Sunday, October 23, 2011

I'll Make a Man Out of You

I was having a bit of a problem coming up with something to talk about and took to the Twitters and Google + to see if I could milk my listener pals for ideas.  My non-sexual life partner Bjorn gave me the idea of talking about trips I have taken or meeting people.  Then I realized that tomorrow is an old friend of mine’s birthday.  And although I have talked about Shannon before, I thought I could go a little more into detail of our friendship and things we did as kids.

A refresher on when Shannon and I met.  We were in the seventh grade.  He mother was an aide for our middle school and she had transferred back.  Shannon was and is a gorgeous girl and was dating my crush Michael.  A side note to Michael is my mom kinda dated his father when I was in high school.  Moving on.  Michael and I talked a lot about his drawing.  Not only was he cute he was an artist.  Shannon confronted me on trying to steal her man.  And me, not being one for confrontation, caved and said oh no, we’re just friends, we talk about art.  And through that, we because close friends and I was close with her parents and younger brother.

A little back story before I get into my first Shannon story.  When I was 13, I met the first love of my life David and his friend Mike.  They were 15 and soooo dreamy.  I think initially, David and my pal Janessa were trying to hook Mike and me up, but neither of us were interested.  But Mike and I turned out to be great friends for a good amount of time.  I thought Mike and Shannon would be a great couple and I made it so. 

The three of us hung out together a lot, but I did know when to make myself scarce.  A lot of dinners, movies, or just hanging out at Shannon’s house.  If there were nights Shannon couldn’t come out, Mike and I would go park in some random parking lot and listen to really bad music.  Mostly Bon Jovi.  He would try and teach me the “joys” of Metallica and talk about how he wanted an Acura Integra.  On the weekends from time to time when Mike had to work, Shannon and/or I would go hang out with him as they closed.  One Friday, my stepdad was going to take  us, but as he drove out of the drive way, the brakes went out on the car.  So Shannon and I hopped on the bus.  We came to find out that the bus wasn’t going its usual route and dropped us off about two miles down the road from the Round Table Pizza Mike worked at.  In order to get there, we had to walk over this bridge that had no lighting.  We were scared that someone was going to come grab us.  So we marched down the road “singing” Ace of Base.  And by singing, I mean loudly screeching.  And we were laughing so hard we almost peed our pants.  But that’s how we rolled; that’s kind of how I roll now. 

When we were sixteen, Shannon had just returned from living in Colorado for a year and her parents needed to go back and pick up some little things that were left behind and invited me to go along.  So Shannon and I climbed into the back seat of their black Pinto station wagon with red interior and we headed up to Grandby, Colorado.  I can say that I have seen the Rocky Mountains and they are quite amazing. 

Once night, on our way to Colorado, we stopped in St. George, Utah.  We were sleeping in a motel 6 or similar.  Shannon and I in one bed, parent in the other, and Ricky (the little brother) on the floor.  At some point in the night, Shannon threw her arms around me and mumbled in her sleep that she would make a man out of me.  I started laughing so hard, I woke he up.  It became the long running joke of the trip how Shannon was gonna make a man out of me yet. 

From St. George we made our way to Virgin River, Nevada.  On the way there, Shannon’s dad, whose name is Dave but I called Cliff joked that he was going to throw us in the Virgin River and if we sank, he knew who was a good girl and who wasn’t.  And while the parents were betting their nickels in, us kids played in the arcade, had $4.99 prime rib dinners, and crashed in the hotel. 

When we finally made it to Grandby, the parents showed me around the very small town.  Took me to little shops, and basically made me fall in love with the place.  I got to meet Shannon’s friends she made in Colorado where they took us out and I bought cigarettes and felt super cool because she didn’t even card me.  We went to some random guys house and drank Coors.  Shannon told me if we sucked on pennies, the parents wouldn’t be able to smell the beer on us.  So like fools, we sucked on dirty pennies.  BARF!  The parents may have known, but didn’t say anything. 

On the drive back from Colorado, Shannon and I decided that we were going to start a band and call it Greg after one of her hot guy friends.  I had found a touristy Sherriff Greg pin at a gas station and of course we had to buy one.  After a while, we both got a little sad.  Shannon missed her pals in Colorado, and I had fallen in love with the place, I was sad to be leaving. 

Shannon and I shared an affinity for music; all kinds.  We used to listen to everything from Pearl Jam, Hole, Elvis, to Garth Brooks all in the same night.  For my graduation, I was given Alanis Morrisette tickets and I took her.  When Violent Femmes came to town, we drove down to the club and rocked out on the beach outside. 

Shannon is in Idaho somewhere with her now husband and their two and a half children.  I said in my show about girlfriends that i wished we were still as close, but things happen, people grow apart.  I am also questioning her taste in music now a days.  But I will always have a genuine fondness for her and hope she's having a happy birthday.

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