and my friend Nina
grew up together in El Monte. Barrio Brats. Nina just wanted out,
Rachael wanted a little more. Un Poquito Mas. She got it. The Big
Ticket. The High Time. She became a model then an actress, raged
in New York and Milano, met a Trip-Hop
DJ who ultimately left her with a great pad, a kid, and a drug
Now she dates
her dealer, wades through her equity, and leaves her kid for days
on end with her last real friend.
I had been
thinking about the view from Rachael's terrace as we passed old
Sam on our way out of Ralphs.
when I heard Sam do his 'Devil' routine and had, what some call,
a moment of clarity.
if he beautiful, then people crowd right up and buy whatever he
sellin'. That's how he get 'em. People come to get one thing, they
end up with another. Sometime they don't even know it but till it
too late. Th' devil...he got 'em."
I don't think
I can explain it fully. I'd always been attracted to Rachael - who
wasn't? - and a little jealous. But I realized that it wasn't Rachael
or her lifestyle I coveted, it was her kid. I wanted to protect
him. Hang out with him. Be a Dad.
wasn't an impluse, it was an inspiration. Just seeing the little
guy trying to figure Sam out. And me knowning that, given the way
his Mom was going, there was a very good chance Mat might end up
just like Sam.
I decided that
this little one was not going to slip through the cracks. I was
going to adopt him. Protect him. I didn't know how, considering
that I was a single guy and that Mat wasn't my kid. But, since his
Mom didn't seem to want him any more - I don't think she ever wanted
him - I figured that with guts, luck and a good
lawyer I'd find a way.