Welcome to The Year That Everyone Died - Season 1 - Rich And Free. When you finish reading a page simply click “older posts” in the bottom right hand corner to continue the story. Thanks for reading. Sean Williamson.

1

In a perfect world I wouldn’t be here.

I’d wake up at noon...make that one.

I’d shower and my hangover would be manageable.

Me and Carter (my dog) would eat together.

For breakfast I would have a number 8 on French from Jimmy Johns and Carter would eat a steak – one good enough for a businessman in town from Toledo or Bowling Green or whatever.


Rus (my driver) would pick us up and run on over to Wendy’s for a couple things off the dollar menu, nothing too crazy…a double stack and a Jr. Bacon never hurt anyone.

Rus would drop me off at Marietta’s and take Carter to the dog park. Carter loves the dog park. I don’t. Dog owners weird me out.

Me and Marietta would eat homemade guacamole and chips and watch the How I met Your Mother from a couple weeks ago. There’s a manatee and a mermaid. Maybe we’d fuck, no biggie.


I’d call Rus from the yellow rotary phone in Marietta’s bathroom.

(who keeps a phone in the bathroom?)


And have him pick me up some mozzarella sticks from that joint on the corner of 56th and swing back to get me.


Around three me and Carter take a nap. I’d dream that I was in a gallery of antique stringed instruments. In the dream I was the last one to ever see it…go figure.


I’d have a second lunch with Dizzy and Darlene(they’re sisters) at Ma Fischers.


We’d share some chicken wings and I’d think about ordering the clam chowder. I wouldn’t once I find out they serve it with crackers and not bread. No butter - no business, I always say.

I would drink two glasses of water and a coke…then a diet coke.


We’d go to the bowling alley and I’d watch them throw because I don’t play games.


Rus would pick me up and take me to the movies. Carter gets a milk bone because they’re good for his teeth.

I’d get too high in the theater parking lot and forget what the movie is about half way through. I’m laughing and crying and I don’t know why.


I’d go home and watch Nash Bridges on Netflix and eat Cheetos in bed, first the originals, then the BBQ ones which are new, and in my opinion, slightly worse.


Carter would lay with me but I wouldn't give him any Cheetos. Cheetos are terrible for dogs, fatal I’ve heard. I’d consider stopping eating Cheetos all together….consider. I love Cheetos.


I’d have Rus fetch me a Mountain Dew from the fridge and wait for Nancy to come over.


She’d come over and maybe we’d fuck but probably not. Most likely I’d fall asleep half way through Caddy Shack and when I woke, she’d be gone.


I’d order a Canadian bacon pizza, eat it, and go back to sleep.


I’d dream. I’d wake.


Nobody would ask me for anything. Everyone would love me. I’d be rich and free. I’d have 4-5 girlfriends that loved fast food.


-

Of course its not like that. The world isn’t perfect and I’m a joke.


I can barely afford a Hot-n-Ready and a two-liter of Fanta.


I have debt up to my eyeballs, a bum knee and a drug problem.


My ex, Rita, threw me out. I still owe her 1,300 dollars. I told her I cheated on her because well…I don’t know why. In retrospect that was a poor decision.


I live in my uncle Donald's basement and write stories that most of my friends won’t even read because they don’t really like me. I’ve gotten old to them.


My own father only pretends to be supportive. My mother is dead.


I have Carter the dog, so that’s something.


I resent my friends.


I resent bus drivers, waitresses, city workers, bums, rich women, rich dudes, families, spinsters, cab drivers, landlords, roofers, construction dudes, people that sit at coffee shops, college students, college professors, high school students, high school teachers house painters and dog walkers.


And most anything with a human face.


Especially myself.


Lately, I’ve been seeing the ghost of a girl I went to college with for a while. I didn’t know her that well. It could be the depression medication or weird fumes in Donald’s basement. She’s there alright. Plain as day sometimes.


I’m pretty sure she’s trying to tell me something. No matter.


I get up in the morning because I have to. I have no choice.


If I was going to kill myself I should have done it a long time ago. I can’t anymore.


I’m too far along now.


