I just bought a Barbie. I don’t know why I keep buying Barbies, I’m addicted. I don’t play with Barbies, I just buy them and then I add the package to my stack in the corner behind the couch. I think the stack must be waist high now. Yeah, definitely waist high. I have lots of Barbies. Barbies and Rolling Rock. Rolling Rock rolling all over the hardwood floors. Has this hill always been this steep? It’s making me thirsty. Good thinking brain, I’ll stop at Eureka Market and get more Rolling Rock. Old Latrobe! Just another block.
Rolling Rock, Rolling Rock, oh where art thou Rolling Rock. These Arabs better have some, it’s like three whole blocks across market and Castro to that creepy market by the Muni and I’m way too tired for that. Oh, wait, is that it, a full sixer? Holy shit yes! We’re in business Barbie!
I hate transactions. I downloaded Google Checkout the other day hoping I could just scan my own item from the shelf, and then just walk away with it, but nope, you need to use a special scanner they mount to the actual register. Total waste of a download, you still need to deal with a human. OK, here it goes…
“Hello, how are you?”
I don’t know, how am I? I’m thirsty should I tell him that? No, he can see that stupid, you’re buying beer. Oh well, too much delay, now it’s just awkward to say anything. Is he still looking at me? Who knows. I don’t like eye contact. How could anyone, it’s just something mom’s tell you to do. I wonder if the Arab thinks it strange that I’m wearing my sunglasses in the store. He definitely thinks I’m strange. I’m just buying Rolling Rock and Marlboro Lights, what’s his problem? Jesus, what a crazy person. OK, finally the receipt. Come on Barbie, let’s go have a drink.
When I reach the building I pause for a smoke in the shadows of the garage across the street. I can see the front door illuminated perfectly from here, and the entire staircase. This is a great spot to watch people come and go. For a second I wonder why I’m hiding in the shadows outside my own building drinking Rolling Rock and smoking and holding a Barbie doll. Because its awesome! Thanks brain, you’re always there when I need you.
No one seems to be coming down now. OK Barbie time to man-up you little sweetling. When I reach the door I look up and see the gold flecked sign San Miguel and make the sign of the cross as is customary. It’s reassuring to live inside an archangel. God bless you San Miguel. I should get one of those Mexican prayer candles sometime, that would be neat. The building smells like burnt cookies, stale cigarettes and moldy carpet. Ah home. I like to take steps two at a time, but on the first landing I hear a door open and laughter. Shit! I’m outside again in no time back in the shadows. The young girl from 2B comes out with her cute asian friend holding hands and giggling. I bet she’s a lesbian now. That explains why the little shy boy moved away. Good old Castro, turning the world gay one tenant at a time.
Time to try again. Buck up Barbie! So much effort just to go home, it’s a wonder I ever leave. We make it to the first landing, and I turn to the side table, the San Miguel gift exchange. Some paper plates, a red plastic clock, napkin holders, hmm these figurines are interesting. Victorian, would make a nice tea party. Want some company at your tea party Barbie? Of course you do. I am putting figurines in my pocket, holding a Barbie doll and wearing sunglasses inside my building. I am so awesome, call the paparazzi. Yes it is Coach, thanks for asking. Just don’t ask where it came from you paparazzi pissant.
Second landing now, alls well that ends well. Just a few more steps. Should I go the backway, up the wood private wood staircase? It’s more private. Nope, then 2B, 2D, and 3B can totally see you, just carry on, home in no time. Rounding the corner I can almost taste home, only a few more seconds and…. Yes! At the door now, jingling these damn keys. So much noise. Shut up keys! Stop shaking hands, body behave! Only brain is my friend, oh and you of course Barbie.
Something is strange. Something is not right. Something is tacked to the door. An eviction notice. An eviction notice? I hear Barbie land on the floor and some Rolling Rock clinking and rolling into the baseboard, another into the door of 3C. Eviction notice? What does that even mean? The revelation guts my nerves and I am shaking, my teeth chatter. This is no good, this is no good at all. I unlock my door, tip toe around the mail, bottles, and futon, and put Barbie away on the waist high stack. Eviction notice.
I open a Rolling Rock and tear the notice from the door. Am I crying? Boys don’t cry, except maybe when they’re evicted. Fucking hell I can’t handle this right now. I can’t be evicted. This can’t be happening, not to me, not now. I light a cigarette with a shaky hand and make eye contact with my pipe. So much for the archangel. Looking around I realize there is nothing in this apartment, just a futon, a pile of clothes, a stack of records but no turntable, empty bottles, trash, a pile of Barbies, and now an eviction notice. Fucking hell.
I’m getting high Barbies. We’ll deal with this tomorrow.
*Day 14 of Where Stories Begin