it’s odd, feeling heartbroken and then falling right back into the trap that left you that way.
this morning i was panicking on the way to weightlifting because i knew i had next to no gas. but the tiny drop got me there and i got a new max. then, when i started up my car to go home, my mom’s credit card in hand to stop at the gas station, the gas light immediately came on. as i’m driving down high school boulevard, i’m trying to decide which tom thumb on 87 would be most logical to stop at. even though i had to go to the library, i decided on the one at the corner of 399 and 87, so i wouldn’t have to make a complete u-turn. plus, i’m big on loops, and that tom thumb would let me right back out going toward the library, and then i could just take 98 home. so i pulled in, and EVERY pump is being used except for one on the end. i drive around, and as i’m pulling up to the pump, this tacky red truck makes it’s way in from the 87 entrance. so i’m waving, and being all, “sorry,” and trying to pull in at the same time, but they just sit there and the tacky lady stares at me. so i kept driving around, and finally saw an empty one, only to find it was out of order. i parked, thinking, “if i run out of gas in this spot…” but a lady finally moved. i got my gas, nearly forty dollars later, and drove down 87 to get onto 98.
the only problem is, i have a huge feaar of merging onto 98, so if there’s any sign of traffic, i wait at the light. but i was just about to laredo street, and i was like, “hey, i can go this way and go through publix - right turn, hardly a light.” so i’m about to turn off laredo towards publix, looking both ways, of course - and it’s a good thing, too! - only to barely make it out alive when a huge, redneck, big, gigantor wheels, mud- and clay-streaked, blue truck, comes flying down the tiny road. as it passes, i notice that a short, toad-like woman is driving, which makes me laugh.
as i’m driving through those streets behind publix, i listen to the radio, because i left my iPod at home. plus, somedays i just feel like listening to the radio. i don’t remember if it was 96.5 or 97.5, but one radio station had their intern out and he was talking to them on the phone. they were talking about how annoying it is when you’re in a store or a restaurant and someone is, not just talking on their phone, but talking LOUDLY on their phone, and all you wanna do is say, “SHHH!” so they decided to reverse the situation. they made their intern go out to a public place, while talking on the phone, and tell others having people-to-people conversations to “SHH!” because he was trying to talk on the phone.
anyhoo, i was cracking up and my morning just turned out really great.
practically all i could think about during the movie.
it’s based on one, i suppose. i was just going through my files and i found it.
i immediately recognized the conversation and the setting as our lunch table. the narrator was a character based on you, Marty was based on eddie. i hardly remember writing it, but i apparently did :)
i wrote this a while ago…
The conversation jumps around, resting finally on prom, which is a mere three months away.
“When do tickets go on sale?” Flynn is asking. We all shake our heads, and she goes, “Well, you better find out,” to Marty. “Last year you almost missed it.”
“I know, I know…” he says.
Then, she flicks her ice-blue eyes to me. “And you,” she says, “you have to go.”
“I don’t wanna,” I mumble, stirring my applesauce.
“But!” Flynn squeals. “We’re gonna get a limo! I don’t wanna be the only junior.”
I frown. “No matter I’m your best friend and all…”
“Well, that too.” Her eyes grow wider, but I just shake my head. “Court?” she asks, sending me an I’ll Deal With You Later look.
Court smiles. “I’ve been talking to Lisette…”
Marty completely disregards Court, who’s been “talking to Lisette” for about an eternity now, and asks me, “Why not? You don’t want a guy spending hundreds of dollars on you—just you—for a night? You don’t wanna dance, or anything?”
“I don’t like big groups,” I say. “Or music…that I don’t like.”
“Charlie!” Flynn hisses. “It’s freaking prom!” Then, she jerks toward Marty. “And you do not spend hundreds of dollars on prom.”
“Hah!” he spats. “Last year, our dinner cost ninety-seven dollars. Add that to the cost of tickets, gas, and your corsage”—
“That was so cute,” Flynn mutters—
“and you get at least hundred dollars.”
Court says, “But you get in free this year, huh?”
“What?!” Flynn bursts. “Seniors get in free—for real?!” Marty bobs his head. “Well, do I still have to pay?”
“I dunno,” Marty tells her, shrugging his shoulders. “But I’ll pay if you do. Like I said”—he directs this to me—“prom, besides the dress, is on the guy’s tab.”
