Bent Words

Bent Words

June 17, 2008

I don’t want to be mean, trivial or trite. I don’t want to be ungrateful or weak or disrespectful but, seriously, would you just call them back? Give them a shout, drop by or shoot out an e mail. Hail a courier dove, direct an old fashioned letter or pass it on to a guy who knows a guy. But, please, tell them how you’re doing, bring them up to speed, respond to their inquiries…

Your friends.

They’re more dedicated to you then weathermen are to being shoddy and just like those failed forecasters, they’re not gonna give up – no matter how often they might think they should (if even they do). They are relentless, wonderful little freaks.

They drop in, one by one, once a week, once a month, barely twice in a year or solely on the sunniest days but, no matter how often or infrequent, their questions are all the same.

“How are you? Where are my parts? Has Shane moved to Brazil?”

Maybe you have. In which case you should have left a forwarding address. Seriously.

They ask me and then they come up with stories – ones that I’ve stood upon the edge of and ones that I run away from, screaming. They detail your recent wedding (“I just remembered I have to stock oil – lots of it.”) or they revisit moments of bottle rockets and beer or they recall races which I struggled to remember or they find a memory lost in the warehouse and, in the current confusion, it all becomes blurred in my head.

What am I supposed to say to all that? How is it that they think I hold the rights to your story?

They ask ME to keep them posted about YOU. As though by sheer will I could produce your current status from the sky. “Here you go, guys. Viola!” And I do tell them, five times, that I don’t know but still they ask, still they inquire, still they care.

They all have their theories…

Tim Dunn says you’ve been stolen, Riviera says you’ll call him back when you’re not so busy with the team, Jeffers knows your world is spread wide, Marc believes you’ve let go (perhaps), Breuer says you walked away and the rest all favor the words which echo desperately in my head; they say you’ve simply disappeared. Simply?

Maybe you had to leave something behind.

Maybe they’re all tucked carefully away amongst your mélange of memories, nestled near your racing leathers and your expressions of weary glee. Sitting there and staring, an endless line of personalities, ready to be called upon and yet your response rests silently on the tip of your tongue – all those people who were your friends.

They still are. (Not the dyno runs for a case of beer guys but all the other ones.)

And I get it if you need your space, your getting-back-to-the-basics time but, believe me, whatever you are now, wherever you’re at, however you roll – it’s good enough. They don’t expect for you to produce a whole a pie; they just want a piece, a bite, the recipe, a good freakin’ whiff (crap analogy, yeah, but go with it). That’s all. Why? Because they were dedicated and they still are – that’s not an easy one to ‘simply’ let go of. It doesn’t just disappear.

So please – call them.

‘Cause I honestly don’t know what’s more difficult; the fact that I just don’t have answers, the fact that they ask every other day, that they care more than I gave them credit for or the fact that I want to know myself more than all of them combined. Every day, all day, walking away, in every way.

Your Friend (five times, always and regardless),


Written at 10:15 p.m.