Nowhere To Go
Long time no see children. I’ve been gone awhile, and I will explain my lengthy absence in detail in my next post.
First however, I’m going to share a story on this most joyous of evenings.
As the cold wind whipped my shoulder-length hair back across my black leather jacket’s collar, I relaxed against the front quarter panel of my 1967 Ford Mustang. My hands in my pockets, refusing to stop fumbling for something to occupy them while I attempted to cloak my nervousness. The door to the awkwardly painted turquoise house stood ajar, with loud, expectantly zealous squeals from multiple young females within. As they began filing out of the door, a large figure emerged from behind the herd. The patriarch of the family, complete with wrinkle-free plaid shirt, as well as over-starched beige dress slacks, stepped out towards the car to intimidate me. With dull, hostile eyes gazing downward at my ensemble of black leather jacket, black jeans, black combat boots, and a Disturbed Tee, it wasn’t difficult to grasp that he did not trust me in the slightest with the lives of two of his daughters, as well as two of their friends in my muscle car. A quick handshake, a second glance into my backseat, and a nod were all I received before he went back inside. Not before he uttered the cliché warning bestowed upon all potential boyfriends by the father of their date.
” You let anything happen to my daughters, this’ll be yer’ last Halloween”.
I climbed into the car, met by the sounds of chattering females filling the cabin. Discussions on trick-or-treat locations, Halloween parties, and church events were spewed out all at once, forcing the girls to continuously raise their volume in order to state their ideas. As I gripped the leather steering-wheel cover tight, I came to the realization quickly that I hadn’t signed up for a date; I had become a chauffeur service.
As I chastised “the stupid, sucker Jake” for once again falling into another ploy at the hands of this young girl and her cult of freshmen vultures, the unanimous voice of the council was heard all at once.
“Let’s go visit Glenda”!!
Normally, I wouldn’t have protested; this “Glenda” lady was the girlfriend of an older sibling to the girl I was attempting to date. She was also incredibly handy, as she would take the annoying chorus off my hands anytime I felt it was the proper moment to regain my sanity. She would be their ride, and it allowed me the freedom I so desired. Glenda was good for me. But not this time. We were coming over unannounced, and Glenda was a busy woman who didn’t do social visitations without a phone call ahead of time, or at least text message of warning. This gave me the grim impression that I would be with these loud children for the remainder of the flight, and I wanted to grab the parachute and bail so bad I could taste it. Visions of an actual enjoyable evening teased me, as I played with thoughts of a movie marathon, cheap scares at a nearby haunted house, or even the thrill of a bit of Hallow’s Eve-inspired vandalism. These delusions were fleeting though, as the giggling sound of the sirens surrounding me reminded me of my current purgatory. Passing a nearby soccer field, I caught a glimpse of a small pond at the edge of the turf, placed almost in Kodak fashion in front of a small viewing area with a white gazebo to complete the portrait. I remember distinctly pondering to myself as I carted the girls down the busy highway street, “wouldn’t that be a prime location to enjoy the evening quietly”?
As I turned the corner, I pulled up slowly to the monumental house. Coincidentally enough, the girls usually picked Glenda’s house for a camping spot as she was reasonably wealthy, sporting a fairly large in-ground pool, as well as a home theater system, pool table, and several other trivial goodies that made it a kid’s wet dream. She was also located in one of these neighborhoods that were “safe”, and by that I mean they had gates, a man patrolling the streets as a form of pseudo-security, and well-lit sidewalks by Victorian-fashioned street lamps. However, undoubtedly the reason these obscenely rich individuals felt most comfortable here, was because this burg was almost completely devoid of black people. It was a relic; a warp that transported only the most vain people into a block of absolute ignorance of the world around them. (But I digress, this story is not about the socioeconomic trends of those with money. I’ll save that for another day.)
While the girls filed into the front door, I was met by the cautious, untrusting gaze of Glenda. Her eyes told me everything I needed to know. She believed I was simply there to inhabit the space of her future sister-in-law, and that my presence was a burden on not only her, but the entire family in which I had become involved with. None of them honestly took too long to classify me; I was simply an invader who wished to do harm to each and every one of them systematically. I was a perfect stranger, and one of whom most of them believed to be completely disposable. As often as I was informed that I was in good hands with them, this unit of the moral majority spent the majority of their time making some pretty immoral prejudgments. As I strolled inside the main foyer of this mansion, stereotypical examples of postmodern art lay strewn over the walls as carelessly as they were created. Nothing but lines, boxes, and polygons as far as I was concerned, and only those who were desperately seeking to seem intellectual sought these works to instill a sense of inferiority in the viewer. Upon reaching the theater room down the hall, I was disappointed to find that not only would I undoubtedly receive no intimacy with the lady I desired, there would also be no opportunity for social interaction with her. The room, packed to the brim with a dozen adolescent females had become a nest of estrogen, craving snacks and slasher films to entertain them into the wee hours of the morning. Knowing I would have no place in this festival, I quietly turned around and headed back towards the front door. As I exited, a sharp stab of hesitation crossed my mind.
