Being back in Cape Town was like stepping into a pressure cooker. Suddenly there were all these fucking hassles weighing down on me like a ton of bricks. Gary was depending on me to send him details about my second trip to Joburg. School was full on. I had homework up to my fucking ears. And relations with my dad were still icy. On top of all that, there was Cody's site. I'd stare at all his old files like they were some huge book that had been shredded, and that I had to somehow put together again. This was Humpty Dumpty big time.
Based on emails from mid April, 2002.
"I don't fucking know, Gary. It's taking me so fucking long to get the Cody's World site up. It was supposed to be up early this year, but I don't know how to do it, and I actually don't know how Cody could have done it the way he did. It will be up eventually, though, so don't worry about that. But my brain is fucking frying trying to figure out how. I'm also trying to set a deadline for it."
I'd also had a serious run-in with my dad. But I guessed Gary would have thought that was a good thing cos it meant at least there was some kinda communication going on between me and my dad. Yeah, right. He came out to the garden one night and saw me there, smoking a joint, so he sat beside me and proceeded to give me the fucking third degree about my "habit" and my grades at school, which were rock bottom. I'd only just managed to get a passing grade for Math and English. The rest of the subjects I plugged. So the drill from my dad was to get decent grades by the end of June, or get out and find a job.
But that wasn't the worst of it. No fucking way! My dad also wanted me go into rehab for at least a month. Rehab? Yeah, right. Like fucking prison. So my limits were school and rehab.
"I'll think about it, dad."
"Think about it when you're not smoking a joint, son. How do you expect your brain to make sensible decisions while it's swimming around in that lunatic stuff?"
Yeah, fucking right, I thought to myself. Where had he been for the past five years of high school, when my grades were right up there with the best? Huh, dad? Where were you then?
Anyway, what fucking choice did I have? I was being forced to work out how to get my grades up, and what subjects to chuck. I'd been like a fucking monk trying to sort myself out since getting back from Joburg.
Wingnut was being pretty cool. We spoke a few times but that was about it. It wasn't like there was a big "welcome home, Steve" party or anything. Maybe my stressing was giving out the wrong vibes or something. My brain was fried. The possibility of my having to go into rehab was playing tricks on my mind, and I really didn't need that kinda stress on top of everything else that was bothering me.
I emailed Gary and told him that I hadn't started writing the stuff about my trip to Joburg yet. "I've got like little notes in my wardrobe that I wrote each time I remembered stuff, and I need to put all those notes together." I also explained that I wasn't able to use Fingers' comp while I was in Joburg. "Fingers has got all his business stuff on his comp, and the thing is password protected pretty fucking well."
A week or so had gone by before I wrote Gary again. Guessed he was pissed off, but I told him that I hadn't even had time to check the incoming shit. My life was like some kinda fucking whirlwind, spinning my mind around like a top. But I did get a chance to visit FunTB chat, where I had quite a tongue wag with Dave of HotGuyz. He gave me access to his site so that I could wank my tool off... when I could find the time.
"I gave the same access to Gary, but I think the fossil's wanking days are down to about once a year."
I still hadn't had time to write about the Joburg2 stuff, and I figured Gary was pissed off about that, too. Every now and then, he'd write excuses for my absence and post them on MrB, explaining that I was probably busy with school work or whatever, but I think he was just trying to buy time, and hoping to calm the Steve "fans".
It was true about the school work, though. When I'd told Gary in a previous email about my dad's chat with me in the garden, I hadn't told him the whole story.
"When I got back from Joburg, my dad and I had a whole night's talk about my habit. He told me that he'd found the stash in my closet. He showed it to me. Well, you know me, Gary. I lost my cool with him totally cos I resented him scratching around in my room like that, and invading my fucking privacy. Then he gave me the ultimatum. Improve my grades, or get a job. It was the suggestion of rehab that fried my brain the most. I've been working fucking hard recently for him cos I want him to see a turnaround in me. I don't think I could handle a rehab center. It's like a prison, and there are some fucked up things that happen to the guys in there. Bashings, rape, whatever. So it would be like go to school, then return to the locked-gate confines of rehab every fucking day. Prison. I'd rather shoot myself than face that right now."
