I did not meet my father for the first time until I was – I forget how old exactly – 19? 20? Something like that. It wasn’t a nice experience. For reasons detailed elsewhere in this blog I ended up back in the town of my birth, where I met my father and his parents – my paternal grandparents – for the first time in my life. My paternal grandparents wanted to get to know me, so I moved out of my Uncle P‘s house, where I had been temporarily residing, and into theirs.
This was 20+ years ago and it was a horrible time so I think I’ve blocked many of the details. What I remember is pretty horrendous.
I never really got to know my actual paternal grandmother – my ONLY memory of her is that I was working a dull and endless job as a cashier at a Coast to Coast hardware store, and this tiny wrinkled old white-haired lady came behind the counter and started making squealy-squee noises and talking about how lovely and solid I was (thanks – I think?) and hugging me! I was like – what the fuck?!! – I had no idea who she was. Upon sensing my alienation and mild alarm, she said, “I am your grandmother!” After some more sqeeing, hugging, squishing, and marveling over my very being, she left the store.
I never saw her again. Weird, right?!!
So, the rotten old bat that lived with my paternal grandfather was actually my step-grandmother. He had remarried years before.
The main thing that I remember about my step-grandmother is that she always did her best to make me feel like I was some kind of most horrible awful dirty. After every shower I was made to clean out the drain, spray down the entire tub and shower, basin, walls, spouts, everything, with cleaner, scrub, rinse, and then dry every surface with a towel. Every shower – no shit. Every one. Her and my grandfather sure as fuck weren’t doing that after THEIR showers! I got to step in their soap scum and/or pull THEIR fucking hair out of the drain! It was offensive as hell and more than a bit over the top.
I was so fucking dirty that I was required to have my own tube of toothpaste – absolutely no using theirs! Absolutely not! Just to make absolute fucking sure that I wouldn’t secretly make her toothpaste dirty, instead of leaving it in the bathroom cabinet, the old bitch actually kept it in her bedroom!
Like, if I’m so fucking dirty, then why did you people even want to get to know me? Why did you even ask me to move into your home?! – Because I sure as fuck had not asked them if I could. I didn’t invite myself. One day, the old bitch had a screaming fit at me – I still vividly remember it – unfortunately – she was wearing an alarmingly thin, transparent white nightgown, and she came running down the hall at me, screaming, with her tits flopping wildly every which-a-way! It would have been comical had it not been so horrible.
What was her fucking problem?
I had dared to leave dried fucking toothpaste spit crusted in the sink!!! 😮 !
Holy fucking grossballs, NO!
But… wait… there’s a fucking problem with that. Since I was barred from their precious tube of toothpaste – I might make it dirty! – I had bought myself a tube of my very own! I had a pink paste. What they had was a blue gel with fucking sparkles in it! That shit in the sink was looking mighty blue and sparkly to me!
She didn’t have an excuse for that. She didn’t have an apology for the harpy-like, screaming, tit-flobbin’ advance upon me due to it, either.
Of course she didn’t.
Grandfather now, what the fuck to say about Grandfather? Not long after I moved in with them I bought a TV from the pawn shop where my step-grandmother worked, with the understanding that Grandfather had promised to run a cable wire to my bedroom. It didn’t happen, and I wasn’t allowed to watch In Living Color – which came on fairly late – very very quietly in the living room, if Grandfather, who often stayed up late, had gone to bed. Why? Because the flickering of the TV light might penetrate my sleeping step-grandmother’s delicate eyelids – and the extremely low volume that I proposed might wake her – all the way down a long hallway, around a corner and through a wall.
Meanwhile, my grandfather blasting stupid WWF Superstars of Wrestling shit late into the night – often hours after In Living Color was long over – that didn’t bother her at all. Not even a little bit. Of course it didn’t. I wouldn’t have even known about the fucking TV at the pawn shop had she not told me about it – and suggested that I buy it!!! (It was a really good deal, due in part to her employment at the pawn shop). Such bullshit!
All I had to do at that time in my life was fuck around with doctors due to my busted face, work my miserable cashier job, spend evenings with the horrible paternal grandparents, walk my dog, exercise at the local rec center, and read a stupendous amount of library books. My life was so dull. The TV that I had paid for sat there, useless, in my room for months. She suggested i buy the thing and he promised he’d run the cable back into my room. He did not, even though I was so alone and bored that I was tortured with it. I had no boyfriend, no friends, no TV – nothing.
