While Steve and I were hunkered down in the laundry basket Sunday, I asked him about this “initiation” he mentioned and why he needed a special outfit. After all, his looking for an outfit amongst Ethel’s costumes was the reason we were hiding from her.
Steve said that with the warm weather and windows open, he’d met a new neighborhood cat named Gus. Gus lives on the street behind us, Springhill Drive. Gus even brought over some of his friends to meet Steve.
I’m glad to hear that Steve’s making new friends. After his tumultuous break-up with Willow, and the way Basil Worthington threw him to the curb, Steve deserves finding a little happiness. Even if he does get on my nerves sometimes.
But back to this initiation. Steve said that his new group of friends wants to “initiate” him into their group at a special meeting, but they said he had to “look the part.” And that’s why he was rifling through Ethel’s costumes.
Apparently, after not having much luck looking for ideas in our moms’ knitting magazines and the latest issue of Mental Floss [what a surprise], Steve thought he might find a few pieces that he could make work for him in Ethel’s costume collection. Ethel’s costumes, however, are modeled after outfits she saw on Barbra Streisand and on RuPaul’s Drag Race. Which means they are primarily assembled from glitter, fringe, sequins, and gold-lamé. Neither Steve nor I are sure what one wears for an initiation, but we’re pretty sure it’s not sequins and lamé.
Honestly, I don’t even know what an initiation is, and Steve is being evasive with regard to what kind of group Gus and his friends are in. All I know is that Steve badly wants to be part of it. [He’s even been doing extra ab workouts to get ready – he’s certain good abs are an essential aspect to “looking the part”.]
Anyway, I said we probably need to figure out what the group is [or at least the meeting’s theme] before we can select his outfit. When I kept pressing Steve for more details, he just said that this initiation is something you do to be accepted by new friends. Steve can be a little dense at times, but it was pretty clear that he did not want me to know too much about Gus and his group.
So I tracked down my neighbor, Baby Girl, to see what she could tell me. It’s great having all of these windows open! As usual, Baby Girl had the skinny. She knew exactly who Gus was and said he’s nothing but trouble.
Evidently, Gus is the leader of the Springhill Ballers. But what on Earth are Springhill Ballers, I asked. Baby Girl said they’re a gang.
We have a GANG in our neighborhood?!
Baby Girl said, yes, in fact we have two gangs: The Springhill Ballers and the Creekview Disciples. And that’s what confuses Baby Girl. Why would the Springhill Ballers want Steve in their gang when we have a gang right here on Creekview Drive? Especially when, Baby Girl said, the two are rivals engaged in a heated turf war.
Baby Girl’s right, this is perplexing. Especially so because I knew nothing about gangs in our ‘hood [as they say] until this conversation with Baby Girl. It seems I need to get more sources on the “outside.”
What is Steve thinking joining a gang? And why do the Springhill Ballers want him? Now I’m worried. But I don’t want to let on to Steve that I know anything. Not yet. First I must collect more information and gather additional observations. Wish me luck!