I'm not screwing around here either, this is no mere invented horror story, I'm deadly serious. With Serafina as my witness, I proclaim that the events I'm about to recount did truly occur in the State of Illinois and Township of M*****, on the 23rd day in the month of July, the 2010th Year of Our Lord.
My tale actually begins much earlier, all the way back in 1978, at a small private school, where a pair of social outcasts befriended each other, eventually becoming intimate. She'd tell you that I was her first lover, and I'd have to admit that she was my first love. We dated for two years, attending Homecoming and Prom as a couple while underclassmen.
Standing almost equal to my 6' height, she was a tall girl, with a particularly strong oval shape to her face. She was called "Balloon Head", a name that made me wince every time I heard it used. I was just a poor boy at a rich kid's paradise, attending by the grace of an academic scholarship. One of my classmates occasionally drove his Father's brand new 1979 Porsche to school, I drove my deceased Grandfather's 1966 Plymouth Fury, and was grateful for having transportation.
At the time, I didn't consider us to be sexually adventurous, and compared to what I hear and read about kids today, we'd be perhaps a bit behind the curve, perhaps not. I know that at the age of 16 I thought about sex most every waking moment, not to mention dreaming about it at night, so it seemed rather normal to me when we'd try to always find a way to sneak off from a crowd to fool around.
I don't intend to be too graphic about our young lust, technically it's borderline kiddie porn, we were both just 16 at the time we started having sex. But, I have to admit, the venues we found for lovemaking were unique. I suppose it could be argued that my start with "Spiritual Sex" occurred with Balloon Head, as I did accept oral ministrations from her while inside the chapel of a Church. Without being too sacrilegious, I'll admit that was the only part of attending Luther League I honestly enjoyed.
Being an honors student helped me evade too much of any teacher's ire when we managed to disappear on the occasional Friday afternoon, when the school had non traditional scheduling and classes. Being "responsible" by using condoms I'd stolen from a local pharmacy was my way of showing that I cared. Being intimate meant that she told me her "secrets" - that she suffered from leukemia, and that she was adopted.
I suppose those things bound me closer to her, I felt somehow gallant for having this tragic love for a sick girl. I always saw her parents treating her just a little differently than her two sisters, and having a father of my own who'd been adopted, I felt very protective of my young girlfriend. I felt betrayed when upon confiding her secrets to my parents, that they told me it wasn't true, couldn't be true, and tsk tsk'd me for being so naive and gullible.
When she stopped returning my calls, a friend told me that she'd been pressured to do so by her Mother, a seemingly hateful old crone. The story was that her Mother knew I was planning on attending Medical School, seeing no immediate future I could offer a sick young lady, she insisted instead on her adopted daughter finding a more suitable and immediately available future mate.
Her loss hit me hard, and I was despondent for a while. I didn't date again for several months. Inevitably, I did move on with my life, I was married at age 18 and divorced at 21. While going through my divorce, a school friend and I were playing basketball together, and out of the blue he brought up the topic of Balloon Head.
My friend asked me if I knew she'd passed away . . .
He explained that my classmates had been informed of her leukemia by a teacher, who knowing my feelings for the girl, choose to tell the class on a day I was absent. He went on to say that Balloon Head had passed away during the second year of my marriage, and that no one had wanted to tell me about it around my wife.
I was stunned . . . shocked . . . I strongly felt the injustice and impermanence of life, I questioned whether there really could be a merciful God who could allow such a thing to happen to such a precious girl, a girl I felt had suffered injustice and injury with every turn.
Again, I moved on with my life, but I know the loss was felt deeply, it changed me. For the longest time I swore it was also my destiny to live fast, die young, and leave behind a moderately good looking corpse, for there was no meaning, no justice . . .
I took refuge in backpacking, in the wilderness. I disappeared one day myself, with nary a word to old friends, off to the Grand Canyon where I trained to become a chef. From there it was on to become an activist, community organizer, etc.
|Flock of geese on our wedding day|
The only thing that wasn't perfect was the presence of a pair of idiots on jet skis who seemed intent on watching our ceremony from the river, noisily gunning the annoying little craft's motors to fight the strong river
current . . .
(to be continued)