ou heard her masturbate every time her boyfriend left the house. She wore bandanas and looked like a surfer and acted like speed and you always laughed a little too late when she told a joke because she was laughing when she told it, too hard to get the words out, and over it by the time she had finished. You went to events with her, and stood at the back by the door, giggling a tad too late and enjoying the company and enjoying forgetting what you were seeing.
Sometimes you went to highbrow movies, moving through the line somberly, wearing your very best, holding it in just long enough to get into the theater and let out the lon.gest. Fart. You would get up, move through the row all excuses, exit as the protagonist is being introduced, enter once more at any given particularly juicy moment, scuff your shoes as she pretends to sleep, snoring so fake the snorts peeled. Sniggering as the people in your row sigh, shake their heads in disgust at the uncultured simpers of youth.
You LOVE being youth. You LOVE being with her. You especially love how no one else seems particularly happy with the world. It makes birding and tweeing and tweed-donning tomcat-dealing shore-kneading all the more delicious.
The two of you shaved each others’ hair badly and when the wrong parts got cut you cut the rest and high fived at being so suave and daring, then showered all the hair down the drain and snuck out of the public showers hoping no one would notice the water pooling in the shower, a sure sign of a clogged drain.
“A+ defaced,” congratulatory, “do you think they will test it for genetics?” “who cares?” “I hope they do.”
“The best damn graffiti in the world, we’ve been growing it for years, cultivating with proteins and a protean set of hopes and dreams and loves”
You went skating with her once. She wore her every-day cat-stratched suits of desire and you wore the nicest long socks you had, they were actually toe socks but you cut off the foot end and cut off the toe end of your shoes and didn’t wear socks. You wanted to wear mismatched converse and baggy short-cut overalls and maybe a turtleneck maybe nothing but you couldn’t go home for a few weeks and were stuck with what you could borrow and your friend gave you sweatpants and a sweatshirt and a lick of sweat to do your hair and it had to be enough. It was a great time, skinning knees and streaking blood about and making stupid bets.
You knew she was in a rock band but you never saw her practicing, you always thought she was the singer until she proclaimed that she couldn’t sing. Or play an instrument. She was there for the atmosphere, she bragged. “For the tits?” you asked. She scoffed. “No, to set things on fire, duh” you couldn’t wait to be old enough to go to her concerts, but she told you sadly the band had broken up, “we ran out of guitars,” she said, “oh,” you said, and that was that.
You went to college and she went to Canada and protested the elections, the dams, the pipelines, the police. You always wanted to go see her, but everything you wrote was an apartment behind and every number you tried was disconnected. You thought about grad school in Canada, but you got an internship with the government. You thought about working in Canada, but you realized she wouldn’t want to know you, button-down, black-tie sell out. You gave a blowjob and smoked a cigarette. You had become exactly the kind of person you wanted to be.