Tuesday, November 05, 2002

A leather jacket and a memory of early corporeal desire...I didn't quite finish the earlier blog. In my innocence, in my habitual teenage drunkenness I would occasionally get into situations that might have turned out terribly badly had I not been protected by some unseen hand (thank you, Virgen de Guadelupe). In this particular instance I ended up in a van with a punk band called "Channel 3" that hailed from Long Beach, California. Rather than admire them for being punk, for being in a band, and what have you I admired the one I think I was supposed to hook up with for being in college and being an English major. This thilled me far more than any electric guitar solo (although punks never do solos I guess). Even back in those days I had a perverse value system. What was he currently reading? I wanted to know. I think his answer was The Catcher in the Rye. Then, thinking myself tremendously clever I wanted to know: Did he think human beings were inherently good or inherently evil?

Somehow I had it in my mind from somewhere that the book--whatever it was--contained a philosophical position that humanity is inherently good. I realize now that this just wasn't a very intelligible or answerable question. At the time it was the best thing I could come up with in way of conversation. I assumed even then (wrongly...and for many years) that what men desired most from me from was witty conversation.

I don't think he was all that interested in my question or even tried to answer but I stubbornly pursued an answer all the same. At the same time the fact I was more than underage wasn't lost on him. I do think he made some half-hearted erotic suggestion...And probably wondered to himself 'how did I end up with one of THESE? The groupie who just wants to talk!' Still he was nice and I think gave me a few gentle kisses and that was all. The thing I remember most at the time was the difference in size between him and me and the smell and heft of his leather jacket. He seemed large and invincible compared to me...more real than anyone else. It was the first time I had actually thought 'there is a man there...this is a man and this is what a man feels like next to me.' Well, OK. I didn't think that I simply was aware of it in a way I never had been. It would be a number of years still before I really had any sense that my body--my physical self--was pretty damn relevant to my life but I imagine I remember this moment because it was the first glimmer of that awareness.

And I suppose it was my overall chatty nature that allowed me to get into these situations time and again and escape undeflowered.

Up next--Death and Plastic...


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