Monday, September 15, 2003

life of buddy don, chaptur 56:
the argon of lonely


after the fire i wood sleep eethur on a sleepin bag in the floor of one of the smokey bedrooms or at the lil house with virgil n mj or at my parnts. n thang wuz, after we had all been so spooked that one nite bout the covens n all, we never agin really wurried bout that kinda thang agin.


fack is, i went into a spell of loneliness on a counta i dint wonta have a nuther relayshunship lack i dun with barbie, n fack wuz, i could barely keep frum havin one with her ever now n agin. n i wonted to change my life n live better, but i dint know whut to do.


but twuznt fer me to do innywho. turnt out my skedule at wurk wuz a'gone change agin. i had been wurkin graveyards n then evenins. finely cum a day when everbidy on our projeck gut into one room n went over everthang that wuz spozed to be happenin with the projeck n everthang that ackshly wuz happenin, n with me bein the main programmer, turnt out i knew as much bout it as innybidy, so they cunvints me to take day shif n be projeck hed. not knowin innythang atall bout office polticks, i fell fer it.


corse that mint i had to drop out of the classes i wuz a takin at roane state communty collidge, n whenever i wuz a'doin that i ast whut else did i have to do to finish thar, n they tole me i needed three more classes to git dun, so i picked em fer the quarter cumin up n sined up fer em. n that mint i had a odd skedule whar i wood cum in at 4 am on mundys n wendsdys n leave round lunch time to take a spanish class n then one last soseeallogy class. n then in the evenins of tuesdys n thursdys i wood take a art class.


n thang is, the change in skedule turnt my life aroun fer a while. i couldnt have all my bad habits, n i had to make new ones n they wuz mosly bettern the old ones i had. fer one thang, i dint see the old crowd at rscc n i dint have much chants to meet gurls. n shoneys big boy restrunt wuz in a dry spell far as waitresses wuz cuncerned, so i wuznt seein nobidy.


n mayhap on a counta that, i gut to whar i wuz feelin awful lonesum n wonderin whuther thay wuz innythang but loneliness to this life. it seemed to me that no matter whut i tride, whuther sex or drugs or relijun or frienship or innythang thar wuz in the way two folks could git along, nuthin i tride seemed to wurk.


it gut so i spent mos ever weekend with my cuzin franny, witch she wuz the yungest daughter of uncle buster n i never saw her much befor he died but after his funeral, she wood call now n then. she wuz takin classes at east tennessee state universty n she lacked bluegrass musick so she wood git me to cum up n go to festivals or to see folks lack john prine. n them weekends seemed lack the purrfeck symbol of how lonely i wuz on a counta i wuz more or less datin my cuzin n couldnt nuthin cum of that n we dint pertend lack thar wuz innythang more'n jes a shared intrest in music n gittin hi.


my uncle donald, witch he wuz my moms youngest bruther, he herd bout how i wuz feelin long bout then n he cum over n tride to testify to me n ast me to play a song fer him. i had jes writ a song called 'st. thomas' blues,' bout how hard tiz to have faith, witch the chorus sed 'give me the faith to have faith,' n whenever uncle donald herd the song, he sed twuz everthang a person needed fer life. n the nex saturdy he tuck me to a baptist prayer vigil dinner thang of sum kind n i watched all the old white men sit with thar hands in the air n thar eyes clozed n looks of peace n contintimint on thar faces.


n i sed to uncle donald that i dint see how twuz inny bettern gittin hi, n seemed lack twuz ever bit as lonely a thang as inny othern. n he tride to splain how ye wood git to whar ye wood feel lack ye wuz part of the hole congregayshun, but whenever i ast him whut that felt lack, he sed twuz sumthin ye couldnt splain n that made me ast how could innybidy know he had dun it n he sed he knew n mayhap sumday i wood know.


n we made plans whar he wuz a'gone take me to find out, but thangs tuck a differnt track n i had to wunder whut he wuz really thankin.


we all wundered, in fack, on a counta a few weeks later, he killed hisself. he wuz wurking at y12 n one day he went down in the argon pit n tuck off his oxygen n twernt but a mint or two till he couldnt move n then he wuz ded.


the funrull wuz a spekticle as ye mite magine. in fack, thay aint much of nuthin lack the funrull of a suicide. everbidy feels two ways at once, sad that hes gone n a lil angry at the way he lef. n thay wuz the inevtibull speckulayshun bout why he dun it, n whenever folks couldnt fine inny obveeus reason, they tuck to wunderin bout whuther he had sumthin awful to hide n thar wuz awful thangs sed bout him n his daughters, but they wuz all lies.


n after that, i wint thru a period of intense deesire fer a woman to share my loneliness n my bed n my hopes n my farm n my next trip n yew name it. but thar wuznt nobidy i even wonted to spend the nite with, n thar wuz sevrul times i tole barbie she wuz a'gone half to find sumbidy else to scratch her itch.


but i couldnt find nobidy to fit whut i wuz seekin n i figgered thay jes wuznt nobidy fer me. n i wood git to whar i wood stop by uncle donalds grave on my way to wurk ever mundy mornin n i wood wunder had he been as lonesum as i wuz feelin? n corse, he couldnt say nuthin back.


so i put myself into wurk n skool. ate lunch with iris n later it seemed lack susannah bilder wood join us till it becum her habit. n one day the subjeck of how uncle donald died cum up. susannah wuz a injuneer n she had studied lots of scientifick thangs n whenever i tole her whut happened, i reckon i sed sumthin lack he wuz poisuned by the argon, n she set me strate.


she splaint how argon aint no poisun n sed twuz a inert gas. so i ast her why did uncle donald half to die then? n she sed problem wuz how argon wuz heavier than oxygen n it dint kill him atall but only jes kep him frum gittin the oxygen he needed to live.


n i sed i unnerstood that purty good on a counta loneliness wuz a'doin me that verr way, n i could see a lil spark in her eye at that. n then we mooved on to the topick of gardens n turnt out we wuz both growin our furst'n, or in my case, the furst that wuz on land i owned.


then she sed i shouldnt let the argon of lonely block out the oxygen of life n i ast how she mint that n she sed mayhap i could show her the atomic museum.


n thats jes whut we dun, only after the museum we went to the mayflower inn on clinton hiway fer lunch n then went to see 'one flew over the cuckoos nest' n then i tuck her home n we wuz standin in the dark of her driveway till she ast why dint i cum in. so i did n we spent the nite together n twuz a disapointmint in lots of ways. she hadnt never had a orgasm n i couldnt find the trick to give her one, n by time we wuz sharin coffee after she had give us a brakefuss of fride taters n a mushroom, cheese n onion omlet, i felt lack i couldnt hardly breathe fer the argon of lonely i wuz feelin.


she ast did i wonta do innythang that day, but i claimed i had to git home n do sum wurk in my garden.


twuz a useful lie.

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