Meantime, I'd been trying to avoid Wingnut. Fact was, I'd been trying to avoid everyone just to give myself time to think. My head was still stew. Just too much happening up there in my scrambled mind, which was preventing me from focusing on anything in particular. By the same token, I'd been putting in a lot of extra effort into school work, so I guessed it wasn't a total fuckup.
One of the main reasons I hadn't been connecting with Wingnut was cos I couldn't trust myself around him. I wanted him so badly. The last time he'd slept with me before I went to Joburg he was about ready for me to touch him just about anyway I liked. But I'd had time to reflect on that, and to realize that my thoughts and fantasies were pretty fucking hardcore, and maybe going just a bit too far.
Was it a paranoia thing? I didn't think so. It was just that if Wingnut had come on to me I wouldn't have stopped him. And it would have definitely gone too far cos of the way I was feeling about that horny little hunk.
It wasn't all bad news on the social scene, though. I'd been connecting with my ex-girlfriend since I'd been back from Joburg. She was in between fucks, so that gave us an opportunity to become really good friends. We went out one Saturday night, and I thought I'd score. Woohoo! But she made it totally plain that she wasn't going to be my slut despite the fact that she wanted me to make love to her. That was so cruel! But our friendship was on track, and even better than it had been when we were just out fucking each other.
I'd also gotten the chance to visit Cody's folks cos Mark had given me a card to give to them. It had a letter inside. So, they invited me to have supper with them, and we sat around chatting about Johannesburg and Mark. They loved Mark like a second son, and were pleased to know that he was doing really well. They had to laugh, though, when I told them that he'd had me up at sparrow's every morning, jogging for miles, then doing boxing training in the garage before swimming several laps of the pool. "They don't come any fitter than, Mark," I smiled. "But I can feel the diff in myself after all that hard work."
Cody's folks seemed to be doing a lot better these days, and had been involved in enjoying a lot of stuff together. Not that they weren't always close, but lately they'd been on some kinda mission to spend more time together, like going away on weekend trips. I figured Cody's death had been like some kinda wakeup call for them to try to spend as much time together as possible. The things in life that you treasure most can disappear in the blink of an eye, so make the most of them while you can.
Meantime, I had a lotta stuff to do, and to focus on. Numero uno was definitely school cos of all the work that I had to catch up on. Our exams would be held in June.
And there was the problem of getting Cody's pages together. Dave from HotGuyz was talking in chat about putting them up on his site, which was a relief.
The other thing I wanted to do for Cody was to finish the story he'd started about him and TJ in Singapore. When I say "started", that's what I mean. He'd only just begun to write it, but I knew he was keen to finish it. Cody never started anything he didn't wanna finish.
Yeah, I was still thinking of Cody a lot. Got a fucking erection every time he breezed into my mind with that infectious grin of his cos I could still feel his fingers on my stomach, cruising into my boxers, and then WHAMMO!
The guys in FunTB chat had told me that Gary was hectically busy on some kinda rescue mission for RSC. What I couldn't understand was why Kostik hadn't just put up a site of his naked pics. Fuck! He would have made a bomb! Whenever Code saw a new pic of Kostik naked he would make sure he showed it to me cos he had a thing about Kot's hard cock. Said it was one of the best looking dicks he'd ever seen. :\
Hi, Gary. This morning, school just stopped. Most of us got there early to get into the TV lounge to watch the launch of the Soyuz rocket carrying the first African into space. He is Mark Shuttleworth... 28 years old and a billionaire. One of those dudes who's a boff at science and math. He started his own internet business, then sold it. Became a billionaire overnight.
He paid 20 million USD to go on the flight, and will spend 8 days on the International Space Station. Makes a person pretty proud to be Safrican.
I know that Code would have been sitting on his cloud waiting for them to pass by, and then wave. Although he always spoke about traveling, especially to the States, he was mad about this country he called home, and loved everything about it. If you wanted to get bopped by Cody, then just say something crap about South Africa. He hated the crime and politics, but thought that Mandela was a god. Who knows? Maybe he'll even go and pay Mark Shuttleworth a visit at the space station. :) "Hi, guys! My name's Cody!" Maybe get his halo polished.
