Monday, April 03, 2006

"Wild Baby!"

"What's the meaning of life?" It's an age old question with so many varied answers. I personally think it can only be answered by one person. You! I know what it is to me. I hadn't even asked the question when the answer came to me one evening many summers ago.
We had a day off before setup and left the lot sweaty and dirty and headed for a hotel. Everyone went two to a room and settled in and had showers. I always got my own room. I long ago paid my dues and didn't share a room or a bunk with anyone. Plus the fact they were mostly young and would be partying late into the night.
I was in my late thirties now and didn't really party anymore. I'd been clean and sober for a number of years. I had no desire to burn the candle at both ends anymore. I figured I'd order a pizza and watch TV and call it an early night. I wanted to be up early the next morning anyway to jam on my guitar for awhile. I've been a blues player for most of my life and always had One of my guitars on the road with me. I absolutely have to play. If I don't I get bitchy.
I Got undressed and had a nice long hot shower and washed the sweat from the last tear down off me. I'd slept a lot in the truck so I wasn't all that tired. The room was cool when I came out of the shower and it felt so good after a hot day. I was sitting on the edge of the bed looking though the phone book for a pizza place when there was a knock on the door. The young ones on the crew usually don't bother me because they know I have little tolerance for their drama or bullshit. When we get into town I want to be left alone. I got up to answer the door swearing under my breath.
Baby was standing there looking up at me. Everyone  called her "Baby!" I gave her that nickname because of her tattoos across her knuckles. The letters spelled out  "Wild Baby!" We all just called her "Baby!"
She immediately started talking.
"Uh... Will and Derek are being fucking assholes, and I'm not staying in that fucking room with them!" She said it all matter of factly with her hand on her hip and her duffel bag over her tanned shoulder.   
"And.............?" I said. 
Her ice blue eyes were looking up at me.
"Can I stay with you?" She asked.
"Oh for fuck sakes, you can't work it out with them!" I asked.
"Please!" She whined. "They're going to be up all night fucking partying and being dicks and I don't feel like staying up all fucking night with them partying and being dicks!"
"There's no other girls you can bunk in with! I asked.
"I don't like half those bitches!" She replied.
"They're fucking bitches and they're gonna be up all fucking night too. I just wanna smoke a joint and have my wine and relax. I won't bug you old man! I wanna jam a bit too" She laughed. 
The girl was a good singer.
"Ahhh fuck, come in. The left side of the bed's mine!" I said. 
I was resigned to the fact my night alone was ruined. I was pissed but she was a good kid and there wasn't much I could do about those other little dicks. It was their night off too after all.
She got her stuff out for the shower and went into the bathroom. I asked her what kind of pizza she wanted and ordered it. She came out of the bathroom wrapped in towel and drying her long blond hair with another towel.  Baby was always a sight. 19, blond, ice blue eyes, slim and tiny, very tanned. 
I don't come on to the young women on the crew but I do notice them, I mean I'm a man. I know most of the older guys on the road do and I don't not do it because I'm any kind of hero or gentleman. It just looks stupid and pathetic when some much older guy does exactly what every young woman knows that he's going to do. Make an idiot out of himself by coming on to her when there's absolutely no chance in hell.
I'm not a creep like that. She was out of my league at this age anyway. But I could notice. We were friends and I always cared for her and loved her tough spirit and the way she carried herself and spoke her mind and worked her ass off. I'd seen her mixed up with a few assholes over the years but it was none of my business. She'd figure out she could do better at some point.
She threw on some shorts and a halter and our pizza came and we sat on the bed watching TV and talking about the asshole she dumped two spots before. Then she smoked a joint and got her wine and I got my guitar out and played some old blues tunes that she knew the words to and she sang her heart out and we laughed and had a good time late into the night.
Around midnight I put the guitar away and figured I'd fall asleep soon. Baby was feeling good as she smoked another joint and talked about life and her asshole dad and what an old prick our boss could be and a "fucking perv!" as she put it.
"We need some music!" She said as she turned the cable channel to a music station on the TV.
The song  "By Your Side" By Sade came on. It's such a beautiful love song. Baby started dancing slowly to it, lost in her buzz. She looked so beautiful moving to the music in the dim light. She moved closer to the bed and kept dancing to that beautiful song as she slowly pulled her halter off and over hear head, dropping it on the floor, revealing her small perky breasts. She kept smiling at me as she slid her shorts off and kicked them away and continued dancing slowly, completely naked now, while her ice blue eyes looked right into mine. It was one of the most beautiful things I've ever seen, and so totally spontaneous and unexpected that I didn't have time to be surprised. Add to that the fact that in the Carny world you don't know what's coming next. It's hard to be surprised a lot of the time. She was the most beautiful creature I'd ever seen in that moment. I can play that over and over in my head like it was yesterday.
In that second the question I had never asked was answered. It was a spiritual experience. The meaning and point of life. It hit me like a brick wall. It was like time stood still for an eternity and it was just "Us!" The meaning of life is to be inspired! No life! That's the whole point. The opposite sex does that for us. Inspiration is the juice of life. Without it we're dead in the water. We live to dream! 
It may be a mans world, but it's inspired by women, and maybe they're the true creators of it all as well as us. Without them we have shit, we don't even exist, literally. We all come from "Woman!"
We made love till morning and she wore me out. When I woke in the afternoon she was gone. I showered and headed back to the lot. Everybody was setting up. I went and threw my shit in my bunk and was headed to the office trailer when I ran into Will.
"Haha, mackin out on Baby chick last night I heard old man!" He laughed.
Just then Baby came around the corner.
"I macked on him, and trust me, he aint that old!" She said and laughed in her raspy way and kept walking, looking back and winking.
I was tired, that girl could go. We got together again a few more times that season and of course always remained friends ever after. I don't know where Baby is now. She didn't come out one year and we never saw her again. I think about her whenever I hear that "Sade" song. I'll never forget that night or "Wild Baby!"


Tom Hoey said...

After reading the post, I am awakend to the fact that there is not too much difference with our Carny lifestyle than the townies. The only difference is that the carnies lifestyle cycles on a yearly basis where theirs cycle three or four times in a span of a lifetime. You know, youth, middle age, older, the end, we all die alone and are forgotten. Bleak, huh?

mysti said...

i'm about to join the carnival and dont think i have any idea what i'm getting into. i love to travel, and by travel i dont mean staying in hotels and going to the beach. i've been homeless several times and liked it, but wanted something with a little more structure and support, but not much. i think this life will suite me, i just wish i has more knowledge before jumping in. when you get this comment, message me @ myspace. or even email me, although i check that less. my name is mysti by the way. advice would be so great