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Entry date: 11-17-2023 – Pound for Pound (and the Bet) – Letters to My Friends

Dear Friends,


Today is the 321st day of 2023. I’m up to something close to 700 blog posts in the last two years. I think I’m going to go for at least 1000 days in a row. That’s something, right? What it is, I don’t exactly know. Self-serving, maybe, and definitely helpful to me, at least, but right now, I can’t think of what else to shoot for with this thing.


Someday they will say, “Pound for pound, he was the most tenacious blogger in Phoenix in the early 20s.” That is something to shoot for.


Happy Friday, dear reader. I went from reading Vision Quest by Terry Davis to reading Eugene Robinson’s memoir. These two books are very different but, in some ways, a lot alike. The character Davis created, Louden Swain, is so much cooler than what Mathew Modine was given to work with in the movie, and he’s a free thinker, driven, and brilliant. This is not unlike the man Eugene Robinson is, too.


Pound for pound, I bet I’m the only person in the history of the world to read these two books back-to-back.


Clearly, I’m in a mood this morning.


*****


“You better start talking, asshole,” Friday said without a hint of sarcasm.


She flung herself down on Dirk’s big purple couch next to Melanie who shifted over to avoid being sat on. Friday didn’t give two shits if she did land on Melanie, either. In fact, she felt like slapping said shits right out of her friend.


Dirk began to pace a bit. It was wobbly and a kind of a sight, but Friday was ready to lose her patience about five seconds after she settled onto the sofa. Her grandmother would have called it a “davenport” but that was beside the point.


“Talk!” she blurted.


“Okay, okay. What do you want to know? It’d be easier for me…”


Friday cut Dirk off.


“Fuck easy, Dirk. You are hiding something from me, and I don’t deserve that. If there is anything I’ve learned from watching my mom take no shit from anyone my entire life is that I don’t have to take any shit from you or anyone else.”


She cast a dagger filled look at Melanie, too, to add a little extra sauce to her comment.


This was a side of Friday that didn’t come out very often with Dirk and Melanie, but her she was in all her glory. Dirk knew he better spill and spill it all or his friendship with Friday (and all the perks that came with it) would be over. They had been friends since junior high school and had been through it all. Friday even made sure, a time or two, that Dirk had a roof over his head and stayed out of jail.


“Jennifer Dunkirk didn’t die in a car accident,” Dirk started.


“But that’s what everyone said. That’s what was in the paper…” Friday trailed off.


“I know, but it’s not true. Jennifer Dunkirk… I’m not sure how she died, I swear, but I do know that Vince had something to do with it. The way he talks about her is creepy, Friday. It scares the shit out of me,” said Dirk.


Friday stewed on Dirk’s words for a minute, and she listened to him continue to tell his story.


Dirk had met Trantella a few years earlier when he auditioned for a role in his movie, “Paranoid Ghosts.” Dirk hadn’t gotten the part, but Trantella had taken a liking to him and invited him to parties every once in a while. The two had gotten to be “almost friends” as Dirk put it, but there was an almost twenty-year age gap, too.

It was at one of these parties that Trantella introduced Dirk to Jennifer Dunkirk.


“I had a huge crush on her. I even told you about her once,” Dirk said.


It was true. Dirk had mentioned a girl that he met and liked. Friday hadn’t thought much about it at the time because, well, Dirk was often falling in and out of love on a regular basis. Friday had always figured that maybe Dirk was gay, but he did seem to like beautiful ladies and Jennifer Dunkirk was definitely a stunner.


Dirk continued his story and Friday only interrupted occasionally to ask for clarification. Melanie continued to sip her margarita and stayed eerily silent.


“About three weeks before you met Vince and Bobby, I ran into them at Tower Records on Melrose. Vince was acting really weird, so was Bobby, and…I don’t know, I guess I felt like I could ask them what was up, so I did,” Dirk continued.


“Well, what was up?” Friday asked.


“They said Jennifer had died. That she’d had an accident. When I asked what happened, they looked at each other for a long time, before saying Bobby said, ‘You want to go for a ride?”


*****


See you tomorrow.



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