We were still at the age when girls are years older than guys, and the guys grow up by doing their best when the girls need them to.
We think about mortality so little, these days, except to flail hysterically at it with trendy forms of exercise and high-fiber cereals and nicotine patches.
Trust your instincts, Dad always says. If something feels dodgy to you, if someone feels dodgy, you go with dodgy. Don’t give the benefit of the doubt because you want to be a nice person, don’t wait and see in case you look stupid. Safe comes first. Second could be too late.
This is the one thing I hope: that she never stopped. I hope when her body couldn’t run any farther she left it behind like everything else that tried to hold her down, she floored the pedal and she went like wildfire, streamed down night freeways with both hands off the wheel and her head back screaming to the sky like a lynx, white lines and green lights whipping away into the dark, her tires inches off the ground and freedom crashing up her spine.
This country’s built on nothing but bull**** and good PR. One kick and it’ll fall apart, and the kick’s coming.
There’s nothing wrong with elitist. Some stuff is better than other stuff; pretending it’s not doesn’t make you open-minded, it just makes you a d*ck.
The smell of the sea swept over the wall and in through the empty window-hole, wide and wild with a million intoxicating secrets. I don’t trust that smell. It hooks us somewhere deeper than reason or civilization, in the fragments of our cells that rocked in oceans before we had minds, and it pulls till we follow mindlessly as rutting animals. When I was a teenager, that smell used to set me boiling, spark my muscles like electricity, bounce me off the walls of the caravan till my parents sprang me free to obey the call, bounding after whatever tantalizing once-in-a-lifetimes it promised. Now I know better. That smell is bad medicine. It lures us to leap off high cliffs, fling ourselves on towering waves, leave behind everyone we love and face into thousands of miles of open water for the sake of what might be on the far shore.
The girls I dream of are the gentle ones, wistful by high windows or singing sweet old songs at a piano, long hair drifting, tender as apple blossom. But a girl who goes into battle beside you and keeps your back is a different thing, a thing to make you shiver. Think of the first time you slept with someone, or the first time you fell in love: that blinding explosion that left you crackling to the fingertips with electricity, initiated and transformed. I tell you that was nothing, nothing at all, beside the power of putting your lives, simply and daily, into each other’s hands.