My Punkest Friend

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One of my greatest friends will not admit that he is a punk.

When he rolled his own cigarettes, he made them out of old receipts, using post it notes as filters.

He painted the lights in the hallways of his apartment building with farm animals.

He allowed a homeless guy to sleep on his couch and print his extremist manifestos because if he was a homeless queer person, he would have wanted someone to give him a roof.

When he had a party at his place, he brought a toaster and bread and butter to the room where a stoned girl was suffering from cravings and made her that damn toast.

He is always good for bumming cigarettes.

He tries to exchange ice cream for weed.

He lets friends borrow clothes for job interviews.

He wore a beanie he found on a bus in Portland and gave it to me.

When he shop-lifted, he gave the things he stole to people who needed them/wanted them.

When he went backpacking in New Zealand and he needed money, he spent a month picking apples.

He gives away art projects that he has made as home-warming gifts.

He embroiders lascivious things on his underwear.

He punches assholes in the face who call him a queer.

He inspires me.

 

Eurotrashcation: Part One

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During the spring, I traveled through Europe. This is a recitation of the events which happened.

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Early in the morning, I went to Heathrow.

I bought some coffee, and bid my time. The croissant was tasty. I bought a ten pack of camels, which was ridiculously expensive. As usual. Someone was being a dick to the Sikh salesclerk. As usual.

The plane took forever to land. I tapped my feet and waited around the flight board. Families and couples reunited around me at the international arrivals. Like that goddamn Hugh Grant movie. An eastern European woman sobbed. An old Middle Eastern man sobbed. Children screamed as they waited for their parents to come home.

The plane landed, but took another hour to get its shit together. I was getting nervous that I had gone to the wrong airport. The luggage claim of for the plane went through, and another hour passed.

Then he was coming through the door. We hugged and kissed, and, yeah, it was like that Hugh Grant movie, okay? Except an Arabic man scoffed at us. Not every moment is perfect, though. Hoss remarked that I looked like a little leather daddy.

We struggled to find the underground towards our hotel. A woman joked with her husband that “Cockfosters” were two of her favorite things. There was an accordion player on the tube. Several people panhandled in the car.

The hotel was very nice and very gay. The table was a sort of pink glass, which matched the pink highlights of the room. There was a pink lotus blooming in a painting. I cannot stress enough how pink this room was, but it matched the dreary London sky.

We relaxed after Hoss’s eight hour flight. When we emerged from the room some four hours later, the sun was down. We decided to go out anyways. We caught the underground to Piccadilly Circus, which Hoss was not as impressed with as I was when I saw it the first time. I like the lights and the noise and the energy of the place. It buzzes.

I showed him Big Ben. I showed him Trafalgar Sqaure and the National Gallery. The streets were dark and quiet, but spooky is more our speed. We saw Westminster Abbey. We saw things we didn’t know the significance of. We recognized names but not the sights. We walked down the Thames and held hands. With shoes echoing against the pavement, we walked to the Tower of London and saw Tower Bridge, which I maintain is campy as fuck. We pointed at the umbrellas shoved into the trash bins.

We got lost and had to ask a tourist where we were to get home. She pointed us out on the underground system map, and it was clear we were lost in a machine we didn’t comprehend.

When we made it home later after grabbing a bag of KFC, a drunk, homeless, Irish man told us some jokes.

“What do you call dairy from Israel?”

“What?”

“Cheesus of Nazareth. What’s the difference between an envelope and the Queen’s vagina?”

“What?”

“I wouldn’t want to lick one.”

We both gave him a couple pounds. He deserved it.