Cape Town, South Africa
G was having all kinds of probs with the Daniel site. Every time he found someone to take care of the webmastering they’d let him down. “I’ve tried a few of those HTML programs and I’ve realized that I’d need to give a lot of time to getting it right. I’m not just uploading pics, I’m uploading buckets of text and it’s all too hard and time consuming for me. I’d like to be a one-man-band but it’s impossible.
“I’m almost at the end of my tether with this thing, Cody. If Daniel goes, I go. It’s all I have left. People like Dave and Winso don’t seem to realize that I’m almost 54 and don’t have a job. Moreover, at my age there ARE NO jobs! It’s Daniel or nothing. But they couldn’t give a shit.”
G was asking me a whole stacka questions about how I managed my site. It wasn’t all that difficult cos Tripod kinda made it easy. And my dad had Word 97, which could convert text to HTML. But G only had Word 3.1 or something. He was getting pretty determined to rely on himself, though, rather than other dudes. “It would be so easy to give up, but I can’t. Somehow, I have to win this battle – and it IS a battle!”
Meantime, I was getting a bit depressed about Steve not being around. I hadn’t heard from him in ages. So that kinda meant that I wasn’t in the mood to write G.
A week went by. Then another week. By then I was feeling kinda guilty about not having written, and it got to a stage where I didn’t know what to say. I’d been emailing G at least once a day and sometimes two or three times. And suddenly there was nothing.
G's email to me:
“I’ve no reason to believe this will ever get to you, but I’ll write it anyway. I can’t help thinking that somebody has scared the shit outa you, and forced you to run for cover. I noticed recently that your site has disappeared.
“Well, you don’t have to worry about me. What you’ve sent to me will always remain private.
“I’m currently going through all the Daniel stories, proofing them and changing bits and pieces here and there. Lawrie [yet ANOTHER webmaster] wants to turn them into 4 volumes of paperbacks to be sold in bookshops. He’s putting up the $6000 needed to print the first 1500 copies of Volume 1. [It never happened. Just another pipe dream. MrB]
“As I proof the stories, I come across your emails to Daniel. Right now, I’m proofing the chapters where Daniel visits you. It breaks my heart to re-live all those special memories.
“I haven’t written the chapters where you come to Florida to visit Daniel yet. And I don’t think I can. It would be far too painful.
“You are one of a handful of people I’ve met in my life who’s made a profound difference. Like those few others, you will remain impossible to forget.
“Somehow, I believe that you will survive the drama – whatever it is – that you’re currently experiencing. You’re a pretty tough kid. You’re a survivor. You’ve got guts.
“When I send this email into cyber space, I’ll have no idea of whether it’ll reach you or not. But at least I’ll have wished you well in life and have thanked you for sharing your life with me for the past eight months.
“There is, and will only ever be, one Captain Cody.
“I hope so, Cody.
How the fuck was I gonna respond to that? What could I say? I had no excuses. It was another two weeks before the next mail from G arrived.
“It’s been a month, mate. I’ll try your two email addys to see if I get a response. I miss you tons. :(
But even then I didn’t reply. I figured maybe he would just give up. I remembered what Paul used to say about living in a fool’s paradise with internet friends. “They’re not real, Code. I’m real. Cape Town is real. The guys on the swim team are real. So get real.”
The next time G wrote, it was just before his 54th birthday in August ’98. “I’ve got nothing to celebrate without you, Cody.” That gave me the guilts big time, so I decided to answer. I explained that I had no excuse – that one week had led to two, then three and four and five and six and seven. The old dude musta been worried sick about me, so I apologized, saying that of all people he didn’t deserve to be treated that way, and that he’d always been good to me. Then I wished him happy birthday.
Was he mad at me? No way. He was over the moon when he received my note - hehehe. So any fears I had about getting a huge fucking lecture about being an asshole evaporated.
G told me that one of Daniel’s fans was a Safrican teen named Brent. He was a surfer, so Daniel [through MrB] had asked him to keep an eye out for me - a kid with a mop of black hair and “generously proportioned lips”. So G had spies out looking for me? Whoa!
[At that stage, Daniel had his own email addy, and answered his own email. I wanted to make Daniel as real as possible but it turned out to be a dumb mistake, so I wrote to all his fans and told them the truth.]
Brent's email to Daniel:
“Shit!!!! I was at the Planet [restaurant] the day before the bomb [blast] for my birthday!! I just thank my lucky stars that we didn’t go a day later like my sis wanted to.
“I went to the surf comp. Man, it rocked! I came ninth in the boarding category in my age group. Could’ve done better but it was cool. My 360 didn’t quite work out the way I had planned it. I talked to about a hundred people there [at the beach], and met 2 Codys and 8 Stevens. They were all 18 and 19 years old, so they weren’t the ones you were looking for. But I made a couple of buds there – hehehehe!!!!
“Sorry I couldn’t find them this time but there is another big comp in a coupla weeks. It’s Spring now, and as Summer comes, they are held almost every second weekend. I will compete in most of them now, so I can scope out for your buds.
