Dear DJ, by Mason Johnson
Mason Johnson and DJ Berndt have a wonderful relationship. Look at their Facebook profiles. Hair updates happen periodically between these two ‘internet bros’. Internet bros are the strongest type of bros. They give each other high fives through the power of profile pictures. When I check their profiles I see a true connection.
This bond began at an early age. Mason and DJ went to school together. Back then Mason whispered everything. Girls beat up young Mason. While Mason was beaten with angry six year old girl fists they told him ‘It has to be done’. None of the girls enjoyed beating up Mason. Yet the girls loved giving DJ the bloody nose. DJ wore his broken nose with pride.
DJ grew up in a trailer park with millions of brothers and one sister. For DJ’s party Mason got the greatest gift of all: a haircut that wasn’t a mullet. A Polish hairdresser gave Mason his first truly ‘mature’ haircut. While Mason got his hair cut he also received a delicious potato Pierogi. Pierogi is a lifestyle.
Northwoods transformed DJ and Mason. Every summer Mason and DJ learned how to be total trash. Not showering, fixing a truck, scaring wildlife that is being one with nature. Happy Mason found his voice in the woods like so many other young writers. ‘Fuck Fish’ is the mantra for our generation.
Serious bonding occurred between young Mason and DJ. They stole bras from the freezer, claiming they were popsicles. In a way the bras were popsicles, in a perverted pre-pubescent kind of way. DJ wanted more. At Greg’s house DJ took two pairs of panties because why not? DJ was an idiot hambone. Mason got the gross panties. Wonder why Mason wanted to remove the stains?
Unfriending dead people on the internet are frowned upon. Mason avoids taking this route. Instead he looks at the old picture and remembers his friend Greg. There is a type of nostalgia that exists on Facebook, something that reminds us that now our lives are forever cached.
Happy DJ was non-violent. Mason beat the blood out of poor DJ. DJ’s nose bled into the carpet. For this awful treatment DJ deleted all of Mason’s Hotmail emails. I am happy I am not the only one who used to use Hotmail. Man my Hotmail moniker was the most cringe-worthy thing I can remember about myself. That was before I honed the art of online presences.
Grandpa gets the full treatment here. Mason loved his grandpa. Though he drank all day he never got drunk. Glad that even at such early ages Mason and DJ knew about the complexities of what one can and cannot say. Poor air mattress thought it died on its sword, serving its duty as a plaything.
Poor Mason had a rough time. I can’t picture a time without Mason and DJ being together. After Greg’s death Mason threw people on the floor. He got drunk, broke his toe, and yelled at people. Wonder if Mason’s hair looked the same during this dark time. Since birth they were next to each other. Mason goes into extreme detail about the birth process. Guess being born is important.
Friends spread apart. DJ used to be ‘punk as fuck’. Wonder what that’s like. I never had a punk phase. The aggression of punk never appealed to me. Mellow music beckoned to me. Drone, Shoegaze, and Sigur Ros were my only friends when I was young. Everything moved slowly which sort of embodied my life at that time.
How it ends is so simple: two friends taking a bus ride together. Other passengers stare at them. Those stares cannot break apart this beautiful friendship. Friendships can survive years without talking. That is fine. You need care more than anything else; you need hair more than anything else. Mason and DJ have all of the above and more in spades. Never thought I would see a high-five across the internet. ‘Dear DJ’ proves me very wrong.