2

On saturdays i have to meet with father Boyden. I got an OWI five years ago and i had never had enough money or been sober enough to go to the counseling to get my license back.


I figured a while back that a twenty five year old man should have drivers license. Most sixteen year olds do, and Im at least at that level of maturity...eh, maybe. I graduated high school at least...barely.


Anyway. I have to meet with the father twice a week for two months. Today was my last meeting.


“You need to understand Mr. Wilson. You have a privileged life. You have every advantage. From a decent family, above average intelligence, white male. You are throwing what god has given you back in his face. You have been given every opportunity to serve his will.”


And I’m out. First staring at the wrinkles under his eyes and the dandruff in his silver hair, then at the the way the fat builds up around his collar. The way his glasses ballon his eyes and dwarf his pear shaped head. He smokes a cigarette and it curls in wisps around his dome.


Two weeks ago he said that the first thing to go when drinking takes over is your ability to make good decisions. “Sure, he said. You can plan not to drink and drive but then the drink takes over and suddenly you believe that you can make it tonight. Just one more drink, just one more shot of booze. What is your drink of choice again?”


“Whiskey.” I say. It’s a simple answer.


but out again.


I look out the third floor window of Saint Lukes and snow starts to flutter slowly from the heavens. And the memory and the present flutter down with them. I day dream of walking to the bus stop on Winnebego just past the old brewery. I search for a lighter or matches in the trash that has built on the fence around the footbridge. I go home and make a Hot Pocket and drink a Pepsi, then a Mountain Dew then a larger bag of Cheetos. I go upstairs and eat and watch Mad Men reruns on Mega Video and then I sleep and Carter coils up around my feet. And I dream.


Father Boyden snaps in my face. “I don’t have to sign your sheet, you know?”


Boyden ... red faced, fat necked fuck. “I understand. I drifted off.”


“And you may or may not remember your childhood but i bet as you sat with your friends at the lunch table talking about the party on saturday, or the movie on friday or sunday brunch and football games. I bet there was a friend that was staring into his soup not saying a word. Do you know why?”


I shake my head.


“Because he spent his weekend alone in his room, pretending to read but actually listening to his drunk father call his mother a stupid whore.”


We stare at each other and he puts out his cigarette. I know then, for sure, that he’s right. I am privileged and no matter how poor I get, or how strung out, or how alone - I’ll never be as sad as him. I’ll never put myself in his hopeless position, speaking to walls and praying for nothing.


He signs my paper and I’ll have my license forever now, or until I get arrested again... which is more likely.


I walk to the bus stop and can’t find a lighter in the trash heaps along the footbridge. It's December now and it only takes a few seconds for my fingers to go numb.


I see her again though, her summer dress blowing in the wind. Its yellow and blue and her black hair swirls around her olive face.


I walk towards her but she disappears. I take the bus home, eat a bologna Lunchable and a cup of Trix yogurt. I nap.


3

People are wary of grown men that sleep on cots. Mines a good cot. Its sufficient and when you sleep alone, what’s the difference?


I once had a friend who had an African King Sized. the bed covered the whole room and i wondered how he got it through the front door...or the kitchen...or the bedroom door...no matter.


I wake. I have a hard time remembering my dreams.


I’ve heard that smoking weed would do that. There are lots of names for strains of marijuana. Cali Cush, Kreeper, African Tutti Frutti 5 Some are real and some are fake. They should call the strains what they really are, ambitionless-alicious, spent-the-rent-cush, dream murderer... The terror, the absolute bong rips.


I sit up on the cot in uncle Donald’s basement. I’ve put up a couple posters on the wall since I’ve moved in.


One is from Randy Moss’s rookie year. It shows him long and stringy, flying down the left sideline against the Packers. Man, i remember how they killed the Packers that year on Monday night. 1998 was a heartbreaker.


The other is a Ronald Reagan/George Bush Sr campaign lawn flier from 84’. I got it from my friends grandmother. We used to sell schwag out of the attic of her house and she gave it to me one day as I left the house red eyed. I don’t know much about Reagan, I don’t think I’d like him if I did. I know he was an actor and a politician. Evidence enough that he was a heartless robot.


