The cigarette in his chubby hand, and the 180 pounds of fast food girth, betray his thirteen years of living, but compliment the outsized clothing and tiny dirt bike, as well as inspire confidence in the third-grade toady, who pedals furiously, yards ahead, then races back to his side. He is the fat punk rock kid in my neighborhood, and he screams for ice cream. "Here it comes, yo!" The ice cream truck plays a warbling, music-box version of Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Wolf as it graduates to the side of the road. He grabs hold of the truck and somehow fastens his jaw to the freezer to siphon its contents-- wrestling pops and extreme eclairs, sodden wrappers shooting from a corner of his mouth only to be caught in midair by fluttering swarms of Japanese animation. The smaller boy kicks the tires and exclaims "Daaammmn!" Cranky but satisfied, the two boys cross the street to kick the shit out of the newspaper machine. The universe, dictated by X-box physics, allows them to twirl atop a magical swell of E minor chords and land spectacular high kicks, the greatest of which sends the machine soaring into oblivion. They collect the change and adjust their Coal Chamber t-shirts. Then it's off to the overpass. "We're going to spray-paint the biggest titties anybody's ever seen!" "Damn!" They, in fact, do paint a large, uncannily detailed mural of a woman's breasts on the side of the overpass. The skin-tone and illusion of heft are wrought with such tender precision, it is as if an actual giant woman has paused there to exhibit her extraordinary fertility. Responding to complaints, a policeman approaches in a squad car. He removes his hat, then twists his lapel for a minute. "I'll tell you what, boys. I was sent out here to arrest ya, but now that I see you were out here drawin' a couple o' jugs, I don't see no reason for fussin'." He pulls away and crashes into a tree, then stumbles from the car, swatting out a small fire at the cuffs of his pants. "It's okay," he says, "because of the jugs." Unimpressed, they hop on their bikes and slowly weave their way to the record store. The man who works there is arranging LPs and listening to Brazilian space rock. The fat kid steps up to the counter, thrusts an Offspring cd at him and says. "Listen to this, bitch." The music comes to a needle-scratching halt. The store clerk removes his Buddy Holly glasses and replaces them with a larger pair of Buddy Holly glasses. "Why I, I've never heard of this before. Let's put it on." The two boys run amok, jumping onto fixtures and smashing "pussy-assed" cds against the wall. Offspring clamors away as the clerk shakes his head and shrugs his shoulders. College girls dance in the aisles and smile foxily as the fat kid urinates onto a listening station. Suddenly he is in the park, lying face up, a huddle of blurry faces peering down at him. "He's waking up," says one of the faces. "We found your Offspring CD, fat ass. Did your mommy buy it for you?" "Gimme that." His bike is in a tiny heap near his head. "Stick to riding in your backyard, Pillsbury. You landed on your big fat head." The toady steps back a few paces, appearing sympathetic, but then conceding the collective look of disgust. "Yeah, blimp ass," he says. "Damn." "Did anybody get that on tape," asks the girl with the green hair. "Fuck yeah," answers the boy with the lip disk. "What a homo. Let's go tweek out and fuck shit up." They all hop onto their handlebars and ride backwards into the sunset.
All right, I was trying to write an absurd story about a fat, commercialized punk rock kid who is always walking by my house. He's this perfect consumer, an archetypal gluttonous clown, eating cream pies because he doesn't know how to throw them (I'm sure you remember the gluttonous, pie-eating clown archetype from Folklore class.)- representing Punk Rock, twice-distilled, through successive generations, becoming a self congratulatory, prepubescent fashion trend not unlike Underoos or Garanimals. But I've written this kid into a heart-wrenching situation and now I feel sorry for him. Everyone leave the brutish, fat, punk-rock kids with the dead raisin eyes...alone. They probably have mean dads who get drunk, watch Full Metal Jacket and throw bookends. (Because what else would one do with bookends?)