A little more than a year ago, we moved across the street from Pinkeye Beach. Seriously, it’s beautiful, and it’s smells all wonderful salt and wet and thick on my face, and I love driving on the highway next to the water, and there’s red tail hawk that hunts from the tree across from our kitchen window sometimes, so majestic, and the campfires smell so wonderful (until someone starts smoking something that smells more like plastic and tar and 151), but really, that water will get you sick.
Never mind that the ocean is nature’s toilet. Never mind that there is always a dead sea lion on the beach (that’s why the dogs always start running as soon as they are off leash–they’re looking for that sweet rotting sea lion). Never mind that there are a million other dead things there; that’s why Pinkeye Beach is covered in crows and pigeons. Kick the bulb of the bull whip kelp and a million flies pour out of it like it’s a corpse’s eyeball.
Never mind all that: there are floaters in the water. You see them every time you go there. The treatment plant is right at the end of Sloat Boulevard. That’s grody. Don’t go in there. At least get a hep-B series first.
Our apartment is one floor up, over the garages, and goes through the building, but it isn’t a railroad, I don’t think. My desk is by the dunes side (we’d have to be on the upper floor to have a view of the beach proper). My boyfriend has the street side. At night, when we eat and watch our stories (y’all, I am just now learning how fucking great Prison Break is. I can’t understand how I slept on this shit for so long), and at night, that’s when this magic happens. A ghost rolls under the windows.
For months and months, we didn’t see it, just heard it. It went too fast to be walking, and too slow to be driving, and too quiet to be on a skateboard. So it had to either be a) disembodied, or b) on a bike. The weird thing: always blasting 1980s hiphop, like Grandmaster Flash, Sugarhill Gang, Kool Moe Dee, and almost always the same ones, like he had a Time Life collection of Greatest Hits CDs, or an 8-track.
It didn’t help that the ghost was fleet of foot. Every time we heard him, we looked, but ghosts get, well, ghost. He was always gone.
Finally: a man rolled by when we were by the window for no reason on a BMX bike, blasting some LL Cool J. He looked young, but it was from far away. Maybe he got hit by the train? Or a car? Maybe he has a message from the 1980s to share with us? A message of peace and freedom through rapping? I can say that hearing Kool Moe Dee and other old school beats made me happy as hell.
Since we saw him once, we see him often. He very much seems male. He is always alone. He is always with music. We can’t tell if other people can see him or not. I want to know his story, since the ones I write for people and ghosts are certainly wrong.
(This is the song I always want the DJ to play, but I think requesting shit from the DJ is rude. I want the ghost to play it, too, but I think requesting shit from a ghost is pointless and rude.)
I’m not sure when my friends and I became the cliché of new Berkeley. But we did.
I’m getting ahead of myself.
I had breakfast with Sparrow and Miss DeLoop the other day. Brunch, I guess, since they got eggs and I got carnitas. It was noon. We had planned on eleven, but then Benjamin Franklin et al. got all up in our shit and messed up our morning with some Daylight Savings bullshit. And then we couldn’t reach Zorro Smitty. (Yes, these are my noms de guerre for my friends.) He was off the grid. This shit doesn’t happen in the Age of the Cell; it used to happen all the time when we first met. Remember? When your friend wasn’t home and wasn’t at the spot and for all you knew they were being probed by the Alien Head from 1995? But these days it’s disconcerting. Someone could be trapped under something heavy. Someone could be having a stroke.
Anyways, it turned out that Zorro Smitty had a callback for an audition, so hooray for him–for us all, really! He got the part, too, but we didn’t find that out until later. Zorro Smitty is a star! And I am a star fucker, so I’m keeping my wagon platonically hitched to that boy. I would anyways, but star fucker is so fun to say.
Sparrow is the one with a real job, a real grown up job that had sent her to Europe recently. She’d even gotten to go to a fancy tech party with bands and shit. It turns out traveling to other continents on business isn’t glamorous–this is what everyone has told me–because the time difference fucks your shit up so badly you can’t get right in a day or so for meetings. You don’t have fun. You just try and get your sleep right and feel out of it.
I am the old ass obligatory graduate student of the bunch. I’ve had three real, grown-up jobs in the past. But now, I am the one who regales them with tales out of school. I have two professors who I think might be sorceresses. I wouldn’t be surprised if I saw a magic throwdown between them one day. I think the one would have a raven as a familiar, the other an iguana. No clear winners as far as I can tell.