“Should I just let Glenda take them off my hands”?
The question rang clear momentarily, until I returned to the age of reason. I didn’t belong here to begin with. The father hated me the same as any other date’s father. The girls disregarded me as just another ride to get somewhere. The lady I was trying so hard to impress, didn’t just play hard to get. She played hard to please, hard to contact, hard to not irritate, and hard to not kill after a night of tolerating her bullshit. I realized then, it wasn’t worth destroying myself over, and they would get a ride home regardless, because rich chick didn’t want to piss off her boyfriend’s parents, because she had been with them so long already she ACTUALLY had something to lose. No. This was my night. These harlots weren’t about to ruin it.
My sanity intact, I quickly jumped into my cherry red mustang and took off down the street, blasting Slayer’s “Ghost of War” so loud that these four-car garage having, Cherub loving, spiteful businessmen and women probably thought that the apocalypse was upon them, and I had the soundtrack. As I sped down the three-lane highway, I caught a glimpse that made me slam on my breaks. The pond with the gazebo lay across the street, beckoning me towards it with welcome arms. I immediately turned onto the small dirt road leading out to the soccer fields. As I pulled my car up to park, I noticed a small blue SUV occupied the lot. The two wayfarers of the vehicle, already sitting on benches under the canopy of the ivory painted gazebo, averted their gaze my direction. The one closest to me was dressed as an air force helicopter pilot, clad in forest green gear, and a backpack as well as a large pair of combat boots ; the other, as Beatrix Kiddo from “Kill Bill”, complete with her Katana and the tribute jumpsuit to Bruce Lee, as well as a blonde wig. As I climbed out of my car and began the stroll up the tiny path to them, the pilot called out to me.
“What’s goin’ on?” she asked as I approached them. I smiled and threw a weak wave in her direction. The second one stretch her neck back from leaning against the railing to get a glimpse at me.
“You weren’t just at Nate’s were you? We kind of left in a hurry,” she stated. “…It was really dull though”.
As I took a seat next to them on the bench, I explained my situation. They both chuckled to themselves as I recounted the disgustingly sterile neighborhood, the protective father, my disdain for playing the role of simply a driver, the room full of t’weens going insane for social acceptance at their tiny meet and greet. As with several times since, a silent current of understanding flowed between us.
“That sucks. I don’t think that’s unheard of though. I am a girl, and that’s pretty much most females I know. Want some Candy?” she responded while tossing a giant bag into my lap. I grinned, and unwrapped a jolly rancher. As we sat by the water’s edge, watching small coy rise to the surface repeatedly, they took turns describing the party they suspected I came from. Rooms of nothing but hilariously intoxicated high school seniors singing horribly at karaoke, as well as spilling loosely laid plates of BBQ over furniture that didn’t belong to them. Much like you’d expect from a party in the Midwest, I can only surmise. They informed me that they only went to enjoy the company of a friend, and left quickly when they realized what a pathetically pointless social occasion they had joined. They were both alone on Halloween, enjoying a single friend’s company and feasting on treats they had earned earlier in the evening.
The crickets sang from the tall grass beyond the well-maintained field, and I sat next to the ladies playing Mudvayne’s “Forget To Remember” on my small pair of iPod speakers. They sang along with me, and we had numerous laughs comparing our friends who didn’t share the same love of metal that we did. For hours, a euphoric sense of relative comfort inhabited the nonexistent walls of this gazebo, providing atmosphere and a soundtrack to the still, black water and the bright stars above. In the end, we came to agree that Halloween was a wonderful holiday, but the rules apply in the same manner as Valentine’s day. You don’t require a special someone to be with on October 31st, but it damn sure helps.
we’ve been brought here for a reason
Be it fate, or internal treason
Souls will be saved,
Or mutiny’s waged,
As we plead for something to believe in
Happy Halloween everyone. It’s good to be back.