Here is an excerpt of Chapter 3 of Masturbating With Strangers in honor of Back to the Future Day October 21, 2015:
Unfortunately time did progress. Next thing I knew I was a week from graduating, and I never could have suspected that I’d end up throwing around boxes in a grocery store months later. After all there was an air of invincibility I carried with me throughout college. I nonchalantly assumed everything would work out for me. Scholastically I had never been challenged. In high school, I breezed into a four point oh grade average without breaking a sweat. In college, I stayed drunk virtually all semester until the last two weeks, when I studied efficiently enough to find myself graduating cum laude. I was a mother fucking white American. When you do well in school you’re supposed to write your own ticket- or so I thought. Even jobless during my last week as a college student, I was confident enough in my job prospects to skip a job fair in favor of a prolonged happy hour, which resulted in quite an adventure back to my apartment.
“Wait, explain this again? You and Paulie ditched that bullshit job fair for some drinks? I get that shit. I knew with that kinda strife it’d be no time till you guys were hitting the bottle. Understandable. Paul’s in the bathroom shitting cus he ate the nachos again. I get that shit. You both lit your ties on fire in alley way to protest something or other, which I kinda get that shit. It’s weird, but I fucking follow. But what I don’t get Kev, is how we got a stripper in our living room?”
“Dude she’s technically not a stripper,” I said rebutting my roommate Mark’s presumption. The fanfare from having a Bostonian roommate in the middle of the south was like winning the lottery. I never grew tired of the strangers requesting him to recite lines from Goodwill Hunting.
“She looks like a stripper,” I’m sure most girls would look like a stripper next to the life size cardboard cutout of the two women in bikinis, who were name infamous for mud wrestling on a Miller Light commercial. Our living room may as well have been a frat house satellite office. Not to mention Mark and Trevor had left a particularly steamy episode of Blind Date on the television. For some reason every date in Phoenix resulted in a spikey haired shirtless dude three way kissing with two bombshell blondes.
“Of course she looks like one. She works there.”
“But you’re telling me she ain’t?” Mark took another look back at the dark haired girl, who for some odd reason was wearing a beanie with her cocktail dress. Her nose ring was sparkling ironically against our faded couches, while she stood in wonder at the ten percent full beer bottles littered throughout the room.
“Noooo. No. No, I mean she’s super persistent in clarifying that she’s a waitress, and does not get naked. She’ll get pissed if you say-I mean she already got pissed when Paul said it.”
“Still she looks like a stripper.”
“I know isn’t it great? I mean isn’t the waitressing just the training wheels for you know like full blown stripping? We’re totally getting in on the ground floor. This is like pre-Star Search Britney Spears right here.”
“Kevin, what the fuck are you saying kid? I totally get your excitement, but I’m at a loss for the fucking words behind it. On Star Search Britney was a midget. Don’t you mean like mouseketeer-ing anyways?”
“No dude I mean Star Search. I know my Britney. Don’t fuck with me on my Britney.”
Finally the waitress lost patience with our huddle at the front door, “So seriously are ya’all gonna whisper sweet nothings to each other all evening? Or is somebody gonna pay me my twenty bucks? And Kevin don’t fuck with me, and say you’re doing that time travel bullshit. He would not stop talking about time traveling, and he better not be doing it now so he can back out on his promise. What is that shit anyways? Sounds like blacking out to me.”
“Don’t worry Tamara. I just got distracted, and dude chill with that negative black out bullshit. Time travel is like way too elegant an analogy to pass on. I mean if the last thing you remember occurred at 11 pm, and now its 11 am, you had to do something to fucking get there. So why not time travel?”
“Whatever hun, it sounds like blacking out to me. Can I get my twenty bucks and go back to work before my lunch break is over?
“Whoa, whoa, Tammy we can’t have you leaving our pad with such a negative connation towards the glory that is time travel. Kev, what kinda deal did you make?”
“Who cares? That isn’t important. Tamara, some of the greatest most hilarious feats of man happened when some dude was essentially time traveling his ass off. It’s not a loss of consciousness like blacking out, but rather an inspiration allowing us to be greater than our ordinary sober selves. You know like the ability to approach random strangers and connect the most disconnected- yet absurdly brilliant thoughts, into the most insane profound shit possible. That’s time travel not blacking out!”
“OMG Kevin! You told me you’d give me twenty bucks for a ride home, so I could buy my boyfriend and I Chinese food tonight for our Gossip girl marathon. You’re such a . . . ”
“Did I? That was fucking stupid.”
“Not exactly profound shit is it?”
“Nah that’s pro-tarded. Let me go get some money from my room. In the meantime Marky Mark get funky wit it and learn this girl about time traveling. Be right back!”
“Can you make it quick Marky Mark? Fucking boys.”