The rain appeared out of nowhere and I couldn’t see the road, so by the time I pulled into the Starbucks parking lot, I’d been driving thirty-five in a forty-five where everyone drives sixty for ten minutes. My parents wouldn’t mind; they hated knowing that I was on the road in pristine weather. Still, I took my phone out and sent my younger brother a text message.
Looking around, though, I considered going back to just sit in my car. I felt dumb walking into Starbucks and ordering a hot chocolate. Plus, I didn’t have a book, laptop, or iPod on me, but I ordered my drink and took it to a corner chair. When I sat, the leather made that horrible sound that leather liked to make in the quietest and most awkward situations. Like a puppy, I flicked my head back and forth, seeing that no one seemed to have seen or heard. I relaxed back into the chair slowly, avoiding all possible noises in the process—and that’s when I saw them.
They were sitting across from each other, staring down at the tabletop, but not doing anything in particular. At first, I assumed they were a couple; however, they had an alluring aura—the kind that made me stare. Luckily, my corner kept me hidden, and I was able to discern that they were less likely a couple—they were siblings. Each had black hair—his was short, almost a buzz cut, and hers was long and curled into fat spirals. Each had black eyes—his were glazed over, hers were wreathed in dark purple eyeliner. Their skin was generally pale, save their abnormally rosy cheeks.
And then his lips moved, and she looked up—he’d said her name. Her lips moved, and I barely saw her glance at me.
I reacted a second too late and shoved my back into the chair, looking for something—anything—to make it look like I wasn’t staring. But I’d caught his nod. They knew I was staring, and I just sat there hoping they wouldn’t pursue the matter. After twenty minutes, the rain had stopped, and I hadn’t taken a single normal breath for too long. So I closed my eyes, counted to three, and shot my eyes toward the two, but their chairs were empty and they were gone.
alive and well.
one take - two mics. in between recording demos for new songs that will make you dance again take a bowel movement in your pants
i like being away from the world; kind of retreating into a place where nothing matters but tiger woods 2010, dvrs, sausage, and two fluffy dogs. it’s nice, but i’m finally kind of ready to get back. i miss my house, and my hair serum, and my hairspray. i’m so unbelievably glad i brought my laptop with me or i might have died - literally, dropped dead. but i’ve had some creative thinking time; who knew a ceiling could talk?
i love my new phone, too. it’s amazing :)
Hospitals are cold and have a distinct smell, an assertion that anyone who’s ever set foot in one would agree with; but I liked the sounds. Mind you, I don’t hang out in the emergency room or the violent, anesthetics-free surgeries area—just the maternity ward and the intensive care unit, where mostly elderly people die, along with the occasional bright-eyed young mother, like Jocelyn had been. It wasn’t that the sounds of death made me happy either; it was that they were calming. The sounds of whispering, whimpering, beeping machines, medicine dripping slowly into IV cords, footsteps on the ugly linoleum flooring—they blended into a nice kind of white noise that had lulled me to sleep so many times during my stepmother’s long hospital confinement, and dried my tears.
After the ambulance pulled up to the emergency room, after the whole fiasco that was the emergency room, a horde of nurses had escorted Tracey, Paisley, and me to a room somewhere on the third floor. A steady dosing of who-knows-what finally put an end to my sister’s false labor, and she was sleeping. My dad showed up red in the face; I could hear him shouting and running about from all the way from the third floor, leaning over the railing just in time to see him scamper in the elevator. Allison was with Portia, Warren, and Thom at our house, and Noah and Carter had cut out of their last classes of the day to get to Sisters earlier than normal. Initially, Tracey told them not to come to the hospital, to just go on to the house, but once Paisley calmed down and fell asleep, she called and told Allison to load everyone in her car once her boys arrived. What she didn’t know, was that the Acura had only five seats, but I was sure Carter would be more than happy sitting in the very back without a seatbelt.
The doctors Appleby paid a brief visit, and while Tracey chatted with the nurse, who was much kinder than the one at the high school, I made my way out of the room, and wandered down the halls, where I could listen to the sounds of the hospital that were so oddly comforting to me.
I was curled up on a squishy chair in a seemingly abandoned area of the hospital when my second surprise of the day—although not quite as significant as the first—came walking around the corner.
It was Brod.