Mud Brothers

Sunday, July 11th, 2004 | Friends, Travel

Big Chris and I have reached a new level of trust, warmth and understanding in our friendship. Yesterday morning we soaked our Chrissies in the volcanic ash of Calistoga, emerging from the mud to watch our toxins and ennui wash down the drain. In our matching “Russian River” t-shirts and Merrell hiking boots, and over a bottle of wine by the River, Chris suddenly blurted out, “You are not Midge, you’re Scotty!” Shocked, I replied, “But I want to be Midge.” “No,” he said, “I am Midge, you are Scotty.” I sat there for a moment, and the light bulb in the thought balloon over my head suddenly lit up. He’s right.

We’re of course talking about the principal characters in Hitchcock’s Vertigo, one of the first films we saw together, and the loose script for our subsequent interaction over the past 4 years–minus the chicks thrown out of the tower and into the bay. Midge is the beloved character played by Barbara bel Geddes, the character after whom our gallery is named, Marjorie Wood, or “Midge” for short, cute and sassy, smart and patient–what I want to be. Scotty, James Stewart, is a former detective who is obsessed with a dead woman. When he stumbles across a woman who reminds him of his presumably dead love, he convinces her to dye her hair and even wear the same clothes. The irony is that she IS the former lover, and it’s one of the best fucking movies ever made, so if you haven’t seen it I’m not going to tell you any more, there’s no excuse not to rent it and watch it tonight.

I am Scotty, trying to impose form on an ever-elusive love. “The gentleman seems to know what he wants.” Chris is Midge, patiently (well, okay, perhaps not so patiently) observing my obsession. “Well now, Johnnie-o, was it a ghost? Was it fun?…”

Thank God we’re not vacationing at the Mission San Juan Bautista, otherwise Midge might throw Scotty from the tower this time.

We went barhopping in Guerneville last night, which wasn’t that difficult as the only 2 bars in town are across the street from each other. We rated the men based on how many beers we’d have to drink before we slept with them. There were only 2 for whom I wouldn’t have to drink anything, otherwise, most guys rated between 4 and 8. Apparently Big Chris rated 3 Sierra Nevadas, 1 mineral water, and half a bottle of wine.

The drive back was soothing, in and out of fog, with stops along the coast and barbequed oysters in Tomales Bay. More tomorrow, gotta run…

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