My Fake ID Ch. 01
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Standard disclaimer: This is a work of fiction. Any similarities with any persons living or dead are wholly coincidental…
A note from the author: I’ve been spending some time in the spa (hospital) again. I ask you to be kind. I write to entertain myself, hospitals are boring. I share because Oz told me back in the day, I should try.
Feedback is good and welcome, bitchy flame mail is not.
* * * *
The patrolman read my driver’s license. “Magnus Øystein Haugen, the Third… of Williston, ND… Race: Other? Well, that’s a new one… Sex: Male… Height: five feet eight inches… Hair: Blonde… Eyes: Blue… Age: TWENTY-ONE… well there we have our problem!” He droned on and I zoned out.
I asked myself how the fuck did this happen. My fake DL is normally getting me out of difficulty. Unfortunately there are times it backfires. I don’t know why I keep the damn thing. Oh that’s right, it’s easier to buy booze with it. This time I’m sitting in the back of a patrol car in handcuffs.
I learned a long time ago, back when I was just trying to get into the adult bookstores, and dance clubs, when you’re making a fake you keep your date of birth the same, you just change the year. It’s too easy to fuck up and give the wrong month, or day. It is easier to train yourself on the year.
The photo on both of my IDs don’t quite match my current appearance. The soft oval shape of my face and my large powder blue eyes haven’t changed. What has changed is the length of my hair. My blonde straight hair now goes all the way down to the small of my back.
Most of the time people look at it, look at me, and take it at face value. Then again, most of the time I’m careful about who I show it to. That was not the case today. I’ve always been careful, FUCK why not today. My mind reflected on my life and journey.
* * * *
My story began back in the North Dakota oil fields. Yep, I’m from the Flickertail State. I had turned sixteen, three months prior. Granddad got me my big work truck. My cousin, who worked the docks up in Manitoba lined up a 40 foot shipping container and container trailer to haul it home. Granddad was great and helped with the paperwork to bring it home. It was part of my grand plan for my escape. It seemed like a lifetime ago.
I had one man in my family I admired above all others, my grandfather. It was the Wednesday afternoon before Thanksgiving, and my life was about to turn on a dime.
I walked in on Dad and Nels signing over the deed on the old cabin. Dad said, “He’s becoming a drain on the business assets. The funds were getting from this old ass cabin, can be used to pay for the nursing home for years.” I will confess I was angry.
Back home I argued the cabin had been in the Haugen family for generations. The company was founded and owned by senior still. Why shouldn’t its assets be used to care for him now. It didn’t take much to get junior pissed off. Uff-da, dontcha know, I pissed him off. He commenced to punching me.
The man took issue with everything I did, and was. His major issue was the fact he was a mean drunk. People around town knew about his booze fueled temper. Many doubted my mother’s suicide. Everyone knew she was terrified of water. Yet somehow she committed suicide by driving her car into the frozen river.
Then it broke, it was the last straw. The one holding my fury, and apparently sanity in check. I clocked him with my welder’s helmet during his attack. Of all the things I was forbidden to do, fighting back was the biggest no-no of all. I swore this was the very last day, I was going to be his punching bag.
My family liked using the old Nordic tongue when angry. Junior was very angry. He called me a, “jævla fitte, kuksuger jukkegutt” (fucking pussy, cocksucker gay boy). I turned calling him kjønnsleppefittehårsuppe (a labia cunt hair soup. okay, it loses a bit in translation). You betcha though, as soon as the words left my lips, his fist made contact with my throat. With that the fight was over before it began. I was standing there trying to gasp for air as his punches landed, unable to defend myself.
Eventually the beating ended. Mostly because I’d become a bloody puddle at his feet. Then junior grabbed me and threw me out of the house. I crawled my way to my truck. I knew I was in trouble, there was a sundog in the sky. Those rainbows around the sun only formed in the extreme cold when the ice crystals would freeze in the air. It was going to get colder as the sun went down.
I started driving towards the rez. Being drawn like a magnet, I needed people, I needed help. I knew the people in town would side with father and I would get no help there. I was slowly losing the battle with consciousness and pulled over. I slumped forward, knowing unless someone would find me soon, I would be joining my mother’s spirits. I lost consciousness just outside the shelter belt of someone else’s property.
