So Dan, Jamie, and I went on our usual Friday night dinner thing, this time to a barbecue joint in Oakland. Afterwards, we decided to take a drive up into the hills before grabbing some dessert.

After twisting through Glenview and Montclair, we ended up on Snake Road, which is very aptly named, as it twists and turns up and down hills with no lights, few guardrails and (mercifully) little traffic. Apparently, it’s the place of choice for partying East Bay teenagers.

Jamie started remembering ghost stories from her childhood about strange sightings on this road (which sounded remarkably similar to the ones I grew up hearing about Old High Point Road in Greensboro). This is one creepy, deserted stretch of road, so imagine how startled we were to nearly run down a hitchhiker at 10:00 at night.

It was probably stupid to pick him up, but we felt sorry for him (and he was quite adorably scruffy). Anyway, we figured we outnumbered him no matter what happened. His name was Seth and he looked even better close up. He said his car had broken down. There was something strange about him. I figured he was stoned.

I think Jamie was craving him, but I could tell he liked boys when he kept brushing his hand against my leg in the back seat. He said he was headed to a party in Lafayette (almost a contradiction in terms, I thought) so Dan agreed to drive him there. I was glad, because his absent-minded hand motions were getting a little more aggressive and pointed.

By the time we got to Lafayette, I think we’d pretty much arrived at the official point of “petting”. I advised him that he needed to come back to San Francisco with me. He agreed, but said he had to go into the party for a minute to let his friends know.

Dan, Jamie, and I waited more patiently than you might have expected from any of us. I think they were being nice because of our Krispy Kreme fiasco last week. But finally, I went up to the house to get him (if just to tell him to “fuck off” for making us wait so long.

A guy about my age answered the door and I asked if Seth was there. His face lost most of its color and he asked “Seth who?”. I described him and his face lost the rest of its color.

“That’s Seth Turner you’re describing.”

“Great. Is he here?”

“No. He died. Ten years ago tonight, as matter of fact. He was killed in a car wreck on Snake Road on his way to a party here. It was just after midnight on April Fool’s Day 1990.”