That was his minor offense. Get this.
This, this was the incident that finally made me say “fuck this” and move into a bedroom I rented from a horribly fucked-up alcoholic couple with two screaming brats – yeah, I knew it would be bad – and it was – but that’s how eager I was to get away from these people. I had gotten in trouble for hanging up a Black Crowes poster and had been forced to take it down – I actually got bitched at about four thumbtack holes in the wall – even though the wall was already visibly riddled with dozens of holes from things that had been hung and removed in the past – most likely by their daughter, who was an adult and had moved out years before. When I left the house each day to go to my miserable cashier job, the room was expected to look like nobody lived there. All books and possessions were to be in a closed drawer. All coats, clothes, boots, etc. in the closet with the door shut. Absolutely no signs of my personality, or fuck, my very existence, actually – were allowed to show. I was absolutely not to go out to any bars but the rec center was ok as long as I worked out and “came home looking worked out”. (?!! )
I was fucking 20 years old – I had been homeless already. I was way beyond this kind of micromanagement by anybody – I only endured it because I thought I needed their support and place to live while I was getting my rotting face fixed. It turned out, I didn’t.
Oh, you didn’t think I up and finally moved out of there because of a Black Crowes poster, did you?
Of course not, that was just a segue into what happened – a demonstration of how my personality was oppressed there.
My mother at this point was trying pathetically and frantically to make amends since I had uncovered her vast lie about my very conception. I’ve always had a thing for weird morbid shit and skulls. As a kid I had what I thought was a pretty decent skull collection – it was lost in the house fire, as was the AC/DC poster also shown in part here. I found every one of those skulls myself, in the lovely wooded countryside where I grew up. The coolest and most disturbing, I think, was the dog skull with the bullet holes in it.
Anyway, this was the mid 90’s when stupid battery-operated motion-activated shit was all the rage for Holiday decorating. When all of the cool Halloween shit was out my mother had found a very nicely made pirate’s skull with a motion sensor – it was supposed to hang from a tree limb or a porch railing or something, presumably, it had a hanging loop on the top of its morbid, plastic head. When activated, the eyes would flash red, the jaw would clatter open and shut, it would electronically growl pirate-y things like “yaarrr!” and “yo-ho-ho” and “ahoy matey” and “whar’s me gold treasure?!” It would also vibrate. She knew I would like it – I did – and she was in deep shit for her lies – so she bought it for me and mailed it to me. Of course my grandparents knew that my mom had sent me a package, it had come to their house, kind of hard to hide that! – and when they saw what it was when it opened it you should have seen the big little eyes they made at each other! 😮 ! I was instructed to take it out of their sight. I knew I was expected to hide it away but I was feeling sulky, petulant, super-oppressed, pissed-off and defiant, so I thew it on the top of my dresser in my room. It stayed there a couple of days and the harpy-witch step-grandmother never bitched about it, so I figured the daily room checks must have gotten old after – I forget how many months I lived there at that point. 6? 8? I don’t remember anymore. An unfortunate while, anyway.
The morbid little pirate skull didn’t do anything for days – I turned it off. I had a backpack I took to and from my job with me, with my library books, Walkman, cassette tapes, lunch and whatnot in it. I think when I came home and threw it on the dresser one day I knocked the switch on the skull from off to on, but it didn’t respond immediately. I dug my library book out of my bag and crawled into my bed, the cold, dead eye of my TV – hooked up to nothing – staring at me as I read. My dog, Hobo, pushed his chubby way into the bedroom – I always left the door ajar so he could come and go as he needed – and he pounced his chubby fuzzbutt up onto the foot of the bed. All the sudden we were both startled by this buzzing sound – what the fuck?! Hobo piled on top of me, bug-eyed and snorting. Then I realized that the pirate skull was flashing vibrating – for some reason it didn’t proceed with the loud pirate-y bullshit, it just stopped. And then it vibrated loudly against the wooden dresser top one more time. I was trying to struggle my way out from my dog and my blankets when my grandfather slammed suddenly into the bedroom, looking mirthful and wild-eyed. He was crestfallen when he saw the pirate vibrating away on the dresser. His shoulders literally slumped with palpable disappointment.
