I’m not sure I like all the girls I work with. Karyn is the most suspect, I think she fucks the clients and I’m not sure she charges. Will I always suspect women who sleep with stupid men for fun?
Alison is tougher then me, which I respect even though it makes me nervous. She the only one who can grab me onstage for a two-girl show without pissing me off, when we dance and grind, I know all the men are looking at her pussy because that is where I am focusing – I want to swing my hips nice and slow, she grabs my thigh and next thing I know, I’m not here anymore, I’m off on a dance floor where no one will jump in without asking and ruin my good mood. Where the people are hot but more importantly, considerate, tied together by a respect for their shared community, a beautiful xxx that people fight for and which should always be defended. This is what I feel with Alison’s legs intertwined between mine, as the fish throw fives and my dress edges higher and higher.
JJ is an alpha – she steals my eyeliner and I always let her because I share her shine-gloss, stuff that is viscous but dries with a gorgeous, plasticky sheen on your skin. It turns us into living dolls and its expensive as sin – parabens and oils are not transported cheaply. Trying to find a shower to wash it off in is a fucking challenge, but it turns the guys on so much to think that YOU are plastic, that I always make more money and can pay for the luxury of a few more minutes of hot water without cutting into the rent or savings at all. Anyway, I only use it at the club – at a housecall, any client would be nonplussed if I got it on his wool pants or cotton sheet. These natural fibers simply do NOT resist stains like the old polyester blends.
“Are you almost done?”
Fuck?! How long had I been in this stall? Always, this spacing out was always a problem.
Everyone else who I’d like to talk to or see is in another time zone, if they’re here at all – I mean, in the same 3-D earth plane; of course they’re here at all because they’re in my mind and I’m thinking of them. They live on. Do other people think of me as I think of them is such an emptying question. But I ask it to myself anyway, occasionally.
I want to imagine future conversations and activities with people not-here, but that’s usually depressing after a few minutes, so I revert to replaying touches and phrases in my mind –the alternative, however pale. Rich memories and time spent in stasis. I watch the couples around me working on loving each other, and guess that what they have is a weak imitation of the gorgeous loves I’ve experienced in my lifetime, and then I worry that I think this because I wonder if I will never be in love again. A silly thought for a pretty girl, but a reasonable one for me at this juncture, nonetheless.
Considering the absence of interpersonal entertainment, I’ve done quite well. My little collection of crap outside my room has grown into a pirate cove. There are some beads I found free at a yard sale down the road, and their glass x-mas colors lend festivity and sparkle. Its kind of otherwise relatively tank girl-meets-trailer trash around here, and I am impressed that I’ve brought my people here with me. Keeping all that alive to the certain end. Fuck, why did all of New York State have to go first? And with all the people I knew, why were so many at a conference in Brooklyn? I’d said goodbye to so many friends, but I sure didn’t think it was going to be for the last time…who would I have kissed? Well – I think I’d tried to let everyone know exactly what I thought, how I felt. But maybe I never went deep enough with the people I loved and respected. I hope they knew.
I got out some tin foil I’d kept [hoarded? Is it hoarding if you use it eventually?] and brushed off the flakes of old burritos and breakfast tacos. I formed the words, winding the letters together with twine and a butter knife. I climbed the kitty steps I’d placed on the north-facing side of the building to smoke and brood, and then mounted the words on the left side of the roof. I LOVED YOU shined darkly. Climbing down, it’s still true: I really loved you each as best I could.
I brought Alison, my friend from the Club who lives out of the City too, over last night. I don’t have a lot of guests so as soon as she walked into my room I felt dirty, like I’ve never cleaned or hostessed before. I used to have the best parties, back home. There I guess I never cared if things were dirty, I had the love of all my friends to keep me from giving a shit. Here we drank cocktails and I showed her some but not all of my polyester clothes. I’m still not sure what trusting another human means but I do know I don’t do it. She smiled and joked, “I have all the newest polyester clothes and I didn’t have to buy any of them!”
I weirdly wanted to tell her that I had another friend, Alliya, so I wouldn’t feel so needy and pathetic. I know there’s nothing wrong with needing people but when I need them so fucking bad and they can just leave, walk away, whatever, it’s a fucked power dynamic. I decided to try being cooler about it even though I wanted to cry about it. Whatever though I cry about everything. I’m almost over crying so much.
Alison lives in one of the managed compounds and I’m working on not judging her for that. Some people don’t want to shovel their own snow. That’s a metaphor, there’s no snow here. Some people don’t want to run their own generators. That’s more accurate. Here it’s Georgie that really commands that shit, her broad hands wrangling the cables as needed in a way that sometimes makes me think about sex generally but usually makes me think about people I used to fuck who died which is kind of the opposite of thinking about sex. I take my turn on the generator like everyone else here, take my turn checking the router and wireless bandwidth signals script is shifting through any newly available channels, take my turn putting mulch down on the shitter.
Alison does none of that and I like her anyway, she expects to work in her life just not also at her home. She’s one of the best hustlers at the club, and she started telling me about a client she sees in one of the restricted zones of the City. She gets there because you can get passes into that part of the city if you own there. Duh, of course, like a parking pass for your body. Like a visa. Like a special entry card. She had a stack of them and gave me a few. What the fuck man, I might see about a new hustle myself. Alison works hard sometimes so she doesn’t have to work hard all the time. Why has that never occurred to me?
