Thursday, May 7, 2009

Here's a toast to Ze, wherever he may be

Sunday, May 09, 2004

"i see dead people"

i wonder if my hands are shaking today because of the abundance of alcohol i drank last night, the humid rainy weather, or because of everything that happened this past weekend. probably all.

i sat through work agonizing over the hours. meetings. minutes. left early because i wanted to get some personal time in before i was to meet up with one of the agents for fleetwood mac. he'd emailed me on nerve looking for a "backstage beauty" for a night. (my short-hand version of the email.) for now we'll call him Mr. White.

i hadn't had sex in a week or so and we all know that lolas don't do well non-sexed. so many things were going on at once. i was supposed to meet Mr. White after 9pm. i was supposed to meet Mr. Saff from aff at 7pm. i was anticipating having dinner with greg at 5pm who was in from minneapolis. i wasn't supposed to respond to bd's email inviting me to come over while he was frustrated over not being able to open bondagetrials.com

yes, an un-sexed lola is a horny lola.

so i cancelled Mr. Saff. waited for greg. and then drove over to bd's.

at 7pm we were done with dinner and at 8:30pm i was tied up in 4 cords of rope and getting my tits and pussy lashed. he even made me cry. and although, dear reader, it sounds possibly cruel and horrific, do remember "to each her own" and that i dig it. i wanted to stay with him, sleep with him. i was exhausted, but knew i had to go. you make me want to stay here, i said. but i didn't. sometime around 9:45 i was at home and had called Mr. White to say i'd be at his hotel by 11pm. meanwhile, i was online chatting with Mr. Ian about how excited he was that he could watch me sip maker's on the rx via my webcam. (he'd never used cam before.)

and at 10:25pm someone knocked.

i remember the times vaguely, but i'm pretty sure it was then. i remember it was past 9pm when i left bd's because Mr. White had emailed wondering why i hadn't called him yet. and i remember it was past 10pm when i was chatting with Mr. Ian because i kept thinking, i'll give myself 10 more minutes with them and then i have to go change and freshen up.

i thought for sure the knock was one of the lovers who don't know the rules not to visit without calling ahead. i opened the door and the music flowed out behind me. i was faced with a woman in her late 30's with brown hair and glasses, a greyish face. and a man in his 30's with hair pulled back into a long ponytail. they looked somber. asked if i knew my next door neighbor (i live in an apartment building, his door is 5 feet from mine). i said i'd met him last week friday for the first time. i'd seen him once before in the hallway, thought he was kinda cute, wondered why i always heard his door open and close but never saw him.

so last week friday, i tell them, i was heading out at night to go dancing and his door was open. i didn't tell them that i could see a painting of naked butts hanging over a bed in his back bedroom. and that the lights were on and i really wanted to see that painting and meet this man. but i did tell them that i knocked on his wide-open door and he said yes, as i stepped inside and i introduced myself and he called himself "ze" and he is portugese and was smoking and i said that i smoke in my apartment, too, eventhough it's not allowed. and that i hoped he wasn't moving out because of me (loud music, smoking, fucking or whatnot.. i'm always afraid that i'm a horrible neighbor). he laughed, no. he's a scientist and someone threw a rock into his bedroom window the first week he lived there. i said that was horrible and that, as a woman, i'd never live on the ground level.. and really, neither should men. no one should live alone on the ground level. and he agreed, said he was waiting for our landlord to tell him if there was an available apartment upstairs for him to move into. i asked to look at his apartment b/c i'd never seen what it looks like. did he mind if i looked around? he invited me in gladly. i saw the couch, a sparse living area, a huge painting of colors on the wall, a desk. did he do the paintings? no, his mother, but he had done this one over here. colors, lines. i said i liked them both. i peeked into the kitchen. small. yes, and the kitchen, he said, it's too small. i like to cook and it's too small. i agreed, stepped back and wandered to the bedroom. can i see the painting in here? sure, he said. yes, my mother painted that. she's a great artist, i said. i turned and went into the bathroom. and we exchanged pleasantries and i thanked him for letting me look, hoped he'd get the upper apartment, and said goodbye to go off to dance.

