June 12th, 1976.
Hi, my name's Lee. If you're reading this, it is very likely that I will be extraordinarily upset with you, because this is a personal journal I bought yesterday, at the new Montgomery Ward. Anyways, here's some stuff about me, since that seems to be what you're supposed to do when you use a journal. I'm 17 years old, and I'm a Senior attending KL High, where I do marching band stuff. I also collect coins, which is not too exciting to some people, but I like it. When I graduate, I'd like to do something in engineering, but if that doesn't pan out it might be nice to do something with mechanics
School isn't really a huge thing. I've got band, and my friends. We mostly just mess around in the band room, practicing, going to other classes, then going back to band after class ends. It's actually pretty routine. The other band members aren't really interesting. Cindy's nice, but she doesn't really talk to me. Albert is the band leader, and he doesn't really do much other than boss us around when we bullshit him.
June 13th, 1976
Ugh, what a crummy day. There's a game coming up tomorrow to decide who gets to play in the county finals, so of course we got to march around, roasting in the sun as we do the same maneuvers over and over and over and over…. ugh. Went on forever. At least we had water, so nobody passed out from the heat this time. Abi's still pretty embarrassed about that one.
The rest of the day was just as blugh. First period was just boring boring boring. Mr. Collins just kept talking about sports, which I guess is what happens when you put the football coach in charge of a math class. Daniel was just being an asshole, babbling on with him about it. It would've been nice to learn shit before I fail the next test, but whatever, guess I'll just flunk again. Damnit. I need this credit for the mechanics scholarship.
I was talking to Cindy today, and she was really peeved that a bunch of afterschool stuff is getting cancelled. There's money issues or something. It's really a lame situation, I'm really upset about it too. If they cut the shop, I'd be out of luck. Just crossing my fingers that they can work something out.
June 14th, 1976
That game was a massacre. We crushed them!!! It started as a pretty close call, but by the second half we were basically untouchable. Coach was joking about how the uniforms were the key to the game. They're pretty cool looking, I guess. They bought them from a cheaper place this time, Synophone or something, but it turned out really awesome. Hope we get new uniforms for the finals.
Crap. I just realized how much more band work I'm gonna have to do.
June 15th, 1976
Someone busted our front window today, while everyone was out of the house at school. I didn't get home until six or so, band practice, and I almost cut my foot on one of the more jagged pieces.
Note to self: Double bag glass next time, glass cuts are not fun.
June 17th, 1976
Got to talk to Cindy today. My spit valve busted, and I didn't have anything to practice with. She was really nice, talked almost the whole period and then some more afterschool. Should see if she'd be interested in hanging out sometime, maybe go into town or someplace like that. But first thing is to take care of getting the valve fixed ASAP. I should check on my savings jar…
I just got back from going to the new music store downtown. Apparently it's from the same outfit that gave us the uniforms, and they're called Syncope Symphony. It's a really excellent store, they've got tons of stuff for such a small place. I even got a big discount for being a student at Kirk Lonwood. Definitely going back soon, if I can. Just have to close my eyes and follow the beat. I also hit up the coin shop, but there wasn't much of interest, and the good stuff costs too much.
June 18th, 1976
Went to do a babysitting job today, for one of Dad's friends. I'm usually not a guy who likes kids, but they were alright. They were old enough that I didn't have to change diapers or anything, and they were nice enough. We pretty much just watched TV the whole time I was over there. Parents gave me thirty bucks, which I'm gonna spend on some coins I saw.
Oh, just remembered what we were watching. It was that old batman TV show. Nananananana…
June 20th, 1976
Cindy and I were talking again today, about the clubs and stuff. I told her that if she was gonna be bored from missing her clubs, we could hang out or whatever. I really do enjoy talking to her, we've got a good rhythm, talking words together and coming out harmoniously. We decided to hit up the Renmar theater, to see some movie. I don't even remember which one we picked out.
June 22nd, 1976
I just remembered something from the other day. A lot of the stuff in town was closing up. There was that Synoco store, but the grocer, barber, and a bunch of other places just looked abandoned. I stopped at Synoco to get something for Cindy's birthday.
The store was still nice, but it had different people working there. Not that they'd say that, according to them they're working "with" the store. They were just really strange, beyond that. I saw one guy mop the same spot of floor for the entire two hours that I was shopping. He just whistled the same ten second tune over and over. Was a nice tune, so it didn't bug me, but it was weird.
June 25th, 1976
Went to the counselor to talk about career options. There wasn't a lot to go on locally, but up in Reskin they have a college with a pretty good mechanical engineering program. It'll cost a pretty penny… might need to dip into my savings again. I really don't want to have to sell any of my coins, but if it comes down to college or coins, I'm going to have no other option.
June 29th, 1976
Been busting my ass with practice. We've been going out everyday to try and get ready for the big game. Of course, Collins picks the hardest and most retardedly ass-backwards routine he can think of, and expects us to have it perfect in four weeks. We're starting some more intense training this week, which is gonna be miserable. If we weren't already in "intense" training, I really don't want to see what is.
I placed an ad in the paper for some of my coins today. I tried to pick the ones I could part with and still had value. Haven't got any calls yet, but it might've come in while I was out. We really need an answering machine.
June 30th, 1976
As part of the new training schedule, we've been given some vitamin pills or something to keep us up during practice. They're little chiclet pills, don't even need any water to swallow 'em. Take two in the morning and one in the evening.
Those glass shard cuts still aren't all the way healed. Damn.
July 3rd, 1976
Sold the coins today. The clinking and the clanking as I handed them over was really nice. Made me think of pennies on a drum. The money's gone to the saving jar, and I'll talk to a counselor after we finish up the season.
July 6th, 1976
Training has started. We're doing excellent work together, stepping in beat with our sound and in synchrony with the metronome. Just march to the beat, Cindy and Randy and Greg around me, we march in solidarity, together unified with the miracle of sound.
Someone has to keep the beat to the world. We're giving them the greatest show they've ever seen, this game will be more memorable for the halftime band than the players.
July 9th, 1976
The radio was really good today. The sound slithered through the holes in the fiber cloth, curling arround the wooden frame and emanating itself to me. We listened for almost all of yesterday and the day before, and I didn't even notice. Time sure flies by when you listen to it.
July 11th, 1976
It's a distraction. We march every day, keeping the beat. There isn't time to play games, Cindy. I know you read this. I know you've been tearing the pages to write your own personal symphony. Well, I can tell you that you're just a roll of quarters stuck inside the cash machine, not hearing the chime of changing hands above you.
Things are different now. They're always going to be. I remember changes before, or later. Sometimes it's hard to decide.
July 15th, 1976
I'm not hungry anymore. We talk to each other, and play one another, and make them into the notation. We're conducted together. Who needs free breakfast, lunch, and dinner when you're part of a bigger piece? Cindy was eating. She can, I have life to live.
God, my stomach is twisting itself tighter than a violin string right before it snaps
July 18th, 1976
Before we met, I was a pitcher of water, sloshing around and holding all my notions in my skull. My flow was stagnant, and I couldn't walk with my fellows. We had to break the glass, let it fall to pieces, let it sink into the sides of our heads. Rattles arounnnd until all the pieces catch. I needed you to put it back together again, with the cracks showing. It comes in like a fountain now, and I know so much.
I remembered how we used to sing.