Date: Tue, 15 Nov 2016 23:00:47
Subject: Another Larkin Update
From: Zeke Krahlin
To: My Andromedan Cohort
I now know that Larkin hangs out at the booze den down the street, same side as my building, every Tuesday evening from around 6 PM to 9:20 or so. As luck would have it, that dive, too, has a large picture window facing the street. Just like Twin Peaks Tavern across the way. So it is now my habit to walk by there once I arrive hovel, walk slowly enough by the plate glass, to be sure he sees me…maybe even throw him a glance. Or a kiss, just to add a little spice to the grade B scenario.
So around 6:30 I approach “Beaux” (I know, stupid name for a bar); side door is open and I hear his stentorian, playful voice. But alas, his back is to the window and my mission fails. Returning on the same side of the street around ten minutes later, I do not see him anywhere; perhaps he is in the restroom. I light up a cig and hang out front several minutes, but no Larkin. Funny, though:
As I near the gate of 2306, lo and behold there’s his housemate Zachary, sitting at a taqueria table out front, perusing a magazine. He looks up as I pass within two feet: I look back and throw him a “your pathetic” chuckle. Other than a brief grimace, he does nothing. Now in front of my domicile, I lean against the bus stop shelter fifteen feet catty-corner. I watch to see if maybe Larkin will show up, but after three minutes or so, decide to enter Hotel California North, and watch some Youtube videos I downloaded this afternoon.
So time passes gazing at the LCD monitor and the various scenes that capture my attention. But not so much that I don’t wrestle with stepping out once more, to fulfill my Tuesday mission.
“No don’t bother,” my lazy self commands. “He’ll be ambling up the sidewalk soon enough, and you can either step out to greet him as he wanders by, or call out to him from your window.”
“True enough,” I ponder, “especially since His Goofiness always makes a point of acting boisterous as he crosses beneath my window. No doubt in hopes I’ll holler out, and I receive in return, the expected ‘fuk off’ remark that is, by now, his trademark greeting.”
But after watching episode six of “The Young Pope,” (very good BTW, though I don’t think Jude Law is so handsome as to play captivatingly gorgeous men, though he often does), my pixie side gets the better of me. So I don my sneakers once more, and my hoodie, and with a little tingle in my gut, step outside and walk towards Castro Street.
Nope, he’s not there at all. So I shrug my shoulders and continue my stroll until I reach the corner. Then something tells me to stop, turn around, and march back…I might get lucky this time. But I must admit: that was more my lazy half speaking, than it was the pixie.
As I near the bar once more, I see a tall, skinny man leaning against the lamppost, dressed in baggy shirt and pants, and sporting a crewcut. His back is turned to me, hunched over and diddling with a cell phone. There’s a large van parked beside him, offering to test anyone for HIV, bright light emitting from its windows and open door.
“Is that Larkin?” I wonder, though I can’t be sure.
I approach and pass, then look back. Yep, that’s the devil, alright! He is angled in such a way as to not notice me…or, I should say, to “pretend” to not notice me. Since we both know by now, he’s quite the game player and loves to trip me up. I call to him:
He looks up with a ready smile, but then when he realizes it’s his better half, scowls a bit.
“Go away, don’t bother me!” he gestures with a wave of that gangly arm.
My ambulation is slowed almost to a halt, though I continue to drift away as I speak once more:
“Well have a nice night anyway,”
He keeps gesturing those “get outta here” swipes as he replies:
“Yes, you too, have a beautiful night, just don’t bother me…aargh!”
“Thank you,” are my final words as I turn forward and leave his aura. Though I decide to pause further up the block, to have a smoke and watch him for a bit. As I do that, I think:
“I bet he was standing there all along, just out of my sight, watching me pause by the bar’s door and peek in. And I bet it was he who summoned me back, that I have the satisfaction of a mission accomplished. Once again, he tricks me into thinking I missed my chance, but at the last moment…voila!”
And he wasn’t particularly harsh, just like the last time our paths crossed (at the Castro Metro stairs), and since I had that dream of reconciliation with him and Zachary. In fact, he was gentle this time, though abrupt. But I’m concerned about Zachary, for when I saw him tonight, he looked haggard: hollow, dark bags under his eyes and way too skinny. Very elongated, drooping face, too. Like he has AIDS or something else equally serious. Cancer? Emphysema? Meth or alcohol abuse? I decided that, if I ever get the chance to speak to him, I’ll ask him if he’s alright, break through the wall of hostility Larkin created.
For my continuous reaching out to Larkin is because of all the truly /kind/ things he’s done for me, especially when he spoke these words to me in May of 2014:
“Our friendship, our being brought together, is a Godsend!”
