Boosh showed up at my church the second Sunday of May in 1995. I remember the exact Sunday for two reasons. First, I’d known him since we were in college and he had never been the churchy type. Hell, neither was I, but something mysterious happened to me in 1982 and – long story short – I ended up being a preacher for a few years.
Second, he was wearing a blue satin eye patch with some lacy shit around the edges.
“The fuck is that on your eye?” I said in a hissing whisper.
“Language, preacher. You’re a man of the cloth now. You got to toe the line. Also, technically, I don’t have an eye, so it’s covering my eye SOCKET. Technically.”
I glanced around, but we were alone in the foyer.
“Cussing ain’t no sin, my friend. What is that covering your eye hole?”
“Like it? It’s my new Sunday-go-to-meeting patch.”
“Where did you even find something like that?”
“I cut up a pair of Bexley’s panties and made it myself. She’s gonna be pissed when she finds out though.”
I didn’t like the direction this conversation was going, especially right there in the foyer of the church. I pulled him over into a corner.
“Do you mean to tell me that you showed up at church for the first time ever, MY church, mind you, wearing a pair of used panties as an eye patch?”
“Okay look. Sit on the back row. And try not to…just, be nice, okay? For me. I’m asking. I’ll owe you one.”
“You’ll have Lagavulin instead of Laphroaig next time I come over?”
“Yes. Absolutely. I’ll bring a bottle to your house IF you sit quietly and don’t make a scene.”
And I have to admit he was nice. He looked around and nodded politely at people. He spent most of the service scribbling in a little notebook and slipped out after the sermon was done.
He and Bexley had Spurs tickets that evening, and he stopped by my house on the way to the game. He was wearing his regular eye patch.
“Where’s your fancy Sunday patch?”
He frowned and made a cutting motion with his hand in front of his throat. Bexley looked quizzically at me, then at him, then back at me. Boosh handed me the little notebook he had been writing in that morning.
“Me and Bexley are thinking of coming to your church. Thinking about it. I wrote some questions for you in this notebook. If you can answer them, well hell, maybe I’ll try church for a change. The fuck do I know about anything. Maybe there IS a God. Last time I tried something crazy it was marrying Bexley and look how that turned out. Best goddam thing that ever happened to me.”
He pinched her behind and she laughed and punched him on the shoulder. They got in the car and left. I waved, then closed the door. I opened the notebook, read the first question, then closed it again.
Coming next, we drink half a bottle of Lagavulin and I attempt to answer Boosh’s crazy-ass questions.