Archives For The Exploited

American-Hardcore-2006

My coke dealer Harold asked me to “babysit” his girlfriend Lisa when she went out clubbing. I could understand why. She was only 16; a high school girl who had run away from her parents in Scarsdale to live in charming squalor with Harold in his East Village apartment. I called her “Lolisa.”

I didn’t question the ethics of a 30-year-old man living with a 16-year-old girl. In 1991, I didn’t question much of anything. Besides, Harold was successful in his own way; confident, funny, smart. He would have made the perfect Jewish boyfriend were it not for the trickle of powdery white snot that always snaked down from his nostril onto an upper lip he was too numb to feel.

Harold had an international connection which provided him with cocaine much purer than typical street coke. I figured out that I could step on it with my own cut formula and redistribute it to my friends. So, if Harold wanted me to babysit Lolisa while he ran his business, I would comply.

One night, she and I were hanging at the bar at CBGB’s when the band “The Exploited” walked in. They were a Scottish hardcore punk band.

Hardcore punk was punk on steroids; faster, more violent, more dangerous. Hardcore wasn’t my scene but these guys were wildly funny. They chatted us up and invited us to see them play that Sunday.

Hell YEAH. Hardcore fans or not, we knew The Exploited were riding the wave of their most successful album to date. Who doesn’t want to party with the band?

The show was savage and chaotic. Punks were injured by frenetic slam dancing and stage diving. I wasn’t into the music, but I was WAY into their bass player, Smeeks. He was handsome, muscled and mohawked. Wattie, the lead singer, was all over Lisa. With his gargantuan bright crimson mohawk and anti-hero demeanor, he was an even better way for Lisa to say “fuck you” to Scarsdale.

The girls who were part of the hardcore scene were PISSED. Who were WE to be hanging out with their idols? The leader of the pack was Lazar, a wolverine with half her head shorn, the other half bleached and ragged, an upside-down cross tattooed on the side of her face.

That’s commitment to a fucked-up lifestyle right there. Ink like that.

 

We were impervious to their threats. We were with THE BAND.

After the show, we milled around on the street while they loaded up a van with all their equipment. Finally, the band, the roadies, the sound guy and various other members of their entourage piled in. Wattie said, “Come on, ladies! Get in!”

I peeked inside. There were at least 12 guys in there. Getting into a van with a dozen drunken Scots suddenly seemed like a baaaad idea.

“It’s too crowded in there! We’ll catch a cab and meet you uptown.”

They took off, slamming the back doors shut.

 

I felt them before I saw them.

The hardcore girls were a pack of angry she-beasts; snarling, spitting and snapping their jaws at us.

I was supposedly watching out for Lisa, so I stepped in front of her protectively. Lazar pounced on me with a searing punch to the side of my head. I went down. It became an all-out brawl with the gang of them punching and kicking me. With industrial Doc Martens, the kind reinforced in the toe with steel.

I heard, but couldn’t see, Lisa also getting beaten. The girls were chanting “GIVE US YOUR LEATHERS” which was a British punk gang thing. Though American, they adopted all things British punk, even affecting a cockney accent. Stealing leather jackets was a street victory.

They would have to beat me unconscious before I gave up my jacket. They got Lisa’s off, and held it up victoriously, screaming “Oi! Oi!,” a British punk war cry. It was at that point that I managed to escape.

I staggered to my feet, and in one of the most cowardly moves of my life, I fled, leaving Lisa there to fend for herself.

Bloody and disoriented, I tried to flag down a cab but none would stop for me. I looked like trouble, and New York cabbies avoid trouble. I  saw a couple flagging a cab, and when it stopped, I jumped in with them. The man demanded that I get out, but the woman with him was more sympathetic to my plight. We drove back for LIsa, but she and the crowd were gone.

 

I went to my boyfriend’s apartment. I had stabbing pains in my chest and he insisted I go to the Emergency Room. I stubbornly refused to let him call an ambulance. We walked out onto the street and he found a deserted shopping cart and put me in it, wrapping me tenderly in a blanket.

He pushed me 20 blocks to Beth Israel Hospital, where doctors determined that I had a concussion, a dislocated shoulder and several broken ribs.

Harold never spoke to me again. Lisa had gotten beaten up even worse than I had, and returned to her family’s home in Scarsdale. Her parents hired an attorney and tried to press charges against Lazar and her hellions, but no one was willing to testify as a witness to the event. The charges were dropped.

Eventually, I healed.

What didn’t heal was my profound sense of shame for abandoning Lisa. Twenty five years later, I still regret it.

