Sunday, September 21, 2003

life of buddy don, chaptur 60:
the munth of changes


september has always been the munth of changes in my life. i reckon tiz fer mos folks on a counta the way skool wurks. twuz in september i furst lef home to go to skool. n septembers the munth i furst marrd n four years later, twuz in september that darlene n i separated. n twuz september when i gut together with suze, witch everbidy at the farm called her suzie but i always called her suze or even jes su once we gut close. n that same september i started a'goin to ut, n that wuz a big change, bigger'n i could magine whenever it started.


my plan wuz to majur in jurnalism on a counta folks lacked the way i could write n i figgered i'd larn more bout it n make my money a'doin it. n that mint i had to git into the jurnalism collidge n fer that i had to show em i could type n that i had made purty good grades n all. i could type a little n my gpa wuz 3.99, witch i had made a b in golf my furst quarter even tho i wuz one of thonly ones in the class could play the game, but the perfesser figgered everbidy wood be happy with gittin either a or b fer the class. i dint cumplain on a counta i dint figger then how i wuz fixin to git strate a marks otherwise.


innywho, i went fer the innerview n showed em i could type n showed em my grades n they let me in. i signed up fer the furst jurnalism class ye had to take n a westurn civilizayshun class n politcull science n economics.


i later dropped the economics class whenever the teechur cheated on the furst test by puttin a questchun on it that wuznt in ever edishun of the book. i ast him bout it whenever he dun it n he put his nose in the air n sed twuz spellt out in the sillybus witchn we studints had to buy but i sed i had dun bought one on my own a year ago n red it. i dint see why i had to buy a new one. n he sed in that case, he dint see why i should expect innythang bettern a c on the test. twernt fair. i knew all tuther questchuns inside out. n bes of all, i knew the grade game thanks to darlene, n that mint i wuznt playin with sumbidy who dint play fair.


the politcull science class wernt all that speshul, but tuther two were jes rite fer me. thang wuz, they changed whut i wonted to do with life.


furst thar wuz jurnalism, witch the main thang i larnt frum it wuz i dint wonta be a jurnalist. i know they wuz heroes back then n wood report the truth bout even the presdint of the united states, unlack they later becum, but the thang that gut me wuz the awful way they had to live.


i larnt about that whenever we tuck a field trip to the knoxvull news-sentinel n the knoxvull journal, witch they wuz in the same buildin with one cummin out in the mornin n tuther in the evenin n seem lack the sentinel wuz a wee dab more librul than the journal.


but dint nun of that have much affeck on me. whut cunvints me i couldnt be a jurnalist wuz the horrbull wurkin cundishuns. we went into the room whar they wuz a'makin up the news, n twuz nuthin but a wide open field of lil cubiculls, each with its own desk n phone n typewriter n busy lil jurnalist. n twuz a verr noisy place to whar i couldnt magine folks could hear tharself thank.


thang is, i live in a lil cubicull village now n it dont bother me nun. but whenever i saw thatn, twuz the furst time i had ever seen one n i had been wurkin nuthin but midnites all alone in the quiet with my cumputer n my own offus n i couldnt magine how i wood be able to do innythang a'wurkin in such a place.


corse, that aint the hole reason. as ye mite member, when i wuz jes 2 i larnt bout runnin away. n whenever i run away to californy, twuz purty much the same thang, hedded away but without no idee bout whar i wuz a'goin. this time twernt jes wontin to git away frum jurnalism.


twuz fallin in luv with the westurn intelleck-chew-all tradishun, the greeks n histry n flossofy n litertchur n yew name it. n this cum bout on a counta havin a grate perfesser in that western civ class.


twuz a huge thang with over 200 students. the perfesser cum in with two t.a.'s, witch the t.a. stood fer teachin assistunt n they walked with him lack they wuz his bidy guards, witch they wuz in a way. he cum in lack a rock star at a concert n he even put on his lil microfone n innerduced his self as docter sheffield. he wore his hair n beerd lack one of them greek flossofers, socrates or plato fer eggzample, n he had im a big deep voice n whenver he gut to spinnin tales of the burth of civilizayshun n all, twuz bout the mos eggcitin thang i had yet hurd.


corse, i wuz back to wurkin midnites n jes givin the cumpny the programmin they wonted without nun of the ambishun, so that mint i only needed to give em bout three hours a night, jes a nuff to keep ahed of the day shift. n that mint i could read ever book that wuz eether required or recummended, n thar wuz a long list of em.


