“You can’t just walk around using your hand as a testicle vice at will, S!”
J appeared drunk as she bobbed and wove in front of her friend’s face, sweat running down her forehead and into her eyes as she chucked another shovel-head of earth out and over her right shoulder.
“Are you even listening to me, S?”
S wasn’t listening; she was instead, absorbing the things that were coming out of J’s mouth.
“Fine, at least dig, then…it’s hot out here; the buzzards are coming.”
J pointed a pterodactyl-like finger past S’ head, aimed high on the horizon, whereupon a kettle of the grotesque, awkward carrion birds slowly descended through a clear, hot sky towards the spot where the girls dug. With her other hand, she handed S the shovel she’d been digging with and went to the trunk to get another one, so as to speed this undertaking along.
I remember once when we were only about 5 years old, and minutes away from our debut on stage in our first (and last) dance recital; I was so nervous I couldn’t see straight, but S could’ve cared less about the people or the lights or the crowds of strange little girls to compare ourselves with.I recall so vividly too, as we sat backstage finishing the touches on our stupid little outfits (which were, by the way, exceptionally glitzy and covered in sequins and glitter, complete with a huge feather we each had to pin in our hair), S was fidgety as usual and muttering to herself.
“What? I can’t hear you…” I shouted to her ear as I pulled the hairbrush through her dark, wild hair before attempting for the final time to get the obnoxiously huge feather pinned in.
“I just still don’t know how good of an idea this whole “dance recital” thing is, you know?”
S had both hands up to make the bunny ears around the words dance and recital. The feather floated from my hands once again and glided in rocking motion to the dusty floor. We both sighed; I looked her over and saw that she was messing with her tap shoes, struggling to get them and tie the puffy ribbon laces.
“I know you hate this…but we’re almost up, S…get your shoes on!” I leaned down to help her with shoes as I hollered, “We’ve been over this – I know I owe you big time for coming to dance class with me…”
“-…and especially for making me dress like this!…my feet are killing me and we haven’t even been on stage yet!”
S’ helium voice rose to a staccato above the music and clapping of the audience. She pulled and heaved at her little feet in vain to finish getting her shoes on as I searched desperately for my left shoe. It only took me a second to see that S had it and was trying like Hell to make it fit on her right foot.
“Well, no wonder your feet hurt, that’s my shoe…”
Needless to include, our debut was hideous and we dropped out of dance class immediately following the police inquiry.
NOTE: Even at a post-wedding-ceremony party, S is snapped crying while J just wants to get down and cut a rug
Beginning as far back into life as either of us can remember, we have somehow genuinely been: thick as thieves. At one time, she had longer hair and seemed much taller than me, even donned dress flats to make her Mama happy once in a while…although it was Ithat sucked my thumb until I was five, she cried often and was sensitive – surprise, surprise. Her skin thickened later on in life, but during childhood, she was kind of a sissy.
Bruce Springsteen – CHECK.
Handcuffed together inside of a high security paddy wagon – CHECK.
1980’s eye crystal blue eye shadow and feather bangs – CHECK.
Teddy Ruxpin (and cassette tapes) – CHECK.
Piercings in unspeakable places – CHECK.
Ever-Revolving door of chaotic Life-Phases ranging in severity – CHECK.
Direct Tissue/Organ Donation – CHECK. CHECK.
Secret Matching Tattoos – CHECK.
Disturbing and vague shared recollections involving a drunken exotic bird and many, many bottles of Tequila – CHECK.
(CIRCA 19–) Here, you can easily see the perfect demonstration of our days together in childhood. (We are at either end: I am the blonde piglet and she is the snickering shithead) Directly after this was snapped, I was nearly beaten to death by my playmates (S included) for “eating on the clock”.
(CIRCA 19–) S had a traumatic jellyfish experience at the beach early in life, rendering her perpetually in malcontent on any shoreline, anywhere. This photo was taken only a matter of hours prior to her attack, and clearly captured my evil fatmouth full of lies and false assurances to her of her safety.
Our days as friends had no beginning, and will never end.
