Monday, April 25, 2005

Pieces of Summer.

Hot town, summer in the city Back of my neck getting dirty and gritty
Been down, isn't it a pity
Doesn't seem to be a shadow in the city
All around, people looking half dead
Walking on the sidewalk, hotter
than a match head...

Pieces of Summer in Detroit: The Seventies. I wake up and it occurs to me: Summer Vacation! School's out. Three whole months -- that's practically forever! I'm Queen of the Summer! And we're going to Ely in August! Too Cool!

I put on the appropriate days of the week panties, I consider my training bra but it's itchy, and okay, I'm kinda proud of my bumps. Denin shorts and a Starsky and Hutch T-shirt - I'm stylin'.

I play with my Yorkie for a while. Daisy's the best! She's tiny but scary if she doesn't like you! She once chased this massive woman and kid down the street because they trespassed in our yard. The neighbors almost peed themselves they laughed so hard!

I go outside barefoot and the sidewalk is so hot! Ouch, I hop over to the grass! And then back on the sidewalk. Hurts so good. I know my friend Jill's father, they're are from Kentucky, will tell me that I walk around like a little hillbilly. Hey, shoes are for school.

Oops, I didn't brush my hair either. Two long brunette ponytails. I know by the end of the day the red highlights while start to show. Oh, and my freckles. I hate when the kids in school call me "Freckle Face." I guess I won't have to worry about THAT for a while!

I should have asked my grandmother for ice cream money. What if the truck comes? If I'm too far away from home, I'll just have to look sad and hope someone's parent will buy me something. Shameless.

Maybe Lisa's out. She has the absolute best bedroom and even more toys than I do! I mean, she has a freakin' canopy bed! Her mother is such a bitch and hates me for No Good Reason. The only reason we even get to play together is because her grandmother liked me -- she probably told Lisa's mother to "cut it out." Maybe even on her deathbed!

Or there's Brandy. I love that name. Brandy's mom is a bartender and their last name is Alexander. For Real! Brandy and Jill explained to me about my period. Brandy also explained "doing it" to me -- she got some of it waaaay wrong though. I know she messed up because I read romance novels and Brandy never mentioned anything about his "manhood" (that's what they call a dick in romances) getting hard, and she never mentioned him putting it inside a girl. I'm still a little foggy on the details.

I could play with Jill but she can be so bossy, and her brother is a psycho! Yeah, I think he tortures animals. I was carrying Daisy one day and I'm not sure if his eyes bugged out 'cause he wanted to set her on fire or because he was looking down my top. Just in case I always pull my shirt down when I see him so he can see what little cleavage I've got.

Lawn sprinkers! Am I too old to just run through the sprinklers? Who'll see me? I'll just go once -- fast! SoCold! And nobody saw me!

There's Kelly. He's kinda a little kid, but he's okay. He always wants to play superheroes, but I have the red, white, and blue bike so I'm a shoe-in for Wonder Woman.


But I can see you-
Your brown skin shinin' in the sun
You got your hair combed back and your sunglasses on, baby
And I can tell you my love for you will still be strong
After the boys of summer have gone

Pieces of Summer in The Suburbs: The Eighties. School's out for Summer, School's Out Forever! I wish! I hate school. Summer goes too freakin' fast!

I knew it was getting close to summer the day Beth and I drove with the top down and Boys of Summer came on the radio. We sang at the top of our lungs! Of course, we sing everything at the top of our lungs -- it would be nice if one of us could actually sing.

For sure we'll be singing loud at the Rick Springfield. Hee hee, maybe he'll hear me and invite me backstage. Truuuue Luuuuuv! Yeah, right! Don't trust boys as far as you can throw them!

Like that moron -- what's-his-face! Asking me if he could pet Snoopy's nose. See, I had this red shirt with Snoopy on it, and you guessed it, his nose was right across my left tit. Of course I told him, "Yes." His jaw dropped -- he didn't do it, but we probably would have gotten suspended anyhow.

My grades were not at all bad this year. Once I figured out that if you mentioned Reagan to Mr. E, he'd spend the whole hour bitchin' about him. While he yelled I could do homework for my other classes. (It's not like I would do homework at home.)There's this preppy moron who always tries to debate Mr E. He called me a suck-up for grades and Mr. E told him at least I was passing. Guy lost all color in his face -- don't think he ever got a bad grade...ever! I'm totally not a suck-up just because -- I'm smart enough to play the game. E gets red in the face when you mention Republicans - Preppy is no genius if he can't see this is a useless battle. Wonder what his final grade was!

Anyhow, 3 months, I guess that's not too bad. Go to the beach. Hang out at the mall. Spend nights at Beth's and escape my mother. It'll be okay.

Let the wild winter wind bellow and blow, cuz I’m as warm as a July to-ma-to

There’s peaches on the shelf, potato’s in the bin, supper’s ready everybody come on in. Taste a little of the summer, Taste a little of the summer, Taste a little of the summer, Grandma put it all in jars

Well there’s a root cellar fruit cellar down below, watch your head now, down you go


So you say you’re weary and you don’t give a damn, I bet you never tasted her blackberry jam


Oh she’s got magic in her, you know what I mean, she puts the sun and rain in with her green beans


Well with the snow and the economy and everything, I think I’ll just stay down here and eat until spring


When I go down to see grandma I gain a lot of weight,
with her dear hands she feeds me plate after plate.
She cans the pickles sweet and dill, and the song of the whipoorwill, and the morning dew, and the evening moon, and I really got to go and see her soon, cuz the, canned goods that I buy in the store ain’t got the summer in ‘em any more...
Pieces of Summer in Ely, Mn: Nineties. Damn, I love it here. I can't wait until I live here, but D. promises soon. I could wake up every day of my life hearing the sounds of the wildnerness, knowing my neighbors, keeping it simple.

When I was a kid I knew all my neighbors, but now it just seems like I either wave to people in passing or avoid them. Crap, nobody is friendly anymore. Here people WAVE to you even if they don't know you - you feel embarrassed for them, because clearly they think you're someone else - and then it hits you that friendly people acknowledge even strangers!

And good service in restaurants. Didn't anyone tell the waitresses to be rude and distant? I hardly know how to react -- I think I'm overtipping.

I'm loving spending time with my grandmother. She was born here, and took me to visit her family fairly often growing up. She came to Detroit to work in the factories during World War II. She worked in a tank factory - Grannie the Riveter!

When I was a kid it was the best here! I could do wherever I wanted and I was told to just look for the water tower, which was just a block over from my great-grandmother's house. Now it's just plain my grandmother's house. Time flies.

My great-grandmother was this scary, bossy little Slovenian woman. She didn't seem little when I was a kid as she chased her cats from the upstairs with a broom and called me the Slovenian word for "Little Devil." Then I visited when I was in my teens and she was practically a midget. I mean, I'm sure she shrunk a little, but still...

And she was always feeding her cats kidneys. She would call out," I've got kidneys" and Fluffy and Penny would come running. (Usually from upstairs.) All I know is those damned cats lived forever Fluffy was 25 when she died and Penny was close to that. Kidneys are possibly the kitty fountain of youth.

People in this town seem to live forever. I think it's all the damned steep hills -- you get a work-out walking to the store.

I'm going to see the wolves at the wolf center again. I just want to adopt one -- is that so wrong? It is? Never mind then!

I think the fresh air makes D. Horny. Me too!

I'm soooo moving here - come hell or high water!

(Summer in The City, lyrics by J.Sebastion/S.Boone/M.Sebastian. Boys of Summer, lyrics by Don Henley. Canned Goods, lyrics by Greg Brown. )
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