I’ve been taking a new way home from work to avoid riding the bus with zombies masquerading as people. As soon as you turn away they smack their fists in their hands and point at me. They peel the latex ‘people’ skin from their face to show me decaying flesh then stick it back on before anyone else sees them. Sometimes the bus is filled with them because they know this is my usual route.
So this is my new route home.
It’s the back roads of Riverdale in the Bronx. There are others walking here but it’s rather quiet. Since there are mansions on one side and a few houses speckled on the other by the river, I might be saved by a compassionate homeowner if one of those stinking dead bastards comes.
I imagine this road in the fall when the leaves turn Halloweeny and the moon is huge and orange with the wicked witch flying through it on her broom, and I get all oogie.
That white speck is a zombie but I’m behind the tree.
This walking path is like a country road with the woods and the river. The people who live here don’t make the path less twiggy and gnarly because they don’t want riff raff like me too comfortable on it.
The road leads back to a luxury apartment area winding east. At the end where the road curves back is a quaint old apartment complex, units crookedly piled on top of one another on a natural terrace jutting out over the river. Each unit has an iron terrace and the roofs are rust colored, corrugated. There’s ivy crawling all over the buildings. There’s a serene view of the river and the palisades. Woods are across the street. Next to that is a prewar building, rather average but attractive, resembling the kind in my neighborhood. It also juts out over the river. It’s strange to see a building like that in a privileged position.
I’m going to live there. That’s also why I walk this route, to get used to it when I have to come home this way, zombies or not.
But now, for my trip home from work this way, after a mile and a half, I get on a bus that zombies refuse to ride. They don’t know where I live and they’re not blog readers. A few are starting to get on Facebook, but I blocked them. Trying to avoid them is exhausting but I don’t want to become a zombie anytime soon, so it’s what I accept. They want to eat my superior brain and I can’t do anything about that.
I was worried that the proof copy of my book would look shoddy. I thought the cover artwork would be washed out, but it’s a very good-looking book. My flimsy free phone camera doesn’t capture the beauty so I didn’t post pictures — the above is just the art from the Create Space site. I have to read it to make sure everything’s there. They did omit the page numbers, which is weird. Mean-Spirited Tales is a hefty book. It’s 6×9 and about 300 pages, and mauve — I hope men don’t mind reading it. As part of my guerilla marketing plan I’ll read it on all the city subway lines, making sure people see the cover. I’ll squint and turn the pages thoughtfully. Really loud I’ll say, “This book is…it’s amazing!”
A thought. I could peddle my book on the train. People make good money selling stuff on there I had heard. “Git ya copy a Mean-Spirited Tales heah!” From a tray supported by two straps on my shoulders, I’d pick up books to hurl at passengers waving money at me from the other end of the car. A portable credit card machine might work. I’d wear an I Love New York visor — oh and I’d have a cigar butt dangling from my mouth. Gotta keep it real yo!
A mouse had babies in my apartment. They don’t know shit from shamrock because they’re too young yet — they don’t know they’re supposed to run when they see me. The one today just walked around my apartment with impunity, exploring, sniffing at my books on the floor. He stopped to drink droplets of water on the kitchen floor — while I stood there. Maybe he knew (she?) that I referred to mice as cute Disney creatures in a previous post. Maybe he knew that I don’t kill mice, that in the previous days I merely trapped his brother and sister in a shoebox with bread, took them outside and let them free in the woods. “This nice lady likes us,” they think. How did the one sibling wind up in my bathtub like Sisyphus? He’d get so far up the porcelain curve before sliding down. I gotta admit he was kinda cute. But how? It couldn’tve climbed up the outside of the tub. Baffling. The one today I didn’t capture so it could still be in here. It just better stay the hell out of the crack of my ass! One time a couple years ago I swear one flitted across my ass while I was in bed. I’m not infested. And I’m not a dirty girl. I think they just know I feel their pathos. I left the little runt here today and went on my way.
On the train I fell asleep and was awakened by a man who sat across from me grumbling about some fellow black folks he was fittin’ to kill. Talking to himself the whole time, using the rapper’s expletive, the so-called N word — he promised to kill up all of them because they had done something to him. He was so angry, spewing all that killingness that I left the car. I have a choice you know. As this was one of the cars that you couldn’t walk through, at the next stop I got out of the car and ran to the next car before the train pulled off.
I went to my doctor’s. She thinks the tingling in my face and arm may be because of a nerve healing after the oral surgery I had — so I’ll have tests. I left there and tried to find humane traps at Whole Foods and Home Goods. No go. I thought my friend who I’m hanging out with tomorrow might know where to get them. She knows about stuff like that.
The train going home was crowded so I had to stand. “Yo ma you want to sit down?” A man says, pointing to a seat next to a giant suitcase. I thought he wanted me to sit on the suitcase at first. I knew he was off — I shook my head and cast my eyes down. He was a white male using black street vernacular, tall, wearing urban gear. He had piercing eyes and a threatening demeanor. He then yelled at passengers with a psychotic testosterone fueled rant, “Ma wants to sit down yo — let ma sit down!” He walked toward me. I shook my head and moved further away. He targeted an Asian gentlemen reading a book. “Yo, you smart. Let Ma sit down.” The poor guy looked at me and began to rise. I shook my head furiously, determined not to speak as I didn’t want to say anything this man could attach himself to. Thank God this was a car you could walk through — I made my way closer to the area between the cars. The man continued bullying, “Ma wants to sit down, somebody gotta git up yo!” He waved an arm at all the passengers. A woman offered me her seat. I thought about her personality type. Was she easily intimidated, somebody who didn’t feel worthy of her own seat? I swiftly made it to the next car while the train was still moving — I love being able to escape a car if I have to. Looking behind me constantly, I could see the champion of my cause peering through the window. I leaned back so my view would be blotted by a standing passenger. I wondered if I should move still further, but I was fine for the rest of the ride — what the hell was going on in New York City’s subway system today?
At home I called my friend about our date for the museum tomorrow, planning also to ask about the humane mouse traps. She has a consciousness about these things. She’s into healthy eating — her sister is into holistic health. I imagined a little box with compartments for food and water, maybe with a steel mesh window so the little buggers wouldn’t feel claustrophobic. “Hey, do you know about humane mouse traps?” I said, telling her my mouse stories. “Just kill the little motherfuckers with a bat. You let ’em go they’re gonna be killed anyway,” she said. Ah yeah, the day.