Holden is my Homie

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Humor  |  House: Booksie Classic

I was inspired to write this short story of life experience by my girlfriend whom I thank for all of the inspiration she provides me with

Submitted: December 16, 2017

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Submitted: December 16, 2017



I waited patiently for the library to open. Or as patiently as possible when its 90 degrees outside and your car has no A/C. The sweat pooled on my lower back and basically any body part touching my dirty, black car seats. The sun was already beaming and the humidity completely enveloped me in an oppressive blanket that I certainly didn’t ask for. It only enhances the stench of my filthy body permeating throughout the roughly 10 foot radius around me. I sat, watching the clock on my dashboard, not doing much of anything besides turning my situation over and over in my tired mind. It’ 9:54am on a Friday in late July.

Once the doors are unlocked, I leave my disgusting sweat-box of a car and thoroughly enjoy the blast of cold air that greets me as soon as I pass the threshold. I try to clean up as much as possible in the bathroom before entering the main area. I may be homeless but they don’t need to know that. I nod to the librarian that I have come to know pretty well over the past few weeks and grab the copy of “Catcher in the Rye” that I have been reading and occupy my normal seat between the rows of books. I flip to chapter 4 and try to get lost in the worn book clutched in my sweaty hands.

Over the years, many people have told me that I need to read “Catcher” because they knew where my political ideologies lie. Basically, I wanted to be an anarchist. No government, pure freedom to do whatever you please whenever it suits you. Which is somewhat in line with what the main character of the book feels. Unhappy with just about everything and everyone around him. People tend to be pretty divided on this subject. Either they think Holden is some sort of genius or they think hes a whiny bitch who serves no purpose. I’m caught between the two ideas. I sympathize with him feeling lost and alone, but I’m definitively not going to get hammered and try to fuck anything that moves all the while complaining about life. Not really my style.

I made mention of my past political ideals because at this point in my life I suppose I was an anarchist. I was living totally off the grid. I only made my transitions in cash which I acquired either by doing odd jobs or flat out stealing it. I paid no taxes. I answered to no one but myself. My younger self would probably be pretty jealous. But there is something important about living this lifestyle that is a recurring theme in the book. The freedom is intoxicating, but the loneliness is disconcerting and soul-sucking in the worst of ways.

And at this point I feel its important to shed light on the particulars of my situation, for they almost seem like a joke. I had borrowed several books months prior and had never returned them so I racked up some pretty heavy charges on my account (and still do). So, if I wanted to read a book (such as catcher in the rye) I had to physically go to the library and do my reading there. “I went to the library to read Catcher in the Rye, but I never actually borrowed it” is the reason why the word “Irony” was invented. I sat there, reading a free book, charging my phone with free electricity and downloading the world onto my phone from the free WIFI. The irony of the situation was totally lost on me until some months later, when sharing the story with my girlfriend. At the time, I thought nothing of it. I was simply living within the constraints that I had made for myself, intentional or not.

So, while reading a book about someone totally dissatisfied with life and wanting nothing more than to simply not be a part of it all, I was living a very similar lifestyle. Even going so far as to try and contact just about anyone, no matter how far removed from them I was. In the book, it almost seems like Holden is doing this to be an asshole, but having been in that same exact spot myself, I can say its from being lonely. Even with just that one similarity, I can say for certain that me and Holden would probably be “friends”. I can picture both of us talking about nothing, pretending we are anything but hurting and drinking far too much scotch.


© Copyright 2018 Jake P. Fortin. All rights reserved.

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