South Africa
Part 71
Based on emails from August, 2002.

I didn't wanna tell Gary about the birthday card cos I wanted it to be a surprise. But I was chuffed that it was, anyway. "Hey, I hope you didn't get snot all over Cody's T-shirt!"

I'd been worried about why the package was taking fucking ages to get there. Dugout canoe to Asia, then a Chinese junk to Taree.

Gary was right about my birthday. I thought it was cool that things were coming together with Steph and Winger, and the Ts. Hey, I even got a phone call from Mark the other night. I'd forgotten to mention that to Gary cos it was only a short call. He just phoned to say hi, and to ask me how it was going with the counselling thing. He told me how cool it was that I was making an effort in the right direction. I thought the call rocked. :)

"I know what you're saying about paying the Winger compliments, Gary, cos I know that I enjoy them as well. Makes me feel good. I just don't want to start an F1 [Formula One] pace with him. I want us to learn about each other. I've never really given it a chance with all the fucking shit I've been getting up to. I want him to know that he's safe with me. He doesn't really open up to me like he did with Cody. He doesn't tell me 'secret' stuff. Well, it's not 'secret' stuff, but I want to know what he gets up to at school and with his buds and that kinda thing."

"Yeah, I know I can't be Cody, but that's not the point. I want him to be comfortable to tell me anything. This afternoon Winger was around at my place. The surf was shitters, so we hit the boxing bag for a while."

"He gets totally fucking focused when he does stuff like that, and that's why he learned to surf so quickly."

"He jacks around like a lighty, but he's very mature in his head. Also fucking bright. But he's bright from hard work. That's another thing he and Cody have in common. Cody wasn't the dude with the photographic memory. He read a fucking lot, and studied like hell. He worked for every percentage point he got at school. Winger's the same. If he gets totally stuck with homework, he phones me sometimes. But there have been times when I couldn't help him, and I would feel like a fucking idiot cos he always expects me to know everything."

"Cody built up this thing with the grommet that I was the brightest dude on the planet. I've had a few convos with my dad and he doesn't altogether agree with that hahahahaha!"

"Actually, I've had a few convos with my dad about what I want to do at varsity next year. And I know that you'll raise those bushies as well. I want to do psychology first year. The courses they put you through are generic, so if I change direction it's no real biggie."

"PSYFUCKINGCHOLOGY? Hahahahaha! I can hear you going apeshit from here, Gary. It's just something I've given a lotta thought to. I've been reading a few books. Yeah, I do read sometimes when my eyes aren't bloodshot. It's not as adventurous as marine bio [like Cody wanted to do]. But my final target [by doing psychology] won't be to have people telling me their hassles, or my trying to find out what makes them tick. Well, I know what makes YOU tick. It's that pendulum thing. Hahahaha! I just think that psych is a good basic for just about everything. I think I'd like to end up in marketing design sometime in the future. Oh, shit... here comes the Codeman..."

"Psychology? Are you dimwitted or somethin'? What about somethin' out in the open where you can breathe fresh air?"

"I'm doing psycho so that I can figure out how you managed to screw up my brain, Code."

"Is that where your brain is?"

"Piss off, Code. Be serious here."

"I am. I think it's cool."

"Really?"

"No. But it'll make you happy if I say so."

"You're still the fucking same."

"I can't cuss up here."

"Cool."

"Seriously, Steve, it doesn't matter what you do, so long as it's what you want and not what someone else wants."

"It's what I want... for now."

"Then everythin' is cool. I still loveya even if you are all screwed up, hehehehe. Byeeeeeee!"

The mop of spiky black hair disappeared before I could cuss at him again. Anyway, I was pretty sure that that's the way Cody would have responded to my decision about doing psych. I remembered his saying that he could never see me stuck in a building [working] cos he couldn't see himself that way. He told me that one day he would've dug to be in a place like San Diego or Miami to further his studies cos he thought they were the best bases for Marine Bio.

"And he would've gotten there, Gary. It was his style to focus and work hard to get what he wanted. I think he was trying to get a pact going so that all of us, including Winger, could all be based in the same place."

"The one thing that upset the crap outta him about the prospect of being in Miami or San Diego was having to leave SA for a while. I think his ultimate plan was to come back here and start his own company. There was nothing small about the way Cody thought."

"Meantime, I didn't mean to sound like it was an obligation for me to write you, Gary. I think the writing has been a therapy for me. Apart from that, getting Cody's World up to date has been my way of paying him back for all the times I screwed him over. Kind of like a "sorry" and "I loveya"."

"I'm also finding it very hard to let go and get on with my life. It's like walking through molasses."

"Your Steve Special Edition actually brought a lump to my throat. I thought it was pretty kiff."

"Also had a mail from Spencer and Nevius and Brian. I don't want to end up with a pile of mail unanswered so I'll get to it some time."


