I was asked not too long ago why I cringe when I hear “Miss You” by The Rolling Stones.
Spring break of ‘83 (I was seven), went to visit my Dad during Spring Break. A rare occassion. In fact I was surprised my Mother agreed to this.
First day there, Dad took me to a festival or something that was going on in the park. Carried me on his shoulders. He ran into a “friend” of his in the men’s room. With me still on his shoulders and in mid-conversation, my Dad reaches in this man’s back pocket, takes out his wallet, removes the money from the wallet - this “friend” in a drunk voice asked:
“You robbin’ me?”
My Dad responded: “Nope,” while handing the “friend” back his billfold, counting out the money on his way out the mens room (me still on his shoulders), and we proceeded back into the park. He put me down and told me he’d be back. On the stage was a cover band performing “Miss You” by the Rolling Stones. I sat on the grass watching. The lead singer (who wore Clown paint on his face, for some reason) sang and sang and then out of nowhere, pulled out a gun and began shooting at the crowd. He was quickly grabbed by police and I couldn’t find my Dad.
Later he drives me to his girlfriend’s apartment. She is in a pink jump suit. My Dad leaves for the liquor store leaving me alone with her. She, herself, is drunk and high, and playing the SOME GIRLS album by The Rolling Stones. She began to molest me up until she heard the key hit the lock, then she broke away from me and went upstairs with my Father.
Later that night I left the apartment just to go for a walk. I got lost coming back. Ran into a man working on his car and told him I was lost. Me being lost inspired him to begin to ask me if I knew what hell was. During his terrifying diatribe a police car drives by, I flag them down, tell them I’m lost and they drive me around until I spot my Dad getting out of his car (with yet another brown bag from the liquor store).
Cut To: 2003 - I’m 27. At home writing a script. A knock at my door. I get up holding my Budweiser tall can, my glasses on and a cigarette in hand. I open the door and there stands...my Dad, with a King Cobra tall can, glasses on and a cigarette in hand. He stayed with me for four days, drained all the change out my jar (buying beer for himself everyday) and wound up having a threesome with my neighbors. That aside, one of those nights he and I had some beer and talked about the past. I asked if he remembered that girlfriend of his. He said “No.” Then we got on the topic of music. This conversation was full of laughs and reminiscence of back when music was good - Marvin Gaye, New Edition - and so forth and then my Dad said “Miss You” by The Rolling Stones...I went silent...