We’ve been solid since back when your “bikini” left tan lines that made no sense at all.
(CIRCA 19–) One time, the two of us agreed that we’d made a trivial mistake…soon afterward however – we realized we’d been wrong.
When we became bored with finger painting in preschool, we whisked ourselves away to religiously shrouded monasteries of truth and light, barely visible off the Eastern coast of…some place that was very far away;
we learned to write in Latin… to shoot like the archers from times long dead to history books and chainmaille legends…we gladly taught them to eat with their hands like savages – a few steps back towards their pastel colored roots.
We always eventually overstayed our welcome, wherever we went – and were either escorted beyond the perimeter or politely asked to be on our way.
Drunken Sailorettes – CHECK.
Military AirSupport Dropouts – CHECK.
Shitty Low-Budget Horror Movie Extras – CHECK.
I could go on, but need to save somethingfor future volumes of the Unsecret Chrons…
More of the fictitious story of “us” to come…maybe.
(CIRCA 19–) NOTE: We are seated on the far left end of bench (I am holding a net wtf?) Immediately after this one was snapped, we made history by leaping up from the bench and affecting a medieval style catapult, launching the three remaining girls as well as the creepy, freeze-dried cat well over the internationally recorded current best of 59.05 m into the air.
“Remind me to never let you follow through with any of those ‘Motivational Speaking’ plans that you may have when this is all over…”
S’ voice trailed off slightly with a faked giggle under her breath – she was nervous and edgy as Hell – but also knew that her best friend meant well.
“I meant that out of nothing but love, S…you know that I don’t think of you as a Tumor…”
J was shaking her head and lightly wrapping an arm around her trench mate as they slowly made their way into the hospital entrance.
“I know, I know…but your wording is like a sideshow freak sometimes…I knew what you meant.”
The two walked along in silence for a few moments before they turned to one another in synchronized time, and began to laugh loudly in the sullen corridor – so hard that they each doubled over in side-busting glory. The laughter became snorting and short gasps for breath that fell in between words muttered in vain, and soon enough, several orderly nurses popped heads around doorways with stern faces.
J managed to snort out as she peeled S off of the tiled floor and back into a standing position to continue the walk to the surgery department;
“We were just…oh, get fucked, we aren’t bothering anyone.”
The two figures strolled into the blazing sodium lights ahead, still trying to compose themselves from a minute ago.
“Did you actually just tell me to ‘Be The Tumor’, J?”
S hardly managed to get the sentence finished before her lips peeled upwards once more and she bore her big, white teeth as a means of a laughter warning.
“Aye…I did, Kid…and I meant it, too.”
J sighed as she watched the pinkish-red brake lights come to life through the motion amidst the busy parking lot; she eased out onto the road slowly, following every traffic rule she could think of at the moment, including the use of her blinker as she slowed again and pulled off to the shoulder to wait for S to snail-crawl the ancient Mini from its inconspicuous spot towards the rear of the lot.
Inconspicuous to everyone besides S…
J thought to herself, chuckling.
After several anxious moments of an unintentional, however – record-breakingly uncanny – imitation of a bobble head in the driver’s seat on the side of road waiting for her fairy-like partner in crime, the Mini at last appeared in the lineup of cars waiting its turn to pull out onto the highway. Before long, the two friends were in tight caravan formation and heading home, or so J thought.
The fog was sinking down onto the road with the setting sun, and J wasn’t sure but she thought she saw the Mini driving itself during several stretches of straight two-lane highway. Additionally, J mentally noted at least five separate cigarette butts flying out the driver’s side window in the deepening darkness of night: something she had to make certain to give S a good chastising for when they got home. Just then her phone rang from the passenger side door panel, where she has stashed it prior to indulging in her earlier catnap; the vibration rattled it down deeper in the door’s built in pocket as J imagined herself as Gumby or Inspector Gadget and tried in vain to lean far enough over to reach it.
Another red cherry butt of a cigarette exploded against the windshield.
