I tell Juancho he has brain damage. I say it out loud. It started as a joke, but sometimes I wonder if it’s really true. I have to repeat things for him. Everything. I’ll text him and ask what time he’s going to volleyball tonight, and he’ll write back and ask what I’m up to tonight. He needs me to be his group message ambassador because he can’t keep up. “I’m in too many group chats,” He tells me. We’re in the same group chats. At least 4 to 6 per week depending on who’s having a surprise birthday party, a surprise going away party, or camping in Key West. I tell Juancho that in front of people. I roll my eyes at him. I tell him, “Juancho, come on!”
Sometimes I think, maybe I should be nicer to Juancho. But I know Juancho knows what I mean. There is nobody else I would jokingly say has brain damage. And especially not out loud, in front of other people. But I’ve said it so many times that new people who have joined the group, believed he really had brain damage. They didn’t question it. They just accepted it, because Juancho seems like he might have brain damage.
He lies all the time for the sake of lying because he thinks it’s funny. He asks for answers to questions you’ve just told him 5 seconds ago, 5 minutes ago, 5 days ago. Maybe it’s because he drinks at least six Yeunglings a night. On Friday and Saturday, Juancho drinks more, because it’s accepted. Two weeks ago we went camping in Key West and a few of us got out of the cars to watch the sunset. When we returned to the cars, we couldn’t find Juancho. His phone was in the car. He just wondered off and drank a beer. He’s not capable of considering the future, even if the future is in 10 minutes. But I love Juancho.
Juancho was one of my first friends in Miami. He texts me every single day, and writes, “yo, yo, double yo, how’s your day?” And what follows is a gibberish of Spanglish he blames on a cracked screen and ESL. He calls to see how I’m doing after a break up. I call him when I need advice. I called him when my neighbors were fighting and he convinced me to call 911.
If you don’t know us, and you see us for the first time, you’ll think we’re a couple. Juancho always kisses my forehead and tells me, “I love you Nicki. You know I do.” Anyone I date is always jealous of Juancho, but I wish my dates were capable of reading my mind. Juancho drives me crazy. I hate that he has brain damage, but I also love him too.
Writing Class Radio
Writing Class Radio is a podcast of a writing class. It is for people who love stories and who get inspired by hearing other people tell their stories and who want to learn a little bit about how to write their own stories.
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