Sunday, March 28, 2004

My First Group

Levi was in charge. He was older, a senior, and had the most stuff. And he worked for his parents so he had the most flexible schedule. The first time he called me himself to invite me to a game I did a little dance around my room--I was IN. He had another group of friends, other seniors that only played with us from time to time. They were Zach, Levi's best friend, who years later dropped out of college, grew a beard, and walked the country; Jesus, whose real name was Matt Smith and who worked at Taco Bell (when he was on drive-thru you could order a Matt Smith Soft Taco that would be so loaded with Grade D meat that it was bigger than your fist); Fred Paul, who shaved in the morning and had a full beard by midnight; Tim, who was always on speed; and Nate, who generally had other, shadier things going on.

The next guy in our group was Comstock. Comstock and I stuck together the longest, after the other cats moved off to college or quit playing altogether. He liked Pink Floyd and would honestly listen to nothing else. He also drank Diet Mountain Dew (caffeine free) and carried cans around in the duffel he called a book bag. He was diabetic and gave himself insulin shots in the stomach while we played, not even bothering to stop talking while he did it. Later he worked at Subway and gave us free sandwiches.

James rounded out our group of four at the beginning. He was my friend from 5th Grade, the one that had always been cooler than me. I saw him change in high school, adapt himself to please the other people around him. When he got a job for the first time he used to shout that his set of dice had cost him an hour's worth of work.

Robin and Amy and Melanie were the girlfriends. They played when they were dating someone in the group, and stayed friendly even when they weren't. After Levi graduated the group fell apart, even Comstock for a time. I found my second group by posting an ad at my local ratty comics shop.

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