? Am I in trouble?"
"No your not in trouble" she says.
I'm standing at the top of the backstairs of the house which looks down on our kitchen. I can't really make out the details on my parents faces because I haven't gotten my glasses yet. My dad is sitting at the tab;e in the kitchen with his head in his hands. My mom is standing. She looks up at me and tells me there is something they have to tell me. She looks at my dad as if she expects him to speak.
He doesn't, he just keeps his head buried in between his hands.
My mom lets out a large sigh. She looks back up at me and says...
"You've got a sister Chris." My eyes light up.
"You have a sister?"
"No, she's already alive."
My mind starts racing. An older sister. A child my family had given away long before I was born. An adventurous girl who had traveled the world and lived in New York and drove a car. She had finally hunted us down to be welcomed into our loving family.
"No" my mom said. "She's your younger sister. She's just a baby. She's your half sister."
They send me upstairs. I sit back on my parents bed considering the situation. My mom staring down at me from that picture. Her light skin, her curly brown hair. Her firetruck red lipstick, She's very pretty but the most beautiful thing about her is her eyes. Deep brown and filled with a confidence that is heartbreaking.
"A half sister. How did that happen?"
My father has always been a sensitive man, caring and nice and gentle. A man who when the emotions of life come, doesn't fight them but is overcome by them. On the other hand; I've never seen my mother cry. Her strength and resolve coming from living without a father and a drunken mother.
I can only assume how hard the next few years would be.
They would do a great job of hiding the fights, the separations. There was a time when I slept in the bed with my mom, while my dad slept in my bed. They told me my dad just wanted to see what it was like sleeping in a tiny bed.
It must have been so hard.
For my father knowing that his weakness had almost torn the family apart. For my mother using all of her strength to keep it together.
After that my father and I didn't spend much time together. Some sons lose their childhood experiences with their dad because of work. But mine was a self-inflicted wound. I kept to my room and stayed there for years. I laid in my bed and didn't get out till my feet reached over the end. I watched as my toys got smaller and went to my siblings. I had a brother now.
My family repaired itself but I watched from the outside as it did.
It, as my mothers son, was hard to forgive his trespasses. Though she hid her hurt so well, I had a serious anger in me for years. The years father and sons usually spend playing football or basketball or building model planes or working on cars. We spent those years looking at each other in the reflections of the bathroom mirror while we brushed our teeth. Catching glimpses of the other while we left the house.
We had become like distant relatives or acquaintances who catch eyes on the train but don't get up to speak. My mom once asked me while she drove me to school, if I hated my father.
I told her no, that I understood he just made a mistake. But how do you tell your mom that you just don't care. You don't, you lie and hide it. And we are good at that.
I remember being sixteen and my dad telling me he loved me while he dropped me off at school. The words were so unfamiliar that they stung like gargling vinegar. He sat behind the wheel and looked out at me, his face so worn and old. He looks like me but so many years older.
When i was five he looked young and full of life. On weekends he'd tell me that I was going on a playdate. We'd jump in the Toyota Celica my dad's sports car. My feet would bounce up and down on the carpet while I looked out the window. He and I would sing along to No Diggity and I'd ask him questions he couldn't answer.
We'd drive for so long I could fall asleep three times before we pulled up to a white house with a screen door.
I stood next to my father at the door when it opened a small white woman with dirty blond hair welcomed us in. Her and my father hugged while I raided the fridge. She would ask me how school was and I'd say fine. Playing the game until I was let go.
"Heather's outside if you want to play with her."
I bolted out the back screen door letting it slam shut. The dirty blond closes the back door and I hear the lock snap as I run up to Heather sitting in her plastic house. I look back at the small white house, it's not as pretty as ours, and heather's mom isn't as pretty as mine. The dirty blond and my dad say they are gonna talk while we play outside but the blond closes the blinds in the kitchen so we can't see in the house.
Heather looks like her mom, like how I look like my dad. She's wearing jeans and standing at the fake oven with the fake microwave. She opens the plastic box and pulls out a plastic purple plate with plastic bread on it. She turns to me with her dirty blond hair.
"Do you wanna play house?"
Friday, March 14, 2008
This is another true story that i apparently blocked out of my head, until it came back to me when i was talking to my friend's girlfriend. So thank you Maq Attack.
It is hard for me to form into words how much I loved pudding as a child. I loved pudding, Especially Jell-O’s chocolate pudding. The first time I had it, I was four years old being babysat by my Aunt Karen. She was looking for a quick snack opened up the refrigerator and asked me
“Chris do you want some Jell-O pudding?”
