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St. Elmo! Here I come! - Sing With Me If It's Just For Today...
If I should fall behind, Guyster, wait for me.
guysterrules
guysterrules
St. Elmo! Here I come!
Dixie called last night, and I paused Joe Millionaire and soaked in her voice. It’s not only her accent that feels like a comforting blanket but it’s how she speaks – in rapid long sentences that detail every imaginable part of any given situation. There are moments when I listen less to what she is saying and more to how she says it. Dixie was very important in Billy’s life. She taught Billy how to dance when he was eight. She used to take him to the barber for his haircuts. She buffered the hurt and sorrow he felt at his Dad’ funeral when Debbie, his other sister, yelled out to the gathered mourners that Billy was a “faggot” and unwelcome. Dixie was the one who helped Billy collect Marlboro miles so he could order our tent, the tent that we would have slept in when we got to Joshua Tree, a trip that never happened. I sat there last night with my cell phone earpiece dangling from my left ear and I tried my best not to break down and cry. I succeeded, at least while I was on the phone with her.

Once a cluster of holidays to eagerly anticipate, Thanksgiving and its following day, our anniversary, are now markers drenched in a thick oil of sadness. Last year, I went to Joshua Tree, Bob and me, and we drove out to the desert in the middle of the night and we cried. We listened to CDs Billy had made me and we listened to a lot of Springsteen. I had Thanksgiving dinner by myself at Dennys, the only restaurant open in the high desert town. The next day I got a tattoo, the same one Billy had in the same place he had it. It’s a small, simple tribute to our Vinyldog.

When I visited St. Elmo this summer on my way to DC, it was obvious where I would spend the holiday this year – right there in the epicenter of Billy’s life. I leave tomorrow, and I’ll check into the same motel Billy and I had slept in on our first trip together to see his family back in 1995. It’s a two story Super-8 that looks over the highway and late at night, when the traffic stops, you can almost hear the blanket of stars crying out for attention.

Dixie was talking about having the dinner at Mandy’s parents home. Mandy is new to the family as she has taken up residence with Matt, Billy’s nephew, and they are about to have a baby. She’s four months along. Bub, Mandy’s younger, a sixteen year old corn fed linebacker brother, will be there. I met him this summer and like so many others in Billy’s extended and growing family, I was the first homo he’s ever met, and it all seems fine by him and everyone else. Dixie said we were going to have turkey and ham, and turkey and ham balls, and noodles and I drifted away, hearing her voice but not her words, as I was thinking about what kind of tattoo I’m going to get for this year’s anniversary present.

I’ve found a tattooist named Toad about forty miles up the highway, and I’ll see Toad on Friday morning. I’ve never been drunk or drugged for a tattoo. I just grit my teeth through the excruciating burn and for whatever reason, I’ve always had my tattoos done in the morning. This year, however, I’m bringing a half of a codeine Tylenol because of where I’m getting it. My hunch is this one will hurt more than the others but I know once that burning needle is off my skin after an hour of sweat and pain, the result will be sweet and worth every moment of its torment.

Dixie ended the call with a “Well, I’ll let you go. I can’t wait to see you.”

“Me too, Dix,” I said.

“I love you,” she said.

“I love you too,” I answered, and we hung up. I sat there looking at a frozen image on the TV screen of Joe Millionaire and his Czech chick in their manufactured romance, and then I cried.

Current Music: CNN

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Comments
From: inkprincess Date: November 25th, 2003 10:16 am (UTC) (Link)
Dammit, you can't just say that about a tattoo and not say more!!!!!! I await the results and pics of it!!!!
zombietruckstop From: zombietruckstop Date: November 25th, 2003 12:26 pm (UTC) (Link)
Where, where, dammit!

The tat I have on my lower back was EXCRUCIATING, and it took 3.5 hours. Ouch. So if it's there, get ready...
From: inkprincess Date: November 25th, 2003 01:04 pm (UTC) (Link)
i have a tat on my lower back, didn't hurt one bit. weird, huh? people really ARE different. LOL
spleenless From: spleenless Date: November 25th, 2003 01:49 pm (UTC) (Link)
Enjoy your trip, bittersweet though it may be.

As for tats, my next one will be from Dragon Moon in Glen Burnie. The have an excellent staff and a amazing reputation. I just have to save the $$$. Hope yours is a painless as possible.
twillhead From: twillhead Date: November 25th, 2003 06:07 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hugs to you, Buddy. And even though you said it was the site that was most painful for you, I have been seriously considering getting my first tatt on my rumpus. Happy Thanksgiving. More hugs.
From: pit6steve Date: November 26th, 2003 02:45 am (UTC) (Link)
Have a safe trip and enjoy your Thanksgiving holiday with the in-laws. That's the way I spent my turkey dinner last year.

Looking forward to seeing a pic of the new tat.
ubermunkey From: ubermunkey Date: November 26th, 2003 06:07 am (UTC) (Link)
spill baby spill, where is this coming tat? and of what?

I have never been altered for any of my tats either. It is part of the ritual with me. A bit of paid for torture to remind me that I am alive!

I enjoyed your post today as always, and am glad that you'll be having holiday with Dixie, bitter sweet.

When I read your posts I can feel taste part of your pain. It moves me and makes me appreciate you even more.

Be well.
connor
ca_bounty From: ca_bounty Date: November 29th, 2003 04:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
Hey guy I've been reading your journal for a while now, I have no idea how I came upon your journal all I know is that you move me and touch me at my core.

You're an amazing guy, thanks for being you.

Have good days,

Ed
guysterrules From: guysterrules Date: November 30th, 2003 12:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
I'm always giddy happy when someone reads my journal. Thanks for your support. I had no idea you were reading it.
ca_bounty From: ca_bounty Date: November 30th, 2003 04:38 pm (UTC) (Link)
I like to read a journal for a while before friending someone, I'm sure you'll be friended sometime in the near future.

You definitely cause a guy to think about things and reflect on the past. Like you I also had the love of my life taken from me at a young age. 8 years ago he was killed in a car accident and it's taken me this long to accept the fact that he's gone and it's ok to move on.

It was actually a visit from Greg that helped me to move on. You can read it here if you'd like
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