Running with the Boys

A technicolor gang of striped shirts came this way. The one with the bushy eyebrows pointed in between my eyes saying “Do you even know him?” Projecting towards the coma intoxed crowd. I looked at the pole attached to the hoop. It was painted a pretty mango color. Someone drew a dick on it. “Ey. Do you hear me?” Frido, that was his name, spit onto the red-orange dust in front of me. I rubbed it in with my rubber toed shoes then looked up at him. “ Yea. Don’t remember me?” I lifted my forest green Kneeland Family Farm cap off my head, tousled the mousy waves through my dirt encrusted nails. Muscle memory I guess, this is the most feminine thing I do. My wrists are small but it’s hard to catch on. Frido still hadn’t blinked at me, his eyes were getting dry and beginning to vibrate in their shell, his jaw unhinged, a low hum came from the back of his throat. “Uh, sorry man, don’t remember ya. You wanna play ball? We need one more to break even.” Frido held the Tachikara restlessly in his hand. His accent resembled that of a true new yorker, too bad we’re in Maryland. Mary land. The land of Mary. My eyes averted to the other hoop, a pastel baby blue. I didn’t know how to play, nor did I want to, but I wouldn’t admit to it. My face restricting the emotions beating hard against my chest. If I sweat will it fall into rings, valleys, and crevices, will it fall differently, where does it all go? Thick stripes versus thin stripes and me. I told them my name but they decided to call me green due to my cap and they said I looked like a vegetarian. I was, but I wouldn’t admit to that. I was put on thin stripes ‘cuz a guy they call Wood switched socks with me. “Wood” is 6’ 4”, his socks were fucking huge. I knotted the back of each so I couldn’t trip when I ran. Two lavender stripes tied under my knees initiated me into a secret society.


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