I didn’t think that I would be able to write about ‘belief’ and rather thought I would find some convoluted way to write about how recent army discharge
Doug Clement approached me in our school hallway and snaked me hard in the chest with his two strongest fingers. That story would have been called Snakes in a Hallway.
But then I remembered, right after the tragedy back in ’82, I was applying for a job as a minimum wage rock & roll janitor at a church in the old neighborhood, where we used to watch Mayberry R.F.D. on live T.V.
I waltzed five minutes late into the interview as the Church deacon gazed at me to see if I was the right man. He spoke over an open copy of a tomeish Bible in the sanctuary room, as we reviewed my qualifications:
1. Ever done time? Nope
2. Can you sweep? Yessir, Like Elmore James!
3. Do you believe in Godspeed? I don’t rightly know. No – I guess not. Not right now.
I had been rebelling against whatever was out there at that point. And guess what, I didn’t get the job. Certainly the deacon must have believed that he made the right decision, when he saw me walking away from the Biblical debriefing room, with a copy of Huck Finn sticking out my back pocket, only slightly obscuring beneath some Catcher in the Rye.
Later on, I snuck up behind Doug Clement in Darkbarlington Hall and applied a sneaky snake to his chest, until he exclaimed, “Ow, my stars!” Then I told him this story.