Fortress of Privilege, by Matt Senate

I bumped into a troubled friend on Shattuck and Alcatraz.

“Nostalgia sucks, too many memories.”

I see my mother in Brian’s teeth. She’s lucky to have USC-sponsored dentures now, but for a time her teeth were an unsightly burden. She forced her lip over them like blinds, painfully obvious when she laughed–to this day she can’t smile the same. Not like when we were kids, tickled to death on the living room floor. I see my mother in Brian, though he’s not yet lucky enough to have a good set again.

He recently wrote twenty late responses to official legal notices, reliving the elaborate tragedy of a lover’s quarrel. Graham, a mutual friend and laid-off computer science instructor from SF State, helped Brian put them together.

He associates these responses and their dramatic arc to the place he wrote them. Though the responses route and pass through hand and desk, their vapor lingers in a place he can no longer stand the stench. This place is where we met, and where we have hung out, chewed the fat, wrote, and created true things. Now Brian and I will likely only talk, infrequently, through facebook, in the passive narratives we construct there about our lives and everything.

“I need a fortress of privilege; poverty sucks, man.”

He has some Shit to deal with at his house. I have a train to catch.

Matt Senate is a well-wisher, do-gooder, tree hugger. Matt lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, he is a Californian.

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