First let me say that this wasn't written as a tribute to Glen Frey. It was actually written three years ago and has been collecting virtual dust on a thumb drive until I showed it to a couple of dear friends. I want to thank Cute3Kitty for encouraging me to post this, and a huge thanks to blackrandl1958 for not only encouraging me, but her effort to fix my errors, educate me, and make this more readable for all of you.
The King of Hollywood
"Well he sits up there on his leatherette. Looks at pictures of the ones that he hasn't had yet. When he thinks he wants a closer look. He gets out his little black telephone book. He's calling calling calling..."
The Eagles seemed to know my situation even if I didn't. "The King of Hollywood," a song about a guy who lures girls into sex on the premise of Hollywood stardom. Eight years ago I left my family behind to make it big. It doesn't seem like eight years.
I am going home. Well not exactly home. My husband Guy and our daughters Simone and Chelsea don't live in the same house as they did when I last saw them. As far as that goes they don't even live in the same state, but where ever they are is home to me.
I just can't figure out why they moved and never told me. By now, you are probably wondering about me. My name is Janice Doucette. I am a 43-year-old mother of two.
I lived in a small Louisiana town called Bordeaux. My husband Guy and I grew up together and were sweethearts all through high school. He was the quarterback on the football team, and I was the head cheerleader.
We were the prom king and queen and everyone knew that we'd be together forever. When we graduated, Guy went off to LSU for four years. I spent two years at a junior college in New Orleans. I spent the next two years as a secretary while Guy finished his degree.
When he graduated with his degree in Education, we settled in Baton Rouge for a while. Guy was a student teacher by day and he cooked in a diner by night to build money up for us to eventually get married. I worked odd secretary jobs and between our frugal living and both of us working, we soon had a decent nest egg built up.
Two years after he graduated, Guy proposed to me. Of course, I said yes, and then I set about with our mothers planning our wedding.
Shortly before our wedding, Guy was offered a teaching position by our hometown school. I had hoped that he would have gotten a job in Los Angeles or New York. I'd had enough of small town Louisiana life and Baton Rouge had only whetted my city appetite.
Guy was elated. He felt it was great to have an opportunity to give something back to our community. Our parents were overjoyed as well. Everybody was getting what they wanted. Well, everyone but me.
I almost called our wedding off. I wanted to try to live out my dream of being a Broadway star before I had kids and got fat. Two weeks before the wedding, I walked into the den to break my news to Guy. He was perusing a magazine. I could see a woman's face and figured that I had caught him looking at pornography.
That was my ticket out. I completely detest pornography. I would leave Guy for having the gall to look at it in our house. As I got closer, rehearsing my lines of devastation, I saw he was reading a less than pornographic men's magazine. I still wasn't happy, but when I saw he was reading an article titled "Making Her Wedding Day One She'll Remember" I stopped.
He looked up and smiled at me and my heart melted. I decided that after we got married I would push him to try to get us to New York. Plenty of Broadway actresses are married. Guy would understand.
Three months later, we were married. Guy surprised me when he gave me our honeymoon itinerary at our wedding reception. We were going to spend two full weeks in New York. He had gotten tickets to Cats, and Miss Saigon.
I had a wonderful time and realized more than ever that I wanted to be on that stage. When we got home, I practiced my singing and dancing whenever I could. I bought Broadway soundtracks and learned them all. I just knew I was going to be the next Elaine Paige.
One morning when I woke up I wasn't feeling well. I spent two hours throwing up and then I felt well enough to go to work. This same pattern repeated itself for three days before I decided to call the doctor.
I didn't tell Guy right away because I didn't want to worry him. The doctor gave me an examination and took urine and blood samples. I sat alone in the room for what seemed an eternity with various scenarios playing in my head.
I imagined the doctor coming in and telling me I had some variety of cancer. I didn't imagine it was cancer because God doesn't do that to Broadway stars. My grandmother had died of liver cancer, though. And her last years had been hell. She couldn't eat and she couldn't sleep without the aid of drugs. I remember watching her fade in her last months until one day she was happy and chipper.
