Today Sean turns 21, and honey we are going to celebrate. I can't even remember what I did for my 21st birthday. Probably nothing—I'd been drinking since I was 13, right?
But Sean says she wants this to be the best day of her life, which sounds like a lot of pressure if you ask me but she says listen, if you take a look at my life, it's not that difficult.
Sean, what are you talking about?
I'm talking about my life. I only turn 21 once. It better be fabulous.
So here's the plan: we’re going to do a bunch of coke and then drive out with Avery to the Burlington Mall and then we’ll go right over to men's underwear at Filene's to find Abby. Remember, this is Sean's birthday — I'm just making it happen. I still don't believe that Abby works at Filene's, but Sean has called to confirm several times so I guess we'll see.
The original plan was to do ecstasy first, but it's Avery's car and she's fine with driving on coke, but not ecstasy. So the ecstasy will have to wait.
Speaking of Avery, it's like we're best friends or something, ever since she apologized. At first she just said I'm sorry, but I was not going to let her get away with that. I said: sorry for what? She said I'm sorry for judging you. And I said judging me for what? And she said you know. And I said no, I don't know.
She said I'm sorry for judging you for being an escort.
Because everyone has to make a living.
Okay, and what made you realize this?
I'm going to graduate soon, and I don't know what I'll be doing. Maybe I'll be doing the same thing as you. Or Sean.
You know. Selling drugs.
I guess what I want to say is that I think you're brave.
Yeah, I could never do what you're doing, or, I could never do what you’re doing, and be honest about it. I'm a thief. I steal things all the time. Little things like candy bars, chewing gum, or bigger things like this shirt, I walked out of Louis Boston with this shirt, and I've never told anyone that before.
Well, there's no reason to feel guilty about stealing from Louis Boston.
I just feel like I'm trash.
You are trash. We’re all trash. Some of us know it, and some of us don't.
Sean doesn't know it. I mean she doesn't know about me.
Well, I'll wait for you to tell her. Thanks for being honest. I've always thought you were trash, but I never thought you would admit it.
So anyway, now that Sean and Avery and I are a trio of some sort, a trio of what sort I'm not sure, but a trio nonetheless, the plan for us to celebrate together isn't as weird as it would have been before. I'm even getting used to Avery picking me up in his Mercedes, although I’m starting to wonder if that’s stolen too, I mean whether Avery really has rich parents or if it’s all a scam and of course that makes me like him more.
Anyway, after the Burlington Coat Factory, we're going to Bertucci's for a Heavy-Handed Wendy special. Sean might be losing it, but she actually asked where I wanted to go for dinner, I mean where we both could eat, and then she also asked if there was anything else I wanted to do. I was so shocked I didn't even know how to respond.
Like what, I said? Well, you're coming with me to find Abby, she said, so maybe we could all go look for JoAnne?
Are you kidding? This is your birthday. I thought you wanted this to be the best day of your life.
You're supporting me. I want to support you.
So, okay, before we go to Bertucci's, we’re going to JP to see if we can find JoAnne. I mean we’re going to the 5 pm meeting, or not to the meeting but outside, just in case. And then we're going to Bertucci's, since I know I'll be a mess after that. But what about Avery? Is there something Avery wants to do?
Avery wants to do ecstasy. Well, that's easy. And so, on the way from JP to Bertucci's, we'll pick up the ecstasy from Sage. The good stuff again, or at least she says it's the good stuff. I feel like I haven’t done ecstasy in years.
And then, get this? We are going to do the ecstasy at Ned’s. Ned’s out of town for the weekend; he said it was okay if we had a few people over. So we're going to do ecstasy, and get ready for the Loft, and then we’ll come back afterwards and sit in the Jacuzzi. After the Jacuzzi, we'll watch the sunrise at the Esplanade. That part sounds fun. I don't know about the rest of this adventure, but I guess it's Sean's birthday, magical 21, is she ready for her first drink?