“Alright, alright. I got the perfect story for explaining the phenomenon that is Time Travel. I know a kid from the neighborhood named Danny. Danny goes to U-MASS after high school. He gets a fake id. He’s wilding out, having a wicked awesome time away from mom and pop. Well, Danny, dip shit romantic that he is, can’t wait to get back to the neighborhood to ask out this broad that used to babysit him back in the day. There’s like drop dead gorgeous girls all over U-MASS, but alls Danny can think about is his old baby sitter. So he waits, you know, dabbles here and there with a few romantic interludes at U-MASS. You know drunken spit swapping, but basically he waits till summertime to ask this girl out to the bars. You know impress her with his intellectual maturity and what not. Well, she actually agrees. Except by the time she gets off her waitressing shift, Danny, a regular Don Juan, is fucking obliterated at the bar. He’s barely seeing straight. The old babysitter, out of the goodness of her heart, sends Danny home in a cab with a hot dog to settle his stomach.
Except, get this, Mr. Obliterated, Danny thinks the cabbie is some new buddy from the bars. So after a small argument he pays the cabbie. He’s offended as fuck cus he thought it was a free ride. So Danny props down on his lawn and just demolishes the hot dog. Then Danny, dip shit that he is, realizes that he doesn’t have no keys to his mom and pop’s place anymore, and he ain’t about to wake em up while he’s in his sorry fucking state of obliteration. Ah, but our Danny Boy, he’s a worker. This ain’t no problem for him. He just figures he’ll hop the fence and go in thru the garage. So last thing Danny remembers is hopping over the fence to the backyard, no impact from hitting the ground, just hopping over.
Well next day Danny wakes up and he’s sitting in the passenger’s seat of his mother’s car with his pop staring right at him. His pop asks him, ‘Hey kid whatta ya doing in my wife’s car?’ Danny has no fucking clue. His head is throbbing like a techno beat. So he says to his pop, ‘I couldn’t sleep.’ His pop says, ‘Well, next time, why don’t you try parking your ass in your bed instead of my wife’s car.’ So Danny says, ‘Okay pop’ and goes back to bed. Sometime like later on that morning, his pop wakes him back up and he says, ‘Come here Danny Boy.’ His pop walks Danny out to the back yard. He starts speaking, ‘I know we don’t have no dog, and there haven’t been any wild animals broke out of the zoo lately, and the neighbor’s kids have been toilet trained. So could you please help me out as to whose shit that might be on my yard?”
I rushed back into the room just in time to hear the tail end of the story. I literally burst into laughter all fifty-seven times I heard it, but there was no hint of comedic appreciation on the waitress’s face, “Here’s twenty bucks. I’m a man of my word. Even if I’m time traveling when I make the promise. My sober self fully supports my alcoholic self. Great story right?”
Tamara meticulously counted the crumbled up cash until she was satisfied it was the correct amount, “Uh yeah, you guys are so fucking sick. Please don’t ever come in the strip club while I’m working again. That story was not worth free Chinese food. I really think Danny is code word for Kevin, because he obviously thinks every stranger is giving him a free ride. I get that he’s time traveling, but you Marky must be high to tell me such a stupid story.”
With that Tamara proceeded to exit our humble abode. Mark stood under our Jim Belushi college poster hollering at her as she walked away, “Of course I’m high darling! You know relatively speaking smoking is less of a fucking hamper on ya daily life than drinking. Whereas that drinking shit will really stop ya from being a fully functional person! I ain’t about to fucking start prancing around with a ‘legalize-it’ shirt on, but what’s criminal or degenerate bout some kid passed out on his couch covered in munchies?!!! Nothing right?!!! Right?!!! I mean fucking worst case scenario he’s gonna send Lays Potato Chips stock through the fucking roof. Worst case scenario!”
I shut the door hoping to avoid another complaint from our neighbors, “Well that did not go according to plan. I can’t believe that bitch didn’t love Danny boy and his time travel story!”
Mark smiled whimsically, “So to recap, you deep down in your heart of hearts thought you could bang out a stripper waitress who has a boyfriend? Alls you had to do was offer to buy them Chinese food for their Gossip Girl marathon? Kev you have an astounding faith in underdogs, kid.”
“I mean sometimes when you jump start the flux capacitor and dial up Doc Brown you take a wrong turn. Next thing you know you end up in some Biff Tannen alternate universe bullshit.”
“Bad news bears right? However, there are other times where you save the world and recreate 1985 into a place where your parents like to fuck each other.”
“Exactly my dude!”
“And to think the waitress chose her likely mentally unstable boyfriend, who probably has a child-sized cock over a well-balanced, driven, fine articulate young man such as yourself. Bad move by that broad.”
“Always the optimist aye Boston? Never knew positivity existed up North till I met you.”
“You fucking kidding me Kev? The Sox kid, that’s all I got to say.”
“Good fucking point.”