Monday, January 19, 2009

day 11 or 12: (crapping out)

At one point I crapped out. I think it was a day or two after Christmas.

Every morning was the same routine. Wake up and walk to the flower room and watch, bleary eyed and scratching my head and painting a smile on my face, as her and her step mother made leis and discussed the events of others. Get a coffee and smoke a cigarette and take some painkillers for the ache in my mouth. Sit down at the dining room table and try to create pleasant conversation with her father and uncle, about where the sun is on the island or what time the water would feel best, while sipping my coffee and distracting myself with the newspaper. Gather up a bag and put on my swim trunks and roll down the window as we drive off into the day.

Always to meet another friend. Another person from way back in her history. Around every corner another hand is extended and another nice to meet you is said. Everyday I'm the boyfriend from new york that’s never been to the island before. The boyfriend from new york everyone has been dying to meet and goes to school and is studying what, exactly? The boyfriend from new york that stole their friend away.

And after the big birthday party and the last minute Christmas shopping with her family and the drinks every night some place new and strange or some place old and stuffed with memories and the big groups at every meal and all the curiosities about me and all my curiosities about them I just wanted a break from everything and everybody. I just wanted to sit around and frown and find some momentary solace in our womb the internet. I wanted to be alone and read a book. I wanted to lay there and stare up into the sky and not have to think of anything but clear blue before me.

And when she came home that morning from yoga at dawn with big ideas in her head about how we would play the day, I just couldn’t get down with the program again. I didn’t want to meet her friend and her other friend and her other friends new husband down at the beach again. I didn’t want to learn about a new person and have a new person learn about me again. I didn’t want cocktails and appetizers and another hundred dollar bill. I didn’t want to see the sunset. I didn’t want to laugh. I didn’t want to remember another moment fondly. I didn’t want to share anymore. I was done sharing. At least for a day.

I just wanted to be alone. I needed a vacation from my vacation.

But I went along anyway, because I didn’t want to be the party pooper. I didn’t want to be the asshole. So I went. I knew it was a bad idea from the get-go, but I figured, hey, fuck it. I'm on vacation. Ill go to the beach and have some drinks. That’s what you’re supposed to do on vacation, right?

And at the beach I couldn’t bear the sun. I couldn’t stand the ocean. I couldn’t tolerate the sand. I drank a beer and looked out onto the horizon through my shades and hated every minute of it. I gave short, clipped answers. I was distant and aloof. I kept my t-shirt on and felt embarrassed about it but was too stubborn to disrobe. I was miserable. I was the party pooper. I was the asshole.

But whatever. I was over it. I didn’t care.

Anyway, getting to the meat of this post:

At some point everyone but me is laughing and giggling and wet and salty and fresh from a quick dip in the sea. There was a cooler and in it was beer from the local brewery and some snacks. A bag of moshi crunch and some spam mosubi, a few cans of green tea and maybe a tin of sashimi. Drunk on the sun and the beer and the good times with old friends, she decides that this was the moment I should try the spam mosubi.

We had discussed this earlier, back in new york. I was willing then. In the safe web of delis and pizza parlors, hamburger joints and twenty-four hour bodega’s, that I was surrounded by. I think I have tasted spam once, when I was a young kid, and it was sickening to me. it makes me gag even trying to remember the flavor of it. But its embraced in Hawaii and she had grown up with it. so I was ready to do as the romans, or in this case, the Hawaiians, do, and partake in their local delicacy. Back in new york, that is.

But right then, on that beach, at that moment in time, I was not willing to eat a square of rice with a slab of spam laid atop it, wrapped in some wet, slimy looking seaweed. And this was not the best day to try to shove spam down my throat, “for fun.” So I declined. she shrugged, and then she took a bite of it and immediately gagged. She hissed to me that it tasted horrible. And I believed her. It LOOKED horrible. Funny thing is, then she offered it to a bunch of people, the friends and friends, all giddy for some reason, and this one girl scarfed down the whole thing like it was cheese wrapped in bacon


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:gray matters: by jkg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.
Based on a work at