The scent from his suit slapped me in the face, reminding me of another time in my life before I grew this rat tail. His suit had an office smell that told a story of board meetings, cologne, happy hour, and confidence. His brown belt was the same color as the end of an old book on a shelf in your grandpa's office that laid quietly and untouched upstairs. The small glossy brown belt looked as if there was a line of ants chewing zig zag rivers all the way around his wast. A caramel color iced mocha made noises from the ice hitting the clear plastic cup every time he talked. I could see residue on his coffee cup, possibly whip cream, from what I could see out of the corner of my eye, because the corner of my eye was all I was able to use to deeply analyze this creature I used to know so well. As we stood and talked in the front door of the gym, my rat tail started to feel heavier as he put his cell phone in his pocket and began rubbing his hands together with his feet a little out from shoulder width apart as if we were about to talk stocks and bonds. The tail weighed me down back onto my heels if some one was trying to pull me away from him. My rat tail stretched from the gym lobby through the door leading out to the gym like an extension cable to a TV. He moved so freely, and talked like we were best friends. His demeanor was light, weightless, fast moving and intense. Intense in a good way, a draw you in kind of way. A way that had you hanging on every word between every sentence kind of way. A way that made you want to make him coffee, and hoped he liked it kind of way. Little swooshy brooms laid over his work shoes that matched his belt perfectly. Shoes that were more like slippers, and what those broom stick things that substituted for laces were had me scratching my head, even without my beta-alanine pills. Charcoal sports coat still on, but his salmon or pink..... couldn't really make out the difference, had the two top buttons undone, as if to say he put in his work throughout this sunny Wednesday in the silver towers of Charlotte. His blue socks were showing below his work pants, I thought this was odd at first but then soon realized after many flash backs and memories that this is what he was going for, this is what was in style, this was professional none the less. Lexus in the parking lot that made me smile as my head dropped and tears starting to gather their weapons like the beginning of Gangs Of New York as they were making their way out of the tunnel.
The Seattle Space Needle erupted though the gym floor as the smell of salt water and the sounds of fishing boats captured my attention, drawing my face blank as memories never die, and at times can truly become alive. The business man in front of me became blurry and faded. My rat tail became light and small as it fit perfectly in my And 1 shorts while I rode my skateboard in the parks of downtown Bellevue as my dad filmed with his over sized Channel 4 looking video camera. Fresh knees scooting me along the pier made my hurt back feel strong, and my bloody thumbs feel smooth as the echo from the man talking in front of me rang throughout my ears, not breaking my concentration. Time to stop by the office at Nextel for my father to do some "work". What did he actually do while my sister and I played in the break room.....I have no idea even to this day. The man in front of me kept talking as Lexy and I scurried around the cubical world of ringing phones and empty rooms filled with random tables and paper work. Random laughter as skirts and suits would constantly debate where they were going to lunch, no matter what time of the day it was. My dad's office always had people in it. The minute I would abruptly enter the talk, the laughter would stop, heads would all turn our way as if we just broke up the party. Shots of tequila were everywhere, as my dad nicely told my sister and I to go play as he flicked through some cash to give us like we were in the mafia. We took it and ran like it was some sort of game giggling down the maze of cubicles and fax machines, every once in a while turning back as if my dad was going to join us in our little game.
Sun roof open as my sister sat on the "hump" aka the center consul of my dad's beloved Lexus that he would constantly dust with his duster and make us take our shoes off before getting in. Square black sunglasses covered his face, perfect look for the 90's. Bobby Brown playing in the CD deck, as all of our arms and limbs were out the window driving slowly down the strip of our favorite movie theater and shopping mall. Three birds, the team, family, all three never have been together since. My dad reached out to grab my hand and told me everything was going to be okay, and that he still loved me. My sister started to cry as she looked at the window now painted with Seattle rain and fog. His suit smelled strong as my face was buried into his brown leather jacket. My eyes stung from my sister's blond hair that got into my eyes from her sharing the other shoulder. We were family once again. A Seattle Space adventure into the past, a time machine that gave me hope and a feeling of love once again.
I soon realized the hand I was holding was the business man that came to visit my gym. He was shaking my hand and telling me it was nice meeting me. He told me he would be back next weekend to start training. He put on his black leather coat over his charcoal sports coat, and raised his round gold sunglasses to his face with one hand, and then walked out the front door. I went to follow him, but I was stopped by my rat tail. I am a gym rat. I always will be a gym rat.
Suit & Tie 2016