Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Little Red Riding Hood, Dean Winchester, and the Big, Bad Wolf

I crack open the safe myself now
Fourty-five twenty-two
June until September
Three months 'til december

The summer is over

You were my summer, man. Somehow we managed to parlay that summer romance we had into a couple years of friendship. When I say romance, I mean our collective love for guns, beer, and getting laid. That was the only romance we knew, and it got hold of both of us. Summer, man.


Houston, I'm sure I've mentioned before. What I've come to realize is that he was my Dean Winchester before Dean Winchester. He was that seasoned, tough, smart-assed guy who drove a sweet vintage truck, was loved by women, admired by men, and was full of loyalty--as long as you were 'family'.
I became family to him.

Don't get me wrong, we always had that thread of sexual tension between us. Put two attractive people of the opposite sex together, and you're going to get some sparks. Especially since we shared almost all of the same interests.

We didn't become really close until his girlfriend went back overseas. She went back overseas for good, to her husband. That got to him in a really big way.

But he had me. And I was determined to find him another girl or two or three, if that's what he wanted. I was gonna pull him out of his downtime, 'cause that's just how we rolled.

We ended up being the kind of friends that most people wish they had. We had each other's backs. If he made it to work first, there'd be an iced tea waiting on me. If I made it in first, Mountain Dew on the rocks for him.

People always thought we were a couple. Even the people closest to us. Especially the people closest to us. When we collectively denied this, they thought we were just really good fuck buddies.
Maybe it was the way we just fit together, like two pieces of the same sarcastic puzzle. Maybe it was the way we had no boundaries with each other.
(He liked to hunch me in public, if I was checking out something on his computer screen, I usually opted to sit on his lap instead of pulling up a chair.)
We were just 'us'. Or, as we affectionately called each other "Bitch" and "jackass".


About the same time he broke up with his lady friend, I broke it off with B. I remember coming to work with my face puffy from crying. He took one look at me, and instead of zinging me, he sat at my cubicle and asked me if I was pregnant.
That made me laugh so hard I almost peed myself. When I could breathe again, I told him no.

We ended up leaving early that day, to go shooting. We drove to Ardmore, bought some ammo, and went to this place he liked to shoot, on one of his friends property. We ended up getting really, really drunk.
On the ride home the next day, he asked me if I needed to have a girly moment. A.k.a., crying.
I didn't. That would come later, when I was alone.

Eventually, we both moved on from the wreckage of our relationships as best we could. Which is Sal talk for, we drank our asses off daily. Nightly. And to really shake things up, every weekend.

There were days when sober and I didn't exchange glances in the mirror.

I still managed to make it to classes, though. Somehow, we both did.

Sometimes I'd go to class still drunk from the night before. Sometimes I'd go to class so hungover, that I'd wish to die. If you've ever truly been hungover, then you know what it's like to sit perfectly still, and feel like any movement is going to make you heave your guts. Hell, no movement will make you puke. The sound of the clock ticking off seconds is likely to set you off.

This one particular day, Houston called me to remind me that we were meeting at school. I was walking to meet him, when I was suddenly and violently detoured into some bushes. As chance would have it, right in front of the computer lab.
As I fell into those wonderfully supportive bushes, I threw up almost pure alcohol. You could've bottled and resold that shit.

When it finally ended, what felt like days later, there was this nice construction worker who helped me out of those bushes and bought me a sprite. I remember sitting down and sipping that delicious coldness.
As it turns out, I didn't really own that sprite, I was only renting it. Because a few minutes later, it came back up.
You haven't really lived until you've thrown up something cold, that fizzes on the way back up. Good times.

Our summer went like that. We went out, we drank massive amounts of alcohol, we both got laid, but the one constant in both our lives was each other.
It was like a marriage, a sexless, drunken, hilarious marriage.

We spent our weekends writing songs about our insignifigant others. We shot guns. We drank. We filmed random shit. Wash, rinse, repeat.
For the longest time, that was us.

Let's have a talk about the good times
But you were always giving in
Let's have a talk about the good times
Boy, you were only giving in

But one thing everyone knows is that summer has to end sometime. It's only a season, it's only around for so long.

And that's pretty much what happened to us. Summer, man.
Our summer was over. And I won't be seeing him around.

The summer is over and I doubt
I doubt I'll be seeing you around
I'll be seeing you around
The summer is over and I doubt
I doubt I'll be seeing you around

The events that led to the ending of our friendship mostly centered around B, and my inability to get over him completely.
This wasn't helped at all by the fact that B promised me we'd get back together, thus stringing me along. Because at this time, I was still almost completely naive. Trusting. I was little red riding hood. Did I mention trusting? Unafraid to walk in those big bad woods alone, because if you've never been hurt, then the hurt isn't really real. It's only something you've been told about. It's a fairytale, a story. It only starts being real when it starts being you.

