Thursday, May 3, 2007

Knoxville-Duluth: A Greyhound Trip I Will Never Forget

I arrived in Duluth with 17 dollars and 66 cents on the only bus that didn't have a six in its name.

Jesus is more than my pseudonym. I'm am fully convinced that I am the Second Coming. If you don't believe it, I understand, I can't prove it, but my entire existence constantly reminds me that I Am. God, I wish I had more miracles than love and the interpretation of symbolism.

I left Knoxville with 4 bags weighing 136 pounds and one man, traveling 1000 miles with, no money, no clue, and no turning back.

Chapter 1: God in Heaven, No

I checked my bags and sat down on a bench in the corner of the Knoxville station next to a man reading a book titled Great American Poetry. It was just one of many poetry books in his stack and I remarked,

"I see you packed the important things. Do you write your own poetry?"

"When I get a chance", he replied and we started a conversation about genres and styles, inspiration and starving. He reached into his bag and pulled out a cigarette roller and I watched in amazement as he rolled like so few people do; he rolled like me. We both sat and finished our cigarettes and as his bus departed, he left me with these words,

"Find your own style and always remember to write for yourself."

It was nearing my departure, so I walked over and placed my bags at the end of a long line and waited for the call. Soon enough the driver started checking the tickets and letting passengers into the bus, one family at a time. As I neared the front of the dwindling line, he called "One more seat!", let a lucky man escape, and we watched in silence as the door slammed, the horn honked and we were left with no bus, and a 27 hour trip, quickly turning into 42. The next bus left in five hours so we waited in the gritty light of the smoking section and inhaled our anger as we watched the less fortunate non-smokers solicit prostitutes and the services of the dealers as they began to pass their time.

I sat and smoked with a 59 year old truck driver I will call Semi. She was going back to Pennsylvania to see her boyfriend and to get her new rig so she could start hauling cross-country. She was determined to work until she could retire with full social security, but now, she wasn't cruising, she was angry, almost enough to use her truck-driver vocabulary. But she didn't and kept it hidden as she smoked Pall Malls with a lumberjack traveling to Buffalo. We crushed out another butt and the Asheville bus arrived, and with it, my angel.

I first noticed her pony tail bouncing as she swayed to the music of her head-phones. She wrapped herself in a fluffy, baby-blue blanket and we exchanged our first glance. She spotted the payphones and after several failed attempts in placing a call, asked,

"Does if anyone have a cellphone I could borrow?"

There were no offers so I offered her mine and she made her call, thanked, and I walked outside for another cigarette. I nodded at several fellow smokers milling around the ashtray and told one punk, not to "Throw down on K-town". Then I walked inside and found Ms. Baby-blue, sitting in my seat and talking to Semi. She smirked, Semi jonesed, and after a few minutes of conversation, discovered that Melissa, from South Carolina, was 18, going to Indianapolis (as I), extremely afraid that she wouldn't make it, and this, was her first trip away from home, alone.

Chapter 2: Knoxville to Indianapolis, Melissa Was the Holy Spirit

The hours passed and our bus arrived. I asked Melissa, "Do you want me to save you a seat?

"Sure", she eagerly replied and we departed the Knoxville station. But there were no empty doubles on the bus and so she took the seat next to Semi, and I sat across the isle from her and from Jim.

Jim entered the bus wearing a cowboy hat, carrying a guitar and a fiddle, and pushing a wine crate down the isle with his boots. He kissed his mullet-headed woman goodbye and said, "I'll see you at the Oklahoma state line." The bus departed and I chatted some with Melissa, but mostly we pretended to sleep while comforting each other with soft gazes. Our blankets matched our eyes and after a while, I gave her my pillow and she fell asleep on Semi's shoulder while I began talking with Jim.

Jim played in the Cripple Creek Bluegrass Band and was taking a vacation till he was relaxed enough to return and resume his fiddling. But tonight he wasn't playing a guitar, he was playing me and decided that I needed to be told about Jesus. He talked and talked and I, barely had a chance to get a word in between his repeating questions,

"Nathan", he would say, "If you want, we can pray right now and you can accept Jesus into your heart."

