The Insisters could have been a lot cuter, but they had more tattoos than any of the local dudes, which made them semi-sexy, I suppose, and I liked how skinny they were. There isn’t that much to do around here except eat junk food, and most of the local dudes are like obese. I didn’t like the music very much, but I liked that it was so loud that Alykzandra couldn’t hear a word the pair of Privilege dudes who tried to hit on her after the fourth song were saying, and I could tell she thought they were hot. At my school it’s like a status thing to date a Privilege dude because he has to drive 12 miles each way to see you.
The group didn’t play very long because the guy with the big guitar with four strings passed out and had to be like carried off stage. They announced that he had the flu, but Alykzandra, who likes to pretend she knows everything about everything, snickered and said he’d probably OD’d. I wasn’t sure what that meant, and I don’t think Britt did either, but we both pretended to, and then the lame warm-up band came back out and started playing all the songs they’d sung before, and they weren’t any better the second time. In fact, they might have been even suckier, so when this dude with a really cool tattoo on his neck — a dotted line and the words Cut Here — asked us if we’d like to meet The Insisters we said why not. We didn’t want to appear like over-eager.
It was kind of fun going backstage. I’d been to the Crest around a million times, but never been back there. The Insisters dressing room I guess you’d call it had a big table with lots of sandwiches from Jimmy Johns and big bottles of Coke and Sprite and whatever. I was hungry, but it looked like somebody had put a cigarette out in one of the sandwiches, and there was a syringe on top of another one, and one of the Insisters came over looking like he might have the same flu as the passed-out one, and put his arms across Britt and Alykzandra’s shoulders. Totally like entitled, even though he looked a lot older close up than on stage! It was like I wasn’t even there. His speech was all like slurred. He asked if they wanted to party, and I was hoping Britt would say no way so she could drive me home and I wouldn’t have to see that Uber guy again, but she let Alykzandra speak for her, and Alykzandra said, “Why not?” like it was a really clever or whatever.
I didn’t know what to do. The dude hadn’t actually invited me, just Britt and Alykzandra. I thought he probably wouldn’t mind, especially if he got a good look at Alykzandra’s skin, but what if he did? It would be more like humiliating than I could bear. So I was relieved when the Cut here tattoo dude asked if I wanted to do some smudge. He was actually better looking than the actual Insister guy. I didn’t know what smudge was, but it didn’t really matter at that point. Eat your heart out, Alykzandra!
He said his name was Venom, but that I could call him Ven. He wanted to go back to my place. I told him I didn’t have a place yet, and that I lived with my dad. He took a long hard look at me and asked how old I was. I told him, and it seemed to like excite him Maybe somebody will be able to explain to me why old dudes like really young ones when the young ones probably don’t even know how to like do it yet. But whatever. I wondered when we were going to do the smudge, or if that had been like a “come-on.”
We went back to the Ramada Inn — gee, how did I know they’d be staying at the only classy motel in town? — and went up to his room. I’d expected it to look like my little brother who stayed with my mom’s — like a hurricane or whatever had hit it — but it was like totally anal, everything in its place and a place for everything. Maybe they hadn’t been in town long enough to like trash it. The weird thing is that there was little model train set up on the little table where you’re supposed to eat or whatever, and Ven wanted to show it to me. It didn’t look that impressive — nothing like the one that big department store whose name I forget had in its front window last Christmas in Yankton. Ven was so proud of it his eyes were like glistening, and that freaked me.
“You don’t like model trains?” he said, like it was the weirdest situation he’d ever been in. “Wow, I’ve been like totally into them since I was like maybe seven.”
I said maybe I’d better get home since it was a school night and everything, and my dad would be stressing. He didn’t like protest because he wanted to have weird sex with me or whatever, but because I wasn’t interested in his stupid train set. The third or fourth hottest girl at Bolsinger High is supposed to get wet over a model train set? Hello? But who’d want to have weird sex with somebody so stupid as to believe that Friday’s a school night?
I’m telling you all this, but not Britt and certainly not Alykzandra. They both claimed to do stuff with the Insister dude that I don’t even want to repeat here, so I didn’t really have a choice but to say that me and Ven got majorly kinkier than either of them, for hours. Alykzandra looked at Britt and said, “I like so don’t think so, since I looked out the window and saw you getting in Tim Pritchett’s taxicab at like 11.” I said maybe she’d been like hallucinating, and Britt, bless her heart, said, “God knows I was!”