Certainly, I can Swing Both Ways (Get Your Mind Outta My Gutter)
I Can kick a Football With Either Foot.
I Can Write My Name With Either Hand.
But It All Falls Apart
When it comes to eating food
And Right Meow, I have arthritis in my Eatin’ Paw
I am gonna Starve to Death!
I mustered the troops for assistance
Top Sarge asked, “Who we gonna attack?”
I replied, “That bowl of Ramen.”
“Sorry Sir, them Jap noodles. We ain’t at war with them Japs no mas.”
I said, “This is a Direct Order Marine! Do it! Do it now!”
“No can do Sir. Violates that ‘Nevah Convention.”
“Pretend like it’s 1944”
“No can do Sir. Sorry Sir.”
“Well Shit then! What good are you?! Screw it! Dismissed!“
“Thank you Sir.”
Unless I can Find Some Good-Hearted Woman Willin’ to Feed Me, I’m properly fukked.
None come immediately to my Mind at Present
I am Properly Screwed.
I attempted to eat some more. Most of the Ramen ended up on the floor. Good for the roaches, bad for me.Quite certain they will be throwin’ a Party in Honor of Me.
There Is A Positive Note Though:
I have Always Been A “Two-Fisted Drinker“
Now I just Have to Drink Faster.
No Prob—I Got This.
I Can always drink left-handed, and if not, I’ll just use a fricken straw, but generally that ain’t necessary. And I’m fresh outta straws at present. It is all about motivation and dedication you see. Ramen don’t move me,
But booze does.
“They Call It A ‘Problem’; I Call It A ‘Solution'”
Cred: Midland Official
Tom Waits – Reality is for people who can’t face drugs
And then there is always DT Man to Deal With initially, and that’s a ‘visitation’ Iwouldn’t wish even on my worst enemy.
(Not a pleasant fellow)
Anyway, here I am again.
“Once More Unto The Breach!”
I have been battling booze all my life, ever since I was thirteen years old. Gain ground, lose ground. The war is always raging on. No end in sight. No way the boys will ever be home for Christmas. That’s the reality.
I have come to accept it.
Cred for Vid: Thru the Reel Films
Street Cred: MasterBiblicalMemory &
This May Be Part of My Problem.
I Drink Alone – George Thorogood and the Destroyers
We spent the rest of that Friday and most of Saturday enjoying the Bluegrass Festival while swilling beers and smoking lots of cigarettes.
During the late evenings we shared burgers, listened to all sorts of music on my little boom box, drank whiskey and had great sex.
We also talked a lot about a lot of things, but nothing too heavy.
We were enjoying ourselves.
Sunday noon we checked out of the motel and slightly sorrowfully, headed west back to San Dog. It had been a truly perfect weekend and we both regretted the ending of it.
Shonnie impressed me more and more with her worldly wisdoms, and in spite of having no formal higher education, she seemed to know a lot about a lot. Mostly about the important shit: Life.
She had not one ounce of insincerity, pretentiousness, nor of ‘I’m a Sexy Diva wrapped in a small, concentrated package. Worship me’ in her small little body. (Small, very sexy, very energetic little body) Both of us were inventive and creative in bed, but she could’ve been some kind of ‘Concentrated Diva’ had she wanted to.
She didn’t want to.
She knew exactly Who She was and Who She wanted to be:
Did I mention the sex with her was fantastic?
Fairly certain I did.
Knowing my duty schedule on the Callaghan, I knew it would be three weeks until I had another weekend completely devoid of any sailor related responsibilities.
I had already formulated a plan to ‘kidnap’ Her when that free weekend came to pass, and me with my ‘Weekend Pass’.
During the ensuing days we kept up our regular rendezvous schedule. More and more I looked forward to seeing her and getting to know her even better. In fact, time spent away from her was beginning to become more and more unbearable.
“This is not good Sailor,” I kept trying to remind myself, “You have allowed yourself to become vulnerable. If you lose this one, you’re gonna have a Very Bad Day-Week-Month-Year—Life.”
She was reluctant to tell me very much about her life, but bits and pieces did come out during slow dancing, drinking, smoking, and fucking, ‘making love’.
Her father had left her and her mother when she was still quite young. ‘He was an abusive drunk type’, was about all the detail I got from her, but I could occasionally catch a glimpse of sorrow and pain in her eyes whenever I asked about her ‘growing up years’.
So I quit asking.
We were living in-the-moment, Our Moment. Hers and My moment. So Fucking Happy Together.
Honestly Happy Every Moment We Were Together.
Un Happy Every Moment We Weren’t.
