boy scouts

Woke up this morning at the crack of noon. Okay, not actually at noon. It started with phone calls from dancers before noon, who working the day shift, were up at the ungodly hour of10. Then more phone calls, plus needed phone call from my bud confirming tomorrow’s trip to the airport. Then more phone calls from more girls. So the last few hours were a waste of trying to get to sleep. I should have just got up instead.

I was pretty pooped. Last night I had hung out at the bar for a while because one of the girls’ husband did not show up to pick her up. I argued that I would not walk her to the corner store a block away and leave her there (since I walked home last night) because the store was closed at this hour of the night/morning. I’d wait with her at the club until somebody showed up. It was after 3 when someone did and I walked home. While walking I downloaded Tetris for my Sprint PCS phone and played a bit, checked up on sports scores, international news, and looked at the weather forecast for Dallas (closest city I could find on the CNN webpage to where my folks are at). Ten degrees warmer down there… I probably wont need more than a t-shirt! JOY!

Afer browsing some webpages on the phone (i love this little thing, except in the morning when everyone and their mother MUST call me) I was content to just walk. Then a 65 mustang drove by me, its engine in perfect order and sounding beautiful. I watched with my mouth open, drool running from my chin. Perhaps I could wait a year or two years to get a car and make it a mustang! I had spent moments in-between songs at the club listening on a pair of headphones to music by Cherry Poppin Daddies, Stray Cats, Brian Setzer, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, and others… dancing like an idiot in the dj booth. I could easily see myself driving in a 66 mustang playing Stray Cats! But the sober reality came back to me, I still had thirty minutes more of walking before I got home. Perhaps I’ll get something to drive NOW and trade it in later for a mustang.

And so it was that I walked down the rail lines, the full moon over my right shoulder, and I began to think of the mountains. I imagined going to an orphanage or the big brothers club and asking to take a couple of boys out on a camping trip. In my warped little mind I imagined a round of prosecution and defense on my part about how trustworthy of a character I was to want to take some boys out camping when I worked in a strip club. I must be a pervert, I must be some psycho, and so I couldn’t be trusted. I recognized this for what it was… another head on the hydra against my working in a strip club attacking me in the dark. Two nights before it was the desire for me to open up a coffee shop near downtown. So in the odd little scenario playing itself out in my mind I had gathered all the parents of the kids that I was going to take out on a camping trip (now the scenario switched to the cub scouts) and I opened myself up to questions of any kind. I explained to the parents that they needed to know fully who the scout leader was, especially when he was given the trust of taking their kids out on a camping trip. Eventually the question of why do I want to do this came to me and I drank some coffee (yes, had coffee in the scenario) and answered;

When I was a kid I always wanted to go camping. Once my dad and me went, on a small lake in the woods of Arkansas. But mostly every year the family went together to sleep in a tent near a parking spot, surrounded by other parking spots inside a drive-way with a walking path to the showers. I shared a tent with a whole neighborhood of people. I was never satisfied with this. I spent a lot of time in the woods, but mostly by myself. Not a lot of boys lived near me. I wanted to join the cub scouts, make lots of friends, and go on camping trips like the ones I saw on t.v. where all the boys would tell ghost stories around the campfire, listen to hoot owls at night, and go hiking and river rafting during the day. The cub scouts I joined taught me how to make a valentine for mom, never so much as knots, camping, or anything that as a young boy I wanted to do. Now it is that I go camping when I get the chance (before the car broke I went every chance I could). But to continue on the point, I still go out camping and hiking, but it is still alone. My friends list is very short. And besides, when you take an adult to the zoo you hear adult things, adult worries, adult problems. When you take a kid you hear “look at the big purple butt on that monkey”. Kids are a reality check against the sterile, rigid doctrines of the philosophers. Another thing is that I have two nephew boys, boys that I would love to take out camping, show them things about the natural world. I miss out on all of this and I guess that this is a way that I hope to experience something of the sort.

I might add that I allowed such commentary to come out in my scenario. I mean that I could have ended the scenario in my mind at any point, moving to another part or perhaps just jumping over to the actual camping and and my assistant and myself playing a late night prank on the boys after a night of ghost stories. But I was curious as to what might be moving along in my mind, so I continued the scenario until the part where I was with the parents in a library conference room, all huddled together and entertaining questions.

Scout Leader Ed. HA! I can just see it now. The goofy shorts, the hat, the learning the manual so that I actually know the knots that I’ve got to teach the boys how to tie. The camping trip. Oh, this reminds me of another scenario that popped into my mind. I wanted to take the group to a Ducks football game but I was short of cash to pay for everyone’s ticket. So I decided that this might be a good lesson for the boys, explaining to them that sometimes people give you things, sometimes they take it away, both times it isn’t fair. But to improve the odds of getting what you want, you have to work for it, set a goal and work for it. In this spirit I set a car-wash for the boys and on the street corner we had a car wash with a big sign “proceeds go to troop 54 to watch a ducks football game”. The scene had flashes of boys horseing around with water. The next part of the scenario was the actual duck game itself, all of us sitting in a section with our hot dogs and cokes and yelling like madmen while the ducks score a touchdown.

Good stuff. It would fun to do. Two problems exist. One, transportation. Okay, so I’ll not hold out for a mustang but instead acquire something else for now. Two, hours. I work a LOT of hours at the club, more than most people know. So in this regard I don’t know what the fix is. I did the math the other night, I’ve lived here in Eugene for 32 1/2 months. In 32 months I have been unemployed for about 11 months, spaced out into four groups. In almost three years I’ve had four bouts of unemployment lasting for an average of 2.7 months each. The longest job lasted a year, Divas, the next longest job lasted 4.5 months. No wonder I am finding it hard to get my feet under me, I take two steps back for every one step forward. Sheesh. I don’t know what fix there is for the job situation. I’ve underqualified and overqualified for everything it seems. I spend all my time now making sure girls show up to shifts and DJing. I would like to instead work behind a coffee bar, pouring coffee, cleaning coffee tables, ordering books for display, running a coffee house with poetry nights, an outlet for local writers (webpage also) and more. Yep… that is what I’d like to do instead of working in a strip club. But I needed a job and the pay here is allowing me to claw my way out of the hole I was in.


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