(written over several days.) Since I'm stuck in an airplane for the next few hours, I figure that this would be a great time to catch up on life in general. However, you'll have forgive the presentation; we're experiencing what we in the industry call a "clock skew". Most of this is ancient history, a good portion is told in the wrong order, and maybe some of it hasn't even happened yet. Since novelists consider this to be good technique, I'll make no furter apology for it. (And the details of the Manhattan trip are STILL forthcoming. --Ed.) I'm now settled into my new apartment, and not a minute too soon. Living at Lance's house was a little too wierd for me. Don't get me wrong, the house itself was really great, but the occupants were getting on my nerves. Let me attempt the roll call: Lance. Okay, Lance is pretty cool. He is the personification of the term "weekend warrior" seven days a week. Some of his favorite activities are skydiving, rock climbing, and motorcycling. He's one of Loki's "suits", but I don't think he's ever owned one. 90 miles per hour is his idea of driving slow. One time I peeked into his room to see if he was home, and on his table was a Book of Mormon under a copy of "How to Read Auras" under a huge roll of 100 dollar bills. What a metaphor! Lance is great, and I really looked forward to living with him, but I didn't count on the other residents. Lance's girlfriend, Dulcie, also lives in the house. She's a prime candidate for Jerry Springer. When I first moved in, she told me that she couldn't wait for Lance and she to get married. Yikes. She would tell me that she wouldn't know how to exist if they ever broke up. Yikes. And she would tell me that she knows Lance really loves her, and he's clearly just afraid to say so. YIKES. I asked her how long they have been a couple, and after some amount of strained calculation, the result was, "almost a month and a half." Oh, yeah. Did I mention that Dulcie's currently married to another man? Dulcie's husband, Mickey, is a real piece of shit from what I can gather. Since Dulcie wasn't willing to have sex with the guy unless they were married, they had a rather hasty knot tying, and were fighting before the honeymoon was over. Since then, he has pretty much split his time between smoking large quantities of marijuana and watching professional wrestling, which I suspect he believes to be real. Dulcie has a pit bull, named Sierra. I had never actually SEEN a pit bull before this one, but I had heard lots of stories of these dogs removing the arms of small children, so I wasn't too thrilled to find one suddenly living in my house. The dog itself doesn't bother me. In fact, Sierra is the friendliest (and perhaps the most enthusiastic) dog I've met. I think it's the fact that Lance and Dulcie used my shower to bathe her, and didn't clean the hair out of the drain. And my towel mysteriously began to smell like wet dog. Dulcie also has a sister, in whom she confided about her relationship with Lance. Naturally, her sister immediately called Mickey and told him all about the new guy Lance and his big house and big Mercedes. In short, she's a backstabbing bitch. Dulcie told me that she would never be able to trust her sister again. One morning, around 3a.m., I came into the house and almost tripped over someone sleeping on a foam mattress in the foyer. Upon interrogation, I discovered it was Dulcie's sister. I guess trust is a lot like the weather. Maybe spousal abuse is genetic, since Dulcie's mother is apparently also married to a real piece of shit. One night, while Dulcie's dad (or maybe stepfather?) was in lockdown for some sort of domestic disturbance, Dulcie and some friends rescued dear ol' Mom, and brought her to Mickey's house to live with the happy couple and their pitbull. Under happier circumstances, this would be a decent setup for an NBC sitcom. One morning, around 3a.m., I came into the house and almost tripped over someone sleeping on a foam mattress in the foyer. Upon interrogation, I discovered it was Dulcie's mother. Now I can just imagine Mickey sitting on a worn couch, lighting a joint and watching Monday Nitro. He normally hears the noise of a wife, a mother-in-law, and a dog moving about the house. Now there's nothing but the hooting of Ric Flair echoing through the silence. I wonder if he ever started to suspect anything. White trash has a talent (if not an instinctual need) to follow people; it's a 90s incarnation of hunting skills. Thus, Dulcie's indiscretions would lead Mickey right here, and probably sooner than later. I began to expect that he would show up at Lance's one day. He would then shoot everyone, the dog, and finally himself. They would make a Lifetime miniseries about the killings, and I'd probably get played by Eddie Furlong. So that's us: Lance, Dulcie, Dulcie's sister, Dulcie's dog, and Dulcie's mother. Oh wait. There's also Will. He's the ghost. Nobody sees Will except Dulcie, but she claims to have talked with him on several occasions, and has told him to "go to the light." In this case, this is a Christian suggestion to go be with God, making Dulcie one of the few truely devout people I've met that loves both Jesus and Ouiji boards. Anyhow, apparently Will was murdered decades ago, and his body is still buried under the foundation of the house. And he doesn't like me because I'm "closed minded". Will, if you had an email address, I'd send you this journal entry and we could discuss that matter. Shame you haven't got an email address, cause you're just a figment, you imaginary fuck. Kiss my close-minded butt. --ryan.