Blood, Guns and Whores

~An
All American Tale of a Boy and His Dog

Written and Illustrated by W.Ross Ayers

An SFWC Co-Publishing Studio Production © 2011 by LND, inc. All rights reserved

“Blood, Guns and Whores – An All American Tale of a Boy and His Dog“, is a coffee table novel made of micro chapters and illustrations about a boy growing up in the small farming community of Blissfield, Michigan and on to adulthood in San Francisco.

W. Ross Ayers

12. Sadie Hawkins The first middle school dance was in October. It was a Sadie Hawkins dance. I had no idea what that meant. Mr. Craston, my reading teacher, said it meant that the girls ask the boys to the dance. Really what it meant was that I was screwed. What girl is going to ask me to the dance? The week before the dance that’s all me and my buddies talked about. “Has anyone asked you to the dance yet?” “No.” “Me either.” “Do you have a date yet?” “No, whatever.” Some of the older boys had dates with their girlfriends. I had a fantasy that Joy would come up to me at my locker between classes and bashfully ask me. “Do you have a date for the dance this Friday?” “I have been considering a couple of invitations, but I haven’t decided yet.”

“Well... umm... I was thinking that if you wanted…that well...maybe we could go together… that is if no one better has asked you yet.” “Hmm? Like I said, I do have a few choices, but what the heck. Why not? Let’s go.” At the end of the week none of my buddies had a date. And of course, I didn’t either. We were going anyway. There was no way we were going to miss it. Maybe a girl would ask us to dance once we got there and if not, maybe we would break the “rules” and ask a girl to dance. Friday night came. My dad drove me to the dance. Rich stayed at home. Apparently, the year before he had learned it wasn’t worth it. After school that day I had bought some breath mints in hopes that I might get close enough to Joy for her to notice. Half a mile from the middle school I opened the pack of breath mints as we drove around the bend on the river across from Joe’s Carryout. “Hey Dad, you wanna mint?” “Are you saying I have bad breath?” he said flatly as he inhaled on his cigarette. I guess that was his idea of a joke. But I thought he might just as well be serious. “No. I was just offering,” then popped two in my mouth for good measure. We pulled into the parking lot of middle school. I opened the door to the car and hopped out. “I will be back at 9:30 to pick you up.” “Okay,” I said not looking back. I walked up the wide white concrete sidewalk to the front doors, took a breath, straightened my white clip-on tie and yellow v-neck sweater. I raised my hands to straighten my hair and remembered, just in time, that before leaving the house I had put in an extra dab of DippityDo and that my hair was stiff as plastic and brittle as ice on a puddle. I breathed again putting my hands down. I opened the orange metal doors and heard muffled music. I walked past the lockers and opened the doors to the dance.

“Cold as Ice” by Foreigner blasted around me. The white tile-floored auditorium that doubled as our lunchroom was dark and filled with kids along the edges, standing in small groups and milling around. On the stage the DJ, David, a sophomore in high school, stood behind a long folding table covered with a record player surrounded with piles of records. A few kids were hanging around the edges of the dance floor. I quickly searched for my buddies and security. Thank goodness there’s Bob and Jon. I knew Rick and Pat would show up any minute. Nick’s parents didn’t let him to go to dances. He went to the Baptist church. They didn’t allow dancing. I had no idea why. “Hey, ya wanna a mint?” “Sure, thanks.” “Yeah, I’ll take one too.” “Cathy’s here,” Bob said. “I just saw Karen,” Jon added. “Have you seen Joy?” I asked. “Yeah, she’s over there with Brad.” “Are you going to ask her to dance?” “Maybe.” All through the night, “with Brad” rang in my head and squeezed my chest. He was a cool jock. He was an eighth grader. Even I thought he was a great guy. No one could say a bad thing about him. He was a track star, good student, nice guy, and “with Joy”.

During the fast songs circles of girls formed and circles of boys formed trying to move to the beat, nervous and self-conscious. Me and my buddies waited for the slow songs, egging each other on to ask a girl to dance. Each time the slow songs started we stood and hesitated thinking... I’ll ask her the next song. Then Bob asked Cathy to dance and she said yes. He was a Brad in the making. Then Jon asked Karen to dance and she said yes. Jon was just himself, smooth the day he was born. Rick, Pat and I stood on the side of the dance floor. We didn’t dance with any girls.

“Blood, Guns and Whores – An All American Tale of a Boy and His Dog“, is a coffee table novel made of micro chapters and illustrations about a boy growing up in the small farming community of Blissfield, Michigan and on to adulthood in San Francisco.

W. Ross Ayers

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful