July 11, 2024

Hick sisters and nude aliens in the shower

I only have one sister, and she's kind of a hick. Bumpkin is more accurate. She lives at home with my parents out in the woods. She called me a few days ago to say she had quit her job at the pizza parlor and needed a change. She drove down to Minneapolis on Friday evening. I was biking home from Twin Lake when she called at Forest Lake to say her arrival was imminent.

I bought her a margarita at The Bulldog and we talked about life up there. When I was growing up in the woods, things seemed a bit easier...sheltered, but easy. Easy to leave. But when you don't leave after high school and try to carve out a meaningful life in a town of 3,000 where the best bang for your buck on a Friday night is the breakwall where the pickup trucks squeal around the parking lot and the one or two bars in town hold the same former classmates, getting older and older...and the best news all year is that a Culver's is coming to town...it used to be that the ore docks and the railroad could employ you or your husband, and offer health care and union representation and a steady job...now those have faded and the biggest employers are Pamida and McDonald's.

My sister is a few years out of highschool now. We talked about some of her friends who have started to abuse meth. When was in highschool (shit that was 7, 8 years ago already!), weak pot was the town's greatest threat. Now it's something much worse. My sister has seen a friend of hers go, in a few short years, from shy, small-town high school student (like my sister) to fuckmachine who will do anything to you for a little bit of meth. In a way, my sister's inhibitions have kept her safe...could I even say that?...for you have to have low expectations for yourself when you live up there. The classy joint is a 70s supper club built as a faux castle. I would see Steve at work in the grocery store meat department. Torina and I hiked to one of the highest points in the area to camp once, and all I saw was pine trees stretching unbroken to the horizon. I couldn't wait to get away from there. Last night I dreamed I returned to high school. I have no idea why. I was taking classes. My old French teacher kept saying, "Ca va?" to me in the halls. I missed the yellow school bus home constantly, and had to walk.

I want my sister to have a sense of herself in this world as a full of agency. A right to rework the reality around her to make herself happy and fulfilled. I want to hint to her that there is more. She is shy, arms folded, afraid to speak her mind, ask a question, express any desire. Perhaps I'm being too big brotherish.

So where did I take her? To the gay bar, of course. I guess I wanted to show her that life could be hyperbole and silly and inconsequential. There were silly go go boys on the bars that my friends and I critiqued. And I convinced my sister to hand a dollar through the slot to the naked skinny twink dancing naked in that plexiglass shower (Jessica said he looked like an alien). She finally laughed then. Behind all the vapidity of such a place is a genuine impulse toward agency, I think. I may not agree with the end result, but I agree with the process--reworking your reality until its a space you feel comfortable in.

The shower-boy's greatest fan was an old man. Maybe 70 years old, fat, in throwback pants, a white dress shirt, and suspenders. He looked like he was right off the farm. I imagined him driving into the city in the cab of some beat up Farm Ford, wife dead or unaware, to park by the shiny stones of the St. Thomas law school. And here he is, passing dollar bills to the naked boy in the shower. He could do worse I suppose--like cook meth in his barn.

we are all reporters now; how to make meth; i pray for the victims, here and in iraq; inside the minds of britain's young muslims; vintage japanese robots

Posted by jason at July 11, 2024 08:15 AM

I've seen that man. he bought me a beer once. i didn't drink it because i was going to drive home.

and life goes on....

Posted by: nathan at July 31, 2024 09:28 AM

shut the uck up, there us nuthing wtonge with insest love(pHisicallY)obusely u hava fetish 4 it

Posted by: FUCc UUUUU at March 4, 2006 01:39 AM
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