Thursday, March 18, 2010

Sparkle and Shine

The rest of the evening with Mona was filled with fun and frolic-- interspersed with brief periods of rest. Sunday morning after we showered she packed up her stuff and we went to Perkins for breakfast. When we got back to my place I helped her load up her Camaro and she roared on down Rte. 50 headed for home.

I saw her again that summer and we fucked some; but she was done with me. Not much more to tell about Mona. I have no idea where she lives today. I hope she's well. She taught me a lot.

I never did figure out if she engineered my breakup with Sharon. In the end, it really didn't matter.

During that semester I was also hanging out with Ann and Sparkle. Ann lived near my home and Sparkle was at school so never the twain did meet. (That made no sense and I'm ashamed I typed it.) I mentioned them some time ago, but since I post so infrequently it would be pretty stupid for me to think you remember anything about those two. Here's part of what I wrote about Sparkle way back in October...

One of the electives I was taking was a creative writing class. I figured that it wouldn’t hurt a Radio/TV major to be able to write better. The professor was a great guy who believed that the best way to learn how to write was to actually write, not just talk about it. So we wrote tons of stuff and then we critiqued everything we wrote in class. It turned out there was an absolutely outrageous character in that class, a sophomore girl called Sparkle.

Sparkle's real name was L.J.M. but everybody knew her by her nickname which I have barely disguised as Sparkle. Believe me, if you were around the English building on campus in those years you knew Sparkle. She was the most over-the-top, flamboyant person I've ever known-- and I've known a few crazy-ass people. She was, by outward appearances, fearless. She wasn't a slim woman but she wasn't overweight either. Well, not way overweight. She was very, um, curvy. That doesn't quite tell it. Think Jayne Mansfield with a little extra baby fat.

OK. Maybe more than a little extra baby fat. But the thing was, Sparkle never tried to dress to understate her size and shape. The opposite was true. She delighted in just spilling out everywhere in the most outrageous clothes. Low cut tops. High cut shorts when spring arrived. Plus shoes that would make a hooker blush. And bleached hair. She was blind as a bat and wore glasses with frames from decades previous-- because glasses that were current and fashionable would have been way too common for Sparkle.

I found her interesting as a character, but I wasn't interested in, ya know, going out with her. Hell, Sparkle kind of scared me in the way that one of those roller coasters that flips you upside down scares me.

Early on in the term, before I had ever actually had a conversation with her, I was walking along the brick walkways of the main part of campus when I saw her walking towards me. Rather than act like I didn't recognize her from class I said, "hey" in my monotone, non-committal, dullard way when we were about two steps from each other. Sparkle dropped her voice about three octaves and said, "hey" back. I didn't look back despite her mocking tone. Then I heard her yell at me, "Mr. Wilson!" in her normal voice. I stopped, turned and looked at her, "What?"

"Don't be an ass. You should always be happy to see me!" she said.

From that point on we always spoke to each other around campus. I tried to be polite to her and she always looked at me with this knowing look. Like there was something going on that I was supposed to know about. But I sure as hell didn't know what it was.

The professor had us make enough copies of everything we wrote (sometimes, not always) to pass out to all the others in the class. Before the next class we were supposed to read everyone's work and write brief comments in the margins. One assignment I wrote something that was pretty much a ripoff of Charles Bukowski. Dark, dirty, in a drunkard's voice. At the end of class the prof (who by the way correctly saw it as Bukowski inspired) collected all the critiques and we got them from him on the way out. I threw my stack in my backpack and drove out to the apartment.

Sitting at the kitchen table drinking a Golden Goebel I flipped through them. Most of the comments were worthless-- I figured that most people didn't actually read the story. One of the women in class wrote a lot and hated it, hated me, and wondered why I celebrated degenerative characters. She was pretty smart and I took her charges to heart. Then I hit one where all that was written, at the bottom of the first page, was "over". I turned the sheet over and saw a single sentence followed by the initials LJM.