(Also, students take note: red light + theremin + animal costume = bad performance art. I’m just saying. That’s right up there with yarn in a tree. That’s art school 101. What, are you going to write “whore” all over yourself with red lipstick and jump up and down in a cheerleader outfit next? Step up your game, people. Maybe then people will want to attend your “happenings” instead of walking by your forlorn sad little venue.)
I got to the restaurant first, then saw Miss DeLoop. She was still covered in body glitter. Her back is doing better, so she was able to do a show for the first time in a long time last night. She’s a trapeze and aerial artist, not a stripper. [Do folks ask you that, Miss DeLoop?] The show was for a birthday party that must have cost as much as a really, really, really fancy wedding. As much as a really, really nice car. With options. I still think spending that much money at one time is like a potlatch, but not the productive kind, the kind where all this shit is amassed and destroyed. You could feed a bunch of little kids. Find someone in anxiety over their cancer payments or something. But I guess you gotta spend money to light money on fire or something.
And then Miss DeLoop dropped a bomb on us.
“And I got humped by a lemur!”
Pics or it didn’t happen.
–She showed me the motherfucking pics. Of a lemur on her shoulders with his little gleaming demon eyes. Sexual demon eyes.
“He crawled up my back, and he liked my fuzzy coat. And his trainer was all, ‘Uh, no Taj. Stop, Taj. Taj. Bad, Taj. No. Taj.”
She said it was scary. I can’t stop laughing even now.
Miss DeLoop, please send me the pic. I think we’d all like to see it.
I imagine it went a lot like this:
My head, my heart, my hips: different planes. I know things, I feel things, I want things.
I can keep myself from doing things. I can deny myself. I can live as a nun. I can know that everyone around me is terrible for me and not touch any of them. My will is strong. I use reason to argue myself out of things and people.
I left someone when I was still in love with him. My heart still burned for awhile. A couple of years. Then it was dead coals for a couple more. It took a while to get up and clean out the hearth.
But I cannot stop my body from its twinges. I can’t help what appeals to it. I love sweets and fats and salt and creeps and sleazes. I love long stringy tall angular dark men with weird mannerisms that seem dangerous and odd. Unsafe. Think Kafka’s Soldiers and Inspectors and Guards. That reads even more terrible than it was in my head. But unfortunately, accurate. (Gross.)
This is seriously the best thing I have seen all week.
I love the some of these comments on YouTube as well.
“If you go to this store, you will be murdered. And that’s a promise.”
“Dadaism as television advertisement.”
“He sounds and acts like he just smoked a joint full of hairballs.”
“You can count on his name being Mark!”
I want to see!
So I know a lot of people are concerned, or excited, or just having feelings about the result of the straw poll that just came out. You may be looking into Vivos Shelters (which side of the door do you want to be on? I choose this side. I’ve been in the nuclear bomb shelters under the UCLA library leftover from the cold war, and I can’t go for that, no, no can do), or having a custom structure built. You may be considering emigration. Or joining or starting a UFO cult.
I’m here to give you the straight facts before you give anyone your money, blood or stool samples, or allow anyone to lay his/her/its/their eggs in your chest cavity (babies are forever!).
I’m not a Reptilian or Amphibioid, Seer. I am a mammal. We don’t reproduce like that.
Back to our irregular series of shit that freaked me or you out way back when. So: why are so many children’s antagonists very pedophile-like? Really, I mean this. This isn’t a rhetorical question. Because for reals for reals, they seem like people who like to hurt children in sexual ways, document the hurting, and then cook the wee ones in exquisite ways. Not that we all knew that they were pedophiles, just that something made us feel more icky than just afraid when we saw these monsters on the screen. They weren’t like sharks or snakes or giant squids (I had nightmares after riding the 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea ride at Disneyland, no joke) or other things that might scare you. There was something that smelled off about this kind of scare.
I can’t be alone in thinking this.
So. Seer is a hypochondriac, okay? For the last few weeks, I’ve been convinced I’ve been having blood clots again. Not that I’ve had blood clots before. I just periodically think I’m having them. I have imaginary attacks of the clots. I called the advice nurse and mentioned something about having pain in my groin and they sent me to the OB/GYN, but not my regular awesome one whose name is really like “Dr. Douchebag” (I’m not fooling), but some dude I don’t know. I said to the advice nurse that I would be happy to go to the regular doctor, but it was too late: I’m a lady, and I said “groin,” so I’m at the OB/GYN. To the vagina doctor with ye! Be gone, wench!