Stream of Consciousness, or Do You Remember?

A Collection of Memories With A Collection of Friends….

Remember your self-portrait from your high school photography class? It was black and white. You stared at the ground and the light shone through your mohawk. Your leather jacket and safety pins… It hung on the wall in my dorm room and my friend’s band wrote a song about you. I don’t think I ever told you that.

Remember running around outside the apartment building with fake blood streaming down your chin and Danzig blaring through the window?

Remember the time you were tripping and thought you understood “The Wall” and then the credits came on and you realized you’d been watching a blank screen?

Remember when his parents kicked him out of the house and we went to pick him and his friends up and decided we liked the furniture so we loaded it all up on the truck and took it back to your house? And the dog? And then his parents came and stole it all back and took him and the dog back home. A few months later he shot himself in front of his mother, and you read a poem you wrote for him at his funeral.

Remember “The Joker”, toilet paper, caffeine pills, City Lake, and sneaking the guys in during our slumber party? My mom made me go to Burger King the next morning, and I thought I was going to diiiieeeee.

[And you – remember when I called you the next day (you were one of the guys we snuck in) and I couldn’t feel my arm and was slurring my words?]

Remember GG Allin, Dada, Fugazi, Ministry, Nirvana, Violent Femmes, Type O Negative, The Doors? The music that shaped us, they lyrics that taught us, the imaginations that captured us… a progression of ideas that stripped away the illusions our parents had built for us and revealed the world for the fucked up place it was. The music that said, “You aren’t crazy – the things you think have been thought by others” then helped us rebuild a way to cope with it all.

Remember the time your mom thought we were moving furniture? Oops…

Remember standing up in the back of her jeep and flashing the other drivers on 64 while we were on the way to the Jimmy Buffet concert? Do you happen to remember the concert? It’s all a little fuzzy….

Remember when you called me and said, “he died on the way back from the beach” and I said, “Are you sure?” We convinced each other it wasn’t true and clung to that right up until we arrived at the funeral home…

Remember Theo’s poetry? I still have an old handwritten flyer for Metal Fest with a stick-figure Theo in a wheelchair drawn on it.

Remember floating down the creek in huge tractor innertubes? Hanging out in the old tobacco barn, falling down the hill towards the creek bank, chilling on the slate-rocks, flirtations, assignations, drinking spot, smoking spot, safe, secure, green, healing, beautiful…

Remember the time you met those hippy guys at the beach, and they wanted a kitten, and you told them about my house? And then they actually showed up? And she tricked them in to swimming in the creek so they would smell better?

Remember Delores Clairborne?

Remember the time you had two trash cans full of PJ in your kitchen (not unusual) and he stood there and ate the fruit out of it because he didn’t want to get drunk? He had that red pickup truck, if I remember right, and his girlfriend was mad!

Remember how you used to always pass out in either the bathtub or the red chair, and remember the knife you carried in your boot? Remember when, after you had decided to go into the Marines, you woke up one morning and your head had been shaved while you were passed out. You reached up to rub your head and freaked out, running to the mirror saying over and over, “my hair!”

Anybody remember Hornbeam Park?

Remember Chinese food and Faces of Death?

Remember when he disappeared and we had no idea where he was, and then months later he turned back up and was in Georgia in the army and was doing great and bought your mom a necklace and then months after that he was dead?

Remember Oklahoma, the Sound of Music, Yanni, Cenotaph, and Once Upon a Mattress?

Remember when you were home visiting from Okinawa and taught us how to beer bong? I taught the basketball team at UNCA the proper way to bong based on your technique…

Remember Car Wash, The Lost Boys, Flatliners, The Wall, Silence of the Lambs, Natural Born Killers, Pulp Fiction, Clockwork Orange, Jesus Christ Superstar?

Remember when we used to talk on the phone every night and you used to tell me that I was crazier than you and you didn’t know why my parents didn’t lock me up in a hospital like yours did to you? Then one day I called you and your brother said, “I’m sorry to tell you this, but he is back in the hospital and can’t have calls or visitors….” When you got out, we were never as close again.

Remember the time you came to pick me up at my house and the inside of your tires were on fire? Remember when he pretended to be your dad and talked to my mom on the phone and convinced her that it wasn’t a big deal, they did that all the time?

Remember when she mooned us and you yelled out the window, “it looks like a buffalo bent over” and she chased us down the road?

Remember the party at your apartment in Whitakers when you cut your hand punching a bottle? You used to do pushups with her on your back as a party demonstration.

Remember the New Year’s Party at your house and you asked him where his girlfriend was and he had left her in the car? and when you called him out on it he said, “it’s okay, i left a window cracked”

Remember when I kicked you in the groin with my metal-tipped boots and you fell to the ground and rolled across the hallway? i still feel really bad about that, but you have beautiful children, so I guess I didn’t do any permanent damage.

Remember when we sat next to each other in band and you had a Mickey Mouse watch on and I had on a cross made out of racoon bones?

Remember making me the cross made out of raccoon bones?

Remember when I was going to fail geometry, but you came over to my house and taught me an entire year’s worth of geometry in one night and I passed the final exam with flying colors? you have always been an amazing teacher

Remember band camp, band trips, the band buss?

Remember how you sent me all of the poems you wrote during the first two years you were in prison? You got out six years later and when I saw you for the first time a year after that, I gave you all of your poems back.

Remember the Snowball Dance when you wore silver pipecleaners wrapped around your hair and it was absolutely beautiful?

Remember when I spent the night at your house and you played piano and we sang songs with your sister? Y’all are so talented.

Remember when we were riding across the field and you were on Sage and she was on Secret and Donna started bucking and nearly threw me and then took off running and bucking all the way back to the barn with me clinging to the saddle?

Remember when Secret coliced?

Remember when you were working at the big barn and I was working at the little one and I came up and asked your help because the unused stall was covered in spiders? You came down and stood in the middle of the stall, twirling the webs around your pitchfork over your head while spiders fell down around you, and told me about the research you were doing into the legal penalties for patricide. That was the first time I ever met you.

Remember when I got in a fight with my mom and you picked me up and took us back to your house and my mom was calling all night and we drank your dad’s grey goose?

Remember the times we let each other down, got angry with each other, hated each other, talked junk about each other, threatened each other, stopped speaking to each other, and hurt each other? No, don’t remember those – they don’t matter anymore.

Remember this instead – all the times I was there for you and you were there for me. Remember how we never would have survived without each other.

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~ by gypsyjonga on May 23, 2010.

2 Responses to “Stream of Consciousness, or Do You Remember?”

  1. OMG that was fuckin awesome! Trying to figure out who was who…and just reading your exact memories….way cool. LOVE ya Jenny!

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