(Making a hopeful assumption here, regarding how ‘She’ was feeling during the times we were not together)
Happy Together – The Turtles (1967)Vid Share Cred: Cameron Posh
This is what we were all about: The in-the-moment-happy-together-existence. Carrying on as the slightly flawed, yet also slightly perfect, ‘couple’ and ‘match.’
I refrained completely from broaching the subject of her husband-the-biker. In fact, the mere fact that she was married at all had rapidly run away from my brain like so much spilt quicksilver…
One Saturday night she had me drive us to a Mall.
“Okay, what are we doing here?” I asked. “Malls ain’t my thing.”
“Mine neither, but I wanna buy you something.
“Oh Hell-no-you-don’t. I have everything I need.”
It’s Important to ME, damn it!” she replied. You gonna give me attitude now, Sailor-Boy?” You need this, c’mon.”
She led me by the hand to the mall and into a ‘musicland’ record shop.
None too delicately, she immediately attacked the cassette bins. When Shonnie is in pursuit of something, Any Somethingthat is ‘important’ to Her, there is no holding her back, slowing her down, and don’t even foolishly consider trying to stop her.
“What’re you looking for?” I asked finally, as she kept up her ransacking efforts.
“Gimme a sec! Will ya? Oh here it is!” she announced a little too loudly, pulling a cassette from the bin and keeping it from my view.
“You’ll love it. Just trust me.”
“I’m already in-LOVE. With YOU, you crazy Bitch.” (I did NOT say this aloud; only in my head.)
She had in her clutches, Nighthawks at the Diner, she eventually allowed me to discover. It was an album by Tom Waits, an artist I had never heard of…
She made me keep my distance once she had captured her quarry and headed toward the check-out.
“Go stand over there while I pay for this,” she commanded while pointing to the very front of the store.
I dutifully did as ordered while shaking my head. Thinking “Well, That’s My Gal.”
We drove to Balboa Park.
I found a nice, secluded place for the Toranado. Cracked open some beers to go with our whiskey while Shonnie dropped in the ‘Mystery Cassette’ and twisted the volume knob.
“Stand by for heavy rolls as the ship comes about Sailor-Boy,” she giggled.
(I sincerely wished she’d stop calling me that, but itseemed to make her happy to do so and what a small price for me to pay to see her wonderful smile and hear her wonderful laugh.)
I’d taught her that, my most favorite bona-fide ‘sailor-phrase’, although I could not remember when or even why—at least she remembered—and when used properly in context and in a suitable situation, it is a handy phrase to have in one’s repertoire.
Twenty seconds into Waits’ ‘Opening Intro,’ I was a fan. Call it ‘love-at-first listen’, an extremely rare occurrence for me.
But My Girl had me all figured out.
It was just a little disconcerting, how she had so easily tagged, pegged, and captured me, and yet to me she was still mostly an enigma.
“OK. Show me the cassette case now please,”
“Here ya go Baby, she said, handing it to me.
“’Tom Waits’. Never heard of him, but this is some great shit Shonnie Darlin’.”
She smiled demurely at me and said, “Yeah, I know, and now so do you. You’re welcome.”
I grabbed her and kissed her for a long time. Finally she pulled away from my embrace.
“Time enough for that later. Listen to the music. The whole album is one story. Kinda like a thin book. Pay fuckin’ attention.”
“Okay. Okay. No need to get all testy.”
She softened her voice and cooed, “Pay fucking attention, please. How’s that?”
“Better,” I said, as I tried to kiss her again.
“For fuck’s sake. Listen to the Goddamn story.”
“I am. I love good stories and when folded into great music. Bam! I was just pushing your ‘Shonnie Button’. And I am paying attention.”
She sweetly glared at me.
(“Should I tell her now?” I was asking myself. “No.” was the answer I received. “Wait for Vegas. Then tell her. You will know when the time is right.”)
Then I hung up the phone in my head and hundred percent focused my attentions on Shonnie and Tom (And the Jim Beam I was enjoying.)
Warm Beer and Cold Women
After the sun set we started our make out session. Then she did something very much unexpected. She unbuckled my jeans and started giving me head.
This had never happened before and to say I was quite pleased would be an understatement bordering on the felonious.
Just as I was really getting into it, she stopped suddenly, looked up at me with those piercing blue eyes and said solemnly,
“If you come in my mouth, I will kill you.”
Well, that kind of ruined ‘My’ Moment, but actually in a good way. It struck me so funny that I just could not help bursting out laughing. It was priceless.
Make out session temporarily put on hold and my fondness for her greatly amplified.
