Anyway, dinner ended at around 11PM, and Larry said he wanted to show us some waterfalls. We followed him for a while then Dan said Cindy wanted to go home. I thought it was painfully obvious that she was ready to leave for quite some time, and even tried to involve her more in the dinner conversation because of her visible boredom. Larry pressed on to say that he just wanted to show Dan one more thing, but Dan said that he really needed to leave. He said good-bye to Lance, Don, and Larry then told me that he'd take me to a taping of a TV show sometime soon. Koool.
July 5, 1996
After Dan left, Larry, Don, Lance and I walked around the area a while more before heading back to the parking garage. When we got there, Don said good-bye and gave me a hug. It was something I wasn't expecting, but it was definitely nice.
And now, the details get a little fuzzy: Too much has happened since. The three of us rode back to Larry's house and talked in the bedroom. I think Larry was playing on his computer, talking to Lance and I, when Lance went into the bathroom and came back out in his boxers. And what happened from there could be anyone's guess. Most likely, the three of us ended up in bed with our boxers on, hands went roaming, boxers came off and the three of us had fun in one form or another. You see, the reason I can't remember the specifics of what happened Wednesday night is because something similar has happened almost every night since.
Thursday, Larry and I looked at university-owned housing. Parkside, the residence hall to which I'd been assigned, was a dump. In fact, I had to quiet Larry when he kept telling the student guide that he couldn't believe people actually lived there. I was a tad embarrassed, but Larry's verbal dissapprovement proved positive when he asked if Parkside was the only residence where someone could have a bedroom to himself: The guide said almost any apartment could be "bought-out" for 1.5 times the rent. We asked the guide for his personal opinion of the residence halls then headed to one of his recommendations, Webb Tower. The RA on-call showed us a sample apartment and it was much nicer. I still wasn't convinced that I wanted to live on-campus, but living in Webb would definitely beat living in Parkside.
On the way back from USC Thursday, Larry and I discussed his and Lance's impending trip to Hawaii. We'd talked about it a couple times before, but Thursday was the big conversation. My position was that Larry misled me the last time he was in Hawaii, said that I'd be going if I were in California, and promised that I would be going soon. Here Larry was going, again, while I was in California, but he was leaving me home alone. I mean, I wasn't looking for a free trip or anything like that: I just missed being the center of Larry's world. I didn't want to kick Lance from the spotlight, either. I just wanted to be taken along and be treated more like I used to be and less like a family member. Larry's position was that he needed a getaway with Lance. But he went on to give me some crap about how it would be $3000 to take me along and how the flight was sold-out. I was hurt to the point of crying. I know $3000 bucks is a good chuck of change to Larry, but he was acting like it was $20,000. And I had a hard time believing it would be $3000 anyway.
When we got to the office, I signed on EAAsy Sabre and found that a flight to Hawaii was a whopping $418... I didn't get upset, but instead wrote on a sheet of paper, "By the way, a flight cost $415-$418 on three different airlines including Continental." He was on the phone, so I handed him the paper then went into the other room to make a few calls about USC housing.
An hour or so later, I was back out front sitting by the fax when it started receiving. One of the office employees came to get it and said "Hawaii," which was more than enough to pique my interest. I looked at the fax and it was an itinerary for a flight from LAX to Hawaii for "Clouse/Justin"... paid in full.
I kept quiet about seeing the fax for one, because I felt a tad guilty for pressuring Larry into it and for two, because I thought my actual going could have been dependent on my behavior the next few days. (I thought perhaps Larry went ahead and ordered the ticket, but wanted to see if I'd annoy him to death before actually deciding if I'd go.) I kept my normal mood and when the day was finally over at around 6PM, no one had said a word about the ticket.
The rest of Thursday is a blank, but because of schedules Friday morning, I remember Lance came over and spent the night.
Friday, Larry was registered to go to USC Orientation with me, but when he found that he wouldn't be with me all day but instead with the parents part of the time, he opted out. He woke up and drove me to USC, nonetheless, to arrive at 7:45AM.
While I was standing in line to get my name button and information packet, the transfer student behind me asked if she was in the right line. I explained that she was and a conversation between us began. We talked for a while then the student in front of us joined in. Her name was Fara and for the next few hours, she and I stuck together.
We walked through the tour, sat through the introduction, almost nodded off through the class choice explanation, then parted ways when it came time to separate the individual colleges. Before I left, I gave her my business card for the web page and told her to check it out... I haven't heard from her since.
