when i flew to california after high school i had no friends here

quite a change from Illinois where i had gone through kindergarten to high school knowing pretty much every single kid.

was i popular? when youre the only Black kid in your grade it helps to be popular, but for sure everyone knows you. i was also loud.

santa monica college, 1984, michele had ripped runned fish net stockings, a skirt of some sort, a raggedy sweater, converses with words written on the sides with lipstick, she had the blues eyes the blackest hair and more lipstick on her pout

i said hello to her in the outdoor arena where bands would play at lunch time.

she had a wild looking friend with blonde dredlocks and barbie head earrings.

both a bit intimidating because not one girl looked like either of them in my preppy midwest high school, but this was exactly what i wanted when i moved to LA so i said hello again

i have no idea how i got a date with her but i did and one led to 100. she lived in malibu in a neighborhood where every house is worth at least $2 million, but she was not rich, far as i could tell. maybe her dad had money since he was an engineer way down in manhattan beach but their house was modest and so full of love.

the mom, the brothers, michele, the cats, the food, the open mindedness of everyone.

when i say i have had a charmed life this is exactly what i mean. if i had picked the blonde, none of this would have been the case. but fate put michele next to me and even though we broke up three times, we got back together repeatedly and i learned that Geminis are just like that, as is the world, so just roll with it and stop taking everything so personally.

she taught me about U2 and poetry and journalism, as in that was a path one could actually take and make a living from, and it would be honorable. before her i just assumed it was created inside a hollowed out volcano somewhere and delivered by magic.

we went to foreign films and talked all night on the phone and kissed and kissed and drove and drove because i lived in inglewood which was 32 miles away. 

worth it. every time. every single time.

after a while her mom said oh tony just spend the night.

i was so catholic and so midwestern and such a virgin, i declined the first few times but you do get drowsy after smoking a little weed on zuma beach under the stars.

i forget where i read it or heard it. it was either a model or a porn star or an actress who said

guys move to california and they think they’re gonna meet some hot native californian and make out on the beach and live the life everyone sees in movies but not it’s not like that.

and i know the world famous busblog says nothing in here is true but lets pretend for this minute that sometimes things are true here

you can move to california (or wherever) and you can have whatever it is that you want

and it will not be what you expected it to be.

but it will be perfect for you.

and sometimes it will be even better than you ever dreamed of.

happy birthday michele!