[Originally written 11.3.03]
After leaving the apartment on Thursday, I headed to Newark to catch the PATH. Bad timing, as there was not a single parking space to be found, not even in any of the lots. No big deal, I thought to myself. Made my way to Hoboken, but that situation wasn’t any better. In a last-ditch effort, I wound up parking at the Newport Mall. It was better than paying $8-$10 for one hour in a regular lot, or getting a ticket for being parked somewhere I shouldn’t have been.
Hauled ass to the PATH station. Luckily I only had to wait one stop and then proceeded to walk as fast as my stumpy legs would let me to Unimax. Thought they closed at five, but was relieved to find they closed at six. Bought everything I wanted. Took my time going back to the station, as it was such a nice day. However, I did have to remind myself that I was on a bit of a schedule and could not just wander around, as much as I would have really enjoyed it. Hit traffic on the way back to the apartment, so I didn’t have time to do anything else because I had to drive down to the Shore to meet up with Jon.
It was pretty mild and kind of foggy, which of course set up the perfect atmosphere for haunting the Pine Barrens. However, first we knocked back several shots of Moonshine and smoked a fat blunt while applying our make-up. This would be our final performance for the Halloween season, which unfortunately also reminds us that sideshow in general dies down. Perhaps that’s due to people getting caught up in all of that ‘holiday’ nonsense, which I admit I am guilty of myself. However, it’s a period I don’t particularly look forward to, because Jon falls into that predictable drug and alcohol induced funk where he’s detached from everything, including me. He always manages to pull himself together for my birthday, but between now and then, I know what’s coming and I don’t like it one bit. Sadly, there doesn’t seem much I can do other than deal with things as they come and support my boy because I love him dearly.
In any event, a couple of hours after my arrival at the Shore, Jon and I were in his Chevy headed towards the woods. The ‘shine was hitting me kind of hard so I was puffing away on the blunt while grooving to some psychobilly mix CD he had made. It was dark by the time we reached the Pines, but Jon has an impeccable sense of direction and was able to lead us deep into the towering trees with aid of an oil lamp. Everything was set up just the way we had left it after last weekends show, and people would be arriving in about half an hour. With the lamp between us, we sat down on a couple of stumps and he made a small orange plastic pumpkin appear out of thin air. No idea how he does that sort of magic, but I do enjoy the fact that he loves sharing it with me. Peering inside, I discovered a decadent treat which we split to kill time while waiting for a crowd to build up.
That’s when I noticed Jon had set up the Wall of Death, and I have to admit that I was kind of surprised to see it considering he hadn’t mentioned that he would be performing the stunt that evening. It concerned me that he was filling up with coke and ‘shine, but at the same time I knew a lecture would have no effect. He’s the Death Defying Daredevil and knows what he’s doing; all I could do was be there for moral support and ensure that he didn’t get seriously injured. Doesn’t mean my heart wasn’t racing with anticipated nervousness, or maybe that was just endorphins.
The groups were fairly decent all nite long, stumbling and weaving their way thru our DIY maze of horrors and screaming when they were startled by one of the many scares along the way. Our sideshow performances seemed fast-paced, but that might be attributed to the substances floating thru my body. By the time midnite arrived, a large audience had gathered to witness the Wall of Death, and that funny feeling swelled in my stomach once again. We took a break underneath the structure to wash off our make-up, change out of our costumes and split a blunt. As he was climbing into his riding gear, Jon asked if I wanted to drag race, and tho common sense dictated that I should have said no, a smile tugged at my lips and I teased that I would totally win. Should have exercised better judgment, especially knowing my best friend was about to risk life and limb to entertain a bunch of strangers, but my brain certainly wasn’t thinking clearly. Oh, and I totally got my ass beat.
Took my usual position and announced that there was just three minutes to go until midnite, suggesting that everyone take their seats and prepare for a feat they would not soon forget. The engine of Jon’s motorcycle roared, echoing deep into the pitch black forest. A unanimous cheer rose from the audience as he appeared. For the next fifteen minutes, my heart beat savagely in my chest as I watched him circle around the Wall of Death, showing off his entire repertoire of ticks to heated applause, cameras flashing in waves. Everyone was on their feet and clapping as hard as they could when Jon settled on the ground once again, helmet held triumphantly in the air.
Sleep came hard when we returned to his house, which made me thankful I had washed my face earlier.
Friday was Halloween!
Drove up to NYC in Jon’s Chevy, faces painted like death and blasting a special Halloween-themed mix CD, blunts burning as fast as the rubber tires. Parked in some unknown neighborhood and then walked to the village to catch the parade. Debauchery was had in high levels as we enjoyed the lavish costumed characters that marched down the street. At one point we found ourselves walking alongside a lobster, lumberjack and several sequined drag queens. The energy was definitely good and I very much enjoyed myself.
Hit up CBGB afterwards for several shots of whiskey and drag racing in the bathroom. Pretty much everything after that is a blur of hallucinations and not a moment of being sober until waking up early Saturday evening.
Carnivale was damn good last nite. When is it not? Brother Justin is now in the nut house…oh what fun. Had a feeling Sophie was going to try dancing the cootch. Can’t believe that Jonsey agreed to Stumpy’s suggestion, as I was hoping he wouldn’t, especially since I tend not to like Rita Sue. Ben’s dreams get stranger, particularly with the appearance of Brother Justin. Disappointed there was no Scorpion Boy, but a Lobster Gal instead. How does the vision Ben have when he shook Phineas’ hand fit in? And why did the symbol on his ring match that on the watch fob Samson had? What was Lodz saying to management? Him and the bearded lady are odd, but it’s sweet to see the sideshow freaks be romantically involved with each other. Next week’s episode is sure to draw out more questions.