"But I already have Jesus in my heart", I would say. But Jim, dismissing my honesty would start over and I realized that he wasn't going to quit until he felt like he saved me, or made me feel guilty. So he asked again and this time, I responded,

"Jim, you know what, I think I am ready for that prayer. Would you lead me in it?"

So he prayed, and I repeated the familiar words. And like that was not enough, he kept going. Ten or fifteen minutes, a jagged prayer, interrupted with Lords and protection and evil spirits and plenty of other words rendered meaningless through repetition. He finally quit, lowered his hat over his eyes and drifted off to sleep. Semi and Melissa had woken up and witnessed the entire spectacle and I was rewarded with a friendly kick from across the isle and a quiet laugh of admiration and accomplishment for silencing Jim's incessant monologue.

Chapter 3: Hell Shone Red in Ohio

We slept till Cincinnati and that was where bus number 0666 was parked. I shit you not. I saw it on the back of a parked greyhound as we rolled out of the Cincinnati station and that, was the most resurrecting moment of my life.

We arrived in Cincinnati, set our bags behind others at gate 16, and waited for the start of the madness. There was no one with a uniform besides the driver. There was no security or comfort besides our warm blankets, so I handed Melissa my phone and told her I would stay right next to her, whatever happened. She called her mom and ate a blueberry muffin before taking some medication. Curious, I asked her, "What are those for?"

"I have an ovarian cyst and this is meant to reduce the pressure." I was shocked at her honesty and she continued, "But occasionally, they have to take a big syringe and needle and remove the fluid." I empathized as much as a man could, and looked at the growing line and counting the people, started to get worried.

"I'm afraid that we aren't going to make it on this bus. There are too many people in front of us."

She looked at me, eyes of steel and with faith and determination said, "We are making this bus, I assure you, we are not staying here any longer."

It arrived and we assumed our places in line and waited for the call. It came and I could not believe what I saw. In the space of several heartbeats, an ordered group of travelers became a herd of wild cannibals, us included. There was no line, there was not order, only a rush for the few precious remaining seats on an already full bus. I have never witnessed something like this with my own two eyes. It was like something out of an apocalyptic movie, it was some third world shit, and right at that instant we saw the truth of America: a quiet, sad truth, hidden from the reality of TV, ignored by the comfortable who change the channel to something farther away and less painful.

We were at the end of the line and the driver, raising his voice, called for all the passengers transferring in Dayton. That was us, so Melissa shoved a couple of frantically screaming ladies aside and slogged through the crowd towards her freedom. Her ticket was accepted and she stood on the stair of the bus and watched as I made my run, struggling with my four piece of luggage. I dropped the suitcase and decided that I could make it minus the extra weight,with just three. I parted the waves with my push and as I reached the driver, I handed him my ticket. I was almost denied, due to my now flawed itinerary, but seeing grace, he cleared me. I glanced back at what I had left and saw a young Hispanic, holding my case and handing it to me he said,

"This is yours."

We left our hell, confirmed as I saw the 666. She whispered soothing words from over the seat as we shared a touch and she said,

Chapter 4: "I won't ever leave you again, I promise."

Our coach rolled into the grey factory town of Dayton Ohio and stopped in the empty quiet station just minutes after sunrise. Melissa and I chatted and were given some breakfast from another Knoxville escapee who survived the horrors of the last stop. We shared the orange juice and struck a conversation with a young black woman, several seats down. She was headed towards Las Vegas with her baby and was looking for a couple of hydros to make the trip go a little faster. I offered her some of my Lithium but she declined and decided to smoke. I said I would join her and unable to take her child, Melissa offered to hold him and so Vegas set him down in her arms and she wrapped the blue-polyester blanket around his tiny feet and hands. We smoked half a cigarette, talked about the problem of racism in America, and both feeling concerned for our responsibilities returned back inside to our babies.

