when i was coming of age i was a scared little man. i was 13 or something when 8th grade end loomed and i was terrified of my future. my brain was big, not my muscles. how would i fit in with the older stronger rougher boys? would it be the same religion? all religions are the same, right? i went from private school to a Catholic high school, which was the death knell of my social life. all boys, no girls. no distractions and also death. but since my life was over i had all the time in the world to concentrate on my studies. while others played basketball and fucked their basketball teachers and went to prom i would be busy organizing someone else's prom not going to it and sharpening my pencils over pizza on Friday nights. it was gon be fun. welcome to another edition of Friday Night Writes.
NO IT WASN'T. i had zero confidence in those days. even less now. you could knock me down with a feather. one leaf of a feather. i liked sports but not like that. the only weight i lifted was myself when i ran away from places. i was a nerd and a geek but the death knell was that i was a dork. under this extreme situation of godawful pressure i entered my first day of real school and was blown away by explosives. someone tried to blow up the school. the cool kids. i was ramshackled into the corner of geometry class. my pencils were sharpened but my mind was mush. next to me was an Asian with long hair split down the middle who wore sagging baggy pants with a loose snakeskin belt, the fashion of the day. yes, everyone seeing your drawers was considered cool back then. dude had on Ernie Rubber Ducky drawers which was the first sign that i could breathe. everyone called him Token Asian. they asked where he was from after they told him to return to where he came from. he said he didn't want to go back to Glendale, his Apperson was out of gas. you don't know how rad it was for a freshman to have a car. he said he was Thai, not Chinese or Japanese, so he was dubbed Thai Guy. he wore a tie when there was no dress code so that was unique. he might not have stood out from the incoming billion-student freshman class, but he stood out to me.
day one: i relaxed more. he asked for an eraser and i offered him a sharpener. i said he could keep it cos i didn't make mistakes, i got it right on the first try. that clued him in that i was smart. or at least secret clever. and i was right about not making mistakes. about him. i think he relaxed around me, too. he told me about his fraught home life and that his one saving grace was Saturday-morning cartoons. oh the saving power of Saturday-morning cartoons in those days!
day two: i was comfortable around him. even under the tension of my first-ever pop quiz.
Thai Guy: did you study?
me: i'll cheat off you.
Thai Guy: let's drown our sorrows in McDonald's ketchup at 3.
that was the one year they served pizza at McDonald's. the fountain-drink machine was broken.
day three: Thai Guy mentioned under his breath how everyone at this godforsaken religious school already assumed he was a Walking Stereotype so he might as well play off that. if anyone messed with him or me, he would crawl on his knees and assume the position, the Crane stance, and karate-chop the air and snarl his lips and roll the pupils into the back of his eyes rapidly and lick his tongue till the bullies realized American punches weren't gonna cut it.
Thai Guy: i don't care what my grandmother says, this school is shit. these are gonna be the hardest four years of our lives.
i feigned a knowing innocence at that remark as i stared hard forward.
Thai Guy: i worship my ancestors. i don't need their faith. i can curse them with one blow. let's get the hell outta here.
day three after school: my first truancy. i was brimming with berserker energy. we exited quietly careful not to trip the bell and the basketball team came to wish us well. they stood there, lined up on either side of us, calling us the filthiest of names and monkeying our fear. it was a Catholic cordon, a Crucible of chaos and confusion, and we didn't make it out without war scars.
Thai Guy held my hand the whole time and put us under his umbrella with the Japanese giant salamanders on it. they called us fags. we were trying to drown them out talking about our favorite tv show:
ironically, we were discussing how we wanted to fuck Rogue from X-Men in the asshole. we bonded over that. all the way home. well to his home. i asked him what his name was.
Thai Guy: A-Wut.
me: a what?
i never saw him again after that day. he transferred over to trigonometry. he was smarter than me. he was also just more knowledgeable about basic life and the ways of the world than me. i was REALLY REALLY REALLY REALLY naive in those days.
X-Men was my oasis of calm on Saturday mornings after i spilled the cereal milk.
THAT HARD-DRIVING INTRO GOT ME PUMPED, CLICK HERE. THIS WAS THE YEAR BEFORE I DISCOVERED ROCK 'N' ROLL
Rogue and Gambit are best ship. they win the war. the shipping war. sorry. they are best couple, OTP, and soul mates for life. Rogue taught me about sex cos this was the first time a cartoon character made me feel strange and tingly inside. other than Nanny's striped legs, my first fetish. did Rogue swing both ways with Jean Grey? sure, why not. we all know about the X-Men so i don't need to go in depth here. mutants vs. humans, allegory about being different in society and the need to fight against oppressive governments and so on. just wikipedia it, that's what i do. Wolverine gets way too much screentime, Jubilee gets too little considering she was supposed to be the protagonist every kid first experienced the world of X-Men through. female protagonist no less, a big deal in those days. there was a crackle of excitement when the first episode aired and you are taken on Jubilee's journey as she is introduced to the team and frightened over the government's mutant-destroying mammoth robots. you remember a time when Professor X WASN'T Jean-Luc Picard. and Magneto was actually formidable.
Magneto taught me about magnets.
but it's all about everyone's first couple. Rogue was sexy. he was built, she was.....i'm not gonna say it. she filled out that green-and-yellow suit nicely and had '80s holdover hairspray hair. there was just somehting about her Mississippi accent.
like say sugar. now say suga. see?
Gambit. too. his Nawlins accent seals the deal in bed. it's the French thing. French makes sex saucier.
CLICK HERE FOR THE FAMOUS PECK
i remember their kisses being more passionate. i remember an old car, and a spooky misty Louisiana bayou which set the mood, and there being tongue. i was really into this stuff, that relationship meant everything to us as novices in the ways of courting. our first mirror. as you can tell from above, Rogue is sick of hearing our matchmaking bullshit. she'll love who she'll love, she's fiery like that. she loves her baby Remy, not you.
the show and the comics dug deeper into their pasts, Rogue and the kiss which sealed her fate, running away from the X-Men, eloping essentially with Gambit on the run, liking a criminal, the Thieves Guild. that's what happens when you fall for the charms of a trickster. named Remy LeBeau. i mean the man uses playing cards for weapons. not even the King of France has a greater French name than Remy LeBeau. the brother. and her many aliases, once of which is Scarlett O'Hara. it's all very Southern-fried sprawling and Gone with the Wind and a plantation named Tara. Vivien Leigh never really wanted that part, did she?
Rogue and dat ass was my first undressing with my eyes and my slow devolution into male creep. which brings up X-Men: Evolution. sorry, out of time, gotta eat, great show, i loved the continuation, but it received mixed reviews. the original, as always, is still the best if you want a nice Nineties arched extensive plot that is from the comics but is anything but comic. and developed lines and myriad character turns and bad guys with soul and a nostalgia bullet for biscuit.
in honor of my lost friend i'm having a pizza i cooked. i flipped it over so it's just the crust showing and it got smushed together so it looks like a brown salamander.
i am lost but all is not lost for me. this show gave me my Thai Guy, A-Wut, the first-ever bromance in human history.
CLICK HERE FOR THE A TO Z CHALLENGE