I woke up next to the Barton oil field. Mr. Barton escort otel had hired our company on numerous occasions. The cold of the winter was hell on oil derricks. Chris Barton had opened the door to my truck. As I tumbled out into his arms he exclaimed, “Lil Mag, What the fuck happened!”
Mr. Barton slid me back up into the truck. Then he drove back onto the site telling a roughneck to drive his vehicle into town to get the doctor, and the sheriff. I was out again.
I woke in a strange bedroom. I could hear them but could not reply. Mr. Barton shook me. I winced in pain with every movement, “Magnus, who did this to you? What the fuck happened? Your father keeps hanging up on me. Is there someone else I can call?”
My cousin Shehék (‘laughing’ Coyote) was standing over his shoulder. He was older than me at twenty-one, but he was one of the cooler family members I had. As kids we would dance with the women of the tribe. We were too young to understand the whispers between the older people. Our mothers always smiled when we would dance. “Chris everyone knows who did this. That’s why the doctor won’t come. No one wants to cross Junior… Óoxa (OH oh ha – closest pronunciation in English), Chris and I will care for you.”
Junior was the name everyone used for my father, when he wasn’t in ear-shot. Óoxa was the tribal name given to me. “I’ll call Dad on Fort Berthold and he’ll bring the tribal doctor. Óoxa is Mandan, they will help him.”
The Sheriff arrived and stayed long enough to say, “It looks like the little queer boy got a beat down for propositioning the wrong visitor. Now he is trying to throw it on his father. There is no evidence his father actually struck him.
Mr. Barton, Maggie here is a troubled boy with an active imagination. I don’t think you wanna piss off the guy who owns the only fabrication company in the region.” My cousin Laughing Coyote wasn’t laughing when he showed the Sheriff out.
People think of North Dakota as the iceberg of the north. The coldest static temperature in winter was – 60. Throw a 50 to 60 mile an hour wind on top of that, I think the phrase “brrr” was invented in North Dakota. Still, that only gives half the story. Growing up, I got to see our temperature go from over 100 degrees in the summer, to under a minus hundred degrees wind chill in the winter. That kind of a temperature change is hard on equipment and people.
On the plains the most dangerous condition to find yourself in, is alone. That was my current state. I fled from Dad’s house without even trying to pack a bag. All I had were the clothes on my back and dirty workout clothes in my gym bag. I looked down at my shirt, I saw it was shredded and blood was covering it.
Chris was surprised, like many, to find out about my Mandan heritage. With my fare skin and hair, I don’t exactly look like I fit in. Both Grandma and Mama where Mandan. I was three quarters. Granddad’s Nordic blood still ran deep in me. The only thing I got from Mom’s side of the family was the lack of body and facial hair.
The next morning, the swelling on my larynx receded, and I was able to croak out some answers to their questions. I was able to confirm what my cousin Shehék had told Chris, that it was my father who beat me. I was grateful for the Thanksgiving break, in spite of my bruises I would be able to return to school.
Shehék’s mother (Waráwit) Mourning Dove, came to the site with a box of clothes she thought would fit. Her eye was spot-on. She and my mother were quite close, more sisters than sisters-in-law. The roughnecks went through their footlockers and gear boxes and found work clothes for me. I think a couple of them cheated and ran into town.
Mourning Dove stayed by my side all weekend and made some ponytail covers of leather, bone, and metal to keep my hair from getting tangled in the equipment or burned while welding. She also fashioned a leather ponytail sleeve and decorated it with beads, porcupine quills, a silver fox charm, and an eagle feather. I knew eagle feathers were sacred and would only be given by family for a great life success, or a great survival.
I tried to help with the beading unfortunately my arms felt like lead. My fingers and hands still hurt, from fighting with father. I missed doing the arts with mother as a child. I was proficient at beading, weaving, quilling, and tanning. Mother’s poppa said that made me special, and someday I would know why.
As a kid with no perceptible support, Dad had expected me to crawl off and die or just disappear. Apparently he forgot about making me get a job freshman year. He thought it was about time I learned the family business. He chose to put me to work in Uncle Nels’ metal shop… I had been a certified welder since I was twelve. Bonded at 15 (thank you Grandpa), in two months I’ll be a certified master welder.
