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  • Gutter Punk: Young And Homeless

    Chapter 11

    By Punkerslut

    Punk is Love
    Image: From "Anarchy" Gallery from FreedomInYourMind

    Start Date: April 26, 2003
    Finish Date: January 27, 2004

    The camera is in the squat, inside the room that the gang sleeps in. Freak is sitting down flipping through a family album. Kevin is passed out in the corner with a bottle of vodka in his hand, just moving around a little. Lily and Spike are making out. Sweep is reading a book by Mikhail Bakunin, "God and the State."

    GUNNER: Hey...

    LILY: Jesus, what happened to your face?

    Lily stopped for a second to ask and then goes back to making out. Gunner touches his nose and...

    GUNNER: Shit, oh yeah... I got in a fight with some Nazis. Those skinheads were fucking Nazis.

    SPIKE (pausing): Fuckin' A... What happened?

    SWEEP: Did you win?

    GUNNER: I said, "Nazi punks fuck off," they pushed me, I punched them, one of them was holding me while the other hit me. Then Tank comes running in and plows him down.

    FREAK (almost looking amazed and looking up from her family album): Wow...

    SWEEP: Are you okay?

    GUNNER: Yeah, I'm fine.

    Spike and Lily go back to making out.

    KEVIN (still in his disillusioned state and not even looking up): Nazi punks! Nazi punks! Nazi punks! Fuck off!

    Lily (between kissing): Gunner beat the shit out of some Nazi punks... (more kissing) I'm glad he's my family member.

    SPIKE (between kissing): Me, too... (more kissing) I love him like a brother.

    Gunner sits down, legs crossed.

    GUNNER: So, how you doing, Spike?

    SPIKE: Shit, that reminds me.

    Spike stops making out with Lily and pulls out a small wooden box.

    The camera freezes as Gunner does a voice over and reminisces...

    GUNNER, VOICE OVER: In all honesty, I guess I am the one responsible for his name, Spike. It was a cold, rainy night.

    The sound of thunder comes as the screen turns black, and slowly drifts down to an alley way at night time, while the rain pours. Spike and Lily are huddled up together, leaning against the brick wall of the side of a store, in a small area where the rain isn't hitting them. Gunner is walking down the street.

    GUNNER, VOICE OVER: It was a cold night. Cold and wet. The type of cold that when you reach over to touch your skin, you yank your hand away because it's so unbearably freezing, but you can't even feel it on your stomach or thighs. So, I trekked, with a recently shoplifted blanket. It was the first time I saw them in town. I stopped by and greeted them.

    GUNNER: Hello to you two. I haven't seen either of you in town. I'm Gunner.

    SPIKE: Hi, my name is Carl.

    LILY: And I'm Lily.

    They shake hands.

    GUNNER: Pleasure to make your acquaintance (looking up as the rain pelts his face) It looks like it's going to be a long fucking night.

    SPIKE: Sure is.

    Gunner pauses, then looks back at the couple. He unzips his sweatshirt and pulls out a blanket that is wrapped around his stomach. He hands it to them.

    GUNNER: You two will probably get more use out of this than me.

    SPIKE: Thanks, bro. That's fucking awesome. You're welcome to join us. We found a spot that's shielded from the rain.

    GUNNER: Nah, it's cool. Thanks, though. I'll see you guys around.

    SPIKE: Later.

    LILY: See yah.

    Gunner starts walking away.

    GUNNER, VOICE OVER: I suppose it came with the territory. In high school, I was always a loner. On the streets, that tradition remained unchanged.

    Gunner reaches a dumpster, opens the lid, and puts one boot on the side. Then he stops, pauses, looks back to the couple in the alley way, looks back to the camera, and gets off the dumpster. He starts heading back to the couple.

    GUNNER: Yeah, actually, I would like to crash out here for tonight. If we huddle, we'll probably be able to generate extra warmth.

    SPIKE: Sure, one second.

    Spike lifts up the blanket and he has a needle in his arm.

    GUNNER: Holy fuck. That was actually pretty cut and without suspicion, Spike.

    SPIKE (with a smile): Thanks, Gunner.

    Spike pulls out, caps the syringe, and puts it in a wooden box. He then lifts up the blanket, and Gunner sits next to me, and the blanket covers the three of them. The camera is then looking down the alleyway, facing them, five feet away from them. It slowly moves backward, while Gunner does a voice over.

    GUNNER: Ever since then, I've called him Spike, because when I went over to him, his arm was spiked and he was injecting. I have no problem with it. Lots of kids on the streets shoot up. It's a notorious activity of gutter punks. Dealers come up to me, because I wear knee high boots, I'm white, I'm young, and I'm homeless, and they automatically assume that I'm a junk addict. Anyway, that is the story of how I met Spike and Lily.

    The camera focuses on Gunner, Lily, and Spike all together in the alley way again. Small droplets of rain keep hitting Gunner on the face, and though he's asleep, he still shows some signs of agitation. Spike, droopy eyed, notices this, and moves the blanket up just far enough that it catches the rain drops, without hitting Gunner's face. The camera then goes back to the squat, and unfreezes. Spikes pulls out a bag of speed, begins to cook up, spike his vein, and shoot up. Lily is just sitting behind him kissing the back of his neck.

    GUNNER: I got spacebag, everyone.

    Gunner pulls out the bag of wine.

    SWEEP: That's the mezzeliest, droog.

    GUNNER (smiling): Shut up, devotchka, and drink up.

    Gunner passes the bag of wine over to Sweep.

    SWEEP: Hey, I'm not a girl.

    GUNNER: It was sort of an intended insult.

    Sweep passes the bag of wine over to Freak.

    GUNNER: Hey, why the fuck do they call a bag of wine "spacebag" anyway?