I can remember knowing full well at the time that I had never tasted pudding, I hardly had even heard of it. But the answer to my Aunts question seemed so obvious to me.
“Of course I want some Jell-O pudding.”
She plopped it down in front of me and gave me a cereal spoon. I scooped up my first bit and watched as the chocolate substance took the shape of the spoon; it fit into its oval contours perfectly as if it had always been meant to fit into this one spoon. When I opened my mouth and let that treat hit my tongue the wave of endorphins that released in my brain nearly caused me to seizure. It was like there was a party in my mouth and everyone was high. It tasted so good I was almost angry.
Who had kept this from the world, this wonderful thing? Who hid this fantastic sweetness which could end wars, save lives and bring together broken homes? What angry bitter man bent on filling the world with hatred and sadness was keeping this delicious treat from mass consumption? I asked my Auntie this question. She laughed.
“You haven’t seen Bill Cosby; he sells this stuff on TV.”
WHAT!? Bill Cosby, as if it wasn’t good enough, Jell-O pudding was being sold by Dr. Huckstable that good and glorious man. I made up my mind that day that pudding was a gift from God and it was good.
For the next few years pudding became my edible sidekick. He was in every brown bagged lunch that went with me to school. He sat in my cubby-hole and kept my jacket company while I expanded my mind…or tried to. Two hours into school and my mind would wander; my eyes would leave the blackboard and turn towards the classroom door, where my lunch sat securely and alone. I’d look straight through the thin brown paper to see my prize sitting there waiting to be devoured. My teacher Ms. Heidi who was an old woman who usually looked liked someone who had just been scared by a ghost; yelled at me to pay attention. But even she with her wild hair, her crescent moon glasses and her old skin couldn’t distract me.
At Lunch everything else in my bag was wolfed down. The sandwich was destroyed; I ate apples faster than most goats. But it was all to spend my time with the pudding. Eating it slowly as if it had a secret I could only hear by tasting it, and I wanted to catch every detail. This would continue for years, pudding followed me everywhere, family vacations, sleepovers, to the movies. I had even started developing systems and collecting survival knowledge.
Rule #1: It is okay to put pudding in your pocket. It will be good for two hours, but then your body heat will destroy the consistency.
Rule#2: You can eat pudding with a fork, a knife, a Spork, a spoon of course, your finger, you can lick pudding. But don’t ever drink it through a straw.
And never forget if you put it in your back pocket for any reason don’t leave it there longer than five minutes because you run the risk of premature leakage or busting. And nothing is worse than a small child with a big brown stain on his pants.
At the age of twelve my parents decided they would grant me my wish and send me to a sleepaway camp.
Horse flies were the most common animal and children would sudden jump in pain from having been bit. Any child was at risk, during the middle of a rousing momma joke a boy would jump slightly and lift his shirt to reveal a large piece of skin missing from the bite.
It was around this time that I developed a fear of horse flies which hasn’t quite left me.
Other events such as: mosquito hawk attacks, capture the flag tournaments, and playing with snakes are all memories I have of Pinewood. But the memory that really sticks with me was the final week cabin showdown; which included running, biking, archery, and a pudding eating contest.
Never before had I looked forward to such a meaningless activity. Until this point I hadn’t even been aware that the camp had pudding to eat, let alone enough for a whole competition involving its consumption. My reserves had run out days ago and I was quickly feeling the effects of pudding withdrawal.
So when the camp councilors sat us down at a long wooden picnic table for the competition I was excited to get my fix. The Table sat 7 people on each side, enough for each cabin’s “best players.” I sat in the leader position, first on to start off for our team which had been named 2Legit2Quit because we were.
I sat anxiously looking at the red headed freckled boy who sat across from me. This poor sap didn’t know what he was getting into. I was the Muhammad Ali, I was Michael Jordon, I was the Bugs Bunny of pudding, and I couldn’t be beaten.
And then they sat it down in front of me. A giant silver bowl the size of the sinks barber shops wash your hair in and it was filled halfway with….something.
“Ladies and Gentleman Your Pudding.”
Wait a minute. This was our pudding. No. I wanted to raise my hand and express my concern but no one else seemed to see the mistake. But this wasn’t pudding. It was too dark for one. It didn’t have that pleasant light brown tone that invited you in. This was dark, so dark light failed to escape it, a dangerous dark which like a brightly colored neon frog warns: DO NOT EAT ME, I WILL FUCK YOU UP.
