Trauma and Tire Marks

“Get the fuck away from my car! I’ll blow your fucking heads off!”

I heard the words as a typical empty threat from a belligerent, drunk, jabrony and nearly paid no heed. I was gathering my bag to leave him and his precious car alone, leave him ranting at us, leave him with his wrath.

In my effort to not my eye contact with him, my gaze went down and noticed the slim, shiny, slab of steel in his hand. Is he really holding a gun? He IS holding a gun.

He was within two paces of me. I backed away from him slowly, then sideways towards a tree, or bush, or whatever the fuck that was next to me. Trying to put anything between me and the empty space that separated me and the guy with the gun.

My two companions, were also backing away from him, in other directions. K was weaving her way between other cars in the parking lot. I coudn’t see where B was. Please don’t argue with him! I braced for gun fire.

Once I had made it behind some cover, I high-tailed it towards the restaurant. Should I turn and run? Then I can’t see what he’s doing. Nevermind I can’t see shit anyways. Oh good, K is going in the door. Where was B? I couldn’t hear the shouting anymore.

I explained to my wife and the rest of our dining party what had just happened, and that we needed to stay inside. Wait, what if the gunman followed us? If he comes into the restaurant, what do we do? Can we lock the front door? Should we just run?

Calls were being made. Police were on the way. The restaurant managers were going out into the parking lot. Where was B? K is crying. Should I be crying?

“The guy is gone.”

Minutes passed. I peer out through the front window and see the manager talking on his cell phone, looking towards the scene of the action. He is calm. I venture out and see the parking spot is empty.

The guy and his car are gone, just trauma and tire marks left in their wake.

Touring Edition

I’m special. At least, I get reminders of this constantly. It’s like when someone asks you why you’re walking funny, when in your own mind you were just walking. How was I walking? Was I dragging my feet? Did I swing my arms wildly?

Life in cancer recovery is constant frustration. All I want is to be normal. I mostly feel normal. But then every once in awhile the universe taps me on the shoulder and reminds me that I’m not quite there yet.

I’ve just returned from the most grueling work trip I’ve ever done. Basically, me, my boss, and my co-worker, just did a two-week cross-country traveling wine festival. With 10 European winemakers in tow. It only sounds fun because of the alcohol content. A grueling, tight travel schedule, zero lunches, long days and longer nights, dragged-out dinner affairs, etc. It was a small glimpse of the rock tour life, and it sucks.

There is a rhythm and routine to my recovery. Exercise, diet, supplements, regular sleep, etc. Being on a rocking wine tour was the antithesis to any and all of that. There’s not enough gas in my tank to keep up that pace.

And on top of that, I stopped drinking 17 months ago. I might as well be producing a tour promoting responsible opioid usage, that’s basically how I feel about the actual content. More power to them, but it’s not for me anymore.

It’s time to find another path to walk on. Where I can swing my arms however I want.