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I Can See Butt

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I Can See Butt
I Can See Butt
I Can See Butt
I Can See Butt
I Can See Butt

I'm tired of talking about how busy Tim & Victoria are and how bad a man Will is.

Here's the short version. Tim & Victoria traded me six things for bARTer Sauce but they are moving and don't have time to write six stories. Will is a trouble-maker who is being punished by having to "ghost write" six stories for Tim & Victoria.

There. That was sort of short.

This is a two-part story.
Read Part I here.
And now, Part II of Will's story.....

-----------Part 2------------------

Ten years. Ten years gone and it seems like only yesterday. Everything changed after that. Everything, slowly but surely changed, but the friendship is still intact.  I'm the sentimental type and so threw out the idea to take a return trip to Wilmington, just the guys, and have a little ten year reunion trip of that time in May. We're older and, I like to think, wiser now. We kind of hate the beach and the heat, so we scheduled it for October.

Last time we stayed in the Hilton so we could walk downtown and drink and walk back. This time we opted for two nights in an old beach hotel at Wrightsville beach for the cost of one night at the Hilton. Right on the beach, next to a pier. We're married with children and our priorities are much different than they were in 1999.  We coasted into town, 10 AM on a Friday once again. The sky was the color of a new bruise and off in the distance we could see the rain over the ocean.  We checked in because the hotel was empty and started drinking.  We walked around, watched some old Dawson's Creek, went downtown to eat, stopped at the Firebelly for a beer, then went fishing at the pier that was right next to the hotel. My buddy caught a few, but nothing worth keeping and I proceeded to get drunk and obnoxious and sing every song on my iPod loudly to old salty fishermen, then we walked back to the hotel and passed out at 4 in the morning.

The next day I was hungover and dehydrated, we both were, so we thought it would be a great idea to take a long walk on the beach. It lasted 3 hours and I got horribly sunburned, but it was one of the best walks of my life. We talked about so much and so deeply and the conversation rose up and dipped down, from that girl's hot ass to the underlying nature of reality that we take for granted. It was a good talk and the kind of talk that you can't have on the phone or in your hometown, but only on vacation, on some half-empty beach.  By the end of the walk we were shaky and sick from not eating or drinking anything. We went to eat, then slept, then eat again (we ate a lot of seafood!) and finally we went downtown, a return to the belly of the beast.

My buddy was in a down mood from the heat and the sunburn and other things that are going on in his life.  We stopped at the Firebelly Lounge again. This time a drum band was playing loudly, but not too well. The crowd was chill, but the noise was too much. We sat on a bench and watched the young people playing at being alive.  I told my friend that downtown was a young man's game.

We saw a girl, all alone, dressed to kill, delicately balanced on steep high heels.  I said she looked like a pro.  A hep cat with a cool hat walked by, also alone, looked at her then looked at her and with perfect rhythm and timing, not missing a beat, said, "That's a damn shame, fine woman like that walking alone. Shit." and kept walking.  We talked about going to a strip club, but not too seriously. I knew that there was no reality there, but this, this downtown, was steeped in reality and pain and suffering and happiness.  It was a swimming miasma of reality in all its splendor and filth. We ended up in a bar called Hell's Kitchen. Me drinking water, my buddy drinking beer. Finally, to break the foul mood, I talked him into a tequila shot. It worked like Mexican magic. The game was on. A band called No Dollar Shoes began to play and we watched the people from a corner and a few of the girls even watched us, not bad for some old timers. I smoked even though I don't smoke.

No Dollar Shoes plays what was described to me by a very chesty bartender as "Punktry" or country punk which is weird. They played bluegrass pretty hard and it was good.  Before they played I was taking a piss and a guy, the guitarist I think, comes into the bathroom and the floor's covered in piss and this guy bellys up to the urinal and says:

"Shit, I need my shoes."
"Where the hell are you shoes man, the floors like a river of piss."
"I left 'em on the steps of the post office."

That was the whole exchange. The big post office he was talking about is two blocks away at least. It was strange, but the music was good even though that guitarist is probably going to die of dysentery or at least the worst case of athlete's foot known to man.

This one girl came in and she wanted all the attention. She looked like she had shaved her head except for a sprig of bangs and started to dirty dance with another girl. My friend fell for it and stared at her like her face was aflame, I looked somewhere else. I try not to give attention seekers what they want if I can help it.

The girl in the blue dress came in just as the band started to really play. She danced in dirty bare feet and whirled like a top, grabbing the hem of the blue dress and whipping it around. She wore a smile that was just a little drunk on booze and a lot drunk on joy. She danced carefree and alone, heedless to everything else. Watching this girl in blue was like watching pure happiness, in the flesh, and holding back the dark corners of the bar.  There was no one except for the girl in blue. There were no others.  Others tried and failed where the girl in blue triumphed. She wasn't beautiful, but inside her, while she danced, for that time and place, she opened up my eyes to the beauty of careless joy. Her love light shone bright and radiated outward and into the gloom of the bar. Time slowed as she danced.

Eventually though, it was 2 and closing time and the drunken beasts came out of their bass thumping bars, like the Barbary Coast where they give you a free punch in the face with each pint. The "Pint and a Punch" special.  I saw a guy get arrested for assaulting a police horse and heard three drunk girls talk about a guy getting stabbed only minutes before. The streets were a madhouse of drunkenness.  The bars spewed them out like they were collectively puking.  And the puke flowed like a river. We watched the craziness. My friend said it was like Jerry Springer live. I told him it was what the apocalypse would look like one day.  We decide to leave.  In front of us is a girl who can barely walk. She starts to puke in a parking lot, ass in the air, skirt up around her waist from the force of her vomit. It was a thrilling shame. I looked away and passed her by. Later I heard some mean scary girl tell her that she hoped she got raped and murdered that night. Alcohol brings out the worst in people.

Downtown leads into historic homes. We parked far away and free, in front of the residential district. To get there you have to pass what I call "Rape Alley"  a dark set of creepy stairs leading through trees and down to a dark dirt lot which looks like a haven for rapists.  We made it back safe and went back to the beach. 

The next day we went to Whitey's and all was well. We reminisced about 10 years ago and it was like old times. Whitey's never changes and the food's always the same.  This time he was depressed for his own reasons and I wondered how everything would change in the next 10 years. I look forward to it.