i didn't think it odd that he was hoping to move at 11pm. or that our landlord was finding an apartment for him at that late hour. or that his door was open at 11pm.

it was an asian dance night. some after-bar party for them. lots of people. i danced in my usual corner and drank. at bar time i hit the pizza place and got two slices of spinach, talked to a cute boy in line who said he was a professor of history. came home and ze's door was still open. i called in and he met me in his hallway/living room. asked, in my drunk friendly fashion, if he wanted some of my pizza. he was holding a bowl of something and eating already. we laughed, well i guess you're eating already. yes, but thank you. sure. he'd changed clothes. i said goodnight.

i don't remember what i did saturday. oh yeah, el stopped by on his way to his brother's and i was going out on a hunt to meet Mr. History Prof. (different than the one at the pizza place but that's mute at this point.) Mr. Dutch was supposed to come over sunday and fuck me, but Dutch and i cancelled and i know i didn't do laundry b/c i was lazy. monday the door was closed to ze's apartment and two brown couch cushions were outside his door. i thought he'd finally moved but left the couch or something b/c he didn't need it. monday night i talked to Mr. Ian online for hours and the police came by. i have no idea why they came by, but they shouted outside, "Madison police - Stay inside!" maybe it was that night. i heard nothing that would have roused my suspicion.

and nothing happened. nothing at all happened. all week. all week i talked to Mr. Ian, met Mr. White online and got giddy over meeting him and seeing Fleetwood Mac (not that i really care that much about them), pushed through work, had my hormones rise up like flames inside me, masturbated like crazy.

but i told them i had no idea about ze. and they wondered if they could call our landlord b/c they were concerned. a friend of his had called from portugal to say he hadn't heard from ze and was worried. i said i thought that they should call our landlord. and closed the door to get his number while they went to the front building to write it down from the "apartment for rent" sign. we matched the numbers and she asked me if i thought he'd mind they call him. i said, no, of course not. in this instance you should call him. they went outside to call and i went back to Mr. Ian online with our chat. i'd been drinking and we'd been reveling in the new-found web cam abilities. he was pysched to see me and i was having fun. when i got back to him i was worried though. and that thing that happens to me happened.

like when i was in virginia in the back woods at a party. the ghosts came. all those ghosts from the civil war. left helpless and hopeless and no way of knowing how to get peace. like when i was at bd's and grieving at the time of my grams' burial. i could see them in australia crying and my cousin in colorado pulling her car over to cry. like all the times the parallels of time collide in me and electrons and atoms meet. and i know it could be dillusional. i know it could be because of the liquor. but i wonder if it all comes with the liquor b/c i let my brain cloud over and not stop it. only then. not when i'm sober. when i'm sober there are walls up around those thoughts, around those possibilities, closing off any connections between distance and time and space.

so i held my head. and told Mr. Ian that i could see him. i could see ze. he wasn't dead, he wasn't alive. he was trapped. he was trapped somewhere. and i feared for him. i couldn't tell though. i had all these visions... was he abducted because he was gay, a scientist, a portugese? did someone really want to harm him and they had? was he duct taped in his bathroom, on the floor struggling? he was in a dark corner. he was crying. he was dead. ...

oh. my. god. he's dead. Ian, he's dead. he's next door. he's dead in the apartment. he's dead. oh my god. he's there. and he's dead.

just then i heard them talking outside my window, on the front lawn. and i heard my landlord's voice. i told Mr. Ian to hang on. i went outside.

the tattoo on my ass is a japanese symbol. for courage.

