Sal, Lawrence & Mac (Chapter III)

As I sat across the room watching with intent eyes and a warm glance, I saw the people who would pull me out of the standstill that took over my life for several years. I sit here, staring across a room decorated recklessly honest. Specifically the area designated for music and music alone, a space set aside for a world put aside. Music is what mostly stems from this collective of tastefully sprinkled kind. A kind that wears hats upon the edge of their heads, beanies rolled up matching the pants they roll up well past their ankles showing casing their socks and often laced leather shoes.

My eyes focus towards Lawrence, the younger fellow who's rolled up yellow beanie graced his longer brown hair. His hair fell well past his chest and the tips dance over the neck of his Telecaster, created to look specifically aged, vintage rather. He sits atop one of the larger speakers that outline the edges of the musical atmosphere. Nothing more than a fifteen by fifteen foot area covered by a rug passed down through various families, households and god knows where or who else. Sitting on the speaker his legs covered in brown khakis rolled up - also well past the ankles to showcase the high tops that seemingly always grabbed his feet. Cuffed pants for the style, not the practicality. Nonetheless, he was sitting there, ever so often interrupting the conversation happening only a few feet away from with the comical wit that seemed to really make up his personality.     

He was that of the group, the one who's quick witted mind would often grace the exchange of words between people a touch more than the next person. My eyes flashed back up at the simple scene unfolding before me, the calm intimacy that I had cherished among these collective few was yet again making me seemingly content. And in these quiet intimate moments I'd notice things about those who walked about before me. The way Lawrence’s tone on the amp he would so carelessly, but elegantly strum that aged Tele often seemed to match that of his demeanor. A fine tone that was lighthearted and made your body grow warm, but was dashed with enough age and bitterness to take you back to the fifties, where Lawrence honestly seemed as so he came from. In the strangest most peculiar way Lawrence was that of a sharp soul, who seemed to act silly in the most genuine way. A way that would never make you question his wit, but rather feel thankful that a person so naturally knowing and quick witted could enjoy the simple pleasure of being an absolute goof at times. I guess you could say it gave me some uncut hope into the validity of people's hearts, something that for me was difficult at times. Finding the balance between trusting those who seem wholesome and finding those who truly are.

But I guess you could also say a lot of these collective few helped me in this process. I don't what really clicked for me in these moments to come, but as I am sitting here watching as Esmaé and Q read to each other the words from books we bought that day. Q being short for something I was never told, but I'm sure it is short. I'd be shocked, stunned really, if a mother allowed her newly born child a name as simple as one single letter. But never mind my endlessly judgemental bullshit, I apologize really.

My eavesdropping was interrupted, not to my displeasure by Sal. Sal being someone I was rather fond of in the most platonic way, sweet boy was an almost perfect replica of myself and we knew that connection full well. Looking at him across the table, where he sat down rather swiftly upon arriving home from his new job, I noticed the way the sunlight pouring in from the sliding glass door behind me highlighted his dark medium length hair, and created a glare - that would in turn shoot into my eyes - off of his metal rimmed circular glasses. His gazed shot up at Lawrence as he spouted out some nonsense. “Lawrence you’re a flibbertigibbet, bird brain!” shouted Sal across the room as he sat next to me simultaneously reading the words from his bible sized 1976 Thesaurus. His face glowed with an eminent childlikeness that made Lawrence and Mac - Mac being the new face from a few hours back who had seemed to know Lawrence and Sal for quite sometime - giggle with nostalgia for the days when childlikeness, more so fragile innocence, was the norm. Their laughs high pitched and honest reflected a connection only an upbringing of entangled recklessness could surface.