Oh, my first drink — but will it burn?
What about my stomach?
Will it make me nauseous?
Am I still a good girl?
Will you fuck me while I’m feeling it?
Okay, step one: cocaine!
And: more cocaine.
It feels so great to be high. Maybe that sounds ridiculous, since I’m doing bumps all the time, but doing bumps isn't the same thing as line after glorious white line and we are flying down that highway, runway into Filene's but wait, not that entrance, that's the perfume. Back up.
Honey, where the fuck is the men's underwear? But then Avery spots her, from the distance, and we step behind men's suits like we’re undercover. Yes, that's Abby’s head at the register, that's her tiny face with those big ears. I don't know what I was expecting, I mean I guess I wasn't expecting to see her at all. We had all these big plans before. Sean wanted to go up to her and ask if there was a sale on shit-stained panties. But now we're all watching like it's some peep show tragedy. It is a peep show tragedy.
Finally Sean pulls my hand, and then I reach for Avery's hand, and then we head in Abby's direction. She doesn't see us until we get right to the register, and even then it's like we're miles away. Sean says Abe, what are you doing here?
Abby’s face gets all red and she looks like she's going to punch someone. She says you have to leave, or I'm going to call security.
Security for what, I say. I'm just looking for shit-stained panties.
I can't believe I just said that. It's not even my line.
Abby picks up the phone. I say who you gonna call, Ghostbusters? Miami Vice? The Golden Girls?
And then I’m laughing, I can’t believe it but I’m laughing my ass off but Sean is in a different world, yelling are we dead to you? Are we fucking dead to you? Her jaw is so tense you can see the veins on the side of her face, dark circles under her eyes in spite of all the Dermablend. I've never seen her get this dramatic about something that matters.
Abby puts the phone down. She walks to the back of the store like she's heading to the dressing room, and Sean says what, did you forget your enema? You forgot your enema, faggot. Faggot faggot faggot faggot. And Abby turns in the other direction, pushes open a different door and we follow her, then there’s a different door with a combination lock and Sean tries to catch it before it closes but she doesn't get there in time.
There’s some big guy someone in a shoulder pad suit coming towards us saying can I help you gentlemen? And Avery says I'm sorry sir, but can you show us the way to men's underwear?
She's brilliant under pressure. I can't remember if she actually knew Abby, I mean obviously they met but I don't think they were friends.
Thank you, sir, Avery says like she's British royalty. We were lost.
And the guy smiles like he actually believes us.
What should we do now? The bathroom for another bump, yes this is a nice bathroom, marble sinks or is this granite? And then we’re in that ridiculous parking lot again, staring at the façade of the mall that looks so similar to the mall of my childhood but this time it doesn't freak me out. It's kind of funny, actually. This is good coke. Avery starts pulling things out of her pockets. Ties, Polo ties, five or six of them. She says: I've always had a thing for Polo. And Sean says: I’ll take the one with the enema pattern. And we all start laughing, all the way back to the highway and then I realize we're actually early for Jamaica Plain, should we go to Five Seasons for a snack?
Sean says I don't know how you expect me to eat anything there. Avery says how do you expect to eat? And Sean and I both say at the same time: Marinol. We should do the ad jingle, I say. Oh, you're right, Sean says: but I don't think I can eat right now.
Don't worry, I say, I brought the magic zeppelin.
Oh, fabulous, Sean says, just what I need for my shits and giggles.
And Avery says: Marijuana isn't good for my complexion.
And then we’re all laughing again, I don't know why, especially once we pull over by Jamaica Pond and Sean says why is it already so dark again? It's not even four yet and it’s already so dark. Then we step outside and look, Sean, look, it's snowing.
And Sean says: In more ways than one.
And I say: Sean, it's snowing, it's snowing for your birthday.
And Sean says: Mattilda, you know I don't like the snow.
Okay, then it's snowing for my birthday.
Your birthday's in May.