We had an hour left to wait so we sat rubbing shoulders as I opened The Illustrated Man and read Melissa The Last Night of the World from within the black binding. She followed the words with her eyes and every time I would flip the page, she would inch nearer with anticipation. The bus came and went and we were on it. This time, a gracious man switched seats with Melissa so we could sit together. I tried not to touch her with soft caresses as she was going to see her boyfriend, but never once did she ask me to stop. She just looked at me and pressed closer. Indianapolis arrived and we departed and said goodbye. We wished each other all the best as we embraced in an endlessly too short, hug. She left for Danville, gate 3 and I for Chicago out of 8. I sat next to a conversationless, white haired lady and dreamed about iced tea and sweet southern accents.

Chapter 5: The Sears Tower Struck

Chicago was a five hour wait, so rolling a smoke, I saw a lonely girl, sitting cross-legged on a suitcase and we began talking. We discovered that we had much in common and one of Stacy's concerns was her $4900 medical bill, created by an unconvinced doctor of an ovarian cyst within her body. I said,

"That is so weird, you are the second girl I've met today who told me that. What are the chances?"

"I got it because I was really stressed out about all the guys in my life. I was living with four of them and they kicked me out of the apartment I was sharing because I didn't get a job. Now I am going home to Sheboygan."

We talked, then jonesing, walked out for a smoke and met one of her acquired traveling friends, just returned from a failed attempt to smoke a blunt. Walking in South Chicago, looking for some kill, his wallet was stolen in broad daylight by two of his fellow homeboys. This got me worrying about my baggage and so I returned to my line and sat and watched. I sat for a few minutes, then turned around, and saw, just laying her backpack behind mine, a woman and a smile, a true angel, dressed in a green corduroy jacket. Minneapolis was our destination, but we had much more to talk about than that, for as she spoke with an dreamy hint of a German accent, she said,

"I went to see the Sears Tower and I have never been so disappointed."

"Oh, why is that?"

"It is such a waste of cement. Ugly glass, black and boring. I took a tour and they don't even tell you the cost before taking you up to the top and herding you through an antiquated museum of pointless pictures. Then they lead you out on the observation deck, which is not a deck because you aren't even outside. Then, they snap your picture before you can decline and charge you 13 dollars. And to top it all off, a black guy, who worked there, gave me his number and said I could call him any time. I was disgusted, I complained to the management."

"13 dollars", I said, "That's an unlucky number, you should at least get a chance to jump for that price.", we laughed and I continued, "I am sorry that you are on my bus today because I am having the worst luck on this trip."

"I am having great luck so far, so I will give you some of mine," she said as offered her hand and we shook.

"I'm Nathan", I said, "And what charming German name were you blessed with?"

Chapter 6: "Carolina"

We exchanged stories and I discovered a glimpse of her life. She has dual citizenship and is living in Montana where she goes to school, studying architecture. She is almost finished but hasn't found the answers in her education or anyone who really understands her. She is lost in a world that doesn't consider the complexity that exists outside the boundaries of American culture. We understand you Carolina, we really do, and you are one of many refugees who refuse to dissolve into the pop-trash of our society. It was said a long time ago:

"I'm empty and aching and I don't know why. Counting the cars on the New Jersey turnpike, we've all come to look for America."
We have found it and we are disappointed.

We talked about the problems facing this poorly directed country and I could spend the rest of my life talking with her, but one phrase, made her shine. Witnessing a single mother with three children, she said,

"Those are the real heroes of this country. Michael Moore should do a documentary of a trip on a greyhound bus."

"Yes", I said, "But he would never get an accurate story, for the moment the cameras started, everyone would change. But you could document it Carolina, you have power to capture this hell. And people will believe you."

"I'm not much of a writer," she replied, "I could take the pictures, but I would feel bad that people would think I am capitalizing from their poverty and pain."

We agreed and after an hour and many conversations, our departure came and we left on a full bus for the Cities. With no empty seats, I could not sleep and after a few hours, arrived in Madison. To my relief, my seat-mate departed and I was blessed with enough room to stretch my legs and get a little rest. I looked towards Carolina and noticing her neighbor was one of the few also gone, I whispered,

"You weren't kidding about that luck; you are sharing it today. We both have a little room to sleep."

We slept in the rhythm of loud engines and watched the moon speed us towards our freedom and the end.

