Searching For Larry Screws


I wake up and feed the dogs. I’ve lost track of a couple of Prozacs so take my dog’s. Same dose. Her’s is cheaper though. Go figure. I have a pot of coffee. Try to decipher my dreams. Am I gay? Will a violent death befall me? Is the dream of falling some atavistic remnant of our primordial primate tree-dwelling days? I burn a stick of incense. Frankincense. It reminds me of Catholic Church. Forgive me father for I have sinned.

What have I done? My whole life. You tell me. Convince me otherwise. My whole life. The entire breadth of it seemed heading in the right direction before swerving down a contrary course. But there are one or two things along the way that I can’t shake.

One was grabbing Adrianna Goodheart’s tit while I kissed her. She slapped me. Hard. No she said. Was that a tongue? I meant to ask her but that was it. The next day her boyfriend burned down our fort and my mom found our Penthouse magazine buried in a toolbox underneath the fake astro-turf carpet we had stolen from the mini-golf range’s dumpster when the firemen pulled it back to make sure all the fire was out.

The other thing was the Penthouse. Two things about that. One, there was a really hot lesbo scene in it.  A blonde and a brunette in Nazi apparel getting it on on a big white shag carpet before a roaring fire in some Gothic cabin in Sudetenland. Who the fuck knows where? They may have been vampires. I didn’t get that blonde/brunette dichotomy but it made me harder than Chinese Algebra. A few years earlier I got my first hard-on watching Raquel Welch in Fantastic Voyage on TV. I was dry-humping the floor so vigorously my parents thought I was having a seizure. My brother knew what was what but he just sat off to the side laughing letting me get psychoanalyzed by those two.

Second thing about the mag was an interview with a writer named Larry Screws. He had a mohawk and taught college in Alabama or someplace or another. Something about snakes, cars and bodybuilders and Southern Gothic. I thought, fuck, if this Gothic is like that other Gothic with vampires and buxom broads in black leather corsets count me in. See, I would finish my work first in school and go read the encyclopedias in the back waiting for everyone to get finished so I learned a lot but can’t necessarily put it all together.  It’s like knowing how a car works when you’re a kid; if you stand up you can steer it but your feet don’t reach the pedals. If you sit down to work the pedals you can’t see where you’re going.

So now I had nothing but an incipient Nazi Vampire Lesbian Fetish and a quest to find all the works or any of the works of Larry Screws. I was 10 years old. Our Republic was 200. Adriana’s hair smelled like some fruit that existed only on the labels of my cousin’s shampoo bottles. Can you blame me? Guess I’m not asking for forgiveness after all.  But what it is I’m asking for I don’t know. Don’t know at all. Sorry.


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