He liked Coke. I was 16. And whiskey. I was nervous. Why did he like me. I wondered. I can’t even remember how he got a hold of me or how we even met. I think he knew my sister, Wendy. 

He had a cool car. A Gran Torino. He was older. About 20. I went with him. He was cute. We drove up and down Euclid. It was the entertainment of the era. Gas-wasting, hot summer nights. The best. 

Being young and carefree. The thing to do. Two things pulling at me. Having fun and being responsible. I wonder what I told my mom about where I was going. Carefree. She certainly would not have let me go if she had known. Responsible. 

We stopped at a place on Euclid. He bought a bottle of Coke from the machine, one of the small ones, I think they were eight ounce. Glass. He guzzled part of the Coke and filled the bottle back up with whiskey. It made me nervous. I wonder if he was too. 

I thought I was cool. He thought he was cool. I was a goodie two shoes. He was not. I was still nervous. I sat there as we drove around. He talked. I listened. 

Part of me wanted to stay out. Carefree. I had him take me home. Responsible.

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