The next weekend (my ‘freedom’ one), we met at our usual rendezvous point. She, on instructions from me given over a pay phone, had brought along a bag with extra clothing items and whatever else ‘tricks of her trade’ she needed for a sustained two-and-a-half day ‘excursion’.
She also had a signed ‘liberty pass’ from her mom relieving her of motherly duties for the weekend. (Ok, she did not have an actual ‘signed’ document—I made that up—but she did have verbal permission and even a blessing from her mother.)
“So Cowboy, where are we going?”
“Vegas,” I said. “’Sin City’. Should be right up your alley. My turn to ‘educate’ you My Love.”
‘Love?’ How did that slip out?
Had I already told her that I loved her? While drunk perhaps? Pretty sure I had not at that point, but it was on my ‘To Do List’ and a weekend in Vegas would put me in the perfect environment to take such a gamble with my heart.
I just have to remember the old gamblers mantra in-case she did not love me back yet:
“Never throw good money after bad.”
Perfect Metaphor for Lance and Shonnie Together
“Woolworth Rhinestone diamond earrings and a sideways glance”
–Greatest line from any song.
One Might Also Describe Our Relationship in Terms of “Opposites Attract.”
Shonnie and I had a very complex relationship.
Not on the Surface
Deep Down Inside
It Was Forever Bubbling, Burning, Boiling
Deeply Inside Both of Us
Volatile and Dangerous
Look For This Very Soon:
Shonnie, The Biker’s Wife. Part V: Vegas
Update: Part Five Found Here:
Some Bonus ‘Added Value’ below for all you Waits Fans out there in ‘Radio Land.’
“Emotional Weather Report”
And Yet Even More ‘Added Value’ Below:
How I recall the Mystical Magic That Life Held for Me During My Time Spent with Shonnie:
Commentary Below From The Original Post.
For Continuity, Please Start at the Bottom and Read Up
And Thank You if you have made it this far.
LAMarcom June 20, 2014 at 18:31 Edit
Thank you Sadie 🙂
Yep, after all my years and all my wives, I still do not quite understand women. I guess if I did, some of the magic would go away. (No. That is not sexist–it is just that the female mind fascinates me)
~ Sadie ~ June 20, 2014 at 17:44 Edit
Loving this story, Mr. Marcum 🙂 “It was just a little disconcerting, how she had so easily pegged me and yet to me she was still mostly an enigma.” — love the way you worded this & YES we women can be awfully good at that, at times 😉 Can’t wait to read more!!!
lauramacky June 20, 2014 at 09:16 Edit
LAMarcom June 20, 2014 at 09:12 Edit
Thanks for the kind words Mark. Movie eh? Writing it and remembering those days does run like a movie in my mind.
Cheers My Friend
LAMarcom June 20, 2014 at 09:10 Edit
Waits is definitely one of my favorites. I have Shonnie to thank for that!
lauramacky June 20, 2014 at 09:05 Edit
I haven’t listened to Tom waits in ages! 🙂
markbialczak June 20, 2014 at 08:33 Edit
This is shaping up as a pretty interesting movie, Lance. Really. Especially if it keeps getting better, as I suspect. Write on!
LAMarcom June 20, 2014 at 08:11 Edit
And ‘Chocolate Jesus’ 😉
Thanks for your visit! And for your comment.
LAMarcom June 20, 2014 at 08:09 Edit
I will! I will!
happierheathen June 20, 2014 at 03:56 Edit
Dammit, man, get to writing! 🙂
Diana June 20, 2014 at 02:58 Edit
ohhh….”please call me baby” and “the heart of saturday night” – – my two favorite tom waits songs.
LAMarcom June 19, 2014 at 23:44 Edit
Means a lot coming from you.
Teela Hart June 19, 2014 at 23:42 Edit
I will most definitely stay tuned.
How could I not?
You tell a damn good story!
LAMarcom June 19, 2014 at 23:38 Edit
I’ll give you a hint…
You just gotta stay tuned.
Thanks for reading.
P.S. Next to Lenny, Tom Waits is my Hero.
Along with Janis, Jimi, Jimmy, Willie, Waylon, Kris, Jim M., …and on and on..
Teela Hart June 19, 2014 at 23:35 Edit
I knew nothing of Tom Waits until visiting.
I really love his sound.
I’m loving the saga, we never know what’s comin next.
LAMarcom June 19, 2014 at 23:01 Edit
I have left little pieces of me all over Las Vegas.