This was a defining moment in the development of my core values. After that, I became a fiercely loyal friend. I will stand up, against all odds, for the people I love. In my opinion, too many people have a weak and diminished sense of friendship, wanting to stay neutral to all and loyal to none. Too concerned about what opportunities they may lose if they “choose sides.” Stay in friendships that have crossed boundaries because personal gains are at stake.

Perhaps that works for them. But they are missing out on the one of life’s great experiences – that of being a true soul friend.

 

Have you ever been in the wrong place at the wrong time? Did you learn any lessons from the experience?
Do you have any true soul friends?
Talk to me. I’m listening.

Hang out with me on Facebook! I say funny things there. 

 

Broken Heart

Dear Anonymous:

You reached a new low this weekend – trying to contaminate my quiet day of mourning for a dead girl.

Telling me it was too bad it wasn’t ME that died instead of a writer I worshipped and was lucky enough to spend a joyous, incredible summer with.

What exactly is UP with the hate mail?

Are you trying to intimidate me?

Look, I’m no Sarah Connor, cinematic badass and pullup queen extraordinaire.

sarah-connors-o

root of my pullup obsession

But it’s going to take more than emails to get drive me off WordPress.

 

It’s actually the height of irony that I AM in fact, still alive.

I grew up in one three white families in one of the shittiest housing projects of the five boroughs of New York City.

Which, to quote Wu Tang, “Ain’t Nuthing Ta F’Wit.”

There were three reasons to stop playing outside:

1. Your mama called

2. Outside lights came on

3. Gunshots

A bullet to the knee cap really fucked up a Skelly game.

skelly

bottle cap game played by inner city kids

 

So, guns and death threats don’t particularly scare me.

I find it amusing when people cross the street simply because a large African American man is headed their way.

You know who’s really scary? Not Leroy.

Leroy’s FUCKING WIFE.

When he gets home and she starts in with that NECK ROLL, and SUCKS HER TEETH at him, in that way that only black (and Dominican) chicks do really well, and gets up in his grill,

“Motherfucka, you jumped a turnstile for WHAT? To brang me this cold fish dinner?!”

Leroy starts quaking in his green Osiris. True that.

Yeah, I could jump a turnstile back in the day

Yeah, I could jump a turnstile back in the day

 

And those fierce black housing project princesses used to chase me down and beat me up every day. Because I was what? Skinny? Nerdy? White?

Yes. Yes. Yes.

They’d lean over their desks in those nasty portable classrooms that were NEVER warm in the winter, and mouth at me “just let me get you.”

At 3:00 I’d RUN. Or try and find one of my brothers.

Usually, they’d be getting their asses beat, too. We’d get home and brag about who got beat up the worst.

 

In college, I didn’t start off roommates with my BFF freshman year.

She was a tough-ass housing project girl from the South Bronx who knew cinder block and gun play.

We had lame Midwestern girls for roommates, girls who listened to Milli Vanilli and used sanitary napkins instead of tampons, for fuck’s sake.

We met at a dorm social. And when we locked eyes, we were like Tony and Maria in West Side Story.

Every one else fell away. We murdered those lame bitches asked for a transfer and moved in with each other.

And we played Russian Roulette with our lives on a regular basis.

Why should we finance Greyhound when we could just stick our thumbs out on the Major Deegan Expressway in the Bronx and hitch hike back to school?

Jump in a van filled with five guys? Yay! We got ourselves “The Real World!”

“This is the true story of seven strangers picked to drive COMPLETELY DRUNK in a van…

…Find out what happens when they do hallucinogenics and break out into a game of quiddich.”

We’d get them to drive us straight to our town – to our door.

And invite them IN. Where they’d stay, sometimes for DAYS.

 

Once, we got into a car with a cowboy from Montana.

We’re somewhere on Route 80, and Cletus McPigFucker very nonchalantly reached under his seat.

And pulled out a shotgun, placed it on the dashboard, and continued to chat with us. While he stroked his gun, like a penis.

Or a dog.

Or a penis.

We took off running at the next rest stop, hopping over the guard rails and bushwacking through the high grass.

For the rest of my life, I will remember the sight of my BFF running like an escaped convict, high jumping the guard rails.

 

At least when I got jumped on the platform of the D train, I could SEE who my opponents were.

One brother held me while the other put a knife to my throat and snatched a gold chain off my neck.

I don’t know what would have happened next if my Guardian Angels hadn’t saved me.

Not the spiritual Deep-pockets Chopra kind, the Curtis Sliwa kind.

Rocking the whole uniform; the beret, the red jacket over tight white tee with that Guardian Angels logo.

Not my Angels - but they kept NYC subways safe

Not my Angels – but they kept NYC subways safe

 

And I ended up dating one of them, too. But mostly because he was a drummer and because the uniform was HOT.

