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Saturday, September 27, 2003

bittersweet gangsta-rap

The sky was somewhere in-between calm and disturbing, breezy and chilly, somewhere in-between summer and fall. I was walking in-between work and home, obligation and recreation, the on-duty soldier getting five minutes to gradually turn himself off. Five minutes is how long it takes me to walk home from work.

I heard footsteps behind me that momentarily echoed mine. They sounded like hurried, purposeful footsteps, like they were in a rush to make the train or beat the crowd outside to the parking lot at the end of a White Sox game. I was effortlessly walking home from work and she passes me, short, with her little black blackpack and long sandy brown hair that entices my hands the same way that moist, cool beach sand did when I was seven years old and anxiously digging away for some long-lost hidden treasure. This time though I managed to curb my anxiety and, more importantly, my hands. "Jessica," I calmly summoned her.

She slows down, we talk small, and i'm happy to be walking down the Quad next to a pretty girl. We part and later I can't resist turning around, longingly gazing halfway down the Quad as she rides away on her bike. And with the pleasant imagery of her nice booty I continued on, on in-between work and home, calm and disturbed, breezy and chilly, happy and sad.

Friday, September 26, 2003

Delta Delta Delta

Holly is a Tri-Delt, the former girlfriend of Scott, who used to live next door to me freshmen year in the dorms. Good times. One night in the dorms, when it was very late and very quiet, I woke up my half-asleep then-girlfriend next to me in bed. "Did you hear that noise?" I said and we listened quietly with our ears pressed against the eight-inch think walls of brick that seperated Scott's room from mine. Holly was getting the brains fucked out of her and being loud as all shit about it. We giggled and eventually made it back to sleep.

I saw Holly today on my way back home from class. It was one of those semi-long-distance instances of recognition where you see the person from about 25 feet away, cautiously pass a glance of familiarity, sometimes smile, and, given the right opportunity, actually approach and engage said person in conversation. Holly has very light freckles and was going to meet her mom for lunch. I thought about her super-green eyes as soon as we parted even if she was wearing color-enhancing contacts. Standing next to her made me feel tall and I didn't even imagine what she looked like that night, her rough and rowdy cries of ruthless sexual abandon replaying through my mind only recently, repetitively.

Wednesday, September 24, 2003

Chemical Warfare of Gastronomical Proportions

I peeled off the thin piece of wax paper seperating each hunky piece of colby jack cheese from the others in the cheese package and gently placed it on my first sandwich. It was 1 o'clock and time for my daily lunch break back at the apartment. Turkey pastrami, pickles, dijon mustard, sliced tomatoes, and two pieces of colby jack cheese, one each, along with the other condiments, sandwiched in-between four slices of honey wheat bread. I eat two sandwiches everyday for lunch.

The first sandwich was great, and I began to daydream about faraway lands. But suddenly I started chewing on something that had the texture of an old rubber band. I tried to ignore it, but, just out of curiosity, regurgitated the semi-chewed food back into my hand. Something wasn't right. Further investigation into the second sandwich led to a startling conclusion. I peeled away the half-eaten piece of wax paper stuck to the cheese in the remainder of the sandwich and incredulously stared at the profile my bite marks carved into it. It looked like the state of Utah.

Friday, September 19, 2003

Your Honor

This morning I begrudgingly put on a sweater.

I was going to stay in my courtroom attire, maybe impressing unas de las chicas en mi clase de espanol with my stylish sense of fashion. But no, I didn't think it worked on the Judge ("Your Honor") and so it probably wasn't going to on them and besides I didn't want to incite questions from my classmates as to why I suddenly decided to take time to cultivate my appearance.

My court date was scheduled for 9am this morning. I woke up 9:02 and ferverishly convinced my roommate to drive me asap to the courthouse. I made it just in time to watch the prisoners in there black and white and black and white horizonatally striped uniforms file one by one out of the courtroom, back to their carcel, presumably. Usually you only see one white guy surrounded by five black guys on the basketball court, but this case was different. There was a white man en queue along with the black men. Their hand AND foot cuffs clanged and clattered while continuing their solemn dirge and reminding me what I DON'T want to be when I grow up. I anxiously awaited my turn in a front row seat.

"Mr. Cortez do you understand the charges put against you." and now i'm standing next to my lawyer, Susan Hessee of the Student Legal Services, before the judge, and politely yet monotonously repeating "Yes your honor" in response to his bevy of questions. "How do you plead, Mr. Cortez?" "Guilty, your honor."

That same guilt now somehow brews somewhere in my intestinal tract here in the basement of the Foreign Language Building, an upside-down pyramid. Brown Bottle Blues, i.e. hangover:

Last night there were no foreigners at the International Illini barcrawl. But that's ok because last night I drank and drank and drank until I became a well-versed conversationalist capable of parlaying whimsicalities about faraway lands. Most of them lasted more than five minutes and girls smiled at me and I smiled back.

Too bad the Judge didn't.

Saturday, September 13, 2003

Melodramatica

I'd rather make a sloppy mess with my food than have to cantankerously manage it inside my mouth. I'd rather stain my brand new shorts and sandals with various colors than have to let go of the overwhelming passion of painting walls for hours on end. I'd rather buzz in too early, incorrectly on Jeopardy, than hear my opponent answer first, whether or not he was right or wrong.

I'd rather spill my emotions than struggle to squeeze them inside bottles, knowing that i'll not only need one (or 6, or 24, or 30) but maybe even more in order to drink them all away.