“Fuck,” he said, mildly. “I had so been hoping to catch you with your vibrator – or maybe even with your dog!” And then he turned heel and quietly left.
What the FUCK?! Yeah… that actually happened.
I NEVER masturbated in their house. Never-ever. Not once. I sure as hell never owned a sex toy at their house, either. I dealt with my sexual frustration the same way I do now – forever moping over unattainable celebrity crushes. I wasn’t getting laid – I didn’t have any friends. I don’t even remember where or how I got the weed I had been smoking at the graveyard – I was so out of touch. I didn’t really start making friends in that town until I got the fuck away from my horrible grandparents.
What kid of grandfather wants to see something like that? Ever?!!!
I noped the fuck on out of there even if it DID mean rooming with the white trash family straight out of Hell for a while. As you would imagine, my time living with the extremely alcoholic couple and their two very young children – a 5 year old and a baby – was VERY short lived. Those people were crazier than hell, too. The woman downed at least a fifth of vodka every day. Minimum. By early afternoon she’d be passed out on her face and I’d be largely left to deal with her monster spawn. The 5 year old was traumatized by having such a useless shit for a mother, so she acted out horribly and the mother would let her smoke pot to chill her the fuck out. I often ended up taking care of the baby when it was a shitty, neglected starving mess just out of pity even though I REALLY don’t dig babies. It was, after all, just a baby. Can’t leave em hungry and stewing in their own shit and ass-sores for hours and hours, I guess – even if they’re not your problem. On days I had to work nobody took care of those kids. Technically there was an adult with them all day – their mother – but she, for the most part, wasn’t coherent or operable.
I kept the same job at the Coast to Coast store, even though it was even more of a pain in the ass to get to now (I had no car – everywhere was by bike or foot – and I had moved twice as far away). One day a scrawny long-haired hippie boy came into the store – just my type! – and when he looked at me he had butterflies and stars and hearts go shooting off of him. That happened to me a few times when I was younger – even with my face busted up as it was.
We hung out and shared lots of weed and lots of sex for a month or two and then he asked me to quit my job and go on (Grateful) Dead Tour with him. I was doing an unofficial poll of my regulars at the hardware store cash register – “should I quit this job and go on Dead Tour?!” One tough biker lady amazingly said, – “quit your job here, go on Dead Tour, have the time of your life, come back and then work for me.” She meant it and that’s what happened! Well, except for the time of my life part. Of course. I don’t get to have that. The guy ended up screwing me over – imagine my surprise? They all do. Or did.
Anyway, I went on Dead Tour where stuff happened and when I came back there was more drama with the alcoholic couple – I had paid them rent for the empty room for the two or three months I was on Dead Tour with the understanding being that my TV – the one that had been so useless at my grandparents house – and my other, meager possessions, clothes, books, and some furniture I had bought, would be safe. While I was gone the whole family fell in love with my TV – they had taken it from my room (without my permission or knowledge, obviously) and placed it in their living room! They were extremely loathe to give it back. In the end I got it back – I “broke in” with my key – took my TV and left the key. My TV was sticky. 😦
I started renting a trailer from the biker lady – right next door from my new job at her biker bar! So, I was set free of my paternal grandparents and the horrible alcoholic couple – not much later social services swooped in and nabbed those kids. I was also set free of that horrible commute on foot! That damned Coast to Coast hardware store was so far away…
I saw the male half of the horrible, negligent drunk couple one more time – he showed up at my trailer (!) – I don’t know how he found out where I was. Small town bullshit. He bitched about the TV (to no avail) and then talked about how I had “tortured” him with my transparent nightgowns (I don’t remember wearing anything like that around his nasty old ass) and then he lunged at me! He was very drunk, per usual, and mid-lunge he somehow managed to fall sideways into the wood stove in my trailer that my landlady – the biker – had forbidden me to use. (The trailer had a furnace so that was alright). He knocked the stovepipe right out of the wall and the stove itself halfway off the platform on which it stood. He freaked out then and left. Imagine if it had been in use?
Imagine if he had managed to rape me? Fucking sex pest! Fucking sex pests everywhere!!!!
I don’t wish to segue too far from the topic of this blog entry, so here, I will end it.