January 1980

Detective Johnson!

 

Lou called on Christmas and asked me to go out with him for New Year’s Eve. It was his 22nd birthday on Christmas Day, and again, he was alone. I really felt bad for him being by himself for both the holiday and his birthday.  I hesitated about going out, but he agreed that we’d go just as friends. We went to dinner and then back to a friend’s apartment where he was staying over break. He explained that he was insecure about our relationship before, but doesn’t feel that way now, and would like to try dating. It’s been fine so far; as long as he doesn’t pull any crap again, we should be ok.

He was not thrilled that I’m working with Vinny now, but does like the fact that the hotel is within walking distance to the college.  So, after work I can head up to his dorm to do homework together. I get as many hours as I want at the hotel and can study while I’m there, so I quit the restaurant job. Lou met Vinny when he picked me up at work; he doesn’t see him as a threat of any sort, so there’s really no issue to worry about.

I went to “work” with Lou for the first time to repossess a car. We drove to a house in some remote place down a long dirt road and had a stake out.  Finally, the car showed up; when the coast seemed clear, Lou walked over to get into the vehicle, but got caught opening the door by the very pissed off owner who assumed his car was being stolen. Lou immediately flashed an official-looking badge he carries with him, and barked out, “Detective Johnson, REPOSSESSED!” and continued getting in the car. He had the keys to this one, so it was easy to get it started and pull out.  I was waiting in the Grand Prix just across the road, and followed.  I had never driven by myself before, it was snowing, it was dark, on a bumpy dirt road, and I have no driver’s license, so I had a bit of adrenaline rush when I stepped on the gas.  There were some sizable dips, and I got a lot of air flying down that dirt road. It was one of those blustery snows where it is hard to see past the headlights, so I was sitting on the edge of my seat the long drive back to campus. It was really exciting.  I think I like being the getaway car driver.

I had to be very careful driving; a ticket would be expensive, given that I have no license, and Lou’s car registration, inspection, and insurance have all expired. Lou paid for the car, but he bought it and insured it under his father’s name, because he could get better insurance rates through the FAA. However, that means only his father can register and inspect and insure the car, and he’s not talking to his dad.  Even if he could do those things, I don’t know if he could afford it. I usually pay for gas because he does drive me home and pick me up frequently.  It’s the least I can do. His only income is from the repossessions; he works in the fraternity house kitchen to offset meal costs.

I’m doing ok financially since I work a lot of hours, and community college is pretty cheap with financial aid. My parents won’t charge me to live at home as long as I’m in school. I help with housework and cooking; I don’t eat many meals there, so I’m not costing them too much. Besides, I’m only seventeen, so I don’t feel too guilty about living under their roof for free.

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