“Steve!” Uncle Donald yells from upstairs.


“Yeah!?”


“Your friend is on the phone.”


“What does he want?” I ask dick-headed-ly.


He says something I can’t understand so i yell for him to repeat himself. He says it again but I still can’t understand. I decide to go upstairs though I didn't plan on leaving the basement tonight.


-


Uncle Donald is waxing a saddle in the kitchen.


“What are you doing?” I ask.


“I’m waxing a western style saddle.”


“Uh, ok. What were you saying before?”


“I was saying ‘that last time I checked I wasn't your secretary’” He said.


I’m pretty sure Uncle Donald dies his hair. His mustache too. It seems unmanly, cowardly. But sleeping on a cot and playing Galaga for hours on end seems a little ‘something’ too.


“I apologize. I know your not my secretary. I would never hire you as a secretary.”


“Oh, you’re out hiring people. Good, your poetry blog must be going really well.”


“Ha.” I say, not laugh, just say, like “Ha.” with a period afterwards.


I watch him wax the saddle for a while. I remember now that he’s into horses and shit. I know he he doesn't own his own horse. He can’t, his house is ranch styled.


I open the fridge and grab a string cheese. There’s milk and I know there is cereal. There is salami but I don’t know if there is bread. I do this at the fridge. I always open it to eat something but with that comes a decision. How much work am I willing to do?


If there was a sandwich I’d just eat it, a steak I’d fry it, some salsa - I’d dip in it (though I do prefer Tostitos cheese dip). But if a meal or a snack needs to be chopped, washed or (god forbid) thawed I might as well take a nap.


“Arent you going to answer your phone call?” Uncle Donald asks.


Shit I forgot. “Shit I forgot.” I pick up the phone. “Hello?”


“Steve, It’s Parker.” he said very officially.


“Oh hey budday. Hey I got a joke for you...What’s the difference between Jelly and Jam?”


“I don’t know” Parker said.


“I can’t jelly my dick up your ass all night.”


“Wow.” The other end was silent for a while. "What you up to today?"


"McDonald's put the four piece McNugget back on the dollar menu...I was gonna check that out." I said and got excited thinking about it.


And another long silence...


“So what’s up?” I said.


“My dad told me something incredible today. What happened was...”


And Parker bored the shit out of me with a story.


4

So i woke up this morning and uncle Donald was standing over the cot smiling. Which is weird for a number of reasons.


“What?” i asked. My mouth tasted like a butthole.


“For you.” Uncle Donald said and motioned to a box on the floor.


I reached over and opened the box.


“Awesome. a slow cooker.”


“For making pot roast and stews and such.” He said.


“Not like there needs to be a reason, but why the present uncle Don?”


“Merry Christmas!” He said.


“Oh fuck! It’s Christmas?”


-


I got dressed and out to the bus stop as fast as i could. I stopped at the McDonald’s around the corner and got a McChicken and a large sprite.


I’ve been eating there a lot, maybe I’m depressed. I’ve been taking my meds. And doing a decent amount of coke. Maybe that has something to do with it.


Some guy just won a million dollars pulling one of those tabs off a McRib. Fuck him. Fucking cocksucker. Fuck him.


I can’t believe I forgot Christmas. Its one of the few times a year I have to actually do something and I blew it. Now i’ll be late to visit my widowed-sad bastard dad. We’ll drink some MGD’s and watch some fucking Tom Selleck show. He usually has some green bean casserole and ham and shit that his neighbor brings over. She’s a widow too and definitely wants to bone.


I should get him something. I really should. I remember him telling me on the phone a few weeks ago to not worry about bringing anything. Like that would be some sort of relief. Of course it just made me feel more like a pathetic fucking loser.


So I vowed not to forget and get him that Tony Dungy autobiography from the discount book store but i forgot because I’m a retard.


-


The bus was taking too long so i went into the gas station to buy some cigarettes.


Now I usually don’t buy lotto tickets, but that day I decided I would, and give it to my dad. It would be a funny gimmick. We could laugh at how lotto tickets are a tax for stupid people.


But the bus still wasn't coming and i was bored so i scratched it.