At the same time its consistency was all wrong. It wasn’t like Jell-O pudding, no this was watery like someone had filled the bowl with dirt and then sprayed a hose into it. Goosebumps covered my body and my stomach gave me a quick jerk as if to say
“Don’t do it.”
“Alright.” The ref said. “This works as a train. You start as soon as the person before you finishes. First to finish all seven wins.”
Then he blew the whistle. The ginger in front of me threw his face down into the pudding imposter and started gobbling it up. When he came up for air it was like he’d just gone bobbing for apples in horse shit. My team was shouting, GO! GO!
I took last look at the sickening pool, and then dove in.
Oh god, it’s warm and much more watered down than I thought. Instead of acting like real pudding and taking the form of my face this tried to invade me. Every hole filled instantly with shit brown chocolate. I opened my mouth and it came pouring in like fan mail. It tasted like sour milk with the consistency of cottage cheese. First liquid ran down my throat, then a lump of something, then liquid then a lump. If I didn’t swallow right away it felt as if it began to curdle in my mouth.
My whole body reacted. There was an over abundance of this mess in my stomach and it didn’t want it so my whole system threw into reverse.
Before I know it chunks of brown vomit came shooting from my mouth slowly refilling the bowl. My teammates unable to see my predicament called for me to eat faster. That we were going to lose because of me.
I stared down at that shit like pudding now combined with vomit and stomach acid.
We can’t lose, if I don’t finish we’ll lose and everyone will hold it against me.
I lowered my head and submersed myself into the bowl. Because of the clumps of vomit it was like I’d put my head in a bowl of jellyfish that danced around my face waiting for me to open up and invite them in. When I did, I threw up again, filling the bowl past its original point. I lifted my head and the smell was horrible. The fumes burned my nose hairs. I looked across to the ginger that had brown clumps of shit stuck in-between his yellow teeth.
Bile, toxic yellow and neon green flew from my mouth into the bowl. The whole competition stopped and watched. They saw me as in anger I pushed the bowl away from me so violently that I tipped it over. My bile, vomit, spit, pudding ran down the length of the table filling its cracks and holes. The other campers scattered away to the sound of girl’s screams and shouts of “Gross.” Other bowls were tipped over in the process and in the end a river of shit water and vomit cascaded down the side of the table like the waterfall in hell. It slapped against the dirt with a sickening naturalness as if it had always wanted to be there. I turned my head, breathing deep, sweet glistening off my face. Thirteen campers, two councilors, and one ref were all staring at me. Big brown chucks of whatever was stuck to my big lips.
They looked at me like we look at homeless people with pity and self assuredness. That was when I passed out, all went black as my head tipped forward and I landed face first on the table.
I don’t eat pudding anymore.
Tuesday, March 11, 2008
I was rich once.
I’m not bragging. I really want to make that clear, it’s just a fact of life: there was a point in time when my father had money. So growing up in that environment I’ve seen many cars parked in the family space. There was new car every couple of years to keep up with my dad’s moods: A big black mini-van, a Toyota Sierra we used to go on road trips when my dad was feeling familial. He’d trade that in for a sporty Toyota Celica; silver and curvy, flashy, the kind of car that makes you want to have sex. What he really wanted was Ford Mustang but he wasn’t allowed. My mother and I both thought this was his mid-life crisis. We would learn much later that my father was dealing with his fear of aging, not by buying a car but instead was spending nights in the arms of another woman; who unlike the car was not silver or flashy or sexy.
After the sports car was the SUV with a built in GPS, a car that sat the whole family plus two more. It had a built in TV so those in the back rows could watch DVDs on those long road trips that my family didn’t take anymore. It was a car that I loved and would be the first car that I would drive when I turned sixteen and was given the death warrant known as a “drivers permit.” Four months later the once bright and brilliantly black monster, proof of American superiority had been humbled by rash turns and clumsy parking. The driver-side door was severely dented and scratched from a particularly bad night when I tried to pull into the garage with teenage reckless abandon. From that day on the door wouldn’t just creak but would scream the kind of scream that can only be produced by bent metal dragging along car frame. That strong soldier of a car held on as long as he could until eventually he died the death of most honorable veterans; old and alone it passed away from its injuries sustained during its formidable years. It was replaced by a PT Cruiser, a small car which basically resembles that of a hearse for tiny people. When my mom drove my little brother to school, I would imagine the neighbors watching it pass by their front windows and exclaiming,
“Well Janice, looks like another munchkin’s bit the dust.”