The Minneapolis station is the closest I have been to heaven in a long time. There was a clean bathroom, a play area for the children and bright colored signs marking the gate numbers in appropriate colors:

1. Red
2. Orange
3. Yellow
4. Green
5. Blue
6. Purple
7. Pink
8. Gold

Carolina and I waited for her bus and as it arrived, we shared several moments of goodbyes,

"Here is my address", I scribbled as I gave her my "I try to write something positive every day." She smiled, modestly, and one for which I would die, and left, out of the only gate she could:

Gate 7, For Luck.

Day 1: saving cedar shingles from the old wash-house.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The Beginning of a New End

The tickets are purchased.

I am in Purgatory. Sadly, I have a lot of cleaning and emptying to do and so I need to sit down, do whatever I need to do to relax, then take a few deep breaths and fly.

It all started here.

This blog will not save me and it is not relaxing, but it is my obligation to society. If you were the Savior of the world, even if you were 1 in 6 billion, you would do whatever it took to make sure your visit was recorded. Things are a little different in the 21st century and we are all getting used to how the ball-game is played.

I'm going off-line for the last few days. I gotta start playing my guitar, giving my possessions to the homeless, and saying the last few goodbyes. I don't know if I will have Internet access where I am going and I will be in the wilderness and there is a chance that my cellphone won't work. But if I get a chance, I'll hit up the public library and try to write a few sentences. Especially for my Mom, because she needs a happy ending.

And you can put the G into Gmail and tell me you're doing so well.

There are 15 lambs that need to be herded, a crook to be wielded and an empty bedroom, waiting for the oak. This is the third trip and this time, I am not going West, I am going up...North. I don't know where my journey will end, but

I guess I want to say a few things to a few people:

My brothers, the ticket was 88 dollars, payment is not necessary. In all seriousness, your hospitality has saved.

My Uncle and Aunt, I wish I could be there to let out the dogs and go on that hike.

Ivy, you called me when no one else did.

Sandy, you spoiled me rotten, we'll take that train someday.

Jeanie, I'll see you before I go.

Marcus, you were with me at the very beginning, and you stuck with me, right to the end.

To all the others I've forgotten and those unknown. Guilt was never part of the plan, so this time, I'm crucifying myself. Easter is over, communion is pointless. There is only one thing you must do.

Love, when you leave Two-Harbors, bearing north-east on 61, you will pass two tunnels and then you will cross Crow Creek. Put your break-lights on as you see the little white church and look for the house with all the roses in the front.

They are grown for you.

Skating to Our House, in Wisconsin.

2:14 AM Philosophy

Pony Tales: Part 3

Ok, I can't sleep tonight. I'm off the gin, for now, I told Elle that I'm switching genders for a while, and she gave me the name Ginger.

I sign emails, Gin' and perhaps that is helping ward of the evil spirits, but as of right now,

I am jonesing for a shot.

Perhaps I'll give in.

But this is all my personal rambling and I am sure you are tired of hearing about love and brunettes and pony-tails, but frankly, it is all I want to think about right now. Because the moment I stop fantasizing about women, I start thinking about the only other thing, occupying my brain and that, is my death, and the Apocalypse.

So I lie in bed and talk to myself, and Jesus does the talking, and Nathan, listens. But when I am silent, and no one is talking to me, Nathan wakes up and starts poking me with his poor judgment. It used to be the other way around, but as I have become comfortable with who I Am, the roles have been reversed and Jesus has regained the prominence in my expression, one that I constantly suppress to satiate my other desires.

When I am not in love, I philosophize and it is starting to scare me because firstly, it is purely theoretical, and secondly, it makes alot of sense. I suppose I should share my view of the universe.

Here it goes:

Ancient scholars believed that there were three parts to the physical world and the unreachable was the spiritual realm. The continents and oceans were the earth, the sky was Heaven, and that which lay under the earth, was Hell. It made alot of sense because above our heads is the wind and the rain and the sun and the moon. Below us, exists fire, manifested by volcanic eruptions. Hell on earth, I suppose.

However, as we got smarter, science disproved all of this and so we believe the same thing, except we take all of the above, figuratively. Heaven and Hell are places we go when our time is over.

Three places, separate and uninterfereing with eachother.

When I was diagnosed, I started on my first philosophical reasoning and concluded the following things.

