We Didn't Have Much To Do

When I moved back in with my mom for a year I only had one friend, Nick, a clumsy, scruffy art student who managed to get brutally knifed during a trip to Lisbon after meeting a woman named Frederico at a bar, and who last year, in France, accidentally went to a brothel and got strong armed by a group of pimps after they charged him 4,000 euros for a cocktail made of orange liquid that he couldn't afford. 

Nick and I had both graduated from college and moved back to the beach to live in our childhood bedrooms. I was interning at a museum by my house and teaching little kids how to appreciate the world around them, while Nick was desperately fumbling through French lessons so that he could move to Paris and live with his girlfriend, a sculptor, among other things, who was making a living selling urns with holes in them that you could hang from trees so that the ashes would blow out with every gust of wind.

We spent most of our time together wandering in the sand underneath the bridge by the bay, driving through swamps, and talking to desolate strangers at 24 hour diners. We didn't have much to do.

One day, I saw an intriguing poster at the health food store where I often biked to buy vitamins and essential oils. I was particularly addicted to vitamins at the time; I couldn't get enough of them. I believed that they would keep me alive, or at least keep me from dying prematurely and unexpectedly like my father, his sister, his mother, his father, and probably everyone else. If I swallowed enough vitamins, I thought, then maybe everything would be okay. It was there at the health food store with a bottle of B-Complex in one hand (for my happiness) and CoQ10 in the other (for my heart), that I saw a poster for our town's UFO society chapter. They were looking for members and their next meeting was coming up soon.