And he spoke those words while crouched down to my level, face close to mine and one hand on my shoulder. Words full of passion and love. So he’s been fluctuating between icy hatred and sweet compassion towards me, these past four years. Forcing me to choose between the /mean/ Larkin and the /kind/ Larkin. Of course, I settled on the latter after pondering the situation for a long, long time. And I think he’s doing this intentionally, as a sort of test, or initiation, or a kind of Kung-Fu spiritual trial.
Okay, I’m gonna pause here ’cause I just noticed it’s 9:26 and I wanna step out to see if Larkin comes by. I don’t think he did yet, as he bellows and does a high karate kick on the metal sign sticking out of the curb. Which is in front of the taqueria. I’ll be back in a few…
Okay, I’m back. You won’t believe this, here’s what happened:
Outside by the bus stop, having my smoke while gazing off towards where Larkin may be approaching, when someone startles me with a tap on my shoulder.
I notice he’s a handsome, red bearded man in a funky, thick knitted light brown sweater that flows to the upper thighs. His pants look like pajama pants, with some sort of flags or rectangles in blue and yellow, on a black background and scattered about.
“No, you didn’t scare me,” I smile into those cool, gray irises. “I was lost in thought.”
He wants a light, so I hand him my Bic. He say thanks, hands it back. and saunters away. I call to him:
“That’s a wicked sweater ya got!”
He turns and says, “Thanks!” Then: “Check this out!”
I watch as he pulls up the sweater to reveal a yummy, tight torso girded in a pair of hip hugging, black boxer briefs. Sparse, light orange hairs, sweetly arranged.
“Is this what he wants to show me?” I question to myself. “Where’s this going?”
Then he yanks down a dark shirt hidden beneath that sweater, to reveal that it matches those silly pants.
“Oh, you’re wearing PJs!” I exclaim.
He smiles back, says “yeah,” then turns away to continue his march up Market Street.
No Larkin though, so I return upstairs to enjoy my dinner of thick, lentil-potato-onion-tomato soup garnished with kimchee, tamari sauce and a tablespoon of nutritional yeast sprinkled in. Well, no sooner had I consumed the sixth spoonful, than I hear a “whack” on that metal sign outside. Peering out the window, I see guess who?
Apparently, he had ordered a bite from the taqueria, as seems to be his wont these days, after exiting *cough* “Beaux” for the night…and is prancing some kind of terpsichore on the sidewalk, with complicated steps, waving of the arms, and a broad whirligig here and there. The arms of a large, fluffy off-white jacket are tied about his waist, giving the impression of a matador. He greets anyone who passes by and receptive to his handshakes, hugs and friendly greetings.
After he dances several more vigorous minutes, I call out to him:
“I’ve seen better dancing!” He doesn’t seem to hear me, so I repeat the line. He then looks up, hollers back:
“Leave me alone, stop bothering me!”
Then he loudly mutters other words which I can’t really hear, as he positions himself behind a lamppost so I can’t see his face. I retort:
“Yet you still speak to me!”
His public antics continue as he awaits his meal, chatting to other patrons. But then I hear his conversation with someone who is apparently an employee, laughing at Larkin’s humorous quips. As I listen, I realize he’s looking for a job there, questioning the employee about who to talk to, when to show up, stuff like that. Well, Eleanor, this is /most/ intriguing, for if he /does/ start working there, he’s even /closer/ to my residence than *hack* “Beaux” his newest watering hole!
I call out to him a coupla more times, something humorous. At one point he directs a finger at me, from the end of a lanky arm, and shouts:
“Stop stalking me!”
I just laugh back: “Ha! Whatever you say.”
Well, Larkin steps into the taqueria for maybe ten minutes, before stepping back out and walking towards, and beyond, my window. I call out:
“Thanks for the show, I really appreciate it. That was very nice.”
He says not a word, but continues down the sidewalk. So I bellow:
“I hope you get the job! God bless you, Larkin, God bless you!’
So here we have a new story, El, one that Larkin had already planned for me to write about, once the scenario ensued and played out. As My Dragon Guardian has been doing since…oh, I don’t know…since we first met, I suppose.
He /knew/ I wanted to see him tonight, so what does he do? He puts on a show!
And it makes perfect sense, his showing up more frequently in my world again…as the gay holocaust is close upon us, and my destiny about to be fulfilled as a global LGBT leader, with Larkin my guardian, advisor, teacher and BFF. Just like I’ve figured all along, and even described in my novel, published in July of 2013.
Guess I’m soon to be “freed from this bond.” Like releasing the bronco from its pen, kicking and snorting for victory.