Stephen P. Conrad
9 min readJan 20


‘Your Time Is Gonna Come’

Ever since I was a little kid all I keep hearing is, “your time is gonna come”. It resonates in me like a bad case of the clap. Whoever said it, I’m pretty sure they’re right, but for what it’s worth my time hasn’t come yet. Maybe I’m just luckier than others.

The truth be told, I was the nicest bad kid in the neighborhood so long as I wasn’t dating your daughter or hanging around with your punk son. I was the guy your mother warned you about.

That kid a good girls parents told them to stay away from. “Such good manners that boy and respectful. Nice boy. Stay the fuck away from that kid. He’s a punk.” Dads would say. Yeah, I ruined my share of good girls.

Even now it still gives me chuckle Demented but true.

It doesn’t come around twice, this thing called life that is. Shit, most of us are lucky if we get to live it just once. Are you really livin’ or just taking up space?

I don’t mean just hanging around in the background scared to come out and play or sitting on the couch getting old watching shitty reruns living vicariously through through some tv character. Fuck that noise, I mean really fuckin’ living, mixing it up and getting a girls ‘first time’ blood on the tail of your nice white church shirt and shit skid marks on your drawers.

There’s no way around it, either you’re at the party or you’re just peeking through the door from the outside. The wheel of fortune is only fun when it stops between shit or get off the pot. Tongue fuck the good times and shit on the bad, enjoy the acid and trip on life, or sit the fuck down and let the big kids play.

Do you remember what she tasted like, that hottie you picked up walking down the street? Name? Who the fuck remembers her name. I pretty sure I never gave her mine.

There’s no better thrill than wallowing knee deep in the bowels of life.

Many times, I’ve found myself locked in a cheap, dark, rundown motel room. You know, the kind with the green colored carpet you can’t notice the puke patches on or the cum stained sheets the housekeeper flips over to be used again.

My best friend a bottle of rancid dime store gin, the last rail of a speedball and an ugly twenty-dollar hooker that right about that moment looks like a cat walk model straight out of Vogue.

A hooker who replaced the dirty girl scout twenty-one-year-old ecstasy-addicted, rave loving, pacifier-chewing hottie schoolgirl I had hanging around. The same one I moved out of my own apartment to get away from. Yeah, that the ugly hooker isn’t half as insane as the rave baby was. Always make sure you have a time to-go bag within reach.

But goddamn, did I miss that lil’ spawn of Satan prancing around the room in plaid skirt, ponytails swinging ass swaying. The first time I ever saw her do her thing I suddenly I realize, it’s the moment of truth, I have arrived, disfunction junction. Take me know Lawd!

I was pretty sure I scored everything I ever wanted until, right in between “fuck me” and “choke me”, the reality settled on me that I seriously fucked up somewhere and I was at the fork on the road of life. Then I took another swig of gin, sucked a hit off that glass dick of denial and I was A-okay again.

Without warning comes the out of body experience as there I lie naked except for my dirty socks in a state of complete obliteration with my ugly twenty-dollar party girl who now was puking over the side of the bed. No matter, it soaked right into the carpet.

Both of us whacked out, wigged out and busted out I stare up at the tobacco and blood-stained ceiling mesmerized by a slow, deliberate revolving fan that intentionally blankets the room with the revolting diseased bacteria of so many past victims.

Living in my own petri dish motel room, laying in the same bed that they, like I, had made for themselves. Fuck ’em, who has time to worry about some other jagoff, I gotta get busy getting high.

All this living, only a few hours after having found myself and a few comical yet no less dangerous friends quickly backing out of a dark tenement building lugging a leather bag stuffed full of someone else’s drugs, revolver in one hand and my dick in the other.

All that’s left behind is some hog-tied deranged dope dealer frothing at the mouth while screaming in some unknown Eastern European language only what I can assume is how they plan on torturing and killing us. I gratefully can’t understand what the fuck he’s saying. But that kind of thing usually translates universally. Then the fun really begins.

The life, is no joke, it didn’t knock and ask if it can come in. No! It kicked the door right off the fucking hinges and screamed, “Hey asshole I’m here, get your hands on the wall and spread ’em wide”. Sometimes it sneaks up on you just when you think it’s safe to come out then kicks you square in the balls right when you think you got it licked.

Just when you’re ready to blow your load it steals your manhood reducing your once raging hardon to a flaccid, shriveled up mess. Yeah, life can be funny that way. It likes to keep you guessing. One day you’re on top the next you’re in the gutter like every other egomaniac with an inferiority complex.

If you can count yourself amongst the lucky few who last long enough to say you have any experience at life, life twists your balls a little harder to remind you that neither, you, I, nor anyone else gets out of here alive.

I gave up the mental masturbation of trying to figure out life long ago. I don’t shit from shinola and I’m okay with that. I don’t know about you, but my one time around has been traumatic enough, totally insane, a complete train wreck yet amazing and most of the time a fuckin’ blast and still fucking awesome enough that I wouldn’t change a day of it.