And you wouldn’t believe it but I won eighty dollars. Seriously, I can’t believe that i don’t do this more often. Thank god.


I can buy something for my dad and its only 3 pm. I can take the bus downtown and then get to his place by 4:30.


8:24 PM -


Me and my dad are eating even though I’m not hungry. And It’s A Wonderful Life is on the TV in the other room. It’s not, by the way.


“So, how is your girlfriend? You guys getting along?” He asks without looking up.


He has a mustache like my uncle. They don’t really talk though. My dad keeps to himself now. Him and my uncle talk on the phone but thats about it. I wish I had a sibling sometimes. Usually not though.


“She threw me out of the apartment.” I said.


“Are you fucking kidding me?” He screamed. “What happened?”


He didn't have anything to say about the fact that I obviously forgot Christmas or that I was obviously on drugs or the fact that I didn't come over until 7:45 with no excuse to where I was but he was mad about this.


“Well I told her that I cheated on her.” I said. I gritted my teeth.


“Why? Why would you ever tell her something like that?”


“I wanted to be honest.”


“Fuck honesty. Ugh. Un-be-lievable. The one thing, the one thing that made me think you had a chance and you blew it. Look at you. Un-be-lievable.”


I shrugged and didn't say anything. There was a long silence. “Honestly, I wasn't going to but my friends said it would be good. it would make us both feel better in the end.”


“Friends.” my dad grumbled, almost spit in disgust. “Friendship is just a long line of people giving bad advice.”


And we ate the rest of our food and I gave him a present. He opened it.


“A slow cooker.” He said. “Thank you.”


“For stews and pot roasts and such.” I said.


“Thank you. I gave one to your uncle a few years ago. Very handy.”


5



And all of this may be funny. but maybe now its not. Maybe now, you’ll be stricken by the power of ringing truth.


she spoke to me.


It wasn't long after I got back from the McDonald’s on 1st and crawled back onto my cot that I fell deeply asleep as Uncle Donald played Fleetwood Mac’s Rumors on a turntable upstairs.


I had eaten the nuggets of course but it was the extra McRib and small fries that really did me in. For some things napping is the only cure. I would poop when I woke, all would be well.


We were on a beach and I couldn't tell you why. I never liked the beach - all that sand, and sand bugs, and dirt and shit-get all up in your toes and hair- yek - but she walked from a really long way away. It seemed like it took forever and I kept trying to scribble the best idea in the world on a piece of paper but i couldn't read it. And the harder I tried the worse it got.


( if a shrink couldn't figure out that symbolism I’d ask for my nickel back)


Anyway she gets up to me and stands there for a long time. And I want to tell her I’ve been seeing her, that I know she’s been following me around town but i figure I had better not. Let her speak first, be gentlemanly.


And she has something simple to say. “Go to Ashland and find Lester Puloski. Ask him where my body is?” and she turned and walked away. I wanted to follow but my legs were heavy and I was yelling all sorts of things like “Why me?” and other boring questions that she wouldn't answer.


She was still pretty. That was for sure. She stopped and turned and I faintly heard her voice over the rushing wind. I woke but could still hear it. “Christmas is a time for giving up” she said.


Which would be a fancy clue if i hadn’t used that phrase a million times. I’m a joke recycler.


Do you know the difference between Jelly and Jam?


6

So now I’m really in the shit.


Fucking telephone got turned off. Thanks T-Mobile.


I gotta find some dickweed all the way up in BFE (Bum Fuck Egypt). Thanks dead girl.


My unemployment is running out. Thanks United States Of America.


And lets face it living with my uncle is sad at best, Pathetic at worst. And on top of all that it was New Years a couple of days ago.


Now don’t get me wrong, I get hammered on New Years. I wander around blacked out and try to flirt with girls (who are in no way interested), holding my glass daintily with two fingers with the best of them.


But what a terrible-no good delusion. Celebrating in the hope that the next year will be better than the last, convincing ourselves that anything separates this eternal shitstorm from one moment or year to the next. Fuck it. Insane. Ridiculous.


When I finally came to late in the afternoon on the 3rd I had a crumpled piece of paper in my pocket that said...


