I got these weird memories. I remember going to Istanbul and drinking tea and playing backgammon on a big board while smoking hookah with my girlfriend at the time and a very talkative shopkeeper and a not-entirely-uninterested white and brown cat.
I remember being driven to school when I was much younger listening to Nanci Griffith with my mom. I feel like I know every damn song she ever wrote.
I remember only accidentally the way the air smelled in Newton when I was very much a toddler, but the rhythm of the stroller as it rolled over the cracks in the pavement invariably follows close.
The first time I had sex was in a hotel in Prague.
I went to China a couple times. I don’t think I was ready either of those times, but the first time I almost got arrested for goosestepping behind the guards in Tienanmen Square. China is not a place you want to get arrested.
I’ve been to strip clubs in Tijuana and luxury loft apartments in Paris. I’ve been in bomb shelters in Berlin and dreary public squares in Zagreb. I’ve left my skateboard on a train in Ljubljana and I stole a teacup from a stand in Morocco. A goat in Barcelona headbutted me. I’ve broken bones all up and down the coast of California. I’ve slept under redwoods and a WHOLE lot of bed sheets.
I have both looked for and renounced any god thousands of times. I have stolen, I have broken, I have brought and I have apologized. I have bullied, been bullied, fought, lost, won, won but really lost and some fights continue silently through the days.
I let a friend punch me in the face to help him feel better.
I lost a friend over a microphone.
I gained a friend over a 4-person social ride based on the 90s.
The point is, I have lived. I am alive and continue to live. I will not die. I have shed some of the things that kill a man and found new dangers. I don’t despair for the future. It will be in any event interesting.