Tuesday, April 27, 2004

When I lived in my first apartment, my housemates were two metalheads who were best friends and polar opposites. Rob, my little sister's ex-boyfriend, was half-Filipino and quite verbally communicative, yet his dyslexia was so bad he could barely write his name and was functionally illiterate. He had tight kinky brown hair that he had tried to bleach blonde (it was, after all, 1989), but it had come out orange, so around the house we called him Ronald McDonald. Eric on the other hand, looked like a character from the Simpsons, sporting a blonde mullet and overbite that put Bart's to shame. Unlike Rob, Eric was nearly incapable of communicating in more than single syllables, but was a voracious reader. Both were from the deep south, with Rob more the "loud mouth good ol'boy" model, and Eric more the "sullen, mumbling guy from Deliverance". We shared a single bedroom, so if anyone got lucky, the other two guys crashed in the living room. We rarely got lucky however, so this wasn't a problem. The living room wasn't bad digs, because Eric kept it spotless: he got up before everyone else and combed the carpet and the clutter on the coffee table for roaches and scraps of marijuana.

Doing drugs in that apartment, which built into a peaked roof, was always a weird scene. The cheesy wood-paneled walls of the living rom conformed to the shape of the roof, so you felt like you were in a funhouse even if you WEREN'T fucked up. The kitchen was painted in an overly bright, almost paranoid, shade of yellow. When you're freebasing at 2:00 AM and you're out of beer, the single light dangling from the ceiling calls out every greasy dingy stain on the paint. A cop lived across the street, which made things all the more tense. I have no idea why the cops never paid us a visit. We were so sleazy and lame.

At one point we had a fourth roomate, the former captain of my high school wrestling team. Bull also happened to be up to his eyeballs in drugs and alcohol. He and Eric had a low-level but good-natured practical joke war going on. I can only remember two, both initiated by Eric. The first was meaningless enough: Bull had sex with some girl when she was having her period and told us, leading Eric to buy a box of maxi-pads. After drawing "period stains" on the maxi pads using a red magic marker, he taped them to the ceiling fan for Bull to see. Hilarity ensued.

His second prank wasn't so well received. One evening Bull never came home until the next afternoon, when he arrived crowing, "Dudes! I just had the best night!! I met this chick named Grain, and we got a hotel room last night! man, you know i was BANGING it all night!" He brought back Grain later that night and I realized I knew her: she was one of three or four girls that hung out with the punkers and metalheads, and we all knew them as runaways from a home for troubled girls. She was blonde and curvy, with a David Letterman-style gap between her front teeth.

I guess it was a day or so after we met Grain that Bull woke us up one morning at 5:00 AM or so, screaming bloody murder from the bathroom. "Oh man, my dick my dick, it hurts to fucking pee, what the fuck..."

Rob's eyes got all wide. "Dude, y'all gotta get y'ass to the doctor, man, you got some kinda vd!" It came out "veee deeee." Eric began to chant "doctor doctor, bull gotta go doctor." Bull just looked terrified and nodded his head. He pulled on his clothes and left. A few hours later, he returned the color of cigarette ashes. "You won't believe what just happened..."and went onto a description of chlamydia. They did a blood test, gave him a shot, and then laid him on a gurney with handlebars on the sides, like on a bike. "Don't look down," the doctors told him, "for God's sake, don't look down. That's when the doctor took a long Q-tip, and briskly swiped the swab all the way down to the bottom of Bull's dickhole. "NOOOOO, NOO" we all screamed, instinctively grabbing our crotches. "Dude, I got it from that chick Grain. Holy shit! I shoulda worn a fucking condom... Anyway, I gotta get to work," and he left for his job as assistant manager at the Pizza Hut.

When Bull returned at 2:00 AM, Eric had decorated our ceiling fan with Q-tips and condoms. Words were spoken; threats were rejoined with threats; fists were thrown; and finally, Bull threw a chair at Eric, who ducked. The chair went smashing into the window, as Bull went stormed out of the house yelling "Fuck you guys! I'm outta here!"

The last I heard he had joined the airforce and moved to Alaska.