Thanks Friend for your visit and comment.
quarksire June 19, 2014 at 22:59 Editeducate er loose 🙂 LoL 🙂 .ya neva know! 🙂
With nothing else to do and somewhat pissed at Shonnie for putting us both in a bad situation, I walked over to The Las Vegas Club just across the street from the Union Plaza. My intent was to pass some time playing a relaxing game of roulette. I have always enjoyed roulette. The pace is slow and generally that game draws a more serene clientele. A casual game of roulette would afford me the opportunity to calm my anger and pleasantly pass some time.
The minimum bet was one dollar, so I bought a hundred bucks worth of two-bit chips and began scattering them about the table. Never really scoring big at roulette, I did not expect anything but a hundred dollars worth of entertainment and some free bottom shelf booze. I had a few wins, but more losses and as my initial investment faded away along with about an hour and a half, I cashed out the remainder of my stake (about twenty-five bucks), drained my glass, stubbed out my Marlboro and headed back to the Plaza.
Upon entering our room, I discovered Shonnie face down on the bed, a cig still burning in the ashtray.
I sad upon the bed next to her.
“You awake?” I whispered.
“Owwwie… Is that you Honey?”
“Yes, Dear. It’s me. How’d you come out?”
“Won three hundred. Proud of me?”
“Nope,” I said. “You nearly got me in trouble.”
“Always about you,” she said, turning on her side to face me with piercing blue eyes.
“We did have a plan, you know. What happened?”
“I couldn’t get shed of that moron.”
She sat up abruptly. “I tried, Goddamn it!”
“How hard is it to walk away from a blackjack table?”
“I was having fun too.”
“You’re drunk,” I said.
“Yeah. Be a dear and light me a smoke.”
I lit two Marlboros and handed her one. She took a long drag and asked for a cold beer. I fished two Bud longnecks out of the cooler we had brought along and handed her one. She drained about half of hers, belched, and said, “Cotton mouth.”
“Charmed, I’m sure.”
“Fuck you. I have a major headache.”
I kissed her lightly on the forehead and said, “We need to head outta here tomorrow by noon. I have to be back on my boat…”
“Okay! Okay! I got it. What time is it anyway?”
“It’s later than you think.”
She drained the rest of her beer, threw her half-smoked cigarette in the ashtray, rolled over and went immediately to sleep. Just perfect, I thought. I took some minutes to finish my beer and my cigarette, then got undressed and curled up next to her and was soon asleep myself.
Next day we managed to check out of our room and hit the road by about twelve-thirty. I stopped for gas and a six-pack at Whiskey Pete’s and we reverse-road-tripped on into San Diego, arriving about six in the evening. I dropped Shonnie at her mom’s and headed back to the Frederick. I hit my rack and slept like the dead. I had duty the next day, so I could not leave the ship. On Tuesday at sixteen hundred after liberty call I got in my civvies and hit the beach. Found a pay phone on the pier and called her up.
“Hiya Baby. How y’all doin’?”
“Why didn’t you call me yesterday?” She sounded pissed.
“You know damn well. I had duty yesterday,” I shot back.
“Oh… Yeah. Sorry. I forgot.”
“Wanna hook up?” I asked.
“Yeah. Meet me at Seaport Village. In the parking lot. In an hour.”
“Make it an hour and a half.”
I pulled into the parking lot at Seaport Village around six p.m. No sign of Shonnie. I killed the Toronado but left the stereo playing (Tom Waits: “Warm Beer and Cold Women…”) Pulling from a pint of Jim Beam, I lit a cigarette and watched some seagulls diving on scraps in the bay. I saw a haze-gray-and-underway-piece-of-shit heading out to sea, black-shoe-sailors manning the rails. I saw couples walking hand-in-hand on the boardwalk. I was allowing myself to have some second thoughts about my relationship with Shonnie: Was it going anywhere? Was it worth the risk? Was she fun? Was she great in the sack?
Did I love her?
My mindless contemplations were brusquely interrupted as she pulled up alongside me screeching tires and slinging gravel. Grand entrance! She exited her ‘La Bomba’ and walked toward my vehicle. She looked California stunning: wearing tight faded blue jeans, a halter top, cowgirl boots, and carrying a fifth of whiskey and obviously an attitude. She ‘runway’ sauntered over to the driver’s side of my car, opened the door, plopped herself down and inquired, “How’s my favorite Sailor-Boy?”
Aiming for ‘nonchalant’ I said, “Fair to mid’lin. You?”
“Finer-n-frog hair,” she said.
“Don’t be mockin’ a good ol’ Texas Boy,” I said back. (Yes. I did love her after all)
“I have a surprise for you Lover.”
“Do tell,” I said.
“I am ‘house-sitting’ my aunt’s condo in La Jolla all this week. It’s all ours.”
“I’m partial to parking lots and sleazy motel rooms,” I protested.