Steve Wilson’s New Years Resolutions


Stop....


AND THATS ALL IT SAID. WHAT HELP IS THAT?


Shit, i digress.


So i have a lot going on. It’s time to man up. or at least man-child up. But not today.


I’ve decided that today would be for me. All those problems are future Steve Wilson’s problems - hell - I don’t even know that guy. Today would be mine.

-


12:28 - woke up. Watched first five minute of episode of Parks and Recreation before falling asleep again. It was the one where Ron got shot. I dreamt something about cats.


2:40 - looked at motorcycles on Craigslist. Can’t afford them. Also can’t afford five dollar footlong - look through change - can afford six inch.


3:30 - Uncle Don is arguing loudly over the phone about Steve Martin. I don’t know why. I eat some Texas Toast.


3:50 - Smoke half a cigarette. Look for jobs on craigslist - regret dropping out of college.


4:36 - Cold. Cut. Combo. Bitches.


6:12 - Want blow - no blow - no money.


7:20 - Post Poem on blog, uninspired. Think about re-writing, too lazy.


9:15 - Convince Parker to come over and bring a case of PBR. We go see Life As We Know It at Budget South. Sucks.


10:20 - Smoke one-ie in the bathroom at the theater. Little kid gives me a weird look. I tell him to mind his own business - Keeps giving me weird look.


Kids don’t know how easy they got it. No jobs, no rent, no responsibility.


12:31 - Parker buys me a crunch wrap. I kinda want to go to Denny’s. He tells me his parents may be getting a divorce.


12:29 - Parker is still talking. I tune further and further out.


1:47 - Back in basement. Sad lonely. Think about ex-girlfriend. Wonder if she would take me back (prolly not). Wonder about girl I cheated on her with. Wonder what bar she’s in.


-


I have to get my act together. Tomorrow is the day. I swear it. On my mother’s grave I swear it.


7

2 weeks later-


So, I haven't done anything. I haven't avenged shit. I haven't done shit. I am worthless.


but late last night I was considering the story that Parker told me.


Here it was...


-

During my dad’s undergraduate career at University of Iowa, he lived in a house with four other guys. One was Ken. Ken was in love with this girl Gilda Collins, who was his archaeology TA. Everyone thought she was hot, but Ken would write poems about her. Bryce, another roommate of my father’s and Ken’s, found the poems one time and he read them aloud to the entire house.

They’re longing and heartfelt and not all together bad poems. They speak of dread of her touch, fear that a single kiss would be so powerful as to catalyze Armageddon. The earth would shake and crumble in on itself. Ken would cry himself dry as paper if she were to just whisper his name.

Bryce finds these and waits until the middle of a toga party at their house to read them aloud, standing above the masses on a hand chair like a Roman orator. Ken smiled at first, knowing only that there was a joke by the hush in the room and gravitating about Bryce. Upon hearing the second line of his poem, Ken disappears into the winter street before anyone noticed his leaving. They all laughed, really considering but also joking whether he had even grabbed a coat to wear over his bed sheet.

Ken gets back at Bryce for this humiliation by propping a bucket of water on Bryce’s door so it would fall on his head when he opened it, forgetting that device only works among the creations of Misters Hanna and Barbera. Like most people do when entering a room, Bryce walks through his doorway instead of waiting in it and the bucket falls after he’s already passed it. Bryce turns and laughs to himself and makes to go out to the living room to taunt Ken for his miscarried prank, but he slips in the bucket’s puddle, falls, and cracks his head open.

They drive him to the emergency room. He gets 17 stitches, a concussion, and a stripe down the back of his head where they had to shave his hair to stitch up the cut. Of course, everyone calls him “puss-head” after. In fact, U of I alumni call him that right up until he dies on an airplane in ’99, of a stroke.

Bryce is pre-med. Late one night, drinking and doing speed alone in his room to Perry Mason reruns, he concocts a revenge plot. In one of the medical buildings on the campus is a refrigerated room full of cadavers. This, the med students call the “rumpus room” because they sometimes throw parties in it.

