No direction, no purpose, no thoughts.

Until one night when I let those guys talk me into coming with them.

What a depressing, ugly place. That small, dark, smoky, sad, sad room.

Toxic sadness.

Sad men, sad women…

Sad, leering men.  A few (most with our little group of roofers from Omaha) making an effort to pretend that they are having fun. The rest in full awareness of the toxic, sad facts. That they are here to distract themselves from whatever deep sadness has infected their lives. Some look at each other to see if an advantage can be had, but most only stare into the sad, bored bodies they’ve paid to have in front of them.

The sad, bored bodies of the sad, bored women. Women who gave up trying to pretend long ago. Long ago. Back when whatever story that brought them there, was still fresh enough to distract them from the toxic, sad facts. One of which is that they are there at all. In that room. Placing their sad, bored bodies in front of those men.

Those men, those women… have now become part of that room. A room of sights and smells oh please just let me forget!

And so I walk away from that sad, ugly room.

And now I’m here. Walking in this town in Kansas. Walking away from a sad, ugly strip club thinking of the strip club Fred brought me to in Omaha.

As I walk, and think of that time (not long ago at all) I start becoming just a little older. A little more of an adult self… looking back at the naive “good boy” who followed the cool Fred Berdine.

And I keep walking and now I’m thinking too.