n seem lack i wuz finely a'gittin at the truth bout how we cum to thank the way we do. n mos everthang we used to talk bout whenever we wuz trippin wuz dun covered better by socrates n plato n aristotle. twuz as if i had cum online fer the furst time n could git a peek at whut all thar wuz that ye could know n look up.


but twernt all good. we cum to the furst test, n heres whut twuz. they give us 30 mints to write two essays on these here 2 questchuns: (1) "Sum up the contributions to philosophy made by the Greeks during their Golden Age"; and (2) "Discuss the rise of Christianity, explaining its advantages, the environment in which it grew, its relationship to Judaism, etc. Was the rise of Christianity the cause of the 'decline' of Rome? What relationship do the two pheonomena have?"


whenever i saw them questchuns on the test, it made me mad. how wuz we spozed to perduce innythang of valu in 30 mints on topicks lack them? ye could spend yer life on eethur one of them topicks n still not git to the end of whut ye wood need to say. i dont know whut the anser is, but i also dint thank that test wuz good fer much. thays folks that knows thangs but cant put em down in ritin real fast. even if i wuz one of the lucky ones, it still made me mad.


so whenever they had the discushun class, witch that wuz run by one or tuther of the t.a.'s and not even the real perfesser, we gut to discussin the test n i splained whut wuz rong with it. n the t.a. couldnt git my point on a counta i had dun got a a on it so whut else did i wont? i tole him i wonted a better method of findin out whuther folks had larnt whut wuz bein taught n that gut to whar he sed we should talk after class n that gut too long fer me on a counta i had to go to bed sos i could wurk that nite at midnite.


the t.a. seemed rite impresst bout how i had me a job, n he ast how had i dun it n i splained it best i could. n he sed mayhap i wood lack to tell docter sheffield bout whut wuz rong with that thar test, n i sed i shore wood. so he set up a pointmint with docter sheffield fer 12 noon the next thursdy.


i wuz thar rite on time but he made me wait till he wuz dun with a differnt student. then he ast me in. twuz a tiny lil place jes stuffed with books, i mean frum the floor to the ceilin on shelves n even more in piles on the desk n in the floor. ye had to step real keerful lack to keep from knockin em over.


we gut to talkin n he let me make my points n then he made a cuple n twuz a lot lack talkin with my daddy n on a counta that, it went a lil long till i sed i lacked his class n he sed i had a good grasp of rhetorick n i ast whut wuz that n he give me a book with the same title by aristotle. n then i gut up to leeve, but we gut to discussin fate n eddipuss till i couldnt hardly stand all the thoughts a runnin thru my hed. n i dint fall asleep till near five o'clock on a counta i wuz readin that aristotle book n i knew i had found the real thang.


n frum that i determined that i wood not be a jurnalist, but i wood study flossofy n i wood git to whar i could flossofize as good as docter sheffield n mayhap i mite cum to unnerstan bout whar ye need to look fer god or ifn thar could even be one n i could git ansers to them other questchuns that wuz a'bothern me lack whut wuz good n whut wuz real n whut wuz beeyootiful. n why they wuz too.


whenever i splained my plan to suze, twuz the start of sum truble that jes dint wonta go away.


thang is, suze wuz a verr practicull woman. she could see how ye could make a lil money peddlin yer jurnalism, witch whut she dint git wuz why dint i go into cumputer science, quote whar the money wuz unquote, witch i tole her strate out thar wuz no way i wuz a'gone spend my life wurkin with cumputers, or at least, that wuz whut i thought at the time. innywho, she could see whar ye mite git sum pay fer jurnalism, but she couldnt thank of innyway to git money frum flossofy no matter how good ye could doot.


i could see how she mite thank the way she dun. see, susannah leah bilder wuz a orphan frum tonowanda new york, witch thats up round buffalo sumwhar. her mama had died of cancer n her daddy had died of a hart attack. she had two bruthers n one sister n she wuz the thurd of em n she wuz 8 years old whenever her daddy died, witch he wuz secunt to go n dint even lass a year after her mama died. so her uncle razed her n her bruthers n sister, n that wuz a hard way to go.