“Hear from ja,
Convo between G and me:
G wanted to know if Steve and I were still buddies. Yeah – Steve and me are still pretty good friends. And, yes, we still do sleep over, and, yes, we do …. hehehehe.
“Well, that’s good. When you disappeared a couple of months ago, I was worried that he’d freaked you for some reason. I would hate that to happen to you. You’re a good kid and you don’t do anybody any harm. Just the opposite, actually. You’re a giver. Cody rulz.” :)
Actually, during that time I wasn’t writing, there was one time when I was playing a game and he came up behind me from the shower. He only had a towel around him, and he lifted my t off. He started to massage my shoulders, and then rubbed his hands across my chest, and it was just like he wanted to touch me and nothing else. We both got totally damn hard and horny. I could feel his boner hardening against my back, while mine was fighting for air. I could actually see the wet spot growing on my track pants. It felt so damn cool.
“Hi, doc. Yeah, the macrame and knitting is going really well. Huh? Booze? Hardly touch it. Well, it hardly touches the sides on the way down. What? Nothin’. Cody? Yeah, he’s fine. Did I tell you all about the butterflies I caught today? Huh? Steve rubbing Cody’s chest? Oh, that was just a massage. Nothing to do with sex. Yeah. OK. Bye, doc. *click*”
Well, yesterday the wind was howling and it is again today, and it’s cold. So, no damn surf – again!
“Lemme get this straight, Code. What would you do if surf wasn’t an option? Or has that never occurred to you? Seems to me that you and surf are inseparable. You’re a born-again dolphin.”
How does Brent manage to get off school and go to Durban? The lucky spiff.
“Dunno, mate. He didn’t explain. He’s 18 [just 19] but as far as I know he still goes to school. He wrote today but didn’t have much to say except that he’d been really busy and that he’d gotten a whole lot of attention from his publicity in Thursday’s paper. He and a friend saved a dude from drowning in the surf. So it looks like he’s not in Durban yet.”
I wrote G again that day cos I’d just read the latest chapter of Daniel where I was in Florida, and we were going to Disney World in Dick’s Voyager. Hehehe – NOW – that was totally damn hot!!!! Specially with me doing Daniel in the Voyager – fucking hell!!!
“Damn! Your compliments are better than money! Behind every successful man is a woman. Behind every dirty-old-man writer there’s a dirty young kid. Hehehe.”
Dontcha wish you could make those letters bigger at a time like this? Now I’m sweating and it’s not even warm here.
“That’s what I like to hear. But I hope you never lie about how you feel. I really need your honest input. That’s how I’ve learned so much from you.”
Woohoo! Hey, Gary, that was a totally damn hot episode of Daniel. Way, way hot!
“OK. Thanks a stack, Cody. It’s all for you, anyway. There’s a whole bunch of faces out there, but yours is the one I look for in the audience.” :)
Actually, I wasn’t the only one who was impressed with Daniel and the kinda things he and his buds got up to, including me – hehehe. Here’s another of Brent’s emails that G forwarded to me:
“Thank goodness the hurricane [in Florida] just fizzled out and nothing happened. Anyways ….
“Damn pity that Cody didn’t get to see my pic in the paper, hehe. He would have liked it. I was wearing Speedos! Hehe!
“I haven’t been able to go to the beach for two days now! The wind outside is 72 knots! Howling! The sea is massive, though. 8 – 10 foot break. I don’t know what Outer Kom[metjie] looks like, but it’s generally 2 – 4 feet bigger! The South Easter is doing what it does best!
“I am no hero, dude [because I saved that guy’s life]. I don’t wanna be one, I just wanna be me! It’s the people here that make it difficult! Kommetjie and Fish Hoek are small, and everywhere I go I get stopped and congratulated, and asked to tell them the whole story! Of course, my mom thinks it’s great. I got a phone call from the guy my friend and I saved [from drowning] yesterday. He is on my back now as well! Oh, well – guess the congrats and hero stuff will pass eventually.
“U on the other hand R a hero, dude! It’s thanks to U and the other dude that writes your diary [MrB] that a cyberbud of mine is not suicidal anymore! He came onto gayteens and I chatted with him. He was stressed at the thought of being gay. He is 14. He thought it was a terrible thing, and didn’t want to be [gay]. I told him that although I wasn’t 14, there were other dudes out there who were his age. And that he didn’t have to be GAY!!!, that they were just regular dudes having fun! He thought I was bullshitting him so I told him to go visit your diaries. We met the next night and he was cool again! So U and your friends helped him!!! He ain’t suicidal anymore. U dudes there [on Daniel’s Diary] R the heroes if U ask me!
“I am getting a scanner soon hehe. I can send U some pix I have. If U would like them. Just tell me, K?
“Tell Cody hi in your next mail to him, and tell all your buds there hi from me as well. Keep up the good work – hehehe!
“Till next time – be cool. From Cape Town,
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Codeman Part 16