Hey there Little Red Riding Hood.
You sure are lookin' good,
You're everything a big bad wolf could want

It was about this time that B applied for a job in our town. The one job that he wanted. He told me that he wanted this job so we could be together, so we could work things out. And me being me, I believed him. Yes, that one was all on me.

I'm gonna keep my sheep suit on,
'Til I'm sure you've been shown,
That I can be trusted walkin' with you alone.

Before I had to talk to the interviewing officer, I found out that B was actually seeing someone. Or, actually, Houston found out.

So, I had this choice to make. I could tell B's interviewing officer what a creep he was, I could let our personal relationship ruin his chance at his dream job. I could exact my pound of flesh for everything that he had done. I could hurt him as badly as he'd hurt me. I could take that dream, his biggest dream, and I could crush it the way he crushed my heart.

But I didn't.

Instead of dwelling on our personal relationship, I told the interviewer what an asset he would be. I told them about his strengths, about how he would be an asset to any department, his strength of character, personal conviction, and his deep commitment to whatever job he chose.

And he got the job.

Hey, I'm blind.
Good Fine.
Roll the time
On whose dime

The big bad wolves are never who we'd expect them to be. Just like the heroes don't always fit the profile. Houston saved my life once, and I will always owe him for that. But that, is a story for another day...


Ed Adams said...

Sal, you got some crazy ass stories. Even though I don't know what the hell you're talking about sometimes, I still find you funny.......unless it's when your making me cry.....then I hate you......but mostly it's funny.

jules said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
jules said...

#1. I love the word parlay. We had a good run a few years ago, and I keep meaning to bring it back to my vocab!

#2. I know that summer. I've met those bushes, that sprite and that god forsaken ticking clock. My male friend and I endulged in WTF Wednesdays, followed by Throw in the Towel Thursday and would race to our work computers to see who could email who first elaborately explaining our level of hangover-ness. Despite all the vomiting, this post brings back fond memories for me!

From the O-Zone said...

You could talk me out of a tree - unless I thought that my moving would interrupt the flow of your words.

But why, oh why did you have to remind me of my own pseudo-marriage, that drunken, hilarious, but not sexless marriage?

Mighty Hunter said...

I appears that you have lead (so far) a full life of loves and intense feelings and drunken debauchery. I like you already. Let's compare notes sometime.

Sally-Sal said...

I'm kinda random, I know. And thanks for the hate ;) It's almost as good as love.

Those bushes were probably really tough, being watered with alcohol and all ;)

I could talk you down from a tree? Why would you be in that tree?

Mighty Hunter:
Deal. You go first.

'Cuz I Felt Like It! said...

Best friends like that make the best lovers/boyfriends/husbands.

My husband and I were/are like that still and we've been together for almost 16 years! The only way to make a relationship work is to ALWAYS be each others best friend.

ladytruth said...

When you describe your Houston slash Dean Winchester it kind of sounds like my Chris. It's an amazing thing to have a person like that in your life. What happened to Houston though? He didn't go to hell like Dean, did he? ;)

Sally-Sal said...

He wasn't the monogamous type. But he was one hell of a friend while it lasted.

No, he didn't go to hell. We're just not 'family' anymore.

Tennyson ee Hemingway said...

Another brilliant story girl. Man, it'd be nice to read something joyous from you soon. It's gotta happen for you, I can feel it.

Andrew: Encore Entertainment said...

It's sad when you think about those old days and there were those friends you were completely unselfconscious around and just used to light up your day; and you see them now and there's nothing there.

From the O-Zone said...

You could talk me out of a tree because your way with words is rare. As to why I'd be there in the first place, the view is much better.

The Dark Tower said...

Good to have a savior every once in a while no matter how disappointing they may be in the end. Good stuff sal!

otherworldlyone said...

Definitely good stuff.

I'm not very wordy and smart today, so I'll just say that I always love your posts and this was no exception.

Dutch donut girl said...

If we only knew then what we know now. Would you have felt better if you had crushed his dreams? Yes, no, maybe, but probably not.
But don't mind me. I don't know what I'm talking about.
Loved the post.

Mega8815 said...

You are such a lucky gal Sal.
Everyone wishes and needs a friendship like that. It's true what they say - Lots of people come through your life but only certain people leave footprints in your heart... He did.

I also had a friend like this but it didn't last very long either. If I remember correctly it was about 3 years. Long enough I guess. Until he got the girlfriend from hell who pushed me out of his life. Nice. They didn't last long either but we just kinda lost the 'family' thing as well after that.

Lovely post. Thank you.

PS - And yes you were stupid to let B come between you and him. But so is life huh? Shit happens.

erin said...

Good times. That about sums it up. Good post too.

Anonymous said...

I have a friend like that now, James. We talk and everything just comes out. Total acceptance and empathy. God I love him! Think it would be different if he were to be my boyfriend though, I have one now and things just get so complicated when you live together, such is life.

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