landlord said ze had called him a while ago and spoke .. he hesitated.. well, oddly. so i asked him, did he seem unstable? and he said yes. and i asked his 2 friends, did he seem quirky? yes. i told my landlord i thought he was inside the apartment. and from the front lawn we could see the bathroom light, or the bedroom light, some light was on inside and i could see the mattresses naked of sheets and the painting of the naked butts had been taken down and was resting on the opposite wall from where it had been hanging. we need to go in there, i told the landlord. i started heading back to the apartment. wait, he said. no, we have to go in there now. god knows why i said that. god knows why i knew we had to go now. we walked back into the building and landlord said he had to get the master key. he went down the stairs to the basement and came back up. he hesitated, said something, the world rushed in and out of me. he couldn't do it. i wanted to laugh. i was nervous. i was scared. but i knew we had to go in there. i took the key from him and put it in the lock. i turned it one way and pushed, it didn't open. i turned it the other way. i pushed the door open.

half of me thought there'd be some abductor or killer inside. some agressive freak. but there was silence.

the landlord reached across me and turned on the hallway light. ze? ze? we called. and i can't remember who went in first. maybe he did and turned around and said it. maybe i did. but i think the landlord went in first, walked a foot inside, turned, said he was dead, and walked out. and then i walked in, a foot inside, turned and looked.

it wasn't slow motion like they all say it's supposed to be. it was quick. a flash in the pan. but it's burned on my brain now.

i walked into the mini-hallway, turned to the right, saw the edge of the couch, and in front of the couch, two tennis shoes pointed upward.

i quickly backed out of the apartment, put the key in the door, turned the lock, left the key and followed the landlord to the hallway of our building. call the police, i said. call the police now. he dialed. he started talking. his friends started coming into the lobby. and i was overcome with shock. i wanted to smile. i wanted to giggle. i wanted to freak out. i wanted to cry. the landlord was saying the words that i didn't want his friends to hear. i controlled myself i think. and composed myself to hug her. and say i was so sorry. so sorry. so sorry. so sorry. so sorry.

we went outside. the landlord couldn't handle talking to the 911 dispatcher so i took the phone. just then i told her the police were coming. sirens. they're here. it's okay. i'm going to talk to them. it's okay. they're here.

and a flurry. a flurry of activity. blue suited bodies coming in. me going to my apartment and telling Mr. Ian "he's dead." me crying. sobbing. uncontrollable. the lady cop knocking. standing in my doorway as the blue bodies go in and confirm. and talk and noise. and yes, i met him last week for the first time. and my name is. and then we went in. and i've got to stay here and wait around for a detective, and someone from some sort of victims/witness help group? i've got a hot date tonight. and we giggle and i'm sobbing. and no, i didn't know why he wanted to move. and yes, i'll cancel and stay here. and i can't talk to his friends now because it's an investigation. and i get offline and call bd. please come over. please. please come. call Mr. White. hysterical i'm sure. cancel. he's worried. no no, i've got a friend coming over. don't worry. i'll talk to you tomorrow. ok. ok.

i tell the police that bd is coming over and to let him in please. bd shows up, worry in his eyes. i hug him and sob. and tell him all about it and fall back on the closet door. ze needs to leave now. he needs to leave. and he's scared. he's so scared. he's in the dark. he's between dead and alive. he needs to go now. oh my god. go, ze. go it's good there. it's warm. it's safe. it's so safe. bd holds me. it's so safe. go, ze. go. you'll be loved. you'll find peace. and you'll find family. i'm not crazy, i tell bd, i can see him. he's scared. i wish i could hold him. i wish i could warm him for a minute. he's so alone and scared. but ze goes. ze goes and i'm calm again. i have a cigarette and tell bd i have to tell his friends. he thinks it's a bad idea that i go out there. but i go. the lady cop says i can't talk to his friends b/c they're going to ask her questions now. but that i can hug her if i need to. i do. i go outside, i hug her and tell her he's free now. he's safe. he's fine. i can't say any more. they won't let me talk to you. but he's okay now.

i go back in and stand in the doorway. watching the blue bodies go in and talk, move around, i hear something about stabbed neck and bloody cigarettes. or cut neck. the blue bodies have light blue hosiptal covers on their shoes. they're in the living room, the bedroom, they go in and out. an older man asks if someone reads portugese because there's a letter. i say i read spanish, it's close. i look at the letter and it's covered in love, longing, love, love. but i can't interpret it so the friend comes to the hallway, says she can read it. it's a letter from his mom.

