(Author’s Note: What follows is an expansion upon a column of the same name I’d already written in my ‘Buffalogeddon‘ series. A close friend thought this would make for an excellent Thirtyist piece, and I agree – it would be hard to imagine a complete documentation of my life without it. However, in the spirit of trying to keep the material new, this has been remixed and remastered and deleted scenes have been re-added. The other one was PG, this one’s rated R for language, adult themes and graphic depictions of substance abuse. So, mom, you’ll want to cleanse the palette.)
All I wanted was a milkshake.
I popped up the trunk of the 1991 Pontiac Bonneville, a DOA car-corpse in the vast, empty expanse of a vacant lot at the University at Buffalo. I aggressively pried a ramshackle 15-speed out of the formerly beastly and bright hunk of rotting metal.
The formerly beautiful vehicle had been undone and unhinged by leaks, busts, cracks, scratches, rust and wrecks. Age, really. Does that to cars just like people. After 11 years, 176,000 miles, two roadtrips down the East Coast, countless journeys across the Northeastern United States and a few sojourns across the border into Canada, the transmission finally caved. She needed a nap. All that remained was an empty-soul shell of a 3800 V6 with a pile of clothes, some empty pizza boxes, various tools and assorted eccentri scattered across the front passenger seats. Debris from the tornado that was my life at the time.
This was my home. How did I get here?