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June 15, 2005

Patty

I left my old apartment around 3:30am last night to bike home to the new apartment 2 blocks away. Just as I mount my bike a woman across the street, walking her bike, asks if I'll ride with her. I get off my bike and ask,
"How far are you going?" She says,
"Henry. Just a few blocks. You got a light?"
"No, sorry. I don't smoke."
"Nevermind, I found one. You want a hit?"
"Umm, no thanks. I don't smoke." I agree to ride with her up to Henry. She explains her predicament.

"I came all the way from Standale-"
"Wow, that's pretty far."
"It's not that bad, downhill most of the way. Besides, I've got legs like mules. I ride my bike to work at two jobs- one on Fulton, the other on 44th street- about 20 miles a day. So, I've got to talk to my nephew. He's got some killer bud and I need to get to it."

We stop and she asks for a favor. She's hot from riding and needs to take off her sweatshirt. She asks me to hold down her t-shirt while she takes off her sweatshirt. I gently hold it down while she pulls up her white sweatshirt and I let go as she ties it around her waist. She's in her early 30s and is somewhat attractive, but her reason for being out so late and her slightly annoying Michigan accent, kind of covered up by her years of smoking, made it all platonic.

"Man, my nephew. He's a little punk. I was dating this guy and my nephew knew that the guy was cheating on me. That's fucked up. You wouldn't do that to your aunt, would you? He's 24, how old are you?"
"23."
"Yeah, see...I gave him fifty bucks like 4 days ago. And I ain't seen my pot yet. I'm going to go over there and yell at him. I could have bought a carton of cigarettes and some beer in the meantime. I'm going to lose it. Hey, for riding with me, you should smoke a joint with me when I get there."
"Uhh, thanks, but I was actually heading home, I've got to work tomorrow morning."
"Yeah, it's probably for the best anyway. Some shit might go down. What's your name, anyway?"
"Kevin, yours?"
"I'm Patty. Now, if you hear about some chick who was murdered over on Henry street, you'll know it was me."

Just a street later I see her off, now nervous about just letting her go, but knowing that some puny yuppie-looking kid could be in more danger. I start riding the opposite way and she yells, "Thanks, Boo."

June 16, 2005

Lee

Scene: Buying tickets for 9:15 pm showing of 'Batman Begins' at Star Theatre on Alpine

Annie just purchased her ticket. Lee (the short, fully-moustachioed and fully-silly looking, high-pitch voiced worker at the box office) had her prove she was a student with a valid student ID (she pulled out her GVSU and International Student IDs) and prove she was the owner of the credit card by showing her driver license. With four pieces of plastic out, she got her ticket. She walked to the side of me and I said, "Same, please."
"Batman, 9:15, that'll be $7.75."
"Oh, I thought I'd get the student discount."
"You didn't say that."
"Yeah, well, I meant I'd get the exact same as her. Here's my student ID."
"Okay, that'll be $6.50." I handed him my credit card and he immediately asked to see my ID. I handed him my driver license. He swiped my card and examined my license.

"Mm-hmm. Mr. Timmer (he pronounced it TIMER)."
"Yup," I said, wanting to end this. He handed me back my license and my credit card. Then Annie came in.
"You know, Kevin worked here a few years ago."
"Yep, I did."
"Oh. If that's me in two years, I'm worried."

I just walked away. I'm guessing he was trying to be funny. I confirmed with Annie and Mark that the whole thing was nuts. Annie told me that I shouldn't take that and let him know where I'm at in life now, and wave my pay stub in his face, which, for some reason I actually had in my pocket. So yeah, fuck you, Lee. Mm-hmm.

Europe by Mackinac Hall

There's this sidewalk with marks and broken pieces in it. While walking by Mackinac Hall, home of the Department of Modern Languages and Literatures, I thought I saw something...

June 17, 2005

This is what being without TV for a year will do to me

I really hate that I cried from watching the Cheerios commercial where a couple goes to Russia and adopts a boy and girl and they eat the cereal on the plane. At least I wasn't the one and only.

June 21, 2005

Bangers

In the past week I've noticed two different gang-related graffiti markings on the bus. This is the first time I've seen such a thing...well, since junior high on the school bus.

Alex, Georges, Kyle, Jon, Ian and others used to live at 524 Benjamin, on the corner of Benjamin & Bemis. In Alex's later days at the house and after, the residents were known as the 524 Boys. Alex once told me he was mugged around there, so it's not really a surprise that there's a gang in the area called the "Bemis Boys". What's scarier, is their involvement in the recent violence we've seen.

In 8th grade I learned about gangs from my friend Jeremy Sobota. He said he had friends in gangs, but he wasn't in one. My high school, Kenowa Hills, is in the country/suburbs, so peoples' gang involvement seemed ridiculous. It was around the end of junior high when a lot of kids began to claim affiliation to gangs- specifically "Gangster Disciples". Their GD symbols were everywhere (school buses, and now that I think about it a kid throwing the hand signals at one "Den Chief" conference I went to for Boy Scouts)- just suburban kids wishing they could be in gangs. Their symbols always confused me. Quite often I'd see a pitch fork with a Star of David at the bottom and a crown on the top and the numbers "174" (1=best, 7=G, 4=D) nearby.

Researching it, I found that the six points of the Star of David "symbolize Life, Loyalty, Love, Wisdom, Knowledge and Understanding".

I really was afraid of gangs in junior high. There were a couple bullies who always got into trouble and threatened people. It's funny, since they weren't as mean in high school. I think people just didn't care. Once, after I heard a kid brought brass knuckles to school, I started walking home instead of riding the bus (technically, it's unrelated, but I'll conflate stories here) and would get home after my younger brother, which made my parents angry. They ended up calling the Principal and I shared my fears and she told me the kid accidentally left a hunting knife in his coat after a trip and I shouldn't worry. I think seeing movies like "Gangster's Paradise" and "187" just got me worried. I'd hate to get paranoid again.

June 29, 2005

Water

At the precise moment that I inserted the key into my bike lock, ready to unwrap the chain from the rack, four nearby sprinklers turned on simultaneously, two of them showering me. I was immediately angry; I'd always thought how malicious GVSU's Facilities Services are for putting sprinklers next to bike racks. However, a moment later, near the Eberhard Center, I suddenly began giggling and running through the sprinklers, thankful for the respite on such a hot day.

About June 2005

This page contains all entries posted to spacebase in June 2005. They are listed from oldest to newest.

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