Tag Archives: love

A Toast to Cameron — And to Crazytime

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Recently, one of our own joined the ranks of the wed. The courtship was brief, the shotgun was loaded for bear and the wedding was attended by as many people as we could fit on the back porch.

In his sermon/eulogy, Rev. Tony—ordained by the Universal Life Church of Modesto, Calif.—spoke on the subject of insanity, or rather, not pursuing the rational (and safe) path.

Cameron's Wedding

Cameron and his bride, Chesera. With Cameron, it's always crazytime.

“Had we always made the wise and safe decision,” Rev. Tony said, “what stories would we have to tell? We’ve always made the choice to play it close to our vest, to take the option no one in their right mind would take. We even have a name for it: crazytime. Choosing the crazy option defines us; it’s who we are.

“So,” he said, concluding his remarks and taking Cameron and his betrothed by the arm, “let’s get crazy.”

In illustration of Cameron’s propensity for craziness, I prepared before the wedding a list of all the crazy stuff that I could think of that Cameron has done. Easily, my encouragement accounts for somewhere on the order of 98 to 99 percent of this list, which Rev. Tony pulled from his pocket and read aloud prior to the happy couple reciting their vows.

It was a good list. I thought it deserved sharing.

So, in tribute to our dear Cameron and his new missus, we present but a brief, unordered and uncategorized list of Cameron’s craziness:

  • Threw darts at his butt
  • Ate a potentially fatal quantity of off-brand hotdogs
  • Went streaking
  • Catapulted himself across an empty parking lot on a wooden pallet
  • Attempted to drink a gallon of milk in under an hour
  • Smoked concentrated Country Time Lemonade
  • Participated in a contest of self gratification
  • Snorted a line of wasabi
  • Went streaking again
  • Drank a bottle of Karo corn syrup, then vomited foam
  • Participated in another hotdog eating contest
  • Shocked his testicles with an electric flyswatter
  • Tried to drink another gallon of milk in under an hour
  • Participated in another contest of self gratification (but this time for speed and volume)
  • Participated in a green bean eating contest
  • Allowed roman candles to be fired at his bare butt
  • Lit his farts
  • Tried to drink yet another gallon of milk in under an hour
  • Lit my farts on fire, subsequently almost burning down an apartment building
  • Participated in a catfish eating contest
  • Shot bottle rockets out of his butt crack
  • Went streaking—again
  • Ate a gallon of pickles while driving back home from Panama City Beach, which led to him soiling his pants (the first time)
  • Convinced him that, by using a brown eyeliner pencil, no one could tell that one of his sideburns has a one-inch bald patch in it
  • Drank until he passed out and awoke with his pants soiled—again
  • Picked up three underage girls and drove them around Panama City Beach while they stood in his Jeep, without seatbelts, while he was on probation
  • Blew through $500 on strippers and hookers between Tijuana, Long Beach, Calif., and Las Vegas
  • Got wasted in Long Beach, Calif., and wandered off into the ghetto wearing nothing but a pair of bright yellow swim trunks
  • Tried to pace Rev. Tony gulp-by-gulp with a bottle of bourbon—while underage—and ended up crawling into his parents’ room that night (he has no recollection of this)

I hope you will continue to return to squad-blog.com and search through our archives to learn more about the stories behind these terrible mistakes/good times.

It’s always crazytime somewhere.

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Little Deaths

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She looks questioningly up at him.  She doesn’t understand.  He always wants her there.  He hates that she lives so far away.

So how can he be asking, pushing her to leave?  Yes, it’s late, and she has class the next afternoon, but that’s never kept him from holding her until the last possible second.

She knows this is best, that she should leave, because it’s the last week before finals, but she can’t help the crushing feelings from all but overwhelming her.  He walks her to her car, kisses her tenderly, and walks back to his apartment.

* * * * * * *

She’s eating dinner with her best friend and his buddy from high school.  They joke, laugh, and entertain her with stories from their past, but she can’t get past the feeling that she just doesn’t like Chris’s old friend.  He’s arrogant, somehow.

Midway through the pizza and wings, Zack looks up at her and asks, “So you’re dating someone at the Lawrenceville Friday’s?”

She shoots an annoyed glance at Chris who just gives a guilty, boyish grin.

“Yeah.  His name’s Tony.  Why?”

“Really?  I work there.  Tony and I hang out sometimes.  I didn’t know he was seeing someone at GSW.”  He has this smile that’s shifty, sneaky, satisfied, and gloating in one.  How could anyone truly like this guy?

She’s already decided to ignore him when she hears Chris ask, “What’s that supposed to mean?”  Apparently, he had heard the hidden implications as well.

“Forget it, Chris.  It doesn’t matter.”

Chris looks at her, says, “Okay,” then glares at his old friend.

* * * * * * *

“How was your trip?  Did you guys have fun at the bachelor party?  Where did y’all take him?”