Certified welders were rare as gold in western North Dakota. The oil companies were always looking for good welders. Even if they were a little on the scrawny escort gecelik side and could only work part-time.
Mr. Barton was willing to hire me ‘part-time,’ damn child labor laws. Thanks to the kit that Granddad had built into my long bed truck, I was prepared to work. I was set up for Arc, Gas, Mig and Tig welding. If it was metal, I could connect it or cut it apart. I only asked that he occasionally throw me some money for diesel for the trip to Minot until I could set up delivery of supplies.
In addition to working, and finishing high school, I was converting the large cargo container into a tiny house as my junior year project for my industrial arts class. The shop teacher hated me on sight initially freshman year.
He was a rival of dad’s in construction. My father ran him out of business by consistently under bidding jobs. He lost his company and ended up teaching. A few days into the semester he realized, I was not my father’s son in attitude, and how sorry and ashamed I felt.
Mr. Gregory loved the concept of building a tiny house out of the shipping container. We cut holes for, then mounted, the expensive doors and windows. He taught us about thermal breaks, “Tre, if we keep it solid metal, you’re going to bake inside or freeze. He taught us how to hang light framing and spray foam insulation on the outside of the cube. We built a heavily insulated roof assembly for it as well.
We decided to go for an expensive solution for exterior cladding. We used shou shugi ban charred cedar. I couldn’t believe the detail that was added by charring the wood. It wasn’t exactly cheap but the fact that the materials would last for 80 years without having to be resurfaced made it worthwhile.
A few teachers at the school and the tribal council lawyer helped me become an emancipated minor. The council demanded my father be punished for child abuse. The Sheriff dismissed the request.
I was the one member of the family who was constantly stopping over at the nursing home paying attention to Grandpa Magnus. He was pissed with Dad. I was able to temper his heat away from Nels. He had too much to lose standing for me.
I had built a crude camper on the back of my pickup and moved out of Mr. Barton’s spare room. He and Shehék were lovers, I didn’t want to cramp them. Eventually the Airstream style riveted and welded aluminum camper shell was going to be my storage unit for the tiny house. The roughnecks were warned to stay away because of my age.
Though emancipated, the sheriff had an eye on the job site. My father spred rumors that I was turning tricks. The Sheriff made several ugly threats to the Barton’s.
My cousin Pete, a deputy, had cornered me after school with a warning. “Remember Tre, age of consent here is 18, don’t hurt the guys who are helping you. The Sheriff has us checking out your camper with a thermal imager during patrol. If we see two bodies grinding, we are to arrest the occupants. If that happens, during discovery ask for the warrant for the imager. He doesn’t have it.
I am so glad pop talked me out of the family business. If there is anything you need Tami and I wanna help. I am walking a fine line with the department. This sucks so much, I am even looking at leaving Williams County.”
I replied angrily, “Peter Haugen! If all you good cops leave, who will be left to stand for the innocent? If courage was easy, we would be surrounded by heroes. Have courage, stake your ground, and fight where you can. If not you will have to run forever.”
He hugged me and rubbed my head, “Thanks Tre. How did you become so wise?” I could only smile. “My wife made this for you.” He handed me a paper bag. It had a tupperware dish filled with a ground beef hot dish from his wife. She also added a few Ziplocs filled with puppy chow.
I suppose I should explain. Anywhere else in the country folks would dismiss a hot dish as a simple casserole, hot dish is better. Puppy Chow, how do I describe it. Comfort food, it’s a mix of Chex, peanut butter, chocolate, and powdered sugar. Pete hugged me and we parted.
* * * *
The last bit of drama for junior year was when I moved the now dried-in an insulated shipping container out to the site. It was ready for final fittings on the inside. It turned out dad got audited by the IRS because he tried to claim me as a dependent.
As a result of losing his tax deduction (me) he sent the law after me. The sheriff showed up out at the site demanding I hand over the keys to my truck and future home. “Your father wants HIS vehicles back.” I pointed to the registrations and titles.
“With respect Sheriff, both documents say that this vehicle is owned by myself and or my grandfather. My dad has no claim. If you attempt to take custody of it I will have YOU personally arrested for grand theft auto. Run the tags through NCIC, you’ll see I am telling the truth.” He was about to make a claim of resisting law enforcement, in the performance of his duty, when the state trooper rolled escort türbanlı onto the job site. Chris had had enough, and called the regional office.
