Seems as if every woman with whom I have ever been remotely involved in a kind of intimate connection had a problem father. Could be these women were drawn to me on a superficial level as a sort of nice-guy, possibly unlike their father, but deep down they know I am a real trouble. We all suffer the compulsion to repeat and have a deep nose for the connections that allow us to do so.
BJ, the woman who delivered me of my virginity, had a problem father, I am pretty sure. She also had a brother, but she hardly ever talked about him. I got the feeling he had done something terrible like be “gay.” BJ’s father was some sort of salesman who traveled a great deal and was really successful. But BJ indicated that he was on-the-road an awful lot and she was sure I do believe that he had been untrue to her mother repeatedly.
So one day, we borrow a car—because my car wouldn’t have made it—and we drive clear out to Palm Springs to meet her parents. Well, it was sort of confusing really. Maybe I was supposed to meet the parents or maybe she wanted to talk with her mother because that was how it mostly turned out. As I step out of the car once we get there my old jeans just rip from the crotch right up the back so that my butt is sticking right out, at a time that I am not wearing underwear.
Her parents are staying in a house right next to the golf course. So no sooner do I walk in, all skinny with a beard to my Adam’s apple and my red hair sticking out, all curly, like an afro, than I have to say I need a pair of pants. I do not make an initial good impression. I borrow a pair of pants from her father, who is bigger than I am, and all he has is slacks, and I have to cinch up the belt real tight to keep them from falling off. By the time I get the pants on BJ’s father is gone and she is in deep conversation with her mother.
So I decide to get out of there and go wondering around outside and find that the house is right next to a golf course. That’s where the father had gone; he is playing in a tournament. Lacking anything else to do, I walk up right to the edge of the course near one of the holes and sit down, and to my amazement people start coming through and some of them are people I have seen on TV. Why, lo and behold, there is Bob Hope, because it turns out I am an accidental spectator at the Bob Hope Desert Classic of 1968.
I don’t know what went on back then, but there are no guards or ticket takers or whatever. I just sit there on the edge of the course with red hair sticking out all over, wearing pants than don’t fit and looking sort of like a derelict and nobody bothers me or says a word.
Around Whittier, like driving back, you can see the smog coming down like a giant curtain in front of the LA area. We don’t talk much and I guess I am a bit confused having stepped a bit into her life with a powerful and wealthy father who plays golf with Bob Hope and a betrayed mother and I feel like I have smog in my head.