Wednesday, October 01, 2003


It is my birthday. Tim and I are in a huge, dilapidated old mansion in Scappoose. We are waiting for the bus to Portland, which will stop right outside our front door. Angela is playing music. She has a speaker sitting face down on a heater vent and the music is echoing throughout the heating ducts of the house. I walk up a spiral staircase and ask her to turn it down, just as my guests are arriving. Clayton, Summer, Tyler, and 3 others acquaintances from my high school. We are digging through our pockets when the bus arrives. My guests get on the bus, but Tim is looking for the keys. He finds them and as we are leaving I ask him for my bus fare. He only has enough for himself, but Clayton offers to loan me a dollar. I thank him profusely and we get on the bus, paying our fares. As the bus leaves Scappoose, we climb a hill with a bus stop halfway up. Two women are waiting there, but the bus passes them without stopping. I tell the driver there were people at that stop and he mumbles something about pulling over when there is enough shoulder on the side. Meanwhile, he is passing plenty of shoulder and the women are chasing the bus up the hill. They tire and slow to a walk. The bus pulls into an intersection, stops, and opens it’s doors for them. They climb on the bus and suddenly we are on a boat, trying to get back to Scappoose. The boat bumps another, which happens to be a floating refueling station. We discuss taking the boat back to Scappoose, but decide it will not make it. In the blink of an eye, we are walking a bicycle path through the park along Front Avenue. The grass is gray and dead. The trees are barren. We are on our way to a Pearl Jam concert. Eddie Vedder and Brandie have joined our group. Brandie is flirting with Clayton and I start to sing. A boom box appears in Brandi’s hand and suddenly we are listening to loud rock music. We get ahead of our group, whom we do not notice have stopped. Brandie and I arrive at the concert, and a small group of people are swaying to the music, in front of the stage. Instead of Pearl Jam, we are listening to a 7 piece riverboat jazz band. Brandie goes to the front of the stage and begins swaying, out of time with the music. I join her. Behind the band a tri-level choir riser is ascending, carrying on it 6 dancers in gold, purple, and silver spangled leotards, each doing their own backup dance. I laugh at the absurdity of the sight and sit on a bench. Clayton sits next to me and as we are about to speak, Summer comes around the corner carrying a board with beaded jewelry pegged to it. There is a stunning barrette, made of carved filigree jade in a nouveau floral design. I exclaim at it’s beauty as the Melvins rock my alarm.

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