The Next Seattle

The Next Seattle: Chapter 17

Club to truck, truck to club…

Though I parked myself on my usual stool at Seattle, I wasn’t really into the bands this evening. Too much on my mind. Luckily John invited me out to his van and after a little time out in the parking lot and after a while all of those “things on my mind” didn’t seem to matter.

As John and I sat in the van—excuse me, truck—there was suddenly a knock at the door. We were both silent. I’m not sure why. Maybe we thought that by remaining silent we wouldn’t be caught. But after a moment the knock came again.

“Um…” began John, “who is it?”

“You know damned well who it is,” came Samantha’s muffled voice from outside the van.

“My sister-in-law?” John asked.
My sister-in-law?” I asked, even though I have no sister-in-law. “Open the door!” the voice insisted.
“Wait! Wait!” said John, “is it my mother’s half-sister’s lesbian

lover’s ex-fiancee’s sister-in-law?”
The door was yanked open from the outside, revealing

Samantha trying to look stern.
I said, “I can explain this.”
“Shut up,” she said as she climbed into the van and closed the

door behind her.
“You see,” I continued, “John here is a collector of beer cans.

Right John?”
“That’s right. Got a big ol’ collection at home. Hell, some of them

cans are worth a lot of money.”
“Shut up,” she said again, “and give me one of those things.” To

say that this request surprised John would be an understatement, but he happily reached into the refrigerator and pulled out a beer for Samantha. There were plenty more left. There was no danger of a shortage any time soon.

“A beer can collection,” said Samantha, “yeah, I’ll bet you do.” And she opened up her beer. “Do you guys know what happens to me if having beers in my parking lot turns into a thing? This club is for minors. And I get crucified. I’ve got enough problems at the moment. So, please don’t let that happen.”

“Got it,” we both replied in unison.

“Good,” she said, then took a big swig of her beer, “Good.” Then she set the beer down and stepped out of the van.

“What the hell was that?” I asked John.

“I don’t know,” said John in his Hoosier accent. And the way that ‘I don’t know’ was pronounced in that accent became a favorite of mine. It was pronounced as if it were one word without consonants. It sounded like “I-oh-oh.” Later, I would become proficient at pronouncing it, or rather I should say not pronouncing it, but for now I just smiled at the way it was spoken by John. I lit up a cigarette and John and I sat drinking in silence.