Saturday, February 20, 2010


He slipped in the door, carefully, quietly turning the latch. His breath reeked of whiskey and those cheap, skinny cigars that men smoke when they don't want to commit the time and money to a real cigar.

It had been a long night. That one girl at the bar was smoking hot, even if she was a brunette. He liked the way her tribal tattoo crept out of her jeans. Her tight jeans.

He paced around the kitchen looking for something to eat before he took a shower and tried to creep into bed with her. He hoped she wouldn't be mad that he had stayed out all night. He worked like a dog all week, and he needed to blow off some steam with the boys. She certainly had no problem spending his money.

A few pieces of cereal found their way into his mouth, and onto the ground. He would swiffer tomorrow.

Boy, that girl was hot. He couldn't stop thinking about how she would taste. He was excited to meet her later that week. He would stop by her work during the day, pretending he was there on business. He was quite the business man, and he could help her out, he had a lot of opportunity. They would obviously have to meet for dinner and drinks to discuss it.

He rolled it around in his mind as he shoveled cereal into his mouth. Playing the tape forward, he knew he could easily charm her. When the mention of his relationship status came into play, he already knew he was the victim of that woman upstairs. He knew she must have some flings on the side. How could she not? He was always away, working, traveling. Ever since she had moved in, he didn't want her anymore. The thrill was gone. She was no longer something to be acquired, but something to be shelved.

Boys just want to have fun. Crunch. Crunch. Ha.

Lizza was her name, with her tattoo, and her tight jeans, and the way her lips wrapped around that shot glass, tongue flicking out to lick the last drops. Oh, he would have her. She wanted him. He was the biggest guy in that bar tonight, tall, successful, he knew his power. He felt drunk with it, with life, with his pursuits. Or maybe whiskey. He didn't care. He had kept buying her shots until she swayed into him on the dance floor, her hips pressed against his hand as she undulated.

He needed a cold shower. Just thinking about her, he wanted to explode. God, he loved that feeling. He pursued desire.

His plates were tossed in the dishwasher as he took his clothes off and headed towards the shower. She always complained if he got into bed smelling like a barroom floor. Soon, she would be dealt with....

The water felt amazing down his back, as he thought of Lizza, and massaged himself. He would have everything life had to offer, it was his right, his duty, to show the world what he could do.

He plunged himself over the edge, muscles clenching as he thought of this new woman.

Engulfed in Ecstasy, fantasy, he never heard the soft the turning of the latch. The gushing water, and the rushing in his blood covered up the sound of the truck starting outside, and the loud bang of suitcases being tossed into the truck bed.

He got out of the shower, putting aftershave on his sensitive skin. He felt great, as a matter of fact, he felt like he could go again, and began humming a little song. He would take advantage of the woman that was sleeping soundly in the next room. She was a looker, and always complied with his advances. His new found excitement began to grow, and he strode down the hallway, into the dark bedroom, a sure swagger guiding his very being. He was a right man.

He slid his body under the covers, gently easing his weight onto the bed. His right hand drifted over towards her.

And his hand kept going. There was nothing but a warmth, as if she had suddenly disappeared.

His mind skipped, not understanding. Maybe she had gone downstairs for a snack. He lept out of bed, indignant at what he didn't know, but by the time he found her, he would have his reason.

At the bottom of the stairs he could see into the kitchen, and there was no light on. There was no movement. When he walked into the dimly lit room, he realized that everything was just as he had left it.

Except for one thing.

His keys were missing.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

How It All Began, part 3 (see below for previous parts)

I was heading to Oregon for a festival. I hadn’t known that was my destination until I heard Lisa Love tell me about it. I met her under a sycamore tree, just west of Twin Falls, Idaho. Her dishwater colored bangs kept falling into her eyes. She had a glassy gaze and she hadn’t shaved her armpits in a long, long while. She was greasy, shiny, and mildly wholesome. Like mildewed wonder bread.

“You just left Ricci? You weren’t going anywhere, dude? Ya know, I can understand, sometimes you just hafta get out.”
“Yep. It seemed like the time to leave.”
“Well, we should gang up and travel together. Two girls have more fun, and get much better rides than one. Plus, its easier to deal with the creeps when we can play dumb and run together.”
“Yeah. I guess that’s so. Where are you heading?”
“To the rainbow gathering in eastern Oregon. It’s the best time ever. All these people get together in the forest and cook food and make love and smoke weed and talk about how we are gonna change the world. Its so much fun.”
“Well. I might as well try it out. The world seems like its changed too much already.”
“Ha Ha!! Your funny Ricci. I like the way you talk.”

