Excerpts From a Diary 5

by silverapplequeen

[May, 1979]
End of the semester. I managed to finish my Mina Loy paper on time & I gave it to Mr. Barrett. He was impressed that I was able to get it done on time & that it was longer than the required pages. “I look forward to reading it,” he told me. “I hope you like it,” I answered.
We stood talking for a few minutes – he asked me what I was going to be reading this summer & I replied “Anaïs Nin” off the top of my head – although I have lots of other books to read – & while he was telling me about D.H. Lawrence, who walks in but Bard Ellison! It turns out they’re really good friends & they’re in a band together! Or they’re trying to get one going or something. They have a drummer but they’re still auditioning guitarists. They have a gig next week at the Masthead, over by Buff State. Bard had a stack of flyers he was putting up everywhere. I thought it was impressive that they already had a gig but not even really a band. The name of the band is “Chaotic Bliss”.
Bard wanted to see me this Friday night but I’m going to the Cheap Trick concert with M. I’m kinda sad, actually – I think I would rather hang out with Bard & hear about this new band.

I failed my Women’s Poetry Class because I never showed up for the poetry reading at the women studies college on Winspear Avenue – I knew where it was – I’d been there before – but I had been partying with Bro & Crony earlier in the day because Crony was leaving for his home in the Adirondacks – “But I’ll be back,” he said. “It’s gorgeous up there but there’s nothing there! I’d rather be here. You can do anything here.” I thought I would be able to party with them & then take a short nap & make it to the reading OK but I never woke up. So I really fucked that one up. The thing is, if I had just taken an incomplete & left it at that, I would have been OK – I was the one who insisted that I was fine & I could make it to the reading. So yeah – I really fucked up.
My other class I have to finish by the end of July. I have to write a paper on how the capitalist patriarchal culture screws over women & keeps them from being able to fully participate in society or become the person she can become – or something like that – I’m not even sure yet. I have two months to flesh it out & get it to my professor. But I’m just so happy about having to finish up that one class because that gives me a reason to stay in Buffalo – & stay close to Jon. You never know – I might be able to get him back.

May 4 was the Cheap Trick concert in Rochester. I went with M. from the Q station. M. & the Q station is everything Jon hates & used to rant about all the time – the slick corporate element taking over radio stations & squashing out all creativity & spontaneity & true musicianship – the AOR-set lists & “classic rock” hits which are crowding out all the new music – the bloated budgets of some bands, while others starve as they roadie their own gigs & sleep in their vans to save money.
But I wasn’t thinking about that when I was going to Rochester with M. He had some killer cocaine & I was already half-blitzed out of my mind & feeling fine. I was thinking that maybe tonight was the night I would start my career as a groupie – although at almost age 19, I was a little old for that. Most girls start way younger than that.
Backstage wasn’t quite what I thought it would be. The concert was at the Dome & it was shabby, to say the least. There was a spread of various cold cuts & cheeses & stuff like that but no shrimp & caviar & champagne. Not like you read about in magazines. & it wasn’t any wild party. It was really quite subdued. & I was the youngest girl there. I mean – if those other girls were younger than me, then they must have spent years partying. They looked like that anyway. Rail thin & wearing cheap silk-like dresses – although it was way too cold for anything like that – & none of them looking any too healthy.
& Cheap Trick themselves! I mean – they rocked – it was a good show – but they were so old! & so tired looking. Even before the show, they looked like they hadn’t slept in – I dunno – weeks, months, even. A good long time. Rick Neilson looked really bad – big dark circles under his eyes – but he was really nice to me. He gave me a bunch of guitar picks & a Cheap Trick button.
After the show, we partied with them on their tour bus – both Robin Zander & Tom Petersson chided me for drinking Rolling Rock beer when I could have had Heineken – but I hate Heineken & I don’t drink beer that I hate. They were both paired up with the skinny chicks that were backstage. M. pulled out his vial of coke & one of the girls had opium, which we smoked in a glass pipe – I have never smoked opium before – it was really cool – real dreamy & slow & soft – it’s hard to explain – but I really loved it – especially paired with the coke.
I spent the night in the motel – in M.’s room – I wish I could say that I had an orgy or something with them but the truth is, I passed out as soon as I hit the bed & the next thing I know, M. was waking me up & it was morning – I couldn’t tell if he was pissed off about how I didn’t even give him a blowjob – but I was too out of it & I really didn’t care. I wasn’t hung over – I was just – kind of sick. & really tired.
I was glad to get home. Even if “home” was the dorms & I had to start packing to move out. I’m moving in with Mark Miles & John Frederics. But I have a few days to get my shit together.