“Vanessa, we need to talk.  Take a seat, I’ll order you some coffee.  White mocha?”

“Sure.”

What had happened?  Was he okay?  Had they gotten into trouble?  She fidgets with the edge of her red skirt and the straps of her bookbag, worrying about the seriousness in Chris’s face.

Chris was always smiling – what could have happened?

He squeezes his way back over with two coffees, sits, and begins to nurse his own.

She blows to cool hers, waiting as patiently as she can.

Several minutes pass, and Chris watches people passing outside with dark clothes and umbrellas.  It’s not a pretty day.

“Well?” she demands.

He visibly steels himself, turns to look at her, and baldy states, “Tony’s cheating on you.”

Nothing.

“I saw him last night at Friday’s before we took Zack to the strip club.  He was waiting tables.  Every time he had a minute away from his tables, he and this girl were all over each other.  Zack caught me before I did something you might regret.”

“That’s not funny, Chris.”

He looked worn, much older than his twenty-one years.  He closed his eyes and nodded once.

“Why would you say that?  Tony loves me!  He wants to marry me!  I can’t believe you would do this to me…”

She storms out of the cafe, angry with Chris and his games.  Why couldn’t he ever just be happy for her?  As she passed the window next to their booth, she noticed that he hadn’t moved a muscle.

* * * * * * *

In the hour since she’d stormed out of Joe’s, Chris had called her ten times.  She was at the point of turning it off for awhile when “Brown-eyed Girl” sang from its speakers.

She almost dropped it in her haste to answer.  “Tony!” she breathed in relief.  She hadn’t even realized she was holding her breath until that moment.

“Ness.”  He’d been crying.

“What’s the matter, hon?”

“Ness, I’m so sorry.  I’m so stupid.  I’m so sorry.”

Cold fear spread from her fingertips and toes, up her arms and legs, through her torso and around her heart.  When it managed to pierce even there, tremors began racking her limbs.  How long all of this took, how long she sat shaking, she wasn’t sure.

“Ness?  Vanessa?  Oh, baby… Can we see each other?  I need to see you.  I’ll drive there-”

“No.”  She didn’t want him here, bringing his bad news to her warm, safe apartment.  “I’ll drive to you.”

She hit the end button and began throwing random things into a bag.  As she was locking the door, she realized she had no idea what was in the bag, because what could she possibly use from her living room to fix this?

The drive didn’t seem to take nearly as long as it should.  She pulls into a spot just below his stairs, grabs her bag, and is at his door with no knowledge of ascending the stairs.  She hopes she locked her doors.

He comes to the door, bringing a whiff of the cologne she bought him for Christmas, pulls her into his arms, releases her with something like fear or shock – she’s not sure which – in his expression.

They walk to his bedroom; he’s carrying her bag of miscellaneous items.  She numbly realizes he’s probably thinking she came to spend the night.  He places it on the chair outside his bathroom door, and they sit facing each other on his futon.

She uses all her self-possession to keep from jumping off this unfaithful bed, from spitting on its lumpy old comforter.

He pulls her hand into his lap, and he begins to talk.

* * * * * * *

She didn’t scream or rage, and she didn’t cry like she thought she would.  But her insides are still frozen, and she’s been pulling away physically every few moments.  He’s done.  He’s been done.  He’s waiting for her, and she thinks she sees a trace of that earlier fear before looking back at her interlocked hands.

“Is that all?”  He nods, tears escaping onto his khakis.  “Okay.  I should leave, then.”

She makes to go, and he clings to her.  “Wait!  Can’t we, can’t we talk?  You can’t just leave.  We have to talk.  We have to figure this out!”

She’s never seen him beg before, never seen such raw, yet boyish, pain.  She considers him for a minute, then gently unclasps his hands from hers.  She shoulders her bag and leaves, closing his bedroom door behind her.  She takes a moment, then makes her way through his now crowded living room, blindly nodding at who she assumes are his roommates, and she arrives at the door.  She turns the handle for the last time, pulls it to her, and slips into the chilling air.  Funny.  She didn’t notice the winter wind earlier.  She climbs down the first set of stairs before sinking onto the landing.

The gates are open.  The flood has come.  She succumbs.

Her arms wrap themselves around her knees, her bag is gone, her head falls forward.  She sits for days releasing her pain, washing her heart clean.

A distant jingle-jangle dances through the air, and she thinks of her cat, her furball, sitting at home waiting for her.  She’s almost to her feet, wiping her eyes as she pushes herself up, and “Vanessa!” cuts through the cold night and lands in her chest.

She doesn’t turn, she doesn’t answer.  She can only look down at the beautifully carved hilt sticking from her breast, knowing she won’t be able to remove it.

Tony picks up her bag from some three or four steps below, looks up into her face, then lifts her across his chest.  He carries her back to his room, murmuring sweet thanks into her ear, heedless of the blood and life seeping from under his hands.