September 8th, 2003

the globe

The refrigerator

Maybe it's true with most homes but it certainly was in ours. The refrigerator was the nucleus for the house around which everything else spun. It just wasn't about keeping the soda cold or the apples crisp. No, our refrigerator was a time capsule of the years we spent living there. It was covered freezer to floor with collected magnets and each one had something essential it was holding in place. Whether it was a tiny picture of Fred Durst with his shirt off that Billy put up, remarking how much it looked like me (he was a shameless flatterer) or Bob's vet bills, the refrigerator was a free standing archeological dig with all the dirt carefully brushed away.

Dismantling the separate life our fridge had attained in our Venice home was one of the twenty or eighty most difficult parts of the move. Each magnet taken down let its hostage loose and falling free. There was a picture of Scott and me looking smug and grim with Billy in the foreground - his arms wide open and a silly grin plastered across his face, the Vinyldog tribute Billy put together when we got home from the pet cemetery, the Elizabeth Montgomery magnet he made when she passed away, the thank you card sent to both of us from Sandra in 1998, a ribbon that simply stated "I Don't Have Time To Do Drugs" that was hung by Billy, literally hundreds of items making the white of the refrigerator no longer visible.

I had meant to take a picture of our fridge before I dismantled it but I forgot. It was my instinct yesterday to recreate the front and sides in an exact manner but as I started to put up the Illinois magnets (we had three) and the “Queer For Kicks” magnet and the magnet we got on our visit to Graceland, I realized that goal would be impossible. Instead of Billy slipping in a ticket stub from Mama Mia into the back of the pink lollipop magnet, it would be me and that escaped logic. It wouldn’t have the same place in history and it would be inauthentic so I put up all of the magnets but their charges will have to wait. However, I did put up the Scott/Terry/Billy photo as well as some other Guyster pictures.

I found a picture yesterday that I had never seen before and it may be the best, most representative picture of Billy I have. He is so handsome in it, scrunching his face against the sunlight. I can’t place the background but it looks like a fairly recent picture, one taken a year or so before he decided enough was enough and went around Cape Horn.

In that picture, he looks like my beautiful reward.
  • Current Music
    My Beautiful Reward - Bruce Springsteen