i come back inside the apartment. bd and i go back outside. it's calmer. i talk to the friends. i ask if i can get her anything. she and he want tea. tea. tea. how do i make tea? i go into the apartment, bd stays, i then signal him to come to the apartment.. tea? how do i make tea? which tea? i had pulled every tea box out and tossed it to the counter. which one do i make? he finds the "calm" box and says, with a laugh, that this one will be perfect. i laugh. we sit in the other room while the water brews. or we stand in the kitchen. or i pace. and i wonder if the water's done yet. is it done? is it done? i grab the honey. he thinks it's done. i drop honey into the glass and miss and hit the pot. i'm a wreck.

we deliver the tea. i didn't want any but i sip it from bd's glass. i ask ze's friends about him. i think the investigation is over and it's suicide. his friends say he was quirky, people made fun of him because of his clothes (?), he wasn't stable. no, he hadn't lived there a year like i'd thought, only a couple of months. oh. well, i couldn't remember. he was a scientist. and like i'd guessed internally the week before, yes, he was doing stem cell research. she kept calling me a brave woman. the coroner came and asked questions. and the hallway stunk like rotting egg. like cars stink sometimes. i thought it was a cop fart, but then wondered if it was coming from his apartment. i hadn't smelled anything in the week previous. and i hadn't smelled anything like it that night.

at some time the phone rings. bd says he answered it before and it was my upstairs neighbor. she is concerned. i call her back. am i ok? yeah. do you need to stay somewhere? nah, i'll go to bd's. thanks though.

the other lady cop came and said yes, they could go home now and i could leave b/c the investigator feels like he's got all the info he needs. i wonder where the counselor is. i might need some. but bd helps me get my jacket and we leave. i can't stay there. and i should have just stayed at bd's after our tryst earlier. i get on the back of the vespa and pull my hood up. i can't see anything. i stare at the pavement. the lines the pavement make. it's windy. and when we get there i want to start rocking back and forth but stop myself. i ask for drugs. he gives me a valium and i climb in bed sobbing, shaking. i ask for more. he doesn't think i need it but i want more. he gives me a 1/2 more. some time later i'm passed out.

i get up at 10am and i'm starving. i'm groggy. i'm in a haze. i feel nothing. i make two bowels of cereal and read some magazine. go back to bed. he gets up and cooks for himself. i can't get up. i finally open my eyes after i hear a phone call he gets. i know he has other things to do. i keep sleeping. he comes in at about noon and fucks me. i'm so groggy but i want to do it. as i've heard, people when involved with any kind of death want to fuck. reaffirm life.

he drives me back home and another neighbor lady sees us. she asks if i'm ok. i think i am. i'm still dazed. like bd said, it's not like the ad "this is your brains on drugs" and the egg fries. with valium it's more of a slow baking. he walks me into my apartment. the couch cushions from outside ze's apartment are gone. the door mat remains. and the flyer that was left. the flyer for some college thing "make $$ now" kind of thing. they left it. and i remember when i picked mine up sometime that week earlier. and tossed it in the garbage. ze was gone for long weekends and i remember always picking up my junk mail and seeing his remain outside his door for days. bd picks it up and throws it in my garbage. he hugs me. tells me i can call him and come over whenever i need.

i try to log online. i need to talk to Mr. Ian. i need to check my mail. it's 1pm. my mother has called to thank me for the flowers. my friend emily misses me and says that cleveland bound death sentence will be playing soon in minneapolis and i should come see them. Mr. White calls. i try to log on and i'm unsuccessful. i forgot to pay my dial-up fee. i call and pay over the phone. no internet. at 3pm i unlog the phone cord and go to dial Mr. White's number just as he calls. i drink some and go over to meet him at his hotel.

it's awkward but we have good conversation. at 5pm we go decide to go get dinner. we hop in the elevator and there are 2 women with 2 tiny dogs and a man and stevie nicks with her hair in two big curlers. one of the women introduce Mr. White to stevie. she says she's excited for the show but hasn't played in a while and has a beer in one hand. she seems drugged up.