After a few years my parents decided to give the car a paint job. One day I was looking at an ugly car painted a single color. The next I walked to the garage to see an ugly car painted half red and half black with the words KAT MOBILE painted on the side and KAT CRZR as its license plate. Great I thought, people will no longer think we are a funeral home for midgets; now they will think we have become extremely tacky pimps. I wouldn’t dare say these out loud as this was a gift to my mother Kathy. So I just nodded in approval.
All of these cars have floated in and out of my life but only one car has ever truly left an impact on me…That is the car that tried to kill me.
I saw this show or heard this saying, or read a bumper sticker or a fortune cookie somewhere about how someone right now in the world is carrying a gun with a bullet with your name on it and he doesn’t even know it.
I feel like that is true for a lot of things: bullets, knives, drugs, buses, there is a strand of AIDS virus out there someone is carrying around and they are just working their way to giving it to you. The trick being to avoid it long enough so that you can die of old age before any of that stuff finds you. I also find it funny where these things can hide.
For instance I never thought the car that would try and kill me would belong to my girlfriend. The car was a red Chevy Malibu and was actually the reason I found my way into dating my girlfriend in the first place.
Two years after that and I’ve seen this car many times. It was a dark red brown color like blood that had rusted to bike metal. Everything inside of the car was gray, the seats, the floor, the emergency break. The entire interior was the sickening color of old people. It had a dent on the roof from where a tree branch the size of a bazooka fell during a thunderstorm and landed hard on the
Despite it’s name this
Stated simply I hated this car. Nothing good ever came from it. But it still surprised me; like how you think the worst thing that annoying weird guy at school can do is talk to you too close, but then he brings a gun to class.
It was six in the morning and we had been up all night. Since 7pm we’d been out and we’d been fighting since 10pm. A hard nail biting, f bomb dropping, you’re a fucking crazy person, fighting and we were tired.
We merged onto
I see the telephone pole close as it can get without contact. Suzie has turned the wheel of the car as far as it can go but it doesn’t do much but save our lives.
A direct hit would of wrapped us around 400 pounds of steel pole, broken every bone in our bodies and killed us on impact.
Instead that pole clean ripped off the entire driver side of the car, popped off the back wheel and sent us flying. The car tumbled twice the airbag came out and gave me an uppercut across the face. When the car finally stopped spinning like the dreidel from hell we were facing the wrong way down the LSD, head lights coming at us at 60. When I could see straight I kept trying to figure out when all of this had happened. When I got out of the car I wondered how the fuck I was still standing. I quickly waved down the cars who quickly called an ambulance that not so quickly came to clean up our mess.
“What the fuck do you think you’re doing huh? You ain’t about to steal this shit, put it back and get out of the fucking street.” Confused I could only say one thing…
“But I’m her boyfriend.” The mans grip softened but almost accusatory he asked
“How’d you get here so fast?”
“I was in the car”
Without thinking he let me go. A look I never thought a man like this would make stared me down then looked over to the sheet metal that used to be a car. The backside pushed to where there was no backseat, all the windows busted. Front side of the car gone, along with the driver-side door and the back wheel. The fireman looked at me and I think I saw him find Jesus.
“You were in that car?”
Monday, March 10, 2008
My family has been going through a lot of shit lately. Most of that drama has been caused my by sisters chemical imbalances which causes her to do stupid things all of the time. I spend my days watching as my mother and father try to deal with her inexcusable behavior. This is a look into what my family has been going through. It is true. There are a few things i know i need to work on and i will eventually but this is the rough draft.
There are some things in this world that brothers, older brothers, are never supposed to go through. There is a whole list as long as my arm of experiences that older brothers don’t want to know about, let alone see. I remember being thirteen and walking into my house, opening the door and being met by strange words.
“I got my period today.”
My eyes rolled and my body heaved.
“Uhhh… that’s nice.” That was that, and I assumed that would be as bad as it got for my entire life. I assumed that the next time me and my little sister’s vagina would have anything to do with each other would be when I was holding her new born baby.
This was my mistake.
Now I’m twenty-one and coming home from school. I have a little brother who’s older than my sister was on the dreaded P-DAY.
“Cara’s boyfriend is over” he says. I look over to her room and see that the door is closed.
What is amazing about children my brother’s age is that they can be in situations like this, but are blinded by their innocence. What is amazing about people my age is our ability to deny the obvious. A sixteen year old girl with her boyfriend in a closed room is not a room you barge into, unless of course the very idea of that person as an actual person with sexual feelings is impossible.