***

Eddie’s going back to Brooklyn for the summer. He says he has a job with his cousin & he can make some real big money before the fall. He doesn’t know if he’s coming back to school but he said that no matter what, he is going to come back for me. That made me feel really good.
He gave me a ride on his Ducati, finally put back together & running smoothly. It was in pieces most of the semester. Eddie’s room looked more like a repair shop than a college dorm. His roommate complained to the R.A. but there was nowhere else for Eddie to work on his bike or even to store it. The R.A. & the roommate both were customers of Eddie’s so the problem was easily solved. Marijuana always makes friends.
It was thrilling – flying around campus on the back of his bike – holding on as tightly as I could – since there was no backrest to keep me on. When he cornered – we were almost parallel with the road – my knee was an inch from the pavement – it was terrifying & electrifying at the same time – it took my breath away –
He dropped me off at my dorm. “I’ll be back,” he said. “You have my phone number, call me, don’t disappear on me.”
As he drove off, I thought about his promise to return. & that he has never kissed me.

***

I moved into my new house yesterday. It’s on Heath Street. I share it with Mark Miles & John Frederic. John has the bedroom across from mine. Mark sleeps in the downstairs bedroom. The house was so dirty – it still needs a lot of work, but at least it’s livable. I am so glad to be moved in – I can hardly wait for the rest of my stuff to come.
This house is large. The front room is Mark’s – it must have been a porch at one time, but is closed in now. Then there’s a large living room with a lovely but extremely worn rug on the floor. There are several easy chairs that are also quite worn. We have the walls decorated with posters – when we get a stereo, it’ll be really nice. The kitchen is large, but oh – what a mess. It’s gonna be a long time before I have that room in order. The dining room is nondescript – just another room, really. The stairs going up are in the corner of the dining room & they are very steep & winding & have old, hand-braided rugs on each step that will trip you when you’re drunk. Upstairs is the bath – very dirty – maybe I’ll get to it later this week. There are two rear bedrooms yet unclaimed by tenants – John & I have the front bedrooms. My room isn’t large but it isn’t small, either. The walls are painted pale blue & I’ve got them covered up with my pictures. Of course I put up my Janis Joplin poster immediately & the Beatles poster from the White Album. There’s no curtains on the windows but a large tree covers up the view. I love having a tree outside – I feel very secure around trees. It’s a maple tree.
My bed is a big double bed & it sags in the middle but it’s alright. I have to get used to sleeping in it – I’m so used to single beds. There’s boards I can use for shelves if I can find bricks or some other base to set them on.
My room is the best room in the house.

A new notebook for my birthday. A new notebook for a new diary.
Never again will I listen to anyone tell me that my diary is worthless, stupid or a waste of time.
Never again will I kill my diary like a symbolic suicide. If I want to die, I kill me – not the diary.

***

Today was hungover & tired-out but I dutifully went downtown to find a job. I went to an employment agency – I heard it’s the easiest way to find work. I only wish I had a phone. Using the pay phone on the corner of Main & Winspear doesn’t cut it. I had an interview at Victor’s department store at Genesee & Pearl at 2 p.m. – I hope I get it, although I doubt I made a very good impression. The whole time I was wishing I could throw up. I should stop drinking. I should really stop drinking. Going downtown on the bus I was even thinking that maybe I should find a meeting. That’s how bad I felt. The thing is, I didn’t think I drank all that much last night. In fact, when I woke up, I felt fine. The hangover grew on me. Now I feel alright but I slept all evening. I should eat but I’m not hungry. That’s the problem, I never eat.
Last night I went to see Joe Jackson at Stage One with Bard Ellison. Actually, I was on the guest list, but I was with Bard – I’ve been seeing him for a few weeks. I can’t believe it, actually. It happened so suddenly – right after Eddie left – & I’ve been so busy moving into my new place I haven’t had time to think about it, let alone write about it. The first time we went to the Tralf to see a friend of his play radical jazz & then we ended up spending the night together – it was the first time I had made love with anyone since Jon – & it was so wonderful – strange, though – because it wasn’t Jon. It was almost a relief to have finally made love to someone else – & someone as seemingly as sweet as Bard – because he was so very sweet as he made love to me. I spent the night with him last night. We didn’t make love but that’s ok. Just being together is fine with me. & honestly – I don’t know if I’m ready for all that – anyway.

***

Bro is marrying Deanna at the end of the month & they’re honeymooning in Paris. Bro came by & picked me up to take me to the beach. We went to Canada – he said the best beaches were in Canada. I remember going to my grandparent’s cottage in Long Beach when I was a little girl. We went to Pleasant Beach after going to the brewery & getting a case of Brador Beer. We had subs too from Boulevard Sub shop & of course Bro had a bunch of joints rolled. It doesn’t seem to bother him – crossing the border with weed.
It was a really hot day – one of the first really hot days of the season. But the lake was still shockingly cold. There were ice burgs in the middle of the lake & where the water hit the shore, there was a line of fog that was waist high. We were the only people on the beach.

