I'm sitting here, in a squat, in the middle of England writing my will. I've got half a bottle of whiskey on one side of me and a spliff on the other. And my knife. I've got that out. See, if I do this right, I'll die painlessly. Drink the whiskey, light the spliff, finish it, and then take the knife and give my wrist a go. Hey, what would you do? Your girl left you, your band beat you and left you for dead and you're an American in the middle of England. Oh yeah, by the way, you're seventeen.
This crazy train wreck of a year all started on New Years Day. My parents were pressing me about my future. They said my only option was to enlist in the army. My grades sucked. I didn't apply myself. Couldn't play sports. Wasn't going to college. The whole nine yards. They said I had no discipline. I knew where this was going. We had talked like this a million times before. They wanted me to be like my dad. Go overseas, fight a war. I didn't want to do that. Hell, I didn't want to do anything. So I grabbed my jacket, my sneakers and a lighter and left. I walked about two miles through the snow into town. I hit Fenny's, the local coffee shop and sat down. I didn't order anything, I just stared out the window. Besides, I couldn't, I didn't have any money.
I started thinking about everything that happened in my life. My parents technically weren't my parents. My mom was a junkie prostitute and my dad was probably some business man trying to get some while his wife wondered where he was. My entire existence was a complete accident and was illegitimate from the get-go. My step-father was a drunk and my step-mother was a career woman of sorts who just wanted to get rich and successful fast. As you can imagine, with my mom out and my dad plastered things got ugly. Every Friday night turned into Smackdown vs. Raw with him. I'd go upstairs and lick my wounds after words. And that's when I discovered the absolutely wonderful presence of alcohol.
After taking an ass whooping one night, a week after my thirteenth birthday, I decided to get back at the geezer. So I took his Jack Daniels bottle. Not knowing where to dump it, I drank it instead. Amazingly, I didn't feel any more pain. Emotionally or physically. I didn't care where I was. I didn't care who I was. And on that very fateful night, I discovered something else. Music.
I had a small radio in my room that I had liberated from someone's trash can. It was beautiful. Sure, it was beaten up and barely worked. But it worked. I listened to the radio that night for what seemed like hours. Yeah, they only played Nickelback and Daughtry the entire night. But I discovered something amazing.
As I got a bit older, I started stealing CD's. Not for the thrill like some kids, but because my parents wouldn't give me cash for them. They thought music was a waste of time. The Specials, soon became my best friends. Not because I had purposely looked for one of their albums, but because I had grabbed the wrong CD off the rack. I was originally going for a Santana CD. Carlos Santana was my idle. I wanted to grow up and play guitar like him.
Have you ever noticed how looking back, your childhood dreams were stupid? I couldn't be Carlos Santana. I didn't have enough money to buy a knock-off guitar, let alone a real instrument. So instead of playing guitar, I got involved in the street. I joined a gang at the age of fifteen. But because they listened to Snoop Dogg and I listened to Skatalites we didn't get along. I left after they tried to gang rape a seventeen year old girl. It was disgusting what they were doing to her. As I was walking away one of them drew a gun to try and startle me. He didn't realize it was loaded and ended up firing a round. It hit me square in the shoulder. After realizing what they had done, the boys took off leaving the girl tied to a post, pants around her ankles.
As I looked down, I realized I wasn't going to last very long with blood gushing out of me like that. Then things started happening very fast. The girl's brother and her friends found her. She told them that it was me who had tied her down. Her brother came over and pulled a knife and was about to carve me up when he realized that I was still a kid and that I had a bullet through my shoulder. He called for an ambulance and tried to keep me awake. But I eventually passed out.
I woke up, surrounded by a bunch of kids with spiked hair and stenciled t-shirts.
Hey man, I'm Jimmy, he introduced himself. He was about 6'4 and was wearing a Black Flag t-shirt.
Hi. Who're you?
The girl your gang raped was my sister.
I was walking away. And, and, an-
Calm down. I know what happened. This is my crew. We wanna know if you would like to join us and y'know, kick their asses.
Sure. I guess. I really wanted out.
Cool. Well, thanks.
And with that, he and his crew disappeared as fast as they came in.
It didn't end well. Jimmy ended up killing Scar, the one who led the rape, and got 25 to life. The rest of the crew got lesser sentences. Except for me. They spared me. I'm beginning to wish they didn't though.