It was the summer of 2005. I picked Liam up at his house early in the day, we went to meet James at a gas station on the way to Panama City.
“Damn it James!” Liam began, “I knew he’d be late.”
“I know, I know, but at least we aren’t late. . . That fucker. . . We need to gas up anyway.” I said.
We wheeled around to the gas pumps and put thirty bucks in, we were at the worst priced station on 231. The next week they had to lower their prices for price-gouging and then a few weeks later after Katrina.
James showed up and we checked out his fishing gear. We were going shark fishing off the pier. First James had to gas up then we stopped at the shop where he worked, I left my van there and we went to eat.
We all piled into his rough, old S-10 and went to some local barbeque joint. We turned his radio up loud, all he had was tweeters so it was earsplitting, I think we listened to the Gorillaz.
As we sat down we started the old ball-busting routine.
“So James, I haven’t seen ya in so damn long whatcha been up to?” I started.
“Workin” he said like always.
“That’s it?” Luke asked.
“Hell yeah, I go to school and I work. Do either one of you have a job?”
“No.” We both laughed at the same time.
“You lazy bums, at least I’m contributing to society,” as he said this we both started cracking up, he always laced into us about that. “I’m a workin man, you two just mooch, I remember when I used to be the only one who would bring Combos to school and you two and Dan used to just hold your hands out like I was supposed to give you shit.”
The waitress interrupted him to get our orders.
“Sweet Tea.” Liam said, she turned to James.
“Unsweet Tea” I said.
We all ordered barbeque sandwiches, she laughed and said she’d be right back.