J thought to herself, and tore to the right with her grip on the steering wheel with a few quick flashes of her high beams at the Mini in front of her. Oddly, her best friend is pulled over and out the Mini before J can even put the vehicle she is driving in NEUTRAL.
S: What’s the problem? Let’s just pull off up there at the next exit if your toes are cramped up, eh?
J: My toes are not cramped up, S…did you just try to call me right now?
S: Oh, ye…I did…I was going to suggest that we stop over at Red’s and let him take a look at it, see what he thinks, you know?
J: Now? Seriously? It’s white-hot, S…I think we need to cover it with canvas for a while in the junk pile out back or something; not flaunt it all over to our friends in a pissing contest…
S: So you’ll follow me over there, to Red’s?
J lets out the frustrated sigh that S has come to know and love the way a child associates a special blanket to comfort;
J: Yeah…S…yeah but let’s go! And stay off your phone no smoking while you drive!
S: Okay! Follow me!
S hops back to the archaic Mini and starts the engine with a fierce and victorious howl from her doll-sized lungs before pulling out into the traffic. J pulls out right behind her and matches her speed as they make their way to see Red the Undead – the best mechanic around.
The car, with its trunk now packed to capacity by sloshing, black trash bags, was hosed down and shammed dry, engine running and brake lights blazing red through the darkness. J gunned the gas pedal a few times to affect her growing impatience with her best friend (who she loved fiercely, obviously).
J: Let’s roll, Short stack! It’s getting metallic in here!
J: Mmmmm hmmmm As the two roll on, deaf farmer’s farm-bound, S leans over and turns up the music to blast Nina loudly.
S: I LOVE this song!
J: Me too!
J: You know, Bear?…You didn’t have to murder four people just to get me over for coffee and a play date…?
S: I honestly didn’t intend to murder four people, J, I promise…
J: I know, I know…we really gotta work on your inner-vigilante some more, babe…this is what Henry was talking about when he was telling us about collateral damages…you won’t be able to call me prison cell to prison cell…
S: Don’t start with me…you’ve got some blood in your eyebrow…it’s about to get in your eye…
J: I know what you’re doing, S…it’s not gonna work… J wipes her brow with a quick swipe, and turns down the volume of the radio.
J: I’m no murderer…
S: No… but your best friend can be one…
S: And, you are a really good housekeeper…just saying… J lightly chops S in her throat as a gesture of love and acceptance before saying: “You sawed-off, scary lil’ Fucker….you know I’ll come clean your house any day of the week…”
A NOTE ON THE VOICES OF “S” AND “J”:
• “S” SOUNDS LIKE AN ADORABLE SOUTH AFRICAN (WITH TOURRET’S)
• “J” SOUNDS LIKE A HIGH-STRUNG VALLEY GIRL (WITH TOURRET’S)
Liquid noisily splashing against plastic sheeting in background.
J: So, uhhhh….were ya gonna tell me about the toaster or…..?
S: J…would you please stop stepping there! You’re making a mess – LOOK!!!
J: Sorry, oh oops…my foot was stuck to some Jello-y stuff that’s stuck down…oh shit…oops…
S: J! Stop fucking around and help me with the mirror real quick – hurry!… or else the dude you didn’t see yet becomes a problem for us!
J: Okay, okay… slips and slides her way over to the counter and climbs up next to S, who is tearing off a sheet to cover the vanity mirror with
J: Bear! The toaster!
S: Right right…the toaster…
the two struggle briefly to reach all the way to the ceiling, as they are only ten feet tall – combined.
J: This is about your Gods damned burgle, isn’t it?
S: Huh? Oh….that….huh?
J: Don’t play dumb with me!
S: You do realize your own circumstantial lack of leverage here, don’t you?
J: THE TOASTER!!!
*The final sheet of plastic has been lain; and the two tiny creatures sit down on the vanity counter-top with surprisingly heavy ‘thuds’, one grinning widely and the other exhaling a sigh of frustration *
S: That toaster was well worth the money I spent on it, though – for the record…
J is totally distracted by a shimmer in a puddle of dark blood