After being taken with the rest of the communications/journalism majors, I sat in a room and we all introduced ourselves. In the room of 11 people, there was only one other guy and my ewww-gross-he's-gay--dar went off. We learned about housing, parking, and other basic university things before heading for lunch.
When we got to the table designated for "Communications" (the journalism majors were seated elsewhere), a woman looked up and said "Justin Clouse." My name badge only said "Justin", so I sorta double-taked. Another girl arrived and Adrienne said her last name as well. I joked that we'd been checked upon and we proceeded to have a nice relaxed lunch: We talked about everything from class selection to speeding tickets. The only flaw was this bleach blond "I'm the center of attention and I can't believe you don't realize it" cheerleader wanna-be who wouldn't shut up. I wanted to say, "Who cares?!?" more than a few times but managed not to.
So anyway, from lunch, we went to the Annenberg school and proceeded to pick classes. Early on, I realized I could schedule my week so that I would just have classes on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday. The idea of having a four day weekend, every weekend sounded great to me. Furthermore, I even arranged my classes so that I started the days at 11AM, 11AM, and 10AM. No early classes, even. What more could I have wanted? I just knew when I tried to register, the classes would be full or some other thing would stop me... and I was right.
The meeting time of the philosophy class I'd picked had been changed. If I chose to take it, I'd have a single one-hour class on Monday: I'd never make it. So I decided to take another class and found one that fit the timeslot exactly. I re-keyed my entry into the touch-tone registration and presto! A three day week!
I got my picture for my student ID then called Larry to pick me up. He said during the drive to USC that if I got out early, perhaps we'd all go down to Lance's house on the way to La Jolla. The program wasn't scheduled to end until 5PM, but I was done by 3PM. I was psyched.
Larry said to call him back in five minutes, so I went to the bookstore for a quick lookaround then called his cell phone again. He said he was sending Val to pick me up and when he got off work, we'd head south.
Several hours later, around 7PM, Larry finished work and arrived at the house. We packed for the weekend then headed out.
Once we arrived at Lance's apartment, we each hugged him and hung out for a while. We eventually ordered dinner to be delivered and watched TV & fixed drinks while we waited.
When dinner came, Lance ate a few bites then said he wanted to go to the apartment complex's hot tub before it closed at 11PM. Larry had packed trunks for both me and himself, but I had no desire to get into the hot tub for ten minutes and neither did Larry. I did, however, say that I'd go along and sit by Lance while Larry decided to stay and finish dinner.
After a quick car ride, we got to the hot tub and found several teenage girls sitting in and around it. Lance said that he didn't really want to get in, but I said that he'd complained about his back. He soon decided to hang his legs in from the side.
For several minutes, we sat there talking about Larry, being gay, and life. At a few minutes after 11PM, the guard came towards the hot tub but was diverted by the girls who began flirting. In fact, it was nearly 11:30PM before we decided to head back.
And on the way back, we drove past two guys walking. Lance said something like, "We should kiss in front of them." I said back that he was just trying to have an excuse to kiss me and Lance smiled, stopped the car, then leaned over to kiss me. We kissed a few times then Lance drove back to his garage. And before getting out of the car, we kissed a couple times more.
When we got back to the apartment, Larry was asleep. Lance and I tried to wake him up, but when he didn't readily arise, we hugged a few more times. We then both shook him and he woke. We told him about the girls at the hot tub and about the guard... then he fell back asleep. Lance and I ate dinner, hugged a few more times, kissed a few more times, then woke Larry again. He smilingly asked if we'd run off and how come it had taken us so long to get back. When I explained that we'd been back for a while and had even told him about the hot tub, he couldn't remember any of it.
Larry and Lance then left to go check on Larry's dogs. (Larry had left them in the back of the Explorer near the complex office and wanted to move Lance's car to that parking space and move the Explorer into the garage.) For a few minutes, they were gone then Lance came back. He said that Larry was fretting over the dogs.
Long story short, Larry eventually decided that he couldn't leave the dogs in the back of the Explorer overnight and decided to go on to La Jolla. He woke Lance to tell him then went to the parking area to move the Explorer out of the garage and Lance's car back into it. He gave me a note to put on Lance's bathroom mirror when I ran the keys back upstairs.
I placed the note by the sink, wrote a note of my own to apologize for leaving, left it on the bed, then locked the door behind me as I left.
After about thirty minutes of driving, Larry said that he was too sleepy to continue and thus, I inherited the job. By the time we got to La Jolla a couple hours later, I was so sleepy I could barely stand it... but we made it fine and went to bed.
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© 1996 Justin Clouse