That day, in Bryce’s class, he and his classmates had watched their instructor perform an autopsy on a woman who had died the week before after stumbling over a wasp’s nest on her hike. Some fifty-two stings triggered an allergic reaction and her throat had swollen and closed, killing her as her fiancĂ© carried her on his shoulder to a ranger station. The woman was a mere four foot, eleven, leaving so much of the autopsy table uncovered that Bryce’s instructor would at times hoist himself up and sit on the foot of it during his lecture.

Bryce puts a shirt on and goes to the garage, drunkenly dumps warm water and cans of beer from a cooler, onto the floor, then takes the empty cooler with him on a drive to the school. Less than an hour later, he’s back at the house but now he has to drag the cooler back behind him. Without anyone seeing, he takes this cooler up the stairs and, while Ken is out who knows where, he transfers the small dead woman who was allergic to wasps from the cooler to Ken’s office chair. Bryce turns off the light and goes downstairs to watch TV and drink beer with my dad and some other guys because he’s done with his lonely drinking for the night.

The boys get drunker watching movies and probably smoking a couple joints. Finally Ken comes in and, of course, this is the night he has finally bagged Gilda Collins. He flaunts her in front of the boys, his arm around her, grinning, having met her by chance at the library and then proceeding to get drunk off a bottle of vodka she had in her car and making out ferociously in the same car. Bryce is too fucked up to move off the couch, but his grin is just as big as Ken’s because he knows what’s waiting for him when he takes Gilda up to his room.

Ken and Gilda go up to his room, but there’s no shrieking. This bothers Bryce for about three minutes and then he passes out. Ken and Gilda fuck for two hours, falling in love more and more the whole time, and they fall asleep holding and kissing each other, dreaming of each other after they close their eyes. Of course, they never turn on the lights this whole time.

At nine in the morning, the shrieks finally kick in. Gilda has woken up and the first thing she sees is the dead miniature woman with her rib cage split apart, sitting upright in Ken’s desk chair. Instantly, she knows what’s happening: Ken, the man she has just fallen in love with, is a serial killer and he has tinkered with her heart as one would an old Volvo’s engine, just so that she would come to his house where he could murder her like he’d done to dozens of others before her.

She runs down the stairs, screaming in unmitigated terror. Bryce wakes up, still on the couch, realizes what’s happening, and stops Gilda before she leaves. At first, she can’t be reasoned with, but Bryce persists. He runs next to her down the street because she won’t stop going for the police station. Four blocks down the road, Bryce’s words finally gets through the hysteria. She stops running and falls to the ground giggling, high on adrenaline.

Ken, who’s been chasing them both, catches up and Bryce explains to him the origin of the corpse in his room, ending the story by telling him that the joke is, in reality, on himself: his plan had been to scare Ken and then return the corpse back to the rumpus room, but since the science building had already reopened while he was passed out, he can’t bring the body back, for fear of expulsion.

“Fuck,” Ken says, catching his breath on the ground next to Gilda. “So what? You got to fucking bury it now or what?”

Bryce’s eyes go wide with realization because that is exactly what he has to do. So that’s what they do.

The three of them take that poor women to a field they used to party in and they buried her six feet down. Then they all got breakfast together at a place called Hattie’s. At Gilda’s suggestion, they all split a bottle of cheap vodka. They sneak it into a Clint Eastwood movie. All the tension there is between Ken and Bryce dissipates and after that they become dear friends.

-


And he told me that and I spaced out. It was a long story. But it reminded me of how I knew the girl from college. She was pretty.

8

So it reminded me, not the revenge or friendship or utter morbid humor but the pining. I saw the girl from college a few times and I always pined for her.


It was one day under the arches between both wings of the library and I asked her for a cigarette while she stood by the standup ashtray. It was a few days before Christmas break. It would be the only time we spoke.


Now, I believe that students, male students in particular romanticize cigarette smoking in college. Entire classes of English majors associate shared smokes with the beginnings romantic interludes on windy french beaches.


The truth is, if you don’t know someone its very unlikely they will ask you for a smoke or share a smoke or what have you. The idea that a beautiful woman will appear out of nowhere and ask for a light is ludicrous...not like the rapper. Especially these days, with vanity and medical research rapidly destroying the already slim probability.