n wurst wuz, all four of her grandparnts died in them concentrayshun camps overn nazi germny. n whenever she tole me that, twuz as if i had run into a ugly wart on the verr nose of histry, one ye cant keep frum lookin at once ye notice it. n i could see frum such a histry whar she mite wonta know how to take keer of herself.


fack is, thats why she gut her degree in chemicull injuneerin. she splaint it thisaway. she knew she wuznt willin to wurk hard a nuff to be no docter n she couldnt take lookin at peeples teeth all day so bein a dentist wuz out n she dint thank she wuz smart a nuff to be a lawyer n she figgered she mite make a good psychiatrist but thar wuz that docter thang agin.


so she figgered she could git good money as a injuneer, n chemicull seemed lack the easiest one to go fer. n thang is, as odd as such logick is, twuz near the same as darlene used whenever she deecided to be a lecktricull injuneer, only in her case, she wuz in luv with math.


i tole suze i dint subscribe to her logick n i had to follow whut i wuz curyas to larn n i figgered ifn i larnt it good a nuff, i ought be able to figger out how to make it pay. but she wood git to astin how n i couldnt give her a anser ceptn i knew twuz the rite thang to do.


corse, thars always more toot than ye kin splain whenever ye go over the bare bones of the conflick. thar wuz also the fack that with me wurkin midnites n a'goin to skool all mornin, well, i couldnt see suze atall till the weekends n then thar wuz the fuss n fite over sundy afternoon on a counta i wonted to go to bed n she wonted to do sumthin with the rest of her weekend.


n that wuz hard on a counta we got along so well whenever the weekend cum. fer one thang, she wuz a hedonist n she wuz the one that taught me whut that mint. she wuz a grate cook n she taught me bout wines n showed me that budweiser warnt much in the way of good beer. n she taught me bout growin marrgolds to keep the bugs outen yer garden, witch twuz too late fer our garden that year, but i used em the nex year. n she gut me to growin a herb garden. n twuz frum her i larnt bout egg plant n whenever she found out i wonted to quit eatin meat, she showed me how we could eat more differnt thangs thataway.


ceptn she sed she resurved the rite to make chicken soup with matzo balls ifn need be on a counta twuz medicin, n fack is, she could cure ye of a cold bettern innybidy.


n the main thang bout bein a hedonist wuz how she luved sex n luved to see how could it be better n more intents n all. she lacked fer it to go real slow n last a long time. n she lacked to have musick on in the background n she luved fer everthang to be goodn lubricated, witch she taught me the wurd lubrishus n tiz a goodn. she wood even use oils to make thangs slippier n more lubrishus than they already wuz n thar wood be a smell n feel toot n she wood say twuz bes to appeal to all 5 of the senses, n that mint she wonted whut she called a tung lashin, witch i hadnt really larnt thatn as well as i thought i had.  fack is, i larnt a lot frum her that i never knew befor bout women.


n thang is, on them sundy afternoons when she dint wonta let me go to bed, witch i wonted to be thar by 2 if possbull, 3 at the latest, well, the bed wuz whar we wood half the battle n sex wuz our weppons. i wood try to give her a lil peck on the cheek n say 'goodnite, ima gone to bed now,' but she wood kiss me a lil more n say how she wuz a'gone miss me. n i wood kiss her back a lil n say i wuz a'gone miss her too. we wood carr on lack that till finely i sed i jes had to git to bed.


n ifn twuz a'gone end ugly, she mite say twood be wurth it ifn i wuz a'gittin a degree in sumthin whar thar wuz a chants i wood be able to pay bills ifn i ever graduwaited n then i woodnt be able to keep silent till we wuz into a good fuss n fite n that ended whenever she roared off in her orange beetle. n i wood be halfway glad, jes to have it over.


but sumtimes it dint end ugly. she wood say she wuz a'gone cum with me n take a nap, witch she luved a nap bettern innybidy. n sumtimes we wood fall strate to sleep, but manys the time we wood git to touchin n nex thang ye know it could be 7 o'clock n i wood be mad on a counta she wooda dun wore me out by then n i had to get up n jes 3 hours, n she wood feel bad but she wood say twuz good fer me n i knew it.


but one time it ended ugly n we dint talk atall fer three or four weeks strate, maybe longer. n i wuz halfway glad on a counta i dint feel i needed to git me no gurlfriend on a counta i had one even ifn we wuznt talkin so i gut a lot more dun on weekends n gut to sleep.


