i met bro. xu online years ago. he was like a big brother, or an uncle. he was older than the people in our group and he lived in one half of an island and a girl lived on the other half. above him was a festive area where the they had parties. he would invite me, which pissed of most people because i was not 18 which you needed to be to go in adult places. but bro. xu would invite me and spend some time with me when i came. we’d talk together and laugh. he invited me to a cowboy and indian site — where most of the indians were german. bro. xu was a chief. it was interesting because i knew a lot about native people because my dad had been ceremoniously adopted by a cherokee, long long time ago. before i was born. there is a story about why and how but i don’t remember. did i tell this to brother xu? if i did maybe he could tell me what i’d forgotten.but when i talked with him today — for the first time in a very long time — i was very polite. i said nothing out of the way, no jokes. he had a new picture in his profile not the one he’d taken at a restaurant where i think he held a glass of red wine. his hair was shorter…or was it longer? he looked like he’s been working out. his arms had definition that i didn’t remember seeing before.
but this time i didn’t babble, didn’t give him a reason to be uncomfortable and to run away. i looked at several photos of his baby girl. when i last saw her she was in a stroller, now she was three and walking. she was cute and already knew how to pose for pictures.
it was about two am in china, and we said our goodbyes.
i walk a new path to return home.
i’m not going to write about Earth Day. i remember the first earth day celebration i went to. i went with a group but i don’t remember who. my school? but a catholic school wouldn’t come out for earth day, in fact they never rallied or demonstrated about anything.
still, i remember going to a rally and i remember going up on the stage and speaking. about the earth and how it was alive and how it was being choked and poisoned but it was gonna survive. take a licking but keep on ticking. and after all the talking was done we sat in the street and chanted and then the police came. they put these plastic handcuffs on my wrists and put us on a bus. a real bus but yet there was something unreal about it too. we were crowded together and locked up and after a few hours the policemen let us out.
did this happen? if i ever got arrested i’d never hear the end of it, my mother would be arguing non-stop. dad would be mad that i didn’t go to school. no, i did go to school that day we met near city hall after school. i think it was a Thursday.