So I saw her and asked her for a smoke. Because women love petty dependancy.


I asked her what her name was and she said “Connie” which i thought was a name reserved for awkward lesbian basketball players or asian-american neurosurgeons. She was neither.


I told her I was planning on going to the Burger King inside the union (because women love Burger King) and she said she was planning on going to Jamaica that summer but her parents were guilt tripping her into going upstate to their cabin by Ashland instead.


I said famously that “In this life, you can never have what you want.” which must have struck a chord because she didn’t say anything. She just nodded and smiled.


Then we talked about library fines and finals and I told her there was a good chance I would be quitting school after the semester to focus on my writing. Which, as it turns out was one of the only big plans I ever went through with.


“Why now?” she asked.


“Because Christmas is a time for giving up.” I said. I thought it was clever but likely that it had been said before. And that was that.


In the fall that next year I heard through the grapevine that one of the students at UWM was murdered and that it was her. Goddamn shame.


I pondered all of this and walked Carter down to Arby’s and got the five-for-six. Four of the five were mozzarella sticks, I figure they are the most expensive thus giving me the most bang for my buck.


It was something about my lazy attitude that made the girl from college haunt me. I knew that. It had to be. She needed someone who didn't give a fuck. I didn't and wouldn't.


Then me and Carter walked home watched an episode of Friday Night Lights and for some reason Cougar Town and took a nap together. He’s good at curling up on the cot.


9

So I’ve been thinking about it. If I’m going to go find this murderer and avenge the death of some girl I barely know... from college...four years ago...I better (and I say this with all sorts of apprehension) make things right (eck) with the people in my life.


shit.


So I load up Carter in the car. He’s been playing with one of uncle Don’s old rags for a month now. He takes it with him everywhere. Idiot.


We drive over to my old apartment and ring Rita’s doorbell.


“What do you want Steve?” She says. Then she sees Carter and her eyes light up. She always liked Carter more than me and vice versa but he’s one of the only friends I’ve got so I aint giving him up.


Rita gives Carter a treat and I sit on the couch I originally found behind Bella Fat Cats.


-

I remember when they used to have two for one burger tuesdays. Now they’re closed because of not having a food license...whatever that is. Huge tragedy, sort off like hurricane Ned. Thats what it was called right?


I went to california a few years ago and they give a grade for every restaurant based on their cleanliness. What a bunch of grade-school-chicken-shittery. Californians are a bunch of candy asses.


-


I digress.


Rita pets Carter and looks skeptically across the table at me. Of course I glance at her tits and she pretends not to notice.


“First of all” I say “I’m sorry I told you I cheated on you.”


“What the fuck does that mean? You’re not sorry you cheated on me?”


“No no no. Of course I’m sorry about that. I just regret telling you also. Maybe a little more.”


“You are a fuck head Steve.”


“I deserve that.”


“Don’t warrant my insults. I don’t give a shit what you deserve.” She crossed her arms. and Carter laid his head on her lap.


“Let me start over. I love you.”


“Sure you do. You don’t know how to love.”


“Ouch, hurtful cliches are the worst.”


“Also where the fuck is my 1,800 dollars.” She says.


“I thought it was 1,300” I say.


“Its not.”


“I’ll give you Carter.” I say jokingly and she smiles. Whew.


Use the dog Steve. He’s a furry wingman.


She walks me and Carter to the door and says:


“I think you should go back, all the way back and think about relationships you’ve had. Think about how they ended and how you acted during. Then see if there is a pattern there. Also get a job. Also pay me my 1,800 dollars.”


“Ok.” I say. I’ll do the first of those three. I owe her that much. “One more thing.”


“Yes?” She says.


“Would you have sex with me?”


“Get the fuck out of here Steve. Don’t contact me unless you got my money.”


Then she calls me a “fucking retard” and slams the door in my face.


“Real! Mature!” I yell.


She isn’t that mad at me and I think I understand why. I don’t think she ever took me seriously. Sure we lived together but it was only cause she thought I was funny.


I’m funny right?