UNLIFE OF THE PARTY
by J. Tanner
Everyone has their Summer of ’69 I guess. I hope. That summer of discovery. That tipping point between childhood and adulthood. Where everything in pop culture stays nostalgic for you while every other year’s fads have turned to kitsch. My Summer of ’69 was the spring of 1997. Early bloomer. 1997 was the year of girls swooning over Titanic in the theater, Princess Diana’s fatal car crash, and incomprehensible in retrospect wondering if the Spice Girls were possibly something more than the pop flavor of the month. With triumphs and tragedies in equal measure, I think my spring of ’97 probably wasn’t all that much different from Bryan Adams’s Summer of ’69. Once you discount all the bloody carnage.
So, Sherman, bust out your Nirvana tee-shirt, set the Wayback machine for 1997, and don’t forget to fasten your seat-belt because it’s going to be a bumpy fucking ride…
* * *
Zak and Dexter lounged on the floor, their heads propped against the latest corpse as they played some mindless video game on the TV.
I sat on the couch not doing much of anything aside from waiting for the sun to go down. Not that I could see it; all our windows were painted thick coats of black and heavily draped. But I—we—could feel the sun’s descent.
Goo-Head walked in the room and said, “The clowns are dangling. And. Yellow.” Then, seemingly satisfied with his commentary, he sat down on the couch next to me.
“Better tighten the vice,” Dexter muttered.
Goo-Head actually had a vice clamp on his head, the grip plates digging at his temples, the connecting bar crossing over his head, over the goopy gash that prompted its strategic placement there. I turned the crank a little. Goo-Head swatted my hand away, but I’d turned it enough to get a good cracking sound from his skull.