We were always prepared for days like. We took a picnic lunch to the state park and enjoyed a day in the sun. Everyone enjoyed the day and when we left her house I thought that she was going to be better.
The next day, my Uncle John called and told us that Grandma had passed. I thought it was cruel to raise our hopes and then take her, but my daddy said that God had given her one last really nice day on earth before calling her home. I didn't fully understand but if daddy said it, it had to be true.
I also imagined my doctor coming in and telling me that it was something I had eaten. That made more sense than cancer because Guy had cooked us shrimp etouffee and jambalaya. He had been in a snit because it was the third night in a row he'd had to cook.
We usually split the chores down the middle, but sometimes if I'd had to work more than five hours for Mr. Duchene, I'd skip chores to practice my singing and dancing. That day, Guy had come home to find I hadn't done anything. I told him that I'd worked from nine to two for Mr. Duchene.
"What did you do from two 'til now?"
"I was practicing."
"Sacrebleu! Practicing? Damn it, Jan, it's one thing to fuck around and make like a star when all of the shit's done that needs done, but it pisses me right the fuck off when your stupid fucking fantasy takes precedence over everything else and I have to pick up the slack. Now I have to cook and clean and grade fucking tests. Thanks a fucking lot!"
I stormed out of the room and locked myself in our bedroom. How dare he call my life's dream a "stupid fucking fantasy?" To show my displeasure in his actions I didn't come out of the bedroom at all until I heard the ten o' clock news on the TV.
I walked down the hall and stopped short of the den. He was sitting at his desk with his back to the TV grading a massive stack of papers. I knew that he'd be there until one in the morning if he had to in order to finish his task.
I went into the kitchen and, it was clean, and immaculate. I opened the refrigerator and found the etouffee and jambalaya in two Tupperware containers. I heated them in the microwave, sat at the table and ate.
When I was done I left the dishes there and went to bed. I figured he could clean up again since he didn't appreciate my talents enough to take on an extra chore now and then. He was still grading papers when I walked back to the bedroom.
The next morning when I was sick, I noticed that Guy had cleaned up the kitchen before he had come to bed. I was nice and didn't make a mess for him, more because I wasn't feeling well than for him.
The only other thing I thought was I might have contracted a virus. Then I thought of an STD. That fucking Guy couldn't keep his pecker in his pants! I bet the son of a bitch was fucking his students. I made him wear condoms to keep from getting pregnant.
He had wanted me to take the pill because the latex sometimes gave him a rash. I vetoed that idea when I heard that some women put on extra weight while on the pill. I knew a fat sow would never make it on Broadway, so I told him that if he wanted sex he'd have to endure a little discomfort.
I figured he had to have given it to me several weeks before. I had been in a really randy mood for three days and we were getting it on at least twice a day. I felt bad for Guy because the condoms were really making him suffer so I allowed him to forego the condom. I quickly did the math in my head and figured I was clear. Little did I know the bastard was going to give me the clap.
"That son of a bitch did this to me,"
I thought as the doctor entered holding my file.
"We ran the tests and we have ruled out cancer," he said. I breathed a sigh of relief. OK, God was off the hook, but Guy was now public enemy number one. "So what do I have, Dr. Brentwood?"
"Well Janice you have a classic case of morning sickness." He paused to let that sink in. "Congratulations, you and Guy are going to be parents."
"The bastard knocked me up!"
my mind screamed. I couldn't believe it. Guy had just shit all over my dreams. Broadway was no place for a pregnant woman. Dr. Brentwood mistook my tears for tears of joy.
Before I left the office he gave me the name and number of a top rate Ob/Gyn. His nurse called and set up my initial appointment. She congratulated me as she handed me a card with all of the appointment information on it.
I sat in my car and cried for at least half an hour. I knew that Guy would be more than happy to start a family; even if it wasn't planned. I was torn. I could drive to Mississippi and get an abortion. Guy would never know and I could keep Broadway firmly in my sight.
.... There is more of this story ...