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Palo Alto [Englisch] [Taschenbuch]

James Franco
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Produktbeschreibungen

Pressestimmen

"[Franco] ends up perfectly mirroring the undulations of a teenage mind."--"The New York Times Book Review"

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

As an actor James Franco won the Golden Globe award for his portrayal of James Dean in a tv bio-pic of the actor's life and has appeared in such diverse films as Pineapple Express and Milk; he plays the lead in Danny Boyle's new film 127 Hours and portrays Allen Ginsburg in Howl; he has collaborated with an artist called Carter in a conceptual film piece and has shown his work at the Dietch Projects in New York; over the course of the last two years he has been awarded degrees in English Literature from UCLA, in Creative Writing from Columbia, in Film-making from NYU and has been accepted in the English Literature PhD program at Yale.

Leseprobe. Abdruck erfolgt mit freundlicher Genehmigung der Rechteinhaber. Alle Rechte vorbehalten.

Palo Alto

Halloween


Ten years ago, my sophomore year in high school, I killed a woman on Halloween.

I had been drinking at Ed Sales’s house all afternoon, which I wasn’t supposed to be doing because I was on probation. The probation rules said I was only allowed to drive to school and then right back home after school was out. But it was six months since I’d been arrested for being a minor under the influence, and my parents had become lax about the driving rules. On that Halloween Tuesday, instead of going home, I took some friends over to Ed’s and we all got drunk.

His father was a mathematics professor at Stanford and his mother was a nurse, and neither of them came home until at least six but usually seven. His professor father had a great liquor cabinet. I had my first drink there when I was thirteen, and in the three years since then we had been taking from his cupboard and putting water back into the bottles. We could never get much from any one bottle because it would be too obvious; so we would take a little from all the bottles and mix everything into a punch like the bums did in Cannery Row. I like that we did that, I liked thinking that we were like Mack and the boys, even though the punch tasted horrible. We’d usually mix it with grape juice, but it wouldn’t help much.

We were all sitting in the backyard on a little picnic table that you might find at a park. His dad probably took it from the dump. He was always doing weird stuff like that to save money. Ed did it too, like scraping the mold off old bread and then eating it. His dad was a mathematics professor who smoked a pipe, every night. His teeth were yellow and crooked and horrible. Ed had a little pipe and he smoked tobacco with his dad at night. Ed was half Korean and half white because his mother was Korean and his dad was white from Gary, Indiana.

Outside, we were smoking weed in Ed’s little tobacco pipe. We were all planning on going to Alice Wolfe’s house later for the Halloween party, and we were getting ourselves revved up. I picked a fight with Nick Dobbs. I had seen him hanging around my girlfriend, Susan, and I didn’t like it. I spotted them a couple times laughing in the corner of the library at school. I probably wouldn’t have cared if he had been just one of those theater dorks that she was always planning events with, but he wasn’t. He was a handsome skateboarder, and I had enough of the alcohol punch in me to start something.

“I heard you and Susan did acid. Why did you give my girlfriend acid?”

“She wanted it.”

His eyes actually looked worried. It was not the reaction I was expecting. I suddenly felt powerful and a little bad for him at the same time. I probably couldn’t have asked for a better reaction because I really wasn’t a fighter, and this way, because he looked scared, I had beat him without having to fight him. I didn’t like to see people intimidated, but this guilt made me turn meaner because I told him to apologize, and when he did, I demanded that he say it louder so that everyone could hear. I was pushing it a little and I could see him consider just taking a swing at me, but he apologized again slightly louder. Jack spoke up.

“What the fuck do you care, Ryan? She does acid and other drugs all the time, with all of us.”

Well, I didn’t like that. Funny how new facts pop up and make you doubt that there’s any goodness in life. Everyone pretends to be normal and be your friend, but underneath, everyone is living some other life you don’t know about, and if only we had a camera on us at all times, we could go and watch each other’s tapes and find out what each of us was really like. But then you’d have to watch girls go poo and boys trying to go down on themselves.

Then Ed’s Korean mom came home. She was only about four foot ten, but we all got scared anyway. We heard the front door close inside the house, and Ed said, “My mom’s home!” And we grabbed most of the cups and someone grabbed the punch and Ed grabbed his pipe and we all scrambled over the fence and jumped into my car. It was a Honda Accord I’d inherited from my father when things were better between us, and it was pretty small for eight people. There were two others in the front besides me and five in the back. Jack’s elbow was in my face, and when I looked in the rearview, the backseat was a jumble of arms and torsos and heads up against the ceiling. Nick wasn’t in the car. He ran off somewhere to go and cry, I guess.

I raced out of there. It wasn’t time for Alice’s party so we had to find a place to go. The sun was going down, and there were already trick-or-treaters out with their parents. Everyone started getting rambunctious. It made it hard to drive with all the yelling and Jack’s elbow in my face.

“Get that thing out of my face!”

Jack just laughed because there wasn’t much he could do with his elbow. Everyone was talking very loudly, and the people that had saved their cups were trying to drink their punch and were spilling it all over the car. Then for some reason everyone started chanting, “Fuck Alice Wolfe, fuck Alice Wolfe, fuck the Wolfe!” We didn’t know why we were saying it, at least I didn’t, but it was really funny, and some of the guys were howling and everyone was feeling good from the drinks and about the escape and about the night ahead.

For some reason I was still driving fast. As if we were racing somewhere. I guess I just wanted to get this octopus of bodies out of the car as soon as possible, but it was also more fun to drive faster, as if we were really having a crazy adventure. I used to think of these escapades around the neighborhood as good life experience.

We decided to go to Eleanor Park to lie low before the party. There was a little community garden in the back of the park where people could grow their own vegetables, and there were some picnic tables there just like the one in Ed’s backyard. We all sat down and continued what we had been doing at Ed’s house. Ed went over and started picking baby tomatoes and carrots from the garden. They were small but tasted really good, and the carrots were soft and buttery tasting. Ivan went over and started kicking a trellis down, and everyone laughed because his foot went through it.

It was a simple existence, when I look back on it now. I have friends who grew up in New York City, and the stories they have from their childhoods are amazing. Full of color and culture and danger. I envy them.

At about eight we went to Alice Wolfe’s party. We had finished the punch in the park, and everyone was feeling even happier. The Wolfe chant started up again, but this time it was slurred. Now that we were close to the house, the chant began to take on meaning for me. It meant that we had little respect for Alice Wolfe and her friends. Yes, they were the prettiest, most popular girls in our class, but they weren’t that pretty. And our chant meant that we were going to dominate them. We were going to go over there and do our best to get them alone and fuck them.

We had decided to go as monkeys. We had identical monkey masks that we’d stashed in the trunk. All eight of us wore one so no one could tell us apart. At Alice’s it worked out great. It broke the ice because we could act as stupidly as we liked, and we ended up making the girls laugh a lot more than they usually did. I had a few more beers, and then I found myself talking on the back porch with Sandy Cooper.

“I know it’s you,... -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Taschenbuch .
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