Ed pretends he knows what it means when his brother says, “She hates the taste of it.” They are in the yard; Ricky is working on his motorcycle’s muffler and telling him about his new girlfriend.
Ricky smiles at Ed’s put-on. He knows the kids at school will skin him alive if he doesn’t know this one. So he invites his little brother to come with him to the adult video store by the entrance to the Interstate. It is time he starts to learn these things, he tells him. Ed keeps his face blank, uncertain whether he should be interested.
“We’ll take Celita,” Ricky promises him, thinking this will make the difference. Celita is his bike, a new Suzuki 1000. When Ed climbs up on the back, he wraps his arms around his brother, dizzy at the distance between them and the ground. He has ridden on the back of Ricky’s other bikes, but this is the largest one yet. It feels like an enormous beast, like it could not possibly have their best interests in mind. Ricky has hacked the muffler so it is louder, and when he throttles the engine it sounds as if they should be able to fly.
“Are you ready?” Ricky yells back to Ed, when he feels his little brother stop squirming.
“Yeah,” Ed replies. He braces himself and Ricky laughs to feel the little arms tighten.