Monday, April 25, 2016

Gaan Tender, Take two.

At twenty-eight years old, he started grinding his teeth. If asked, he would shrug, and smile and say thank goodness for socialized dental care.

At twenty-eight years old, he started waking, sweating, to the pounding on the floor of his apartment. His neighbors shouting angrily, or with concern, in a language he did not speak well, and certainly not in the deep hours of the night. The language of the country he was living in. Not the country his family was living in.

If he, Gaan Tender, did not get up when he woke up, he felt tired the entire day. This had always been the case with him. He learned to adjust his schedule accordingly.

Gaan Paul Tender. His mother a gardener, his father drunk, but decidedly the one to give him his first name. Spindly, tall, black, scarred, missing two fingers. Working third shift and driving a stick shift pick up truck. Smile like a January sun burst in Detroit, which is where he lived, with a roommate, in poured cement apartment, a few blocks from Wayne State University, which he had not attended.