Tables figure so prominently in so many of the most important moments of all my lives.
Tables and spiders. Can’t seem to get away from either one of them.
Living on a sacred island, somewhat successfully pursuing a movie career, uncommonly fit, glowing, bright and happy, I met Pat.
Our first meeting was unremarkable. I perceived him as a short redhead on the nervous side, a friend of a friend.
Then I saw him at Dockside Restaurant that fateful night, and a milestone moment burned its way into my heart and mind again, forever.
I will never forget the way I saw him that night. A little drunk, actually pretty drunk, something caught my eye on the other side of the dock. I turned to look, and everything else fell away.
I was no longer drunk and I could see Pat clearly, but I didn’t recognize him as the same person at all. I saw him suck all the light from around him, making him a glowing spot in the dark salty-aired night, creating a virtual vacuum around him surrounded in an uncannily dark black.
He stared at me with intense, black, beady little eyes. At this point, I knew who he was, and simply stood there in disgust and awe at the hideous creature I saw in front of me.
The evil thing that he was completely changed the light that he was stealing, and I could see it. Somehow, I could see straight through his facade and I saw him for what he was in that moment – an ugly, evil entity who had nothing but hate for me.
Now, we did not know each other at this point, we had been merely introduced by mutual friends in a casual environment. This was only our second encounter. I don’t know whether it was my drunken state or his, or the level of his evil or the bright of my shine, but in that moment I saw him. I saw pure evil and it gave me the chills. For 15 seconds, I could not look away from the vision I was seeing in front of my eyes as it burned itself like a branding iron on the fabric of my soul.
The next morning I woke up and chalked it up to alcohol and paranoia. I went on to become partying buddies with Pat, sharing many drinks and joints together, many many seemingly idyllic times partying on the beautiful beaches and working at the great restaurants. We shared the same friends in the end, and became friends legitimately in our own right.
While I never forgot the perception of that fateful night, I never gave it the credence it deserved, either.
That all changed the day that Pat came over with a backpack, a nervous twitch and a smile.
“Hey, man!” I said as he bounded up the stairs of my house on stilts. “So glad to see you!” I laughed, hoping he brought some weed with him.
In slow motion, he slung his backpack off his left shoulder and onto the round table between us. It made a strangely familiar metallic thud as it landed. I got a cold chill up the back of my spine and the crown of my head lit on fire.
“I brought you something,” he said with a sly grin.
“Ooo! I can’t wait! Let me see!” I said, quickly forgetting the child that had crawled up my spine, lighting my crown chakra on fire. Easy enough to distract an innocent and pure soul.
When he unzipped the backpack, I froze in the calm realization that indeed I had recognzed that metallic thud. It matched the silver-gray metallic glint of the 9 millimeter handgun inside.
Without missing a beat, I picked it out of his bag and laid it on the table, trailing my finger on the butt, like an old friend.
“What do you have this for?” I inquired coquettishly.
“Well, you know, just in case…I live way out there in the dunes, anything could happen.”
Yeah, more like anyone you fuck over around here ain’t fuckin’ around, and will come lookin’ for you with hardware of their own.
“Well, what else did you bring me,” I said, pushing the gun back towards him, staring deeply into his eyes.
He closed off and stopped fidgeting, a grin creeping across his face that I have come to recognize over the years, across many faces on many different paths. His eyes became beady and calculating, his movements swift and decisive.
He upended the backpack on the table. Out fell the requisite fat bag of weed, and a jar with a something small and white in it.
Intrigued, I leaned closer to the jar. “What is it?” I said.
“It’s a black widow I found on my porch. That’s a cotton ball with shit on it,” he said, reaching forward and righting the jar carefully, leaning over with his other hand to grasp the lid and calmly began to open it.
“A fucking black widow?” I said incredulously. “Dude!”
“Don’t worry about it, I put that thing in there,” he said as he tapped it out onto the table in three swift taps.
Assuming that the cotton ball had something on it that had killed the huge spider that was now in the middle of the table, legs curled up like a dead spider’s supposed to be, I nonchalantly reached out my right index finger, gave the thing a prod, and it opened its legs and started moving around.
That was the end of Pat. And the spiders.
You’re welcome. 😊❤️💋🇺🇸🎉👊🏻🔥🗡⚔️🅰️➕