Bro has always wanted me. Even though he has always been going out with Deanna & she is one jealous babe. But she doesn’t live on campus & he considers himself a ladies’ man. We have partied together a hundred times & almost every single time, he has made a pass at me. He almost always got out a Playboy or a Penthouse magazine to show me the newest poses of the models & he was the one who advised me to start modeling because I had the perfect figure for it. More than once, he has pulled out his dick & stroked it in front of me.
But I have never wanted him.  I’m glad he’s getting married.

***

3:00 a.m. “Oil of Dog” is just starting. I love the way Gary says, “I’m Gary Storm & I’m here to bring you nothing – nothing – nothing but love.”
It’s Jon’s birthday. I hope I get to see him today so I can wish him a happy birthday. How I wish we were still together.
Mark left for New York City this morning. Oh wait, that was yesterday. Thursday morning doesn’t start until I wake up & it’s daylight.

***
Tonight John & I got dressed up & went to Mulligan’s on Hertel, a well-known disco. It was their “rock’n’roll” night – what a joke. It was full of disco queens & macho men on the make. John & I danced & stole other people’s drinks but it was really a drag. I can’t stand that plastic pick-up disco scene. I was glad when we left.
John is crashed on the sofa. I’m still wide awake. But then, I slept most of today. I’m gonna go out & call Bard from the corner phone. I so wish we had a phone! Having to go out to make phone calls is a drag. I know he’s awake because he told me he always listens to Gary’s show.
(morning) I called Bard & went over to his place & hung out all night. I just don’t know – I kept thinking, do you like me? Do you want me? Please want me – I want you to want me – can you feel me wanting you – I wrote a poem & stuck in the back pocket of my jeans. He looked at me & smiled but did not ask. He’s a writer too – a poet – a rock’n’roller. & I’m screaming silently – screaming screaming screaming – because I’m sitting in my bed, lonelier than hell – thinking about Bard – feeling so uncomfortably horny & wishing that John in the next room would wake up so I could seduce him.
He did kiss me goodbye. But maybe he does that to all his girlfriends. I hate feeling like this – never knowing what’s going on –

***

Oh, it’s another lonely night. John is out somewhere. I’m alone here with the radio. Alone with the radio & my diary like a hundred nights before.

***

I am not going to call Bard today. I am going to stay away. I am not going to ruin this relationship before it’s even got a chance to get going by being clingy & insecure. I am going to stay home & write.
(night) I did call Jon. We finally talked about our relationship – without arguing about it – where we saw things differently & what problems we had & why. For the first time, I was able to say, this is how I felt & why I couldn’t tell you & this is what I was trying to tell you & why it wasn’t coming out the way I wanted it to. I said, “You must understand that a lot of the things I thought you were saying or doing may not have been happening in actuality – ” – again, letting him off the hook. But it’s better than perpetuating the same old patterns of accusation & denial.
I did accuse him of playing a “yo-yo game” with me, because what the fuck, that’s exactly what he was doing – Mark & John & Eddie & even Bard says that’s what he was doing. He protested, “But that wasn’t what I was doing!” Once again, I let him off the hook – “Yes, but that’s what it seemed like to me & that’s what you have to take into account.” So I let him think that it was just my emotional problems that created the “yo-yo game”, not anything he actually did. But I know & everyone else knows that’s not the truth. & he’s got to know the truth too, if he’s honest with himself.
I told him about falling in love with Bard Ellison. “That’s good,” he said. I’m sure he thinks it’s good – it means I’m not in love with him anymore. It frees him. But I wailed, “It’s terrible! I don’t want to fall in love! I hate falling in love. I always get hurt.”
“Well, you let yourself get hurt,” he told me. So it’s all my fault.
“I can’t help it,” I said. I mean, what am I supposed to do? Stop feeling?
But it was so good to talk to him. I didn’t realize how much I had missed him. He said he thought that the abortion had fucked us up. I don’t agree, but if that’s what he thinks, that’s what he thinks. “That was the problem,” he insisted. “After that, we weren’t the same anymore.” If he wants to have regrets, he can – I don’t – I can’t – it’s over & done with & I am not going to cry over something that I no longer have any control over. Besides, it was all him anyway. I’d be having a baby now, if not for him.
So now that we’ve talked – now that things are settled between us – maybe we can be friends. But I’ll always want him – always love him – always – till the day I die – & beyond that. & I’ll always hurt because I can’t have him.