I wasn’t joking. I was being serious. Why did everyone think I was sarcastic? I guess it was the easiest way to deal with what I had to say.
So we sat there eating our cheese and bread sandwiches, watching the traffic kick up the dust. The dried earth and roadside filth would fall down in powdery gusts that coated the highway grass, that coated our clothes, our faces, the food we were eating. The heat rose out of watery mirages off in the distance. The road shimmered, cooking its black tar fillings. I had a half empty gallon jug of warm water pressed against my side. I was free. This was my filthy, sweaty heaven.
After we had eaten our meager lunch and drank enough water to make us feel bloated and lazy, I told Lisa Love to wait while I handled our transportation marketing strategy. She gave me a blank and wide-eyed look in response. Funny hippy chick, I thought as I walked across the truck stop lot. She probably thought I was quite the piece of work as well. The sun was directly overhead and I could feel it burning my scalp thru my hair. I had little almost-sweat spots on my temples, but they kept drying and getting coated with dirt, so nothing really came of my body’s effort of water-cooling me.
I could see a fat housewife filling her beige minivan with gas. Three kids strapped to car seats were fighting over a bag of pretzels. As I approached the filling station she looked up, her too-close eyes measuring me with a stupid flat look, debating if she should be afraid of someone who was obviously different from her. She couldn’t figure it out, so her piggy eyes darted back and forth, revealing the confusion and fear in her heart. Revealing what she would protect and what she would compromise. Her kids, sensing her attention shift away from their constant chastisement, stopped fighting and looked up. The same quality of lazy cow-gaze already had taken root in their small, pale eyes.
I gave them a still appraisal, a look I was beginning to perfect. I imagined my eyes were a pond covered with a thin sheet of clear ice, and that the object of my gaze was falling down into its depth. It had a very disorienting effect on them, and they lowered their piggy eyes. I walked past them.
The truckstop dumpster was overflowing. It smelled terrible and had been cooking in the sun all morning, reaching an empowering noon ripeness. It drifted to my nose in waves of heat and smell. I shortened my breath and walked quicker. There was a big box to the side of the dumpster. I grabbed it and swiftly turned around. I headed back to the shade of the tree and Lisa Love. The minivan had pulled away into the infinity of the world.

“Hey Lisa, do you have a magic marker?”
“Yep. Ooo, lets make a sign. I have a couple different colors. The last ride I had gave me a blue and a green one. I have the big black one too, that is the best for making a sign real quick.”
“Cool. Lets just use the black one, I think we should try to get out there and catch a ride before these hicks call the police on us for loitering. Do you know what the laws are for hitchhiking in Idaho?”
I had learned in my brief time out here on the road that you had to find out if a state was an onramp state or a highway state. What that means to the thumb traveler is that in certain states you could hitch hike only on the onramp, and therefore you would only get seen by people who had excited that specific location. This often meant much more time sitting on the railing, waiting to get a ride.
Other states let you hitch hike directly on the highway. So highway states you are seen by a lot more traffic and most likely you would be picked up much quicker. People would stop because they were bored from hours driving by themselves, and wanted the company. Or they felt pity. Or they felt curiosity. Or as in the case of Frank, they were a creepy nut job.

“I have no idea about all the laws in Idaho, Ricci. But I haven’t seen a cop all day, so lets just see if we can get a ride from a trucker first, and then we’ll go to the highway.”

Sunday, February 7, 2010

The sun rises, illuminating my hands as they press these keypads. I am grateful for my life. i pause and notice the depth of my gratitude. Sometimes, it is very shallow. I lay in bed and cry, and feel dissapointed in myself for these immature and waisted tears.

so it goes.

and here is she, the beautiful sun, she leaps up as i am rising. her glow cuts the heavy clouds over this usually sunny city.

what does that mean?

that i spent the night with humanity. talking. promoting. considering. looking.

"would you like a drink?"

"well, of course sir, being that i am not that much of a prude, a gin and tonic please."

"where do you live?"

" i live in my home, but mostly i live in my heart."

"really? but what do you own?"

"i own myself. and a few other odds and ends. would you like something?"

"sir, have you seen our beautiful desert sunrises? it is raining and the clouds are extra vigilant in thier presence, as they move and dance in front of the sun."

he answers, as he looks down at his well-ironed clothes, and he says,

" i don't know about all that, but i hear the odds for blackjack are better this week."

so i sigh. what can you really say? i pointed my soul at the direction that is truly joyous. the beautiful sunrise.

but his pursuit led him to different ends.

"Baby, i am going home. i hope you win lots. you deserve it:

so i hopped in my car and drove home with the windows cracked, enjoying the desert storm as it rolled in off the mountains. i was ready for it.