Over the summer, several of the guys from the job site were trading labor and materials for side jobs. Everybody likes to have custom welding and repairs on their trucks. Too many big things run around the range. They can do a wallop of hurt on your vehicle.
Between installing custom skid plates, grill guards, and push bars for the guys. The tiny house started to take shape. By the start of senior year it was complete. I was able to move into my tiny house. It was well insulated. Even the coldest winter night was comfortable to ride out.
I designed the tiny house along the lines of a shotgun shack. The entry area that contained two triangular storage units for towels coats boots and whatnot. An entry hall was flanked by the powder room to the right. I had a separate shower room to the left of the door. The two rooms created a small entry and changing room.
I had solar panels hard mounted to the roof. Large LP tanks mounted on the tongue, for cooking and backup heat. In the house was a super efficient Scandinavian compact wood heater. I had an extended battery system stored on the truck’s now unused camper, and tiny house. My generator for welding was highly efficient and quiet. It was a backup, in case I was unable to use my panels.
The middle of the trailer formed a great room and second entry. The kitchen and dining made up the middle section. The tongue side was the bedroom. It contained a king size adjustable air bed which filled a lot of the space. Night stands were built into the forward wall.
I removed and relocated the heavy shipping doors from over the tongue to the side. This move would give me the ability to lock out both of the entry doors during shipment. I had storage hidden everywhere. All of the interior doors were pocket doors made out of lightweight aluminum and lexan frosted panels. I chose to do a minimalist build to cut down on the weight. Instead of drywall I chose to use bead board painted white to bounce the light around And make the narrow eight foot wide container appear bigger. The large windows all over helped.
With the build now complete I could focus on saving money for the big trip. I’d have to work, but I could keep going forward. The first night in my new home I found myself at the desk doodling. I had just completed my first container home build, and I was already designing its replacement. How warped is that.
Senior year I started helping a couple of the roughnecks to get their welding certifications. Mr. Barton was impressed. He assigned the two men as my assistants. Charlie obeyed my instructions as if they were written in stone. My other assistant Mike embraced the status. I think he genuinely liked being under me.
The two of them would do tasks while I was at school. When I’d get to the site, I’d look over, and test their work. Most of the time I would check it off. On occasion I’d have to tell them to do it again. After a year working on the job site I was made the welding supervisor and a full time employee.
I got a definite gay vibe off Mike but with him being twenty-one, I couldn’t act on it. Damn, North Dakota’s stupid age of consent law! Everyone on site was over twenty-one, making me forbidden fruit. If we snuck across the border into Montana, I knew the Sheriff would be waiting for our return. The guy’s my age were afraid of my family’s shadow, and to be honest they didn’t interest me.
Mr. Barton asked for me to design a welding truck for the site. There was bad blood between he and my father now. Dad told him, “So long as I run the company, Haugen Fabricating and Repair will not work for your company.” Over the winter Charlie, Mike, and I got it ready to roll. The guys could replace me. It was almost time to go.
After almost a year and a half on my own, I had graduated and was itching to move on. I decided to spend one last summer on the site. I would then take a massive road trip to “discover” myself. I know it’s a sixties concept, but granddad inspired me. I would start my great journey in August, when I turn eighteen. First stop, Burning Man. I had secured a job on the site. Someone is always looking for a welder/fabricator.
Granddad always laughed at my carefully thought out plans. He thought I should just drop what I’m doing and get on the road. When he was transferred from the nursing home to the hospice, it tore my heart out. Those confident eyes that always exuded strength, now looked upon me weakly. “Tre, I have always loved you. You have been my favorite grandchild. You remind me of the strong handsome boy, who I used to be.
There’s one difference between you and I. You have a stick up your ass about doin what is ‘right and proper.’ By the time I was your age I had sex with dozens of girls, and more than a few guys.”
“Ewwwww, Grandpa.” I think I would prefer having the sex talk with a nun than my grandfather.
“It’s cold in winter, sex boils the blood. Tre, are you still a virgin?” I pulled my bottom lip into my mouth and blushed. “There is that rod again. Tre, do you know how I made it to Woodstock?”
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