Do I look any different?

No, not like that.

Oh, well, fine, here. I’ve been thinking of posting this anyway.

Now then. The ever-thought-provoking Ms. Vix posted a blog late last night that coincidentally butted up against something I’ve had on my mind all day today. Her blog was about how much someone had changed in five years. My thoughts were all about how I’ve changed.

I think I remember my dreams a little more often than most people. I don’t know why, and I don’t think it has any real significance, really. But sometimes they give me food for thought. This morning, when my alarm went off, I was dreaming about one of my best friends.

He’s been dead for 16 years.

In my dream, he was alive, and I hadn’t seen him in all that time. I was so overjoyed to see him that I felt like I should have been singing J.D. and Turk’s “Guy Love” song from that musical episode of Scrubs.

He was taller, but he looked just the same. Same long hair, same cheesy mustache, same fucking goofball grin. It was him, full as life.

“Son of a BITCH!” I hollered as I hugged him. “What the fuck, motherfucker, where you been?!?” And I grabbed him and poured out my guts about all the things I’ve done and seen for the last decade and a half of my life. See, this is the guy who got me into heavy metal, not knowing I’d actually go on and learn how to play. He’s the guy who stoked my latent interest in motorcycles (yes, I rode bitch behind him and we both had a ball. If that makes me gay, then gimme a rainbow flag, muhfugga), not knowing that I’d go on to ride and crash and ride again and crash again.

He never knew me in college. He never knew the dude that went to grad school. Hell, we only drank together once, and there wasn’t enough booze to get either of us drunk. He knew the shy, skinny, dipshit high school kid who didn’t know how to deal with girls and was happy just to sing AC/DC songs in the back of a ratty-ass school bus every day.

He never knew how much of an influence he actually had on my life as I went on. How a little bit of ostentatious rebellion kept me from retreating deeper within my nerd-armor. How much music and motorcycles became a part of my life as I grew older. How my well-developed and (at that time) entirely self-defensive yet self-destructive ability to laugh at myself could, with his good-natured help, actually become a positive part of who I am.

In my dream, he was alive in every sense of the word, smacking me on the shoulder and calling me “Bo C” again (short for Bocephus, long story), talking about how we were eventually gonna fix up that skeleton of a Malibu of his and just generally giving me shit like he’d just gone out for a smoke.

And I found myself really wanting to tell him everything. About being a dad, about riding, about tattoos, about new obscure music I’ve discovered, just things I’ve learned about life. I found myself really wanting to feel like he was proud of me. Like I’d grown and changed, but not into a person different from the punk kid he hung with, but as Punk Kid Plus. A bigger, smarter, better version, but still the same friend he’d always known.

I don’t know if he’d think that way if he saw me now. But I like to think he would.

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4 Responses

  1. I saw that post too. I was too scatterbrained last night to leave a proper comment over there, but I can really relate to what she said. And yeah, it made me think about how much I’ve changed, yet not changed over the years. If somebody had told me all the things that have happened to me since becoming an adult when I was ten, I’d have told them they were full of shit.

  2. […] entirely before my son was born) been a model builder of modest talent. Heck, in 10th grade my best friend and I worked together on a ‘70 Chevelle SS that won the blue ribbon in the county fair, which […]

  3. […] years ago tonight, one of my best friends got into a car with his girlfriend.  They’d both been drinking.  He never made it home.  […]

  4. Fuck you, man. That made me cry.

    Your “Adore” post got me all misty-eyed, so I’ll call that even.

    Normally here is where I’d make a joke about “cry = score” but given this context, I’ll just gratefully acknowledge your compliment that it moved you. Thank’ee, ma’am.

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