G'day Steve,
Well, my bushies were raised slightly when I read that you wanna do psych next year. It's a long way from numbers. But I think it's a good move. After all, you'll be dealing with people in one way or another for the rest of your life, so it will help if you understand them. I don't have a formal education, but I'm naturally curious and analytical. More than that, I observe people and try to work out why they behave in certain ways. So I guess you could say that I've done a psych course as well. :) Pity it didn't work with Luke. It would have, though, if he didn't have such a cute nose. Noses are my weakness. :) One of the cutest things about my dog Kelly was her little brown nose. I'd often give it a little honk with my finger.

Anyway, you'd better do psych next year so that you can better understand why I haven't gone apeshit hehehe.

Marketing design would be cool. You certainly have a talent for design. And marketing is basically what makes the world go round. Everytime you add something to Cody's World you're marketing. When Cody first grinned at you at the beach he was marketing himself. I can remember him telling me about that meeting. :) So yeah, psych followed by marketing design sounds pretty logical to me. But then you're a virgo and virgos are logical.

Interesting about Cody's plans for San Diego or Miami, but also wanting to be with you and Winger. He never told me about wanting to start his own company. He would've been a hard task master hehehe... like he was with you when you and he worked on Cody's World. Actually, he used to stick a rocket up my ass from time to time. But what Cody didn't live to achieve he's left for us to do. He gave us that foundation to build upon. It's certainly true in my case, and I believe it is in Mark's case. Soon it will be in Wingnut's and your cases. So we all have a duty to the Codeman to make him proud of us.

No, no, no. Letting go of Cody is not like walking through molasses. Don't think of letting go. Think of Cody as the foundation... the rock upon which you will build your future. Take Cody along with you, as I'm taking him along with me. That's the way he was in life, and that's the way he is in death. Remember his award at the Valedictory Service? I just tried to find his own words on my comp, but I couldn't. Anyway, he was given an award for caring for others, and always putting others before himself. Never underestimate what Cody has done for all of us, and is continuing to do. Why let go? Use your virgo logic. :)


"Hey, Gary. It's Saturday morning. And guess what we ended up doing last night? Winger phoned me and asked if he could hang out."
"So what's with the chick?"

"She's busy doing something else, or her folks have gated her or something. So can I hang out with you, Steve? Or are you going out with Steph?"

Anyway, we all ended up at Steph's house, and we watched the video of Shrek. The grommet was on a bit of a downer, and not all that bouncy. Didn't stop him from ogling Steph, though. Hahahaha!

So it was an early night cos we were all stuffed. I'd just gotten outta bed to write this email to Gary. And after I sent it, I took a shower, then found out about the surf conditions. Bleh. Just as well cos I also had a shit pile of studying to do.

"Hey, you didn't need to plan specials for my birthday, Gary. Serious! I've already gotten such a kick outta your response to that package that it's like the best birthday I could wish for."

Cheers,

Your friend and the Codeman's,

Steve

"Peace, Love, Respect."

In Gary's reply, he mentioned the Peace, Love, Respect thing. So I told him that I'd stolen it from one of my buds. All the surfers used it as an end to email, and I thought it was pretty cool. It kinda said something that I must try to live up to.

Meantime, I was getting a load of fucking uphill from Cody about having sent Gary the birthday package already. Not the clothing. The Codeman was totally chuffed about that. He was pissed off about the graphic I sent. Said I should've waited until it was closer to Gary's birthday.

Next time I wrote, I told Gary that Winger and I had planned to go to the movies to see Stuart Little 2. But the grommet was playing little games, and phoned Steph. "I'm going to the movies with Steve. You wanna come?" And the reason he did that was so that he could invite Jacky along. Hahahaha! So it ended up being a foursome.

"Hey, Gary, it was cool going to the movies with Steph, but I enjoy time alone with the grommet. When he's with Jacky, he's like a dog in heat. I don't know why he just doesn't screw her and get it over with. Hahahaha! Hey, he's too scared."

"It was a good evening, though. We went for pizza afterwards, and some of my school buds were there, giving Steph the ogle."

"Yesterday, I spent most of the day studying. We've got a mock exam starting on Friday [August 30], and into the following week. So I don't know if I'm gonna get time for mail and stuff. I got up at 5 this morning to try to do some more studying, and also answered more email. I've managed to answer almost all of them now. It's just a thanks for writing cos I can't handle the amount of email that Cody handled. No fucking way am I gonna tie myself down like that. But it's cool to hear from the guys."

"I got this one email from June, and I don't know why but I thought it was totally kiff. Maybe cos she's a mom."

"Then I went into FunTB chat for 20 minutes while I waited for Bruce, and chatted with Dio and chuckisup. That was pretty cool." :)

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 Steve Part 72