There are things a brother should never see. At the top of that list is walking in on your sister while she enjoys the less romantic moments of sex. The rest is a flash of images, skin everywhere, clothes everywhere, a brief pause, and then comprehension. The words “WHAT THE FUCK” fill the room from a voice that sounds like me but I’m not sure.
Cara is my adopted sister. Needless to say we’ve always had our problems. I have this memory of me sitting in the back of my mom’s car. And her telling me that we are going to be adopting a girl. I was young and remember my thought being…
“Aren’t I enough for you”
Apparently I wasn’t and we adopted her a year later. She was eight months old when I first held her in my arms. No bigger than a loaf of bread. Her name was Ashley then. But as I held her in my arms in that small purple room, another name passed through my head.
“Cara, her name should be Cara” and it was. My mom allowed me to name my sister; I suppose hoping that it would connect me to her. That using the name I gave her would make me care for her, the way parents let their kids name dogs.
I won’t lie- I never wanted a sister. Sharing isn’t something I’ve been good at until just recently, and the idea of sharing my parents was not very appealing.
Once, when she was two, I was holding her and she looked at me with those deep brown eyes and then stuck her finger up my nose and tore away the skin inside. My blood shot out covering her hands and my shirt, the blood red like candy. And covered in my blood, she laughed. As my mother stuffed my nose with toilet paper I stared at her through the mirror in our bathroom and tried to convince her of what I knew to be true.
“She did it on purpose” I cried. She laughed, “Don’t be ridiculous, she’s only two.”
I stared at myself covered in blood like John McClane.
“She meant to do it” I said. “She’s the devil.”
“You can leave my house” I say to the male figure. “Get dressed and get the fuck out.” I leave the room and pace around my little brother thinking about everything.
Should have named her Ashley is what I think. Cara was cursed. If she was an Ashley she wouldn’t have anger problems, would do better in school, wouldn’t keep running away, wouldn’t be such a slut.
I give them five minutes to get dressed. Try and forget the fact that I’ve seen so much of my sister I know what she’s insecure about. When I head back their clothes are on and oh my God he’s that guy: Baggy pants, Timberlands, XL T-shirt and a band aid under his left eye. This is the guy I’ve been making sure I’m not my whole life. I can’t help it but the N-word flies into my head. He steps up to me like he’s going to tell me something. He’s big- arms are bigger than mine, hands like monkeys. This sixteen year old boy looks like a man and he wants to “talk.”
The first time Cara left. She sat us down and told us she didn’t love us that we weren’t her family and she wanted to leave. My mom took her keys and opened the door. My dad cried. I tried to talk to her- walked into her room, her white walls turned gray from all the drawing she’d done on the wall in pencil.
“You won’t make it out there.” She ignores me and keeps packing her clothes into a duffel bag.
“You’re not smart enough, you’re not tough enough.” She’s still ignoring me, stuffing all her sweaters into the bag.
I step closer.
“You’re not pretty enough, this world will tear you apart; you’ll end up pregnant and trapped. Just stay here.” She finally looks at me.
“Using grown up words doesn’t make you grown, Cara.” I can see she’s going inside herself, she’s about to have another one of her episodes, who knows what she’ll say now.
“Fuck you, you think you’re so fucking smart always running your mouth like you run the place.” Ever since she started hanging out with those Hispanic girls at school I can’t understand a word she says. “Your all full of shit, I don’t fucking love you guys, so just go.”
“Think of where you’d be without mom.”
“Mom’s a bitch.” I moved closer, fast. I think I just wanted to shake some sense into her. As I stepped in she raised her fist and landed a hard punch across my face. I stopped dead in my tracks and stared her down. She looked at me with no sign of love or recognition. She meant to do it. And at that moment we were dead to each other.
Now with this punk in my face I think of our paths.
“You get out of my house.” Cara starts swearing at me, the guy looks at her and then back to me.
“Fuck you man.” Before I can control it I’ve already balled my fist. He takes the first shot like a champ; right to the nose but the second, the fourth, the tenth, the twentieth. Soon he’s on the ground and I can feel his skin go tender under my blows. Cara is screaming when I’m finished. My fists clenched, standing over a boy balled up and crying. There’s blood on my hands now, deep breaths, and sweat. I look at Cara her eyes filled with water. Behind their wetness is fear. There are some things in life, a brother should never see.