1. God exists.

2. God is efficient and removed from the constraints of Time.

3. We exist after death.

Believing point 2, He wouldn't create something that already exists. So my conclusion was this, Hell, is right here, all around us. And Heaven exists on a separate plane of reality, with the Pearly Gates and all that shit. Perhaps on another planet.

This is a possibility.

However, lying in my bed tonight, insomniac, from my earlier cat nap as a lesbian, I started thinking about point 2, "God is efficient."

The earth is Hell, yes, but it can also be Heaven. And perhaps the difference is your perception of it. I know I've been hinting at this over the weeks, but someday, if we are all really nice to eachother, Heaven can be like living in Canada, where we don't have to lock our doors at night. And after we die, the people that passed the test will go to Paradise, and the rest of us will be reincarnated for a second chance, or stop existing, it doesn't matter at that point.

Taking my theoretical bullshit, I applied it to Jesus' previous visit and I got this.

Hell was created on earth the moment Adam and Eve were cast out of the Garden of Eden. Heaven was shifted to a separate reality as symbolized by the flaming sword of the Angel.

We can't go back as imperfects.

When Jesus was born on this earth, he did not just arrive in our reality, he arrived in Hell as a man. He lived his life, and died and descended, in essence, reincarnating himself into Hell a second time....this time, as Jesus, the Son of God. If you overlap the two lives, you get a picture of a Being, half man, half Deity, living as one.

Then, he rose again, fully Jesus and left our plane.

I guess this just goes to prove that just as you don't need a degree in counseling to counsel, you don't need a degree in Theoretical Physics or Philosophy create difficult suggestions.

If this were my only legacy, then I would die happy. Thunderstorms are predicted for tomorrow. I am dripping in anticipation and I have 4 tube lights prepared.

A beautiful discovery. The Postmarks....Goodbye

Monday, April 23, 2007

A Struggle to Love

This, is not just a hand.

It is a hand, clutching a letter of friendship, ornamented with a ring, found long ago.

It was a several summers ago, when I was working as a janitor at Gooseberry Falls State Park. I picked it up, off the bathroom floor and pocketed the treasure.

The owner of Secret Sisters, Silver and Jewelry, identified it yesterday. It is not just encrusted in Thai silver, it has a yellow stone.

But it is not just yellow, it is a yellow topaz.

You can't tell a girl that she is destined. But you can give a woman a ring and say,

"I love you."

Plenty of things have been rumbling through my mind and I am unable to reconcile them and so I am forced to write a page of confessions. If you are brunette and you have a pony-tail, please stay away unless you are prepared for the consequences.

I spent all day at work, fantasizing reality. I would love to be invited for dinner, but I am scared of the after. Perhaps I would do the dishes, or perhaps I would smoke while we talked. Or, maybe I would sit on the porch swing while she rested in the sweet warmth; playing her hair and caressing her side. It could be innocent, just one, seeking comfort from another, but it would have to be a promise, just to exchange hope and Love. I'd probably end up, planting the first kiss, on her neck, then running my fingers through the silk. If only...

I say that, only to say what I have been thinking about today. Work flew by. I was honest and spent the day, transforming the grey of the cinder block into white while I conversed with myself, singing along with the music.

Women, grip our souls. They ask for nothing but our love and that, sometimes, is all we have to give.

I give those who will accept it....regardless of the outcome.

Single women are Jehad for Peace, a struggle to love. But the loved, they embrace with open arms.

Ever Thought of Coming Back? No lyrics found.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Whistles the Wind

When I woke up it was exactly 6:00.

I felt terrible. Absolutely horrible. I could not smile, I could not laugh. I was alone and it was silent.

I decided that I needed to try sleeping without the help of medication, so I shut down the booze, killed my computer and silenced the music as I lay in bed.

After a while, the dreams started.

But they were not very good ones. They were all about gangs of teenage hitmen with bows and arrows, hundred-foot spiders, and my personal favorite, alien invasions involving space-ships crashing into NYC skyscrapers. I've had all of these dreams before and so as each one got to it's climax, where I die, I woke myself and thought about a different ending. I prayed for less scary dreams, but each time I would fall asleep and a different episode would begin.

