Left to right, Shweb, Dan, Charlie, Frankie, Chris, me, and Anthony. I was probably 11. Was one hell of water balloon fight. Anthony’s mom, Sally, took this picture. I can’t imagine an image that better captures how we grew up.
We’d spend our days seeing who could throw what the farthest. Who was the fastest. Who was the bravest, which typically entailed wrestling Frankie. He had such a strength advantage, that anyone only ever agreed to wrestle him if he was on his knees. We were wild and we ran like it, and the suburbs was our place to do it. Couldn’t have gown up anywhere better. Not specifically my hometown, but just the fact that it was the suburbs.
I live in the urban sprawl of Los Angeles now, a long ways from my hometown. I like it here, but didn’t always. It’s the people I’ve found and the girl I love that make it what it is for me. It’s where I belong now, but I couldn’t imagine being a kid here. I don’t know that I could have grown if not in suburban soil. I don’t know that any kid could. Confinement and wild freedom seem at odds. For that, I think some far off day, I may belong to those suburbs again.
Didn’t know who this was when I was drawing him, but the more I filled in the lines, reminded me a bit of a childhood friend. He died when we were in high school.
He came to me in a dream a few months ago. He hadn’t aged a day, and couldn’t understand why I looked older. It was night and we were standing up to our knees in black water. He asked me why I wasn’t at his funeral. I told him, I didn’t want to see him in a casket.
Can’t remember the rest.