Vancouver
4 min

Turbulence

One last blowjob before the plane goes down

Not since reading Erica Jong’s “Fear of Flying” have I wanted to give someone a blowjob so badly.

I take short flights within BC often but I’ve never gotten used to the turbulence.

I’m coming back from Kelowna — where we are combating the negative health impact of homophobia on the health of men who fuck with men — on the one spring day that forecasts snow.

PNE Hellevator-like commotion hits the propeller De Havilland packed with plump white men in blue suits, engineer helmet haircuts and goofy golfers. I distrust the type — could be homophobic brutes — but as soon as we begin to shake the one next to me starts looking good. “Dear Erica: I wanna die gagging, not splattered.”

I fumble in my man purse searching for Ativan (thanks Dr shrink) trying to be inconspicuous but looking like Shelley Winters in the Poseidon Adventure.

I’m already a bit undone as I have had a fight with a plump white boy at the security check. He confiscated my KY (the warm kind).

I told him security has inconsistent standards and the whole thing is a sham anyway and that I have carried that KY to Montreal and Toronto and back and no one has taken it away. He hears no reason. Fuck it.

He asks me to pick the KY up from the metallic counter and place it in the garbage can. But I — empowered by Mariah’s latest emancipation hit “Touch my Body” — reply, “No, you do it… and I’ve used it.” I sashayed away.

So the shitty old rackety fucking plane is going to crash. It is a fact. My Ativan is not working fast; it should be IV.

My mind fevers. I think of John, the cat, the objects hidden in our house that must never be found after I am scattered across the coast mountain range.

Thoughts trample through my head of my lovely ‘hood, wishing I was there, on the pavement, intact.

I think we are still a neighbourhood not overrun by detached global citizens with too much money.

The case of Bella proves it: She got lost in the First and Commercial area in March and reportedly meandered as far as ElectroLadyLux past Venables. A long and perilous way to go for a young three-legged teacup Chihuahua originally from Mexico.

Her owner was so relieved when she was brought back home by Good Samaritan neighbours. The case sent waves of shock and then relief rippling through a few blocks radius.

I need shock and relief, I muse. C’mon fellow passenger, just whip it out! Prove there is a ray of hope in the darkness I see through the plane portholes.

I only like shadows in the intimacy of cinemas (and parks, and bathhouses, etc). I heard Bella’s story when sitting through trailers at the quirky and dilapidated Van East Cinema, that yesteryear art cinema house at a discount for students. How do they manage to keep it open?

I watched my first Almodovar flick there, in a packed balcony, in love with a fellow SFU student.

Don’t owners figure out that there are many art students trying their chops who would siphon Moby like sounds and cool lights at the beginning to make it a destination, the natural bookend to the stuffier Cultch on the North end?

Vancouver is now full of slum operators. I think of the homeless crowd: often native, often young, some French Canadian spending the night in every entrance way. Think of the street woman panhandling in key spots with dramatically worded instalments of pregnancies, adoptions and struggles in a makeshift tent-card (her story far more compelling than that of the fake British accent woman who roams downtown since the 90s getting a “quarter” from tourists). Where will all this end without my Miss Universe/Sister Saviour save-the-world concern?

I’ll go to hell. The plane engine agonizes. Hell must be a Hieronymus Bosch overheated bathhouse with me getting banged like Sook-Yin Lee in the opening scene of Shortbus but by Charles McVety, the proponent of Bill C-10, instead.

Before censorship is extended to newspapers, I must fit in the words “cock” and “pussy” and “fuck” as many times as possible, like a prayer. I’m to die of AIDS, not in a plane crash!

We inexorably approach the ground, bumping and grinding minus the pleasure.

I want to tell the stuffy shirt and tie next to me that we should go at it. Why die in vain?

My tongue is dry; the Ativan renders me a bobbing idiot. I see his crotch swelling. No. It’s the ground outside! I can see the Fraser, malls, my dearest Commercial Dr in the foggy distance.

Or, I might have died years ago and I return today a slightly aged and overweight archangel to announce: the 2010 Olympics are over and you’ll be atoning for years, taxpayer. Repent!

On the Drive, there are only cafes; a Tim Horton’s has opened in Il Mercato where they used to sell lovely and unpretentious salad rolls. Magpie has closed, no one reads anything intellectual anymore or they get it on the internet, sanitized. Corporations have won, gentrification is in.

The tires burning the tarmac tell me it’s all true (except for the archangel coming back part). We are safe, we are alive. I will not have to eat the flesh of the man sitting next to me like the rugby players did in the Andes when I was a child (that fact alone made me want to eat men, plus the bit about the wafer transmogrifying into the body of Christ).

In a few days I’ll be hopping into the chromium suppository again to fly to Montreal to the HIV research national conference where they’ll push the notion that if the infected take antiretrovirals they can fuck at their heart’s content as they are rendered uninfectious.

Next time, I’ll take my Ativan before the flight. I practice “Je voudrais acheter du KY, s’il vous plaît,” so I can shop once I get there.