So then a month later, I’m done student teaching, so I get my application in to the State Department of Education – $100 per certificate, and I am certified (finally) to teach Math and French in the State of New York.

Now I just need to find a job.

But for now I’m not working, and Jim works the 1pm – 9pm shift so he is out almost every night, and so I am out chasing the ladies as often as I possibly can (with no luck, needless to say).

I decide to do a “mass mailing” and send out resumes to every high school between Westchester County and Albany which includes about seven different counties and approximately 100 different high schools – I get ONE interview.

And that’s it for that year.  In the middle of July, things are not going well on the job search, and I’m still not working, and my step-father Mel gets pissed off at me sitting around his house and finally we get into a fight one afternoon and I am forced to leave the house in the middle of the afternoon, with empty pockets, in bare feet.

Luckily, we had been over at Ken Shaunessey’s Dad’s house the night before as his dad was on vacation somewhere, and his house is in walking distance, so I walk on over.

Out on the porch is the newspaper and the half pack of cigarettes I left there the night before, so I sit down outside to read the paper and smoke a few cigarettes.

I call Ken at his Mom’s house, but that telephone is never answered, there is a permanent screening in operation, and I have never been one to leave messages (this situation resulting in somewhat comical situations when I call people who screen all of their calls, whereas, I refuse to leave a message for someone I know is screening) so I just wait.

After an hour or so, someone drives up to the house.  I can’t see who it is so I get a little nervous, but after a minute or two, who should walk around into the back yard but Jim, still dressed for work in a suit and tie, but as previously noted Jim works every night until 9pm.

But not tonight, as it seems that he’s been fired.  “Guess who just got fired?” he asks me, and I return, “Guess who just got kicked out the house?”

So this is the end of July for us, 1993, and Jim has no qualms about going through the “Ken, pick up” routine over the phone, so he talks to Ken, who comes over to the house after he finishes eating dinner bearing Jari and a half gallon of rum with daiquiri mixer.

It seems that it’s party time.  So we sit around for several hours drinking daiquiris and listening to tunes et cetera until we run out of booze and decide to go the bars.

I have to borrow some sneakers from Ken and have explained that I am flat busted broke, but Jim at this point is still fairly flush, making a pretty good salary while he is living rentless at home.

So off we go, but it’s the middle of the week and the bars are dead, so Jim and Jari know that they have a captive audience for their run down to Alphabetland, and so we score some smack, and this time I do try a little bit, and I don’t puke, although I thought I might for a while, but it passes.

The next three weeks are a blur, and Jim is on a rampage.  I don’t try the smack again, but Jim is unstoppable.

This is also the time when we have a bachelor party for my brother down in the city, so there is cocaine going on down there, and when I come back the next day, there is lots of booze left over.  I pick up Jim and Jari that Sunday afternoon, and we go and throw Frisbee at Gould Park (overlooking the Hudson) for a couple hours, but then after that’s over we get to talking and they remember that I’ve just come back from Hamish’s bachelor party, and they ask “Any liquor left over?”

And they know that there is, so we finish off the rum and coke, but then all that’s left is Jagermeister and coke, so we finish that off and head out to the bar, where Jim gets down with some young honey from his neighborhood who is eight years younger than us (20 to our 28) while I have to go home early, being still penniless.

Now, Jim has planned to move BACK to San Francisco, his sister and her husband are still living out there, and since he doesn’t have a job anymore there is no reason to stay in NY.

So after several weeks, he takes off and heads out for the coast.  Farewell! oh buddy o’mine.

So now that school’s just about to start, I finally find a job working at a franchise tutoring center, for $7.50 an hour, maybe 12 or 15 hours a week.

So, the fall begins to flow by as it will, and Jim returns for Columbus Day weekend, and there is a Friday night drug binge which I miss, as I have to work on Saturday mornings.  So, on Saturday night everyone except Jim is out of it, and Jim is laid up at home watching the tube, his mom is gone somewhere, and he’s got just a little bit of the smack left, which we snort up and then head out to the bar around ten or eleven.

Nobody else is out (as most everyone we know was involved in the Friday night drug binge and is at home licking their wounds) so we sit quietly enjoying our buzz in the soft warmth of the Patsy’s Pub window booth, when here comes Larry, and slides into the booth, blurting out “Boys, have I got a story for you!”

It seems that there is some girl that Larry’s been getting blowjobs from for the past couple of months, but she’s much more enamored of Larry that he is of her.  So last night she gets completely smashed and demands that Larry give her a ride home, but he is not in the mood and refuses.  Being drunk off her ass, she gets in Larry’s car and waits for him.

When he comes out to go home and finds her in his car, he demands that she get out and leave him the fuck alone but she refuses.  Somehow, he manages to get one of her friends to get her out of the car so that Larry can go home.  After Larry gets home and goes inside, about a half hour later, he hears noises outside.

Looking out his window, he sees this girl has somehow followed him home and is in the process of taking his car.  She drives out of his driveway with his car, and Larry calls the cops.   Some time later, she returns the car with dents in several places and leaves it in the driveway and runs off.  The cops arrive and Larry explains the situation to them.  They eventually haul this girl in, and talk sternly to her and there are legal ramifications, I was slightly fucked up that night and so have trouble remembering the exact details of the story, but whenever I want to hear it I just ask Larry.  Nothing brightens a boring Saturday night like a totally bizarre incomprehensible story from the previous night which is simply too far out to be a lie.

Anyway, that Thanksgiving rolls around and it is a doozy, a week long binge culminating Thanksgiving night with a late night run down to the Bronx for some cocaine with several youngsters (21-22 yrs.) and we stay up all night snorting lines so that I drive home at 8:30 am the Friday morning after Thanksgiving with a beer between my legs and the teeth grinding away, knowing that I won’t sleep for several hours, and wondering what the hell is wrong with me as I realize that this is not a situation that normal people find themselves in.

After this experience, I decide that I must get the hell out of NY, that this city is going to kill me.  So, the following week, I get on the horn to the Bureau of Indian Affairs to get some information on teaching on a reservation.

(Down East, Maine  September 1998)