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Thursday, September 18, 2008

Back to work...now, where were we?

Ah yes. A real job. That's the great thing about gaining any kind of experience in the restaurant industry. You can get a job, for the most part, wherever you go. And waiting tables generates cash at the end of the day. Very important when one is rebuilding a life from the ashes.

San Fransisco was absolutely 'sick' with eateries. The following day I was a waiter, (they still used the term in the mid eighties. Now, we're servers. Whatever.) at an upscale joint on Fisherman's Wharf... Alcatraz out the window... when the Fog would lift long enough to see it, harbor seals barking and growling a few feet away.

I kept the drinking to a respectable minimum and learned another waiter, (also a writer-I told ya we were a majority) was looking for a roommate. Perfect. Out of that suicidal crib and into a real two bedroom in the Tenderloin District. Four stories above hookers, transvestites, bars and falafel dives. Brilliant. Just like home.

My roommate had yet to be published, but he wrote daily - in the mornings- and I picked up the habit. I had purchased a red IBM Selectric from a pawn shop and placed it on a door between the two bay windows in my bedroom. Instant desk.

I had no idea what I was doing. But over brandy and coffee, he taught me to find my muse, and he taught me she could be spiteful and vindictive. Sounded like an ex-wife to me, but what did I know?

He even introduced me to her, or someone I thought might be her, if she incarnated in the flesh.

She was Latin and several years older than me. She was a singer and worked for a car rental agency in the mornings. Afternoons were spent with me, before Cougars and cubs were popular.

My roommate and I would often get off work at the same time, and hit a few local bars on the way home. He taught me to observe...that sometimes the smallest things about someones behaviour...made for good writing.

Now my muse drank...just not like me. She told my roommate she thought I might have a problem. (So much for control.)

The blow up happened one afternoon after a loud bout of coitus. The only sound was our panting and my room mates tip-tap-tip-tip of his typewriter. I asked her if she wanted a brandy. She declined, and said I should wait, too.

I lost it. My anger stuck to the walls of my bedroom like gasoline and liquid detergent. I forgot she was Latin.

She threw my clothes and my typewriter out the window. I threw her underwear after them.

An IBM is one stout machine, and from four floors up it exploded in the middle of Geary Street, mixing with her underwear like Guatemalan party favors.

I dressed, dodging her hard little fists, and walked to the front door.

"Be gone when I get back!" My room mate stopped me, cocktail in hand.

"Trouble in paradise?"

I gave him the finger. I had said enough.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Badass entry.

Geoffrey Hill said...

As usual...it's appreciated.

Grumpus said...

I've been slogging through your posts and this is where I'm coming up for air for a sec. You're a good writer.

Geoffrey Hill said...

Thanks for the 'slog'...I hope it was worth it. Cheers.

My new disclaimer...yeah I know.

Okay, the old disclaimer was tired. The ideas were outdated and keeping me stuck in a place I don't want to be anymore...so now for something more refreshing.

I have recently changed my views regarding women. Seems I had some issues with the fairer sex due to past pain and self- centered fear. (Yes...duh applies.)

I'm done with that.

Being in recovery has helped me change my entire life, perceptions and attitudes. I cannot change my history but I can change my today and my future.

I recently realized that the women I know in recovery are some of the strongest, bravest, most gentle and kind teachers I have ever had. You exemplify integrity and spiritual growth, and I hope you know who you are.

Some may know of my past marital and relationship history and been a participant in them as well. It's past and that's where it stays...in the past.

I own my part in those failures but claim no more responsibility in any misery you may be experiencing. I am sorry, but it's time to get off the cross. We need the wood.


Thank you all...