If there is anything that is allusive it’s this thing called life. I’ll tell ya, I don’t know much but I do now enough to say I don’t second-guess it anymore. I know when it’s time to get off the ride and get my act together.

Well, at least together enough to not end up in a jail cell, again, or worse yet, stuffed in a trunk of a car hogtied with a cord wrapped around my neck. Yeah, the first I’ve seen plenty of, the latter, I’ve come painfully close too.

But hey, that’s life, right? Bad choices always make for the best stories.

To be brutally honest, I don’t know how I got this far, and I surely don’t know how I’m gonna get through the next half. They say fifty is the new forty, shit, if that’s the case I got a long road of depravity still ahead of me and likely a few more nights in the can.

I’m not sure what it’s supposed to feel like at my age, but I don’t take anything for granted because life has always been a shit show just waiting to surprise me.

So, I’ve decided to take a decidedly different approach to it. I’m gonna take my time getting through this horse race. I mean hey, who do I have to impress? What the fuck do I care anyway? I never have before so why start now?

Now that’s not to say I’m ready to be domesticated. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. No, I’m not ready to settle down just yet. My little head just doesn’t think for my big head as much as it used to.

Maybe that’s because I’m no longer in an alcohol and drug induced stupor and haven’t been for a while. I kicked a few dirty habits, twenty-four hours at a time. But not all habits are bad and I’m still dirty sometimes.

Even Danny the cop still half-jokingly calls me ‘sucio’ in his don’t- give-a-shit Puerto Rican accent. Sometimes even the best of morality showers can’t wash all the stink and dirt off. Then again, who would I be without a little stink in my life?

These days my heads just a little clearer and if I may say so myself, I’m a tad bit wiser.

I have nothing to hide anymore, and I don’t particularly care about what others think about me, so I am less apt to keep what I think to myself. But have I ever?

I’ve already spent far too many years doing exactly the opposite. I may not have seen it all but I’m pretty content with what I have seen thus far. I don’t know what part of all this livin’ was harder. The years spent in a six by nine prison cell, the times spent shaking and shitting myself with the DT’s in a shitty rehab or crying my eyes out over the hopelessly lost love of the twenty-one year old ecstasy freak.

What is love anyway? Shit, I’m not even sure I’ve ever really known true love, at least during a sober moment. It seems unrequited love has always been mine but I’m sure that’s partly due to emotional vacancy having been my area of expertise.

Love is another drug and if I like anything, well you know. It’s always been a series of miserably failed relationships after a string of one-night stands turned into weeks, months and occasionally years. Eventually I leave with what little I have left at the end of a ride on the crazy train. I always go out the door with less than I came in with.

Then they ask me why I still sleep with a knife under the pillow at night. Twisted maybe yeah, but likely necessary. But hey, the upside is she can’t break what’s already broken and that, I am.

Maybe luck in love is what they meant when they said, “your time is gonna come”. I doubt they were being that kind but just maybe.

Getting this far is a big deal for a kid they didn’t think would make eighteen. Then the ante was upped to twenty-one, then twenty- five and well, you get the picture.

A good number of the people I started out with didn’t get here, many never got long past puberty. Those who said, ‘live fast, die young and leave a good-looking corpse’ did, just that. Not a goal I ever aspired to.

No, I want you to remember I was here, leave a mark, pee in the corner to mark my territory. Hell, even after I cleaned up, I had friends dropping like flies. Bullet holes, puncture wounds, needle holes or natural causes, what’s the difference? Is there really any natural cause of death? What does it matter anyway? Just like being born, we all gotta do it alone and only do it once.

I’ve been a have and I’ve been a have not. I’ve wined and dined on Opus One and Chateaubriand and other times couldn’t afford a cheeseburger. I’ve worked straight jake for a living and not so much so. I’ve been a bookie, burglar, loan collector, ditch digger, political employee, city worker, bodyguard, actor, writer, life counselor, paralegal, A-list Hollywood night club operator and county jail fry cook.

I’ve sat at the table with big shot politicians, famous celebrities and notorious gangsters. Dated goody-goody good girls, preachers’ daughters, models, slept with street corner hookers and lived with high-end escorts. Everybody needs to be loved.

I’ve slept on silk sheets in first rate hotels and done pushups on cold concrete jail cell floors. I’ve loved, lost, laughed and cried but most of all I’ve lived, really lived and shit, I’m just getting started. I’ve taken from and given back. I’m surely no angel.

If I learned anything in the first half of the game of life, it’s that I don’t know a goddamn thing and I’m glad I don’t. Knowing shit can be scary. Not knowing is the best part, the rush. The action, that’s the juice.

Still, those words, “your time is gonna come” resonate with me.

Time is time, it can’t be hoarded or saved, nor can it be wasted. You can’t outrun it. It already passes by too quickly as it is so the way I figure it why be in a hurry? Savor the time I do have. I mean hey, there’s gotta be something to be said for living fast and dying old and fucking gray.



Stephen P. Conrad

A nomad, a gypsy at heart, writer, actor, artist, anti-sycophant, socially maladjusted and comfortably near complete insanity.