Live Fast Die Young. Think about that phrase. I think it actually means live hard die young, or live poor die young or live for real die young. People used to die at 35 on average. That was old, before there were toothbrushes and antibiotics. Now 35 is the new 25 and we’re all supposed to be finding ourselves and healing our inner children at 35. WTF. People just used to be fucked up and then die. Frankly lots of folks still do, that’s what feels normal for where I come from anyway. I find the expectation that one can achieve some kind of completed personal healing to be highly suspect and probably weirdly entitled and tied into an individualist biopolitical narrative that’s faultily linked to modernity.
That’s a five-star sentence, as my old bestie would say: two six-syllable words and a buncha shit you gotta go to school to understand. It means the way we think about our personal bodies is part of a system of control that’s linked to power imbalances resulting from shit like capitalism and Culture. That’s still a four-star sentence. I mean expecting to be “healed” means buying into both the idea that yr broken, and the idea that you can control change. Hahaha.
I worked today. The Club has girls my age, mid-30s, and older. And younger. You’re a girl if you’re working, no matter your gender[s] or age. Girls work. Women have money. Adults have careers, and girls have stopgap measures to keep us fed. Or something.
Making Club money is both exhilarating and exhausting. It’s a WAD of MONEY! It only took two hours to get this wad!! But then all the shit that has to be done to make it, and all the things I need for my body–for a life lived fast or slow–lines up in front of the dollars and it suddenly seems like a tiny scrap.
My money goes to rent, to crap for my body in the form of food, clothes, and things to be around my body in my home or out of it, to getting my body around, and to a little spot under my mattress. Typical, right? Hoarding just in case I don’t Die Young. I used to think I would. I have lived very fast. I have wanted to get the most out of every day because the day will come when living seems too horrible.
I guess that day came…and I kept living. Shit. I wonder if what I’m doing still counts as living hard. I guess I am just still living, and I guess it doesn’t matter if I think it’s for anything or about anything or being done in some specific way. I’m alive anyway.
Today is the day we decided we should shoot guns, maybe get some too.
I’ve been thinking about it on my own for awhile and it’s obviously complicated. Guns don’t kill people, people kill people blah blah but my level of trust in some parts of humanity has skyrocketed while for others it’s at an all-time low. I’m ready to be not scared of guns. I don’t want to leave this knowledge to people who freak me out, and I also want to challenge my assumptions about who gun owners are in the first place. If I’m one, is it fair to assume every gun owner is a militant maniac? It’s how I feel about being a European American, I really can’t place a blanket hate face on all of us because that means erasing all my similarly-bred friends and myself.
You wanna know what’s so scary and so hot? Thinking about fucking a gun. In my logistical mind it’s the worst idea ever, and in my pussy it’s like a terrible/insanely hot memory I haven’t even made yet that makes me come when I think about it. What the fuck. This does play in to my desire to do this, of course.
Anyway there’s a range a few miles out and they don’t ask for licenses hah of course. They just want money and that’s fine. I just want to know my way around a gun and that’s fine too. It was me, Georgie, and Georgie’s girlfriend Etta talking that brought it out. We were talking history, the Weather Underground, and our families, the wonderful trash that made us and their guns and while I’m sure that my motivation for shooting was not exactly what my family had in mind, I couldn’t help but think of them as we went over there.
I’d shot a few times, but this time there was a trainer to show us things and it was as if I’d never held a gun before. I can’t remember a lot of things so that’s basically true. It was heavier that I thought but not so heavy I couldn’t lug one around. The range officer showed us how to use finger control to shoot intentionally and maybe he thought he was helping some ladies figure shit out, but to look at the three of us together and not realize we’re all dykes is some real idiocy so maybe he was fucking with us? Either way he gave good tips and we all dutifully lined up in the range to take our turns with a little .22. It was way less climatic than I thought it would be, which made me realize #1 how movies dramatize everything, and #2 that I could in fact be good at shooting if I wanted.
Since I’m now able to go to the city’s second Zone, I’m thinking about my hustle, which means I’m thinking about how far people will go to get at Plastic. For example, Central Park was blocked off from 66th street to 72nd street, because there’s tunnels dug underneath it trying to get at the old garbage. When people started digging, no one was thinking clearly and certainly not about how that trash was older than the US’s love affair with petroleum items. Mostly organics like food and wood fill the rolling hills of the park decomposing and creating an exquisite methane that you can’t smoke or flick a light switch within eight blocks of for fear of blowing the rest of the place up. Meathne from shit is so much more reliable; its been expected. The rare plastics inside are extremely valuable because they are thick, old, potent. Made well before chemical compounds lessened the effects of the atomic coagulants and with a healthy dose of organics in them as well: Celluloid, Gutta percha, my two favorite olden plastics. They didn’t offgas the way the petroleum stuff did.
Central Park. That day. That horrible day. Obviously it was the cops’ fault. Obviously they shot first, most, and enough to spark the air into one giant fireball. Shooting yesterday I noticed that with every discharge the gun emits fire from it’s muzzle. That’s why its called a firearm I’d thought dumbly to myself. Lighters and matches weren’t allowed near the park but shitface cops with trigger happy fingers were. And the news tried to make it out like it was some Black kids starting shit with the cops. We all know that’s not the way it works. Cops and their self importance and their racism and their death urge fired off enough rounds in rapid succession in the Park that the shit blew the fuck up. And then the military was being called in, and then the people with their own other guns came out, and then no one is quite sure how the rest of it blew. I don’t think about it too much but I still blame the cops.
I miss Canada. I stayed in today. I shouldn’t have thought about that shit so much yesterday. This was a bad day.