April 22, 1981 – KEY WEST – JOURNAL ENTRY

Life goes on endelesly on the Key West. I spend my day sunning on the small beach at the end of Duvall Street, ignoring snowbirds’ racist conversations and strangers’ nasty gossip about distant friends and family. It’s the end of Spring Break, so thankfully there are less of them. The color of the Gulfstream cures the senses.

I worry about what I’m going to do upon my return to Manhattan.

No job, no woman, but a million future friends and I’ll wander from bar to bar freeloaading vodka and telling everyone that the Jefferson will reopen, although I sincerely doubt it.

Damn, I wish the hick in front of me lathering suntan loition on his tattooed flesh would shut his hole and also that I was deaf, but then I couldn’t hear the gentle waves lapping at the beach.

“…you know what I mean, Linda?” he says for the hundredth time.

“Sorry, Billy, but sex is no longer the main drive in my life. If I want to get off, I get myself off. I found masturbation late in life. If I had known about it earlier, I might still be a virgin,” said his blonde bikinied companion. The skinny teenager’s conversation was why I didn’t move down the beach.

“I discover jerking off at 12,” the oaf started, until I saw my moment in interject myseslf into their life and interjected, “Hell , it’s better than sex and there’s no men mess.”

“That’s right. Only sweet pussy juice.” She laughed and the hick scowled at me, asking, “You want to repeat that?”

“I’m not a tape recorder. You heard it the first time,” I realized he hadn’t understood my words. Dumb as a fence post. Me too, because Linda was so cute. Slightly anorexic, but like Twiggy in a good way, not that I had ever seen a photo of Twiggy in a bikini or in person. I rapped on about being a poet and a drifter and a doper.”

Key West used to be home to pirates and smugglers, I don’t see any around here.”

“There are plenty of smugglers smuggling people and drugs, but they had a big bust here and now everyone is hiding until the DEA go someplace else.”

Fuck them and all the Feds,” said Billy and I agreed with both of them. This island should have been unindated with cocaine and reefer.

“We’re from here and we don’t know where to cope,” she smiled at me and I thought she might be Peggy Lipton stand-in from THE MOD SQUAD and Billy her Pete. Narcs came in all shapes and colors.

“Probably for the best, becaue i came here to clean up. No drugs, just the sun and the sea.” I picked up my things and moved down the beach. Paranoia is a terrible thing to waste.

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