Today, I got to hang out with Lisa. She’s visiting from Colorado and I was lucky to rank high enough on her social ladder to score a visit with her. Over iced Chai tea and strawberry cake, we talked about how I should have one more kid (Lisa’s suggestion, and it made me laugh myself to death), we talked about the varying hues of menstrual blood, about how she couldn’t taste the strawberries in her cake yet mine was bursting with succulence, and we talked about how we’re going to party like heathens when she moves back to Pittsburgh in hopefully less than a year. (OK, that was mainly my suggestion, at which Lisa laughed herself to death.)
I birthed an entire being made of joy and g-spots when I saw an announcement for the upcoming Chiodos show in one our city papers. Lisa, annoyed that I interrupted our grown-up conversation with a fan-girly shriek straight from the pages of Teen Beat, was like, “OK. I don’t know who that is.” I hated her for a little while after that, but then she distracted me with, “Hey, you look good, by the way,” which opened the gates for an ecstatic sermon on the Gospel of Jump Rope. I seriously might die without that fucking rope. Or WITH it, due to my jumping mania and fury.
Lisa and I have drifted apart several times over the years, mostly because we consistently choose different paths. She chose “graduate”; I chose “drop out”. She chose “Christianity”; I chose “none.” She chose “abstinance”; I chose “like rabbits”. Our lifestyles have clashed at times. She left my nineteenth birthday party marathon because it was lewd, debacherous, drug-laden, and overpopulated with underage drinking. I rarely visited her at Bible College because happy people would try to hold my hand and I couldn’t smoke anywhere on campus.
But through the past few years, we’ve come closer to meeting in the middle. I thought she would have freaked at the idea of me having a bastard son, but she never once criticized me, or judged me. She loves my Chooch and is a huge Henry advocate.
Between sips of her latte, she was telling me today about an issue she had with some guy she met, how she emailed him and prefaced it with, “As your sister in Christ…” followed by a dissertation on faith. A few years ago, I might have once laughed at her for being such a God homo. But today, I have a greater respect for her as a person and for all that she’s accomplished, so I just laughed inside my head.
I love Lisa. I love her so much that I use a song she absolutely abhors as her personalized ring tone on my Blackberry. And THAT is how you know I love you – through torture.
To commemorate my day with Lisa:
My favorite Lisa memory is circa 1997, during the spring of my senior year of high school. I was tooling around town with my friends Jon and Justin, killing time before meeting up with the rest of our motley crew later that night. Justin came to a realization.
“Shit! ICP is playing at Laga tonight. We should go.”
Being a yo-girl at heart, I had no objections to his spontaneous suggestion, until our previous engagements crept into mind.
“But we’re supposed to go over Melissa’s tonight and watch movies with her and Lisa, remember?” A far cry from the havoc we could potentially wreak at a concert, but an obligation nonetheless.
“We’ll just get everyone to meet us at Laga instead.” Jon’s solution seemed so simple, but he was forgetting something very important.
“Lisa’s not going to go for that,” I sighed. The aforementioned Lisa was, and still is, a Christian who just could not get down with the likes of ICP. Becoming a juggalo was not something Jesus would do. (Maybe not her Jesus. My Jesus would have helped pen some of their rhymes.)
“I have a plan,” Justin said. He dialed Lisa’s number and confidently urged her to put movie night on hold in favor of what could potentially go down in the annals of Very Special High School Moments.
“What is an ICP?” Lisa asked suspiciously.
“They’re a band. It stands for…Intensely Christian…Punks.” Lisa, having a soft spot for non-secular punk bands, called everyone else and informed them of the changed plans.
There were six of us that night, all sardined into Jon’s car. Half of us were giddy to be going to a concert; the other half were giddy because we got away with a lie in order to go to the concert in the first place.
As soon as ICP took the stage, Lisa was chagrinned. “They don’t look like punks…?” she yelled above the crowd of undulating and rioting juggalos. Once they started rapping and she heard their lyrics, she edged back from the stage. Once they started spraying the crowd with Faygo, accompanied by lewd and suggestive gestures, she migrated back some more until a wall prevented her from retreating further. She probably had quite a few dialogues with God that evening.
When the show was over, we all tiptoed over the puddles of Faygo left to coagulate into sugary stains. Lisa, the bottom of her Vans slick with the liquid, slipped and fell down the steps.
Best night ever.