we walk outside and i'm introduced to some agent. stevie is in the limo but another man says wait b/c the girls aren't in yet. the girls are the tiny terrior dogs. they hop in the limo and they leave. two lay people are gawking amazed into the limo. i put on my sunglasses. we eat at cafe montmartre. the first people there. i have a glass of wine and i'm trying to pretend i'm not in a haze. Mr. White knows everything so i'm not shy about being out of it. we part so i can get ready for the fleetwood mac show and i go home. i have a drink and change. he calls. a car will stop by to get me. he holds my hand and puts a pass around my neck. when we get to the arena we're in the back part of it. the under-belly. i'm introduced to agents, managers, bookies, production people. i don't feel unusual. i don't feel out of place. i don't feel odd. but i do feel a bit conscious of the "backstage beauty" thing. like, i'm from here. they're all from there. and they know why i'm here.

i get beers and the set list. and we go outside for my last smoke (can't smoke in the arena). it's starting to thunderstorm and it's almost 8:15pm. a drop of rain hits us and we go inside. we sit with the sound board guys and other media and guests. on the floor but back in the back. i borrow his glasses to see that far. and i wear them for a while. dance. we retreat to the back b/c he wants to try and fuck me. but the gang's still back there. i grab another beer. we go back to the show. it's the encore and mick has some weird drum gadget attached to his shirt and he drums these pads like mad and i'm shaking my body, my ass. it feels so good to dance.

we head back to the hotel by getting a ride from a local promoter. he has gifts for his wife in the back seat. his car is nice and expensive. i ask to stop by the bar so i can get smokes. i run in the rain and grab a pack and run back to the car. we get to the hotel and get a drink. the bridal party arrives and she looks hot in white. i request "strange fruit" from the piano man / singer lady. she says she doesn't have it, but will play some billie anyway. i have a maker's and i really don't need it. but i need the smoke.

we head upstairs. and i have dazed, hazed, drunk sex. i think he says this is the best fuck he's ever had.

we go back downstairs for my cigarette and to see the band back now. i'm introduced to more of the crew. i sit down and he goes into the back room where the band is. mick walks past me. i'm drunk and passing out. i tell Mr. White i have to go to sleep. i'm exhausted. i tell him to stay and i'll head up. i go up, undress, pass out. next thing i know it's like 4am and he's waking me up. sorry, he says, but i can't sleep. i can't sleep with you here. and i need some sleep. i'm okay with this b/c i'm drunk & b/c we talked about me leaving at some point b/c we both don't sleep well with other people. hate it when lovers want to sleep holding me. (barring friday night when i needed bd to hold me.) it's 4am. i don't care. i figure it's the only way i'll be able to sleep in my apartment anyway. drunk, tired, and unknowing. he says he's called a cab for me. gives me two 5$. i dress. i tell him it's okay and i head down. no one is at the desk. there is no cab. i walk home. the morning is dark but starting to lighten. i curse my whole way home. it's only 7 blocks, but i'm cursing. fucker. kick me out of bed?!

i walk past ze's door. and pause. my key won't unlock my door. god just let me in. i get in and pass out. i only wake up at 11:45am when Mr. White calls. and then he calls right away again. trying to wake me up. i don't answer. but i get up.

i've just spent a couple hours writing this. and i'm still shaky and my head hurts again.

i keep hearing things. like when bd dropped me off and left. i opened the window and after i opened it i heard "lola." the closet door creaked open on its own... but that happens sometimes i think. i hear the door to ze's apartment open and close. bd was online and told me to call him if i need anything or when they start tapping me on the shoulder. that's not funny, i said. b/c that happens. all the time. and i haven't showered today. the bathroom wall connects to ze's apartment. i wonder what it'll be like showering there tomorrow morning. i won't be able to close my eyes i'm sure.

i keep seeing those shoes pointed upward.

even when i was fucking bd in the morning. even when i was fucking Mr. White. even now. even now i see dead people.

Lola 4:12:00 PM

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