Non Fiction

If this place makes you cry come on baby stay a while – B Side Part 1

I was so fucking stoked on moving to pacific beach with satanic panic.  My previous year and a half had been spent living in more nondescript parts of San Diego.  The first was College Area, which is the area surrounding SDSU, and is over run with keggers, greek misogyny, and women who wore platform sandals, pants made of stretchy black fabric and a pastel halter top.  It was a great introduction to life outside of the valley but not my cup of tea.  I liked getting high not drunk,  and while the parties were large and loud I could never stomach alcohol and had only taken up weed when my social circle dissolved after high school.  My involvement at these parties was that of a high spectator, marveling/judging the ridiculous exploits of youth newly emancipated from the watchful eye of their well meaning parents.  It was a lot of fun to watch, but I never felt like I was part of it.  I moved out of the house I was renting at the time and a month later my roommates were evicted.

I spent summers at home in the valley working with my dad, so the next school season I moved into a one bedroom apartment with two of my friends.  One was a fledgling rap-reggae artist who was way into bob marley and rastafari (probably for “the sacraments”) and the other was my long time friend who made an art form of a) convincing his parents to pay his way through life and b) convincing women that, despite his absence of gainful employment, he was a worthwhile fuck.  By all accounts he was an excellent lay that I imagine the women would later look fondly back upon as their experimental phase.

The apartment was in Northpark, which to me was the ghetto and to anyone from a ghetto was a nice place.  In my defense I do remember a night my two roommates and I huddled in fear in the corner under the bar opposite the kitchen after we heard gunfire across the street followed by someone running through our courtyard pursued by another person who let off two rounds in front of our window.  Needless to say we were high, so after twenty minutes of wide eyed silence, grins turned to uncontrollable laughter and excited conversations common to the sterility afforded affluent tourists who believe they have just had and authentic experience.  I lived by myself for a short time in college area again where I remember rekindling my mostly dormant friendship with Satanic panic.  Living alone proved to be lonely.  I had a long distance girlfriend an 18 inch double bubble bong and I joined the swim team in attempt to reach for something familiar.  The relationship didn’t last, the bong broke, and I wasn’t the swimmer I had once been.  I went home for the summer.

When Satanic Panic and I decided to move in together I was over the moon.  He was one of my best friends from high school, we were both mediocre skaters (I more so than he), and we were going to live near the beach.  I had resolved to quit school for a semester and see what I could do in the working world free of the responsibilities of school.  I got a job at an adult bookstore.  It paid two dollars over minimum wage, a commission, and paid weekly.  I had paid sick and vacation time, and a fucking retirement program.  The gross little apartment located too far from anything of pacific beach notoriety didn’t phase my happiness.  In those first four months I had plenty of money from one week to the next, went skating every chance I got, and lost my virginity to a girl I had been crushing on for two years.  I had no idea how fucked up I would feel about my life by the time this next school year was over.

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