    A few minutes had passed before I was realizing my surroundings again and I’m grateful I became conscious again at this moment, this moment being a chorus of joined voices and soulful sounds. The music atmosphere was being invaded and pushing out a sweet air that filled my ears with only pleasure. That part that caused the room being the most pleasure was when instruments would fade and excited voices would pour out words louder and louder as they began to remember songs of their earlier adolescence. The room would all at once would burst with voices, happy to bursting at the seams together, heads falling back with laughter and small gentle strokes on their guitars was all they needed to be content in this simple world they created together. Mac standing with one foot on the speaker swung his body around as he chuckled and lead the path down memory lane. Sal sitting cross legged on the speaker adjacent to Mac, flickered with a certain awkward giddiness that would make any simple minded person come to have a likeness towards him. Holding his shoulders high, legs still crossed tight in the most feminine way, Sal glanced around the room with an aura of being content in his living arrangement. Not only regarding the roof over his head, but the life he was leading. Surely a grateful kind, soft spoken until settled into the comfort of those he would call his mates. He stood at the sink now, filling up the white mug that always accompanied his left hand. The green light that hung only a few inches above his head gave his hair an unnatural look, but at the same time created a certain glow to his broad back. Green light danced down his back as people flowed in and out of the kitchen, spiraling around the other.

    Now standing towards me, mug in one hand and in the other a slice of bread, he let out a deep sigh of relaxation. However, you could see the stress that was festering in his eyes due to the fact he had to return to his job in a matter of hours. I had loved the way Sal and I often shared oranges, a sweet intimacy we had seemed to reserve for ourselves. I can recall countless times sitting at this same damn table and Sal greeting me with two halves of an orange, one for myself and one for him. Quick glances, often trailed by faint smiles was where we found common ground. Sitting at the same light colored wooden table I always seem to reside, Sal always came and accompanied me in my solitude. Sitting here side by side we discussed that of our inspirations in life, mine being writing and his, well, that being the rather expensive hobby of film cinematography. We sat and chatted for a while about what aspects of film he enjoyed best and as usual he made a pass at trying to read my writings from today, no luck as usual.

 

Parker Lane (Chapter II)

         I’ve come to the realization that I am a reader, not of prose or of poetry, rather a reader of people. I engage in reading daily. Reading through both the surface and hidden mind lines of those who cross me day to day. I remember the first day I read Parker Lane.

        He had been a friend of my sister from the time of elementary school, always the guy who would make you crack a laugh, or bust a gut at half the the bullshit that heavily flowed from his contaminated innocent mind. Not contamination of his mind in the sense of young age indulgence in drugs, but rather the very fact that his Dad wasn’t around, his Dad wasn’t around because drugs were. The feeling of neglect poured from his cheek to cheek smile that greeted you with every heart warming genuine interaction he made sure to provide, because in turn he wasn't provided the same pleasure. But this pleasure differed, it differed because love was lacking, authenticity was lacking from the one he need it from most, Dad. Dad said a lot of things to Gene, “Grow up to be a fine young man, son. Don’t grow up to be like your old man,” said as the cigarette smoke from the drag prior to this “wisdom”, flowed out out his nostrils with each passing cliche. I began reading Parker Lane from the earlier ages of my own fading resilience. Because we are all losing that resilience, aren’t we? Seems as so. Even with each passing day we lose our spark, our once so natural and fluid imagination of the life that could. But some lose faster than others, that being the case with Parker Lane.

      It was around when I was sixteen or seventeen years old and I had been seeing Parker around town more often. Or maybe since I had finally had the chance to scrape the crud - also known as high school - from the under layers of my eyes, I finally started to have the capacity to read again. And it had surfaced across town that Parker's mother had recently passed of cancer, what kind of cancer escapes me, nonetheless, cancer. Seemingly to be without family, Parker Lane still was in a family of three. Ever growing closer inseparable siblings, bonding by the things that tear us apart. Why Parker Lane enticed my every nerve of curiosity from the age of five or six is as much of a mystery to me as to anyone else, but I guess those are the just the habits of my heart. Never an interest of romance or friendship - however, it seems to be heading in the direction of friendship lately - but rather a life that seemed so polar opposite of my own that I was sucked in, always consumed by the habits of other people's hearts. And as I am sitting next to another innocence stripped upbringing, I stumble back into the reality of the house party I am sitting through. Reading people, remembering Parker. Remembering Parker Lane by the bottles being clashed together by clumsy hands and liquid confidence.