***

I was at The Spectrum office today, making telephone calls – looking for work – & I hung out because there was going to be a meeting & there was food – I’m not one to pass up a free meal. Jon was there – looking more desirable than ever.  His hair is blonder than ever & he looks like John Lennon in his new wire-rim glasses. He was as animated as ever – going on about how heavy metal is going to make a comeback – I don’t know about that – while Mark Miles made me the butt of his very bad jokes. I don’t know what’s up with Mark lately.
After the meeting, I hung around as long as I could without looking as if I was waiting for Jon – finally I just left but he soon followed. We walked together & talked – naturally, a continuation & elaboration of our talk the other day. Of course. Jon always has to talk everything to death. & sometimes he was really hard on me & I felt miserable. It was really much better the other day & I wished he had just left it alone. He said that I had “refused” to see that the relationship had “ended”. I was really confused – as far as I could see, there was no real ending until I ended it in March. & even then, all through April, he was still acting like he wanted me. I mean, how was I supposed to know when it was really ending? How can a person refuse to see the ending of something that has no real ending? I wasn’t going to argue this with him – I know better than to argue with Jon.
“It was the best relationship,” he said, as we shared a joint, “are you kidding? Man, at times, it was downright brilliant.” So fucking brilliant you had to end it, I though bitterly but I kept my mouth shut. We talked of the possibility of having “another” relationship. He was leery, of course. “But we aren’t the same people,” I said. “We’re older, we see things differently. We came through all that drama from before, we’ve learned what not to do.”
We talked of relationships with other people – Bard Ellison, of course – & his interest in other women – I didn’t bring up Sara but that’s obvious – & music – all the concerts I’ve been going to – more than he’s been to lately. He seemed jealous that I am getting out so much. I thought that was petty. I mean – he broke up with me.  & now he’e resentful because I’m going to more cool shows than he is?  Really?
Finally, he asked, “Do think that we will ever have sex again?”
“I should hope so!” I burst out, almost indignantly. “You were the best lay I ever had!” I laughed. Then more seriously & quietly, I said, “I would really like to. I think I could handle it. I don’t hurt anymore – it would just be friends having sex. Nothing heavy.”
“I would like to have recreational sex with you again,” he said & I smiled, although inside I was thinking – you couldn’t call it “making love”? “Recreational sex” sounds so – like tennis or golf or something. Like it really doesn’t mean anything. Or you get a prize at the end of it. Blue ribbon for the best fuck.
Since it was beginning to rain, he offered to drive me home. We went a roundabout way since Main Street is a construction mess – because of the new subway – talking the whole way – about doing interviews – he wanted to know how Gary Storm does them – he seemed jealous that I was around when Gary was interviewing Joe Jackson & Tom Robinson. I just happened to be there – because of Bard – I really wasn’t part of the story. We stopped in front of my house. “You have the whole thing?” he asked. “You want to come in?” He grinned.
I showed him around the house, downstairs & up. “This is my room,” I said, leading him in. “It looks like your room,” he said, closing the door. He sat down on my bed & stretched out, watching me. I sat down next to him, prattling on about Cheap Trick – “I don’t even listen to their songs anymore. If one comes on the radio, I turn it. It was fun partying with them but I’m really not that kind of girl.” I was very nervous.
“What kind of girl are you?” He asked.
“I’m just an ordinary girl,” I replied. “Not a groupie – not a music journalist – just a girl – ” I bent down & kissed him & he kissed me back.
He asked, “Are you sure you can handle this?” “I’m sure,” I answered. Inside, I was thinking, I’m dying, I’m dying, I’m dying –
It was so wonderful – Jon is the only one who knows how to touch me.
We were in the middle of it when John thumped up the stairs & went into his room. “I can’t do this,” Jon whispered. “But you are doing it,” I whispered back. John then knocked on my door. Jon & I hastily put our clothes on. I went out to talk to John but it was too funny & I nearly collapsed laughing. “What’s the matter?” demanded John. “Oh – nothing.” I went back into my room. “Lock the door,” hissed Jon. I did, trying to do it quietly. I almost died laughing. Jon laughed too, loud & full. We sat on the bed & I gave him head. John finally went downstairs & Jon & I resumed making love. I have not felt that good in a long time – a very long time. Not since the last time I made love with Jon. & it’s “making love” – not “recreational sex” – I don’t care what he says.
We sauntered downstairs. “Don’t you dare flip out,” he warned. “I won’t,” I promised. He left & I hugged myself & danced in the kitchen. I was so happy!
Then I went upstairs & looked at my double bed & I never felt so lonely in my entire life.

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