I Am Somebody Else #1
I burn out. I drop out of law school. I close my bank account and take cash. I sell all my books. I sell my suits. I sell my car. I sell my laptop. I throw out all my furniture. I buy an old pickup truck. I fill it up with bottles of water and snack bars. I start driving West.
I stay the first few nights in motels, but gradually wean myself off of the habits of regular bathing and shaving. In Omaha, a get a small tattoo on my upper left shoulder. It reads: "Where am I?" I get my ears pierced in Santa Fe.
These are the clothes I wear: A plain white t-shirt. Brown corduroy pants. When it's hot out, cheap sunglasses. No socks. When it's cold, a big button shirt and a knit cap. I wear a belt to keep my pants up.
I buy postcards and send them to people I haven't spoken to in years. I buy notebooks and fill them with notes and drawings. I sleep in the truck. I don't eat meat anymore. I swear very often and never refuse alcohol or recreational drugs. I get to California, where I run out of gas and abandon the truck by the side of the road.
I use the last of my money, five dollars, to buy a six-pack of beer at a 7-11 in Barstow. The clerk gives me a dollar bill in change. I fold it and hide it in my shoe. I hitch to Long Beach and work on the piers.
One day, I burn out again. I take the dollar bill out of my pocket and find a pen. I write on the dollar bill, right across Washington's face: "REWARD, IF FOUND." I drop the bill into an empty liquor bottle I find on the street and throw the bottle into the ocean.
I think one of these days I need to make myself into an athlete.