but then i gut to missin her, n thar wuz mornins whar i wood pass her cumin in to wurk whenever i wuz on my way home. n i could see she wuz watchin fer me n purty soon we wuz wavin at each other till i figgered i needed to do sumthin. by then i had larned to quote see her unquote, n she had becum verr beeyootiful oncet i caught onto her kinda purty. i cant splain that kinda thang, but twuz a fack, n i wood half to larn it overn over agin.


twuz in the middle of the hi holy days. i had been readin a book on judaism on a counta i wonted to know more bout her, so i knew twuz about then.


i called her n ast wuz we ever gone see each other agin n she sed wuz we? n i sed mayhap i should ast her out on a date, n she sed mayhap i should, but whut happens if she sez no? n i sed twuz a chants i wood half to take on a counta i had sumthin real speshul in mind.


corse that gut her a'goin till she wuz beggin to know whut twuz. i sed i dint wonta tell her till i knew ifn she wuz free on fridy nite. n she sed she dint see why not, so whut wuz the sprize?


i sed twuz the hi holidays n mayhap we could do whutever ye do fer it. she wuz sprized that i even knew n wonted to know how i had dun it. i splained how i wuz a'studyin up on thangs.


'buddy don duncan, you are full of wonderment.'


she splained how she used to be all eggcited bout this time of year whenever she wuz young, but she gut tired of her relijun the way folks lacks to do once theys out on thar own. i ast her did that mean she woodnt go to her church with me, witch she dint anser but only splained that they generly called it temple, so i tole her i still wonted to go.


i could see that she never wooda dun it ifn i hadnt been astin, n even then, she dint much wont to, but i kep on n tole her i hadnt never been. n i sed i bleeved it could be as big a thang as trippin n she lafft n asked wuz i ever a'gone keep my promiss n teech her how, n i kissed her n sed i wood swap with her on it. n she sed twuz a deal.


so i gut out my good suit n polished sum dress shoes. i trimmed n cleaned myself up nice n made sure i wuz as pealin to the 5 senses as i could be. i made us a beethoven tape fer my cassette n cleaned out my car n sprayed it with a wee dab of lysol. n whenever i i picked her up, she wuz dressed up too n i dont know when i'd ever felt more moved by a womans simple beauty.


the temple wuz over on kingston pike. the place wuz full, n the servus hit me much hardern i speckted. n fack is, it made me almost wonta cry. i had jes been readin bout ritchul magick, n here wuz the granddaddy of em all. n i could see how a'keepin such ritchuls could make folks strong n give em a healthy lank to thar past.


twuz a lot lack the feelin i wuz a'gittin frum studyin westurn civilizayshun n i tole suze as much n seem lack that gut her a lil over to my side.


we cum out n tuck a drive. we had waited till after the servus to smoke innythang, n we even drove back to oak ridge down by melton hill lake n we sat out on a bench n smoked n talked. n she wuz sprized at how much the servus had made her thank n how deep inside it had touched her. n i tole her how it had dun me. n i splained how twuz a lot lack the feelin i wuz a'gittin a'studyin flossofy n that i knew twuz the rite thang to do.


by then i had her in my arms n wuz talkin in a bare whisper. she lacked to rub noses verr slow n twuz quite affecktiv n we kissed a while n touched n purty soon she sed she could unnerstan how i wonted to study flossofy n ifn i felt so strong bout it, mayhap i wuz rite. i wuz so happy i kissed her n stroked her a lil till she started in to moanin. n then her hands wuz roamin all over that suit till they found whut they wuz a'lookin fer n i lafft out loud whenever she tuck a hold.


n she cum in even closer n put her lips rite on my ear n her voice wuz low n sexy n it made me tingle the way she whispered n squeezed me. n real slow lack only she could do she sed histry (squeeze) n books (squeeze) n flossofy (squeeze) n ritchuls that move us (squeeze) n make us grow (squeeze kiss squeeze) n make us thank bout thangs (squeeze kiss squeeze) is wine fer the sole (squeeze) n we should uncork it (squeeze) n drank deeply (kiss).


then she kissed my neck n begun kneelin. n then she wuz a'sayin how luv wuz food fer the sole. i reached down n tuck her hair in my hands. n she looked up fer a mint, then she bowed her hed n sed how we should take of it, n having taken, eat till we wuz satisfide.

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