    SPIKE: Don't they teach you anything in grammar school? It's what astronauts drink in space.

    GUNNER: I kind of doubt that. I mean, I've heard that, too, but who says? The homebum down the street? The spikey haired, gutter punk? Chances are, they have something that doesn't make you vomit in the morning when it comes to galactical intoxication.

    SWEEP: You want some, Gunner?

    GUNNER: Nah, I'm not in the mood.

    Gunner lies on his back and looks to the ceiling of the squat. Freak looks over and throws a sympathetic look to him.

    GUNNER: Whatchya' lookin' at, Freak?

    FREAK: At the apartments we cleaned out today, I found a photo album. I'm looking through it and adding touches with a sharpy. I also found a nice dress. Look!

    Freak holds up a yellow and white plaid skirt.

    GUNNER (smiling and almost laughing): That's the most dreadful thing I've ever seen.

    FREAK: Perhaps in your opinion, my dearest. But I like it.

    Gunner sighs and closes his eyes. Freak looks at him. She pulls out a knife and cuts off a piece of the dress. She dips it in a plastic jug that looks to be full of clean water, and walks over to Gunner. She starts to clean off the blood on his face, startling the poor lad a little.

    GUNNER: Hey, thanks.

    FREAK: Don't worry about it, gorgeous.

    GUNNER: Do you know how beautiful you look right now?

    Freak just smiles. She finishes up cleaning his face, crumples up the clothe, and throws it in the corner, with the other garbage. She leaves Gunner and goes to sit back in her old spot, looking through the photo album. Gunner, still on his back, lifts his head and looks at her, once she has finally sat down. Then he gets up and sits in front of her, with his legs crossed.

    GUNNER: What are you doing?

    FREAK: I'm looking through this photo album, looking at these different pictures.

    Freak pulls out a picture of two women with their arms around each other. She uses a sharpy to write "sisters" on it.

    FREAK: Now, you see these two are sisters, of course.

    Freak then draws horns on one of them.

    FREAK: That's the bad one.

    Freak continues this process of looking at different photos. She looks and finds pictures of family, pets, and even houses.

    GUNNER: Want to see a picture I have?

    FREAK: Sure.

    Gunner pulls out a folded up picture of a bedroom.

    GUNNER: I found this blowing around on the ground. Not sure where exactly it is, or its purpose. But I always wanted my own home. And since I can't have one, I'll have to imagine what it would look like.

    Freak grabs Gunner's head and pulls it close to her. She kisses him on the forehead. Gunner stands up and sits behind Freak, wrapping his arms around her stomach and resting his chin on her shoulder. She talks and flips through the photo album while her voice is slowly decreased in volume while Gunner does a voice over.

    GUNNER, VOICE OVER: To me, this is how gutter punks, street kids, runaways, freight hoppers, and the like, show their affection. In my past life, when I was in high school, I had a total of two dates. The first was sitting uncomfortably in a movie theater that cost me 5 hours of work at McDonald's. The second was canceled several hours before it was supposed to take place. What the fuck is that? I have to spend $10 per movie ticket to take out someone I'm interested in? I could get drunk several times over with that money. Besides, what do I get out of it? Nothing. Why did I have to use cash to show someone I liked them? Because the American culture is based on greed and exploitation. I couldn't understand it at first, and it only made me uncomfortable in the beginning. Since the world follows profit and my heart follows truth, I couldn't find anyone who I could love. So now, when I like a girl, I drink with her and watch the stars. We might fall asleep next to each other in the squat. We may very well fuck the first night. If we're lucky, we'll listen to a CD player, each of us with one headphone. Or, like right now, we'll flip through someone else's photo album and make remarks about what we see. I went to this college party once...

    The camera focuses in on Gunner at a college party.

    GUNNER, VOICE OVER: Some other gutter punk invited me, telling me there would be alcohol there. That was enough to convince me to come. But then I realized what a bunch of pieces of shit I was surrounded by. So I made a plan.

    The camera shows Gunner at the college party in front of the keg, filling up a cup, and chugging it in two seconds, and continuing this process.

    GUNNER, VOICE OVER: I was going to black out, so the next time I heard fratty say...

    The camera shows a male college student smoking a cigarette in one hand and holding a plastic cup of beer in the other, saying, "Man, I'm gonna fuck these bitches real hard." The camera then goes back to Gunner chugging beer.

    GUNNER, VOICE OVER: Or anything that was similarly derogatory to the female part of humanity, I would beat the fuck out of him. I'd wake up next morning with a black eye, and then be slightly happy that he probably didn't wake up at all. I did black out, so I can't really say what did happen after I drank all that beer, except that I probably drank some more.

    The camera then goes back to the squat, where Gunner and Freak are making out passionately already. The camera moves up and looks at the ceiling for a few seconds, and then comes back down. Sweep is curled up in a ball on a chair that has three legs and is leaning against the wall. He is covered in a sheet and slightly shivering. Gunner walks over, with his jump suit unzipped, and covers Sweep in his blanket. He zips up his jump suit and lays down next to Freak, covering her in his arms. The camera focuses on those two as it very slowly zooms out through the window, while Gunner does a voice over.

    GUNNER, VOICE OVER: That is how day to day life was for us. The basic things that every housed person takes for granted becomes a struggle for us. How do we eat? How do we drink? Where do we sleep? How do we wash our clothes? Where do we piss? Where do we shit? How do we shower? The basic parts of everyday life for the housed population are taken for granted. But for us, it's a struggle and a battle. You could be arrested for stealing a loaf of bread, or pissing in the bushes, or sleeping on a store roof top, or bathing in the public fountain. But besides that, besides the omnipresent dangers that threaten us, we are always with our family, those we love, live with, sleep with. Knowing someone for only one or two weeks, and you could be in love, or you could know that you had a brother or sister for life.

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