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From the full version of Sunnyside's Lousy Book

Raising its Ugly Head Again

After going to a church in Spanaway as a regular for about a year, and even playing in the band; I came across the opportunity to meet a girl who usually came to the services every Sunday. We always glanced at each other from a distance and after seeing her wearing a surfer type T-shirt, I just had to find out if she was a surfer.
       Well she wasn't, but we hit it off pretty well. I noticed that not only the pastor, but others in the congregation were well aware about our encounter and to just how it was going. Since everyone had their nose in our business, I thought the thing to do was to ask her if she would like to go somewhere and have lunch together.
       She said it was her father's birthday and she had other commitments for the day, but asked if we go out to dinner some other time during week. “Sure,” I said. She gave me her home phone, cell phone, and pager numbers. (With all those numbers, I'd think she wanted to go out with me, wouldn't you?)
       After trying to get in contact with her during in the week, it wasn't hard to figure out that I was getting the run-around. After reaching her on her cell phone, I could tell she was giving me the brush-off. I was sure someone must have discouraged her from having anything to do with me and it all made sense in the following weeks at church. That is: she avoided me like the plague and acted as if we had never met.
       Other strange things happened in church as well. Like when women who were new to the church showed up, it seemed like the congregation was trying to make sure the women and I wouldn't get a chance to introduce ourselves.

One time, there were two women who were newcomers and they happened to sit down right next to me. We had introduced ourselves earlier in the beginning of the service, but after the service was over, I couldn't get a word in edgewise. The pastor and other people within the congregation made their way over to them and made sure I wouldn't get a chance to get to talk to them. I hung out for awhile just to see how determined they were at butting in to keep us apart. It was like: Come on guys, yah gotta think of something to say to these girls. Hay give someone else a signal to come over and bail you out, because you’re going down fast and they’re not interested in talking to you anyway. Hay, someone should come over and talk to me for a distraction from the girls. In the end, the people in the congregation just wigged out the newcomers and they never come back again. It happened time and time again.

Sunday mornings became a form of entertainment for me. I’d get stoned before hand and found myself amused at how someone such as myself being present could affect the social life there. I found myself avoiding meeting or talking to anyone altogether and I even quit playing in the band.
       It all came together a few weeks later when a new gal was approached by the piano player. (Just who happened to be the mother of the girl that gave me the brush-off earlier.) She approached the newcomer and advised her to stay away from me because I was dying of aids.
       As I was leaving after the service that morning; the pastor worked his way over to me while I was at the coffee pot. I looked at him and said, "Don't you think if it was true, I should have been told first? If it is true, where did it originate? If we knew that, shouldn't I be able to sue them?” That was the last time he ever had a chance to talk to me.

The rumor wore off, but as things turned out, they came up with many more phony rumors to use on me elsewhere. It wasn't until I began keeping a journal the people on the street learned that whatever they'd hear about me was usually phony setup rumors designed to keep people away from me.

The next chapter of Sunnyside's Lousy Book is:

The Journal

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