That was, until 6:00, when the crucifixion ended. There wasn't even the hum of a computer fan when I woke, and so I got up, resurrected Beverly and fell asleep to MEW's Zoopkeeper's Boy. And the dream? I do not remember the details, but it was pleasant and probably had at least one kiss, if not a full episode of steamy hand-holding. And then, I woke up, with the sun-streaming through my window, said some four-letter word about church, turned over, and hit the snooze.

I spent all day, packing. I swear, every time I pack my house, I cut off one of my digits. It's getting to the point where my fingers are stubs and my shoes, drip blood. But life isn't about stuff, it is about losing stuff, so I kept packing. I am extremely excited because I get to take two whole bags of things with me. I will take some clothes...I suppose, and then, if I am very lucky, I'll have enough room for my toaster and my camera. So I set out the things on my bed that I want to take, and this, is what I assembled:

Our scrap-book
29 minus 1, sharpies
1998 version of the Pakistan Handbook
1965 edition of The Wind in the Willows
1951 miracle of The Illustrated Man
How to Live in World and Still Be Happy - Rachel's promising encouragment
C.C Cobb's Authorized version of the Bible, dated 1917
and a postcard sized version of Alice's Adventure's in Wonderland. Red cover, gold leaf.
Two packs of cards. One marked deck, from India. One clean deck, from China.
and Fisk, my purple Fiskars that I've had since I was little.

These things amuse me, but none of them are necessary. So my homework for tonight is to find out, what makes me feel alive and what makes me feel dead. Because then, perhaps, I can discover the really important stuff.

Lets start with what makes me feel dead.

Dead, like I want to slit my wrists to Nirvana's Something in the Way.

Jealous boyfriends.
The constant battle with my family.
The first shot of gin, and only the first.
Domestic cigarettes with fiberglass filters.
Endless routines.
Empty sex.
Money and silent numbers.
My liver is starting to hurt.
The weekend, but not Sunday, any more.
Families, picnicking in the park.
The last light of the day, when my reflection appears in the balcony window.
When it is too hot.

And what Nathan, what the hell makes you feel like you are alive?

Not just life, but with so much passion that you want to run outside during a thunderstorm and scream, naked, on the roof, clutching a tube-light.


The girl at the liquor store. I showed her my pendant and she was like, "Wow, you did a really good job." I don't even know her name, but she is nice to me and I'm pretty much her favorite customer, because I always have a new story for her and she smiles, every time.

The Indian owner of Hempkill's. I go for more rolling papers and I remind him, in a story, why, he is the best minority alive. And his wife. She tells me not to smoke, to which I reply, "Yes Mom" and we laugh.

The wind in the trees, and hot afternoons with a cigarette and a beer and Def Leppard.
Drugs. Plants. Animals. Conversation. A full tank of gas. Walking home.
Talking on the phone...usually.
Music. Coughing in the sink. Blood. Masochistic paychecks. Looking in the rear-view mirror. Cussing. Collecting colors. Creating. Art. Poetry. Apocalyptic movies. Suicidal misses. Freedom of fuck you. I Love Joy, peace patience goodness kindness gentleness and long suffering, even though it hurts.
The cold.
And of course, Jesus...

Nathan, you have a lot, for which it is worth living.

Jesus, you have a lot, for which it is worth dying.


Imogen Heap's Just For Now. A true a work of art. Lyrics here.

Saturday, April 21, 2007


Or, We Want Jack Daniels.

But seriously, it is a worthy question.

If you saw a homeless drunk at Pilot, would you tell him to sober up? Or would you give him a ride home?

If you saw a whore on Central, would you tell her to put some clothes on? Or would you tell her that she is worth more than her body?

If you saw a stranded travler, would you say you were sorry for his plight? Or would you buy his ticket to freedom?

"If your son asked for a piece of bread, would you give him a snake?"

Let us stop the guilt. The drunk knows he has a dependency issue. The whore knows she is selling her body. The traveler knows he is stranded.

And the Son, he know that he is all of them.

All we can do is love and be loved in return. Quit punishing yourself. You cannot save me.