I wasn’t always so lucky.

Wattie, the lead singer from a death metal hardcore punk thrash band from Scotland- The Exploited – swaggered into the record store near my apartment and invited my fishnet stockings and mini skirt to watch them perform that night, as his guest.

Wattie in the men's room (none of your business)

Wattie in the men’s room (none of your business)

 

So, I brought Lisa, my coke dealer Harold’s 16-year-old girlfriend, who I was stuck babysitting, while he did coke

Unfortunately, we were enraging all the territorial death metal hardcore punk thrash chicks – particularly Lazar, the leader.

A scary creature with upside down crosses tattooed on her face.

How does one get a job with ink like that? Is that not an issue?

And when we left the club, Wattie invited us into the van to continue the party at their hotel. I peeked in – 10 drunken band members and roadies.

Hmmm, this didn’t look like Bay City Rollers Scottish,

this looked like Gang Bang Scottish. We declined the ride, said we’d catch a cab and turned around

To face Lazar and her pack of rabid dog women from hell, who “demanded our leathers” (a British punk thing; they rob your leather jackets),

and then PROCEEDED TO KICK THE LIVING SHIT OUT OF US.

Back then, Doc Martens didn’t come with girly roses on them,

Yeah  - NO

Yeah – NO

They were BLACK and had fucking STEEL in the toe.

We ended up in the hospital with broken ribs, a busted collarbone. a concussion and black eyes.

Harold was pissed.

 

My point is, I’ve been in some actual scary situations.

So, excuse me if my first reaction to your emails is to break out the red pen of my cerebral cortex and start correcting.

What language are you WRITING in? Yellow LEDBETTER?

You don’t seem to know a “you’re” (contraction) from a “your” (possessive pronoun) and my son already knows that. And he’s ten.

Now I totally lost my train of thought

Now I totally lost my train of thought

 

Oh, right-

I’m sorry it bothers you that I have so much to write about. I guess that’s why I’m a Hot Bitch On the Internet.

My blog is my HOME. I’ll write what I please.

If I want to write that I was ass-fucked by Kris Kringle in Macy’s window (34th St side), I will.

You no likey, you no read. Click. That’s what your opposable thumbs are for.

You’ll find they come in handy, once you step down as captain of the “USS WHAT THE FUCK” and do something useful.

Besides hurling CPS threats at me, which are getting as OLD as your snatch hair.

 

Your factually uncluttered hyperbole regarding the details of my life makes me wonder, why me?

You know nothing about ME.

Or about ANYTHING. I’ve been surrounded by YOU by whole life.

Idiots who think they can wax philosophic about Haile Selassie because they know how to tie on a Jamaican flag bandanna as a doo rag between huge bong hits.

 

But really, why ME??

I’m not well known.

I don’t have a huge following.

I’M NOBODY.

I’m a faceless cog pushing a cart in Whole Foods.

I’m a nameless mailbox in the frozen tundra of suburban wasteland with school cancelled yet ANOTHER snow day.

With a sniffily ADHD 10 year old, hopped up on so much Sudafed, he’s Breaking Bad in my family room.

If he doesn’t stop talking through Full House I’m going to have to remove his larynx with a blunt spoon.

I’M NOBODY AT ALL.

Tapping at her computer when I can. My kid just blew his nose and presented me with the contents of his tissue – that was the “Big Event” of the evening.

And the hottest thing that’s happened to me in the last month was getting a lady boner over the fact that Anthony Kiedis is still immensely fuckable at 51.

 

To accuse me of being an “attention whore” is to make no accusation at all. WELCOME TO WORDPRESS.

Aren’t we all spreading our proverbial legs open just for a fix of attention? Isn’t that the point of blogging?

Exactly what is it you want from me??

If you want me to leave, I’m not. Writing is how I breathe.

If you’re trying to get me to not believe in myself, it’s been done already. This is, at best, an amateur effort.

 

I don’t know whether to slap you upside the head, cradle you to my breast…or cook for you.

I suppose,

love you is what I have to do. I just blogged about that, right? That love is the answer.

To do anything else makes me look like a hypocrite.

Love is the the universal force that unites us all.

 

You just make it so damn hard to love you.

 

Deep breath.

 

Regroup.

I know food. I know music.

So, come in. Wipe your feet.

We’re listening to the blues today. If Little Dude wants to play air guitar to “Lonely Boy,” he has to know Muddy Waters.

I hope you like beef stew. There’s enough for all of us

IMG_1391[1]

 

And homemade biscuits. Pull up a chair.

IMG_1399[1]

 

 

Seriously, I got nothing, people.
But you can talk to me. I’m listening.