You've taken six months to come to grips with what's happened, Gary. So yeah, take time off to do what you have to do. Fuck knows I should've waited six months and maybe I wouldn't have gone off the rails so fucking completely. It's not easy, anyway, cos sometimes something happens that makes you think of the Codeman. Maybe a piece of music on 5FM or something in a video or a movie or something that happens in the surf. Or just about any little thing that triggers those vivid images of his face smiling or laughing or looking mad as hell, like he could sometimes.
Cry? I cry a lot. Sounds fucking wussy but it's because there's something gone in my life that I took for granted. And it will never come back. An opportunity to have the best friend in the whole fucking world, and I took him for granted like a cheap fuck. Lots of lessons learned which I will probably only realize when I'm an old fart, and then it will be too late.
Don't go looking for Code, Gary, cos you won't find him. What you will find are the things that he loved so fucking madly. Blue skies, oceans with rolling surf, mountains that are there to be climbed, with views to be admired. The silences and the mad noises of nature.
I remember one time on the Jeffrey's Bay trip. We hitched there and back for a surfing comp. Took us about a week both ways. Anyway, it was dark and we were talking on the side of the road. He stopped, and asked me to listen. OK, so I listened and heard fuck all. He got mad and said, "Just listen, you dumb fuck!"
Then I realized that I was listening to a loud noise of beetles, making that high-pitched, whistling sound that beetles do. It was so fucking weird. I'd never heard them at all until Cody told me to stop and listen.
Then, when we started talking again, I could hear them all the time, and the night became more special. It's like the crashing of the waves at night. I can hear them every night now, and I couldn't before. Just took it all for granted.
You maybe need the time off. Cheers.
Your friend and the Codeman's
Pasted below is a reaction to Steve's comments from Brian, "The Pest" - fossil in training:
I'm sitting here reading how Steve misses Cody and how he now pays attention to all the things around him, because Cody taught him to look and listen. Gosh, the more he says about him the more Cody was like J. Always seeing the little things and marveling at how they came to be.
I remember sitting up in a tree with J and just watching ants for hours making their way to and fro, like they were on their own little private highway carrying their loads tirelessly. Or watching 3 squirrels racing around, up and down trees, across the branches to the phone lines, then down another tree on the other side of the road. And the whole time they were moving like lightening, single file, nose to ass hole. The coordination and acute sensitivity to little changes in direction at those speeds was/is amazing.
So, why am I rambling on like this? Cause today is J's birthday. 06-18-57. He'd be 45 today. And for a few months we'd be able to say we were the same age. Something he relished when we were little. I had been thinking of little things that we used to do together all the time, and when I read what Steve was saying about being taught to appreciate the little things was a gift from Cody, I remembered how J was always
pointing things out that I'd miss. What really always threw me for a loop was J looking up to me all the time. Like I was someone he should aspire to be. J never saw himself as anything special, but that's exactly IT. He was special. A blonde, blue eyed, gymnast with a really tight bod, an eye for details and the ability to be fascinated with minutia, till he had figured out all the whys and wherefores. Why he always looked up to me, the skinny, crazy kid with the big honker is a mystery. But, I'm glad he did.
One of his gifts to me was teaching me to see things from his inquisitive perspective. To not pass things by. To stop and smell the flowers. So much of life can go by and escape our notice because we are so busy with the daily grind.
So here I sit at the comp, again, and remember things that he taught me to observe, like the sound of his breathing, and the sometimes quirky expressions he'd get on his face while sleeping/dreaming. Or the beaming look in his eyes when he'd get a B-Day gift from me. His smell. Watching him watch other things with fascination. Priceless moments that will never happen again, but still linger when ever I think of him.
These are some of the things that come flooding back when I read your stories, and I have to thank you, Cody and Steve for. For helping all of us remember the little things from our youth that were so special.
Thanks bud, for making today an UP day! :)
Copyright © 2002 All rights reserved. mrbstories