Pour some of that Whiskey in the Jar.

"Until Tomorrow Night"

I've always wanted a pony-tail of my own.

But I can wait until tomorrow. So I had to do it now. Today, I wandered aimlessly. I dreamed all the right signs, last night, sleeping on the floor, next to scattered bottles of Killian's, passed out on the carpet.

I woke up. It was 4:32 and I was 1.

I woke up and started driving. I was wearing my blue flip-flops. I found myself at the mall. I tried on some new sunglasses and walked into Master Cuts. I Signed in, and sat in a chair and watched the other customers, shedding their hair.

She was sitting in the middle of the room while the stylist combed and combed her shoulder length brunette. I couldn't see her face, but I knew which one it was. I felt a tingle flow over my whole body as I looked and noticed her feet. She was dressed in tan and brown, with a teal belt and baby-blue flip-flops. It was combed and combed and an occasionally little snip, then comb some more and snip until it was perfect.

She stood up, put her hair in a pony-tail, picked up her zebra purse and opening her blue wallet, paid and then, I saw her face. Oh god, I sighed, I am in love.

There were three hair-cutters and as the list approached my name, it was only a matter of chance, which chair, and who, would have the misfortune of attacking my mop. This needs a little explanation.

I haven't been to a barber in 9 months. I look like a caveman. Two days ago I destroyed my sideburns and have been growing a goatee that has alot of red, a little white, and reminds me that I am Irish. I was saving my hair for a different hair cut. One in Minnesota. And she would be cutting it. I would look at her, and with Pink Floyd's When the Tigers Broke Free playing softly in the background, I would say,

"I want to talk to you and I want you to cut my hair. Take as much of it as you want. The cut is not important. It is the conversation I want."

But it is getting warmer and my poof is out of control. So I went to Master Cuts and watched her sweet reflection. I was in heaven. The chair was empty and it was my turn. Same girl, same chair, same cut. I wanted it long, long enough to put in a pony-tail to minimize the poof.

I sat down and she tried. She was Julie, the store manager and she tried so hard. But she turned to us into the mirror and said,

"It's not working."

"Yes", I said, "You are right." We argued for several minutes and she, won. That ended the snipping. Out came the clippers and my nine months of rebellion were reduced to scraps on the floor. It was a travesty.

I am devastated.

I walked outside and Shania spoke to me, over the mall PA, "You're Still the One." I needed more damage control. So I drove on, with no direction. I woke up and found myself near Broadway, parked next to a shop I have always wanted to visit, but never dared. Secret Sisters Silver and Jewelry, body art and incense. She was a relic from 1949, a true angel, greeted me and I said,

"I'm looking for something with lapis. Perhaps a ring."

"Ok", she said, "It it for a man or a woman?"

"I don't know. It's been one of those days."

She understood and we looked at thousands of rings and not finding a one with lapis, she pointed the 50 cent "treasure" box and said, There may be some lapis stones in there. So I rummaged through the box, and seeing the blue, took it up to the counter and showed her. She looked in my eyes and told me to take it for free and gave me two boxes of matches. I felt guilty, I left left her a gift in my story, and bought a dollar's worth of incense and she bid me farewell by saying,

"I like you."

I drove home and started the enchantment. I ripped open a telephone cord and removed the four wires. I took the red one, and lighting the insulation with my zippo, I let all the red-plastic burn off until I was left with pure copper strand. I wrapped one side of the stone and then took the yellow wire and revealing the copper, wrapped the other side.

Then, I lit the incense and a candle, and waited. I rolled a cigarette and smoked it while drinking the last of my beers until I had enough wax for the incantation. taking my pliers, I poured the wax over the wire wrapped stone and covered it in a cocoon of white. I waited for it to dry, then hung in directly in front of my 75 watt incandescent and waited.

I put Joy's wedding invitation, Save the Date letter underneath, to catch the drips and let the stone heat. It started to show blue and after a few minutes, the drip-drip fell on to the 39 cents of Love, posted on the stamp. After a few more minutes, the wax was completely gone and I was left with my new lapis pendant.

I did not use the black wire. It is mine and I love it.

Finally, I played this song, and blessed it.