Brooks was the kind of friend you wanted around when a fight’s about to brew. Much like myself, Brooks just didn’t give a shit, and when you combine such anarchic lethargy you get some truly irredeemable nights.
Brooks was there for me when I left Misty. He took me out on my first hunting trip, telling me to “Bring some ‘doms.” We got quite inebriated and by the end of the night we were hanging on each other’s shoulders and I was saying “Nice tits!” to any and all women who walked by the streets of the East Village. Surprisingly none of them slapped the shit out of me. They simply laughed and thanked me for the “compliment”. Two even talked to us in the pizza line. We both wobbled like seaweeds at the top of a subway stairs as he slurred instructions on how to get back to Shane‘s place. My first official fishing trip ended up being a bust. If only it had stayed that way.
When it became official that I was leaving the fine city of gutter kings, Brooks wanted to engage in one final blowout. I bought a fifth of Jack Daniels and met up close to a bar Rob had suggested I go to called Saint Vitus. Gentleman’s Quarterly rated it one of the top five bars in Brooklyn. We met up on a corner street and I surprised him by pulling my Jack from my messenger bag. He surprised me with a pint of Jameson. We guzzled and walked. Back then I had temporarily taken up smoking, so I probably lit one or two up.
We were already past buzzed when we arrived at the bar. Walking in we noticed that it was very much a scene bar. Particularly biker style. I would have been fine had I worn a leather jacket, but Brooks? He looked like Buddy Holly at a Metallica concert. I went to the bar and ordered a Palm ale. Brooks did the same, but received a Coors and two shots. “What the fuck did I order!?” he screamed over the thrash band playing through the speakers. We finished our drinks and quickly backtracked to some bar with a giant lighted skull in the window. This one was more mellow.
Inside I saw a couple of girls by the counter. Brooks went to the bathroom while I ordered an unnecessary drink and sparked up a conversation. Somehow it got brought up that I had cigarettes and whiskey in my bag, so one of the girls went outside with me to enjoy a drag. This is where my mind jump cuts. The next moment in my memory is one in which Brooks and I are walking back home, and I search my bag for my cigarettes. I’m unable to locate them, and the thought crosses my mind that my female companion had lifted them from me. “Fuckin’ bitch stole my cigarrettes!” I shouted, taking the bag off and flinging it in the middle of the road.
I beelined my way into the abandoned street to retrieve it, only to hear several shinks, chinks, and clinks. The bottle of Jack was in there. Shit. I opened the bag and pulled out my writing journal, but it was soaked. I took it anyway and left said bag on the side of the road. Hunter Thompson had his Rum Diary, and now I’ve got my Jack Journal.
When I arrived at Carlos‘ place in Brooklyn my whole person reeked of whiskey and I passed out on the floor. Wouldn’t bukowski be proud? Little did I realize that a few months prior I went to get a New York ID and had to bring my Birth Certificate, which I left in the messenger bag and forgot about.
The messenger bag that got soaked in Jack Daniels.
The messenger bag that I just left on the side of the road.
A poet would probably be able to do wonders with that. Too bad I can’t stand poetry. Every time I run into a situation where my lack of having a Birth Certificate becomes a problem, I think of Brooks, and our Jim Morrison style Wild Nights in New York.
Of course one of these days I’m sure I will need to get another copy of that. My birth registration card already looks as if it’s been chewed by a direwolf. I’ll probably call up the offices in Boise and go through a long, ridiculous, roundabout process and end up playing around with a pencil while being placed on hold for the sixth time that call. I’ll toss it up in an attempt to stick it to the ceiling to the tune of a ’90s pop song. Little do I know that the house I’m living in at this point is three straws away from giving into the pressure of itself. A hard toss for the fifth time will stick the pencil in the ceiling and I’ll cheer to myself just as a worker interrupts my Long December. I’ll jerk up in my seat and recap my problems. “Well, sir if you could just send us a photo copy of your Birth Certificate.”
I slap my hand on my face.
“No, Goddamnit that’s what I’m trying to tell yo-” click. “Fuuuuuuu-” the ceiling collapses before I can finish my grammatically correct one word exclamation. I’ll die wishing I had just put that fucking proof of birth back in my glovebox before meeting up with my friend Brooks.