When my friend Jeff lived on Fourteenth Street in the eighties it was sleazy. He lived in an SRO, a three story walk up. I went there once and we smoked a lot of cigarettes. He introduced me to Charles Bukowski, underground comic books and OTB. He wrote me a poem that had the word ‘equatorial’ in it. Sometimes he was called Angry Jeff. Fourteenth Street isn’t what it was years ago. But nothing is what it was years ago — silly me.
Now there are modeling agencies in that region so there are gorgeous people parading up and down that street. Union Square is there with that farmer’s market everyone loves. Whole Foods is there and DSW. I like to go to that Halloween store on 10th St. Today I went looking for green spider webs and purple candles.
When I left I walked across Fourteenth Street to the west side. There were so many people sucking at the air. You had to scoot and slide to get around them all. Oh my — I’m glad I didn’t breed. There isn’t enough air. Some of the people didn’t look happy to be here. I always say I wouldn’t want to create another lost soul. There are just so goddamned many people and a lot of them are populated here – oh I know there’s China but – good lawd!
What are all of us doing here? I suppose we buy things, use energy. Some of us think we’re special but if we thought about how many of us exist, maybe we’d change our minds. How could so many of us be special when there are so many of us? It’s like bugs.
There was a tall man in green scrubs on the train. Maybe he was a doctor. I guess we should make more people to fix other people. Doctors are needed to fix all the people being born. And people have to have cars, so there have to be people made to make all those cars. And then there have to be people made to sweep the floors and there have to be people to put in jail so other people can feel lofty.
So I get it — generally, people have to be here to make stuff for others to buy and use. That’s it. In other parts of the world they have different notions but the idea of having stuff even in those places is seductive. The ‘good life’ is pushed on us like heroin. A lot of people imagine they’re here looking for something better or to be a part of some phenomenal movement that they’re going to start and they think their kid’s gonna help. Maybe. But like I always say, maybe the earth is just toilet paper for us to wipe our asses with until it’s all gone.
Can you put me in a medically induced coma? For the last month I have been waiting for some news to come by May 9th, so this last week has been murder. The sand is running out of the hour glass. May 9th is nigh, and I exist with a frantic edge. I’m afraid I can’t tell you what I’m waiting for at this time. If I told you, I’d have to — you know the rest. I’m not waiting for the results of a medical test thank goodness.
The medically induced coma would put my evil mind to rest during this waiting period. My mind inflicts my body with odd little glitches and a vague malaise. Having experienced neurosis-driven conditions before, I suspect that this waiting for May 9th period (along with a few other issues) has quite a bit to do with my insomnia and the one or two other physical things happening to me that I won’t even bother to get into.
In my early twenties, suddenly I couldn’t swallow food – except for sweets (very tell-tale about this so-called ‘swallowing condition’) – and anyone who knows me well knows that I’d rather eat cake than food – fuck food. (The going out and getting it, the energy used to balance your diet, killing it, cooking it, taking an hour to eat it – what a pain!) I went to the doctor, who prescribed a lovely medication. The pill allowed me to swallow food once more, and it also made me unusually mellow. I called the doctor to find out what was in the pill and he told me that it was phenobarbital (I was a dumb kid who didn’t think to ask what was in it before he prescribed it – if I had known I wouldn’t have taken it).
This was a lesson about my neurosis. I have seen as well what stress does to other people, what sicknesses they contract because of it, so I just remind myself of this mind-body connection, hoping that my body will eventually see the dirty little trick that my mind has been playing (Or is this the other way around?).
I’ve seen what some fellow bloggers in the sphere have lived through so I know I can do it. But I’ll do it with a slight sense of hell… In the interim, I must remember to be kind, helpful, and compassionate to people, to be of service – it’s not all about me — but it is all about me dammit. Thanks for listening.
“Awakenings” made me cry three times. I cried my ass off when Robert DeNiro’s character comes out of his catatonic state and stumbles to his mom who sees him like this for the first time in 30 years. “Mama, mama,” he says walking to her smiling. The other time I cried was when Robin Williams’ character, the doctor sees the effect of the drug he’s administered to all of the other catatonic patients on his ward — they’re all walking around and talking for the first time in ages. The other scene where I cried was when all of the ex-catatonic patients are dancing at the club after taking the drug for a while. They’re all flipping around, swinging, jumping and hopping and shit – it’s great!
This is a fucking feel good movie! And I generally hate anything categorized as a ‘feel good’ movie. It was directed by Penny Marshall and released in 1990. I also liked it because it was in the Bronx, even though I was raised in Manhattan. But we were a stones throw from the Bronx. They had a scene on Fordham Road and they had a shot of Alexander’s Department Store, where I worked in 1979 when I was a 16 year old foxy young thing. The movie took place in 1969, so it made me imagine walking on Fordham road back then when I was but a lass holding my mummy’s hand.
I want to write something like this that makes people cry. Why can’t I write something like this? One question: What the hell was Dexter Gordon doing in this movie?
I’m sorry that I’m too tired to remember the character names and have only referred to the actors. I know I’m 22 years late, but you have got to see this movie! Goodnight.