Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Charles Mee

Love is

the will to possess

in love
we come to know what it is to be a human being.

--From Charles Mee's crazy whirlwind passionate hurricane of a play, Fetes de la Nuit.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Obama in the Village

I have never, ever, ever, in my short time in this world, seen anything quite like last night.

Amongst the people, dancing in the streets, more powerful than the men in blue uniforms, it felt like some unseen giant was ladeling hope over our heads. Another helping? Take two more. Flags waved, anthems sung, arms in the air. I climbed onto a trashcan to watch the bedlam and was swept away on the current of pure joy. After the unbearable tension of the past weeks, last night was the breaking of a severely backed up dam. It was the orgasm we all needed after a chaste 8 years. I have only known adulthood under the dangerous farce that was the Bush Administration. I look forward to knowing something other than facist, racist, sexist ideology in the White House.

I look forward to a new America.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

To the one I can't have.

Ah, when to the heart of man
Was it ever less than a treason
To go with the drift of things
To yield with a grace to reason
And bow and accept the end
Of a love or a season?

-- Reluctance, Robert Frost

She didn't know if their love would ever end, but she tried to understand that it had to. They'd tortured each other enough over the years. They built desire like fires all over their bodies. They kissed in the rain under the bridge. She had to stand on her tiptoes to reach his lips, and he would hold her close with strong arms. They smoked cigarettes together, and drank wine in the afternoon, and sang at the tops of their lungs. When she was around him she was enveloped in a warm haze of something beautiful. No one else mattered. He looked at her with a hunger that grew sharper over time, and wanted to take her away from everything dark. In those moments that were perfect, their passion seemed invincible.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

A Brief Study: Gustav Klimt & Kattaca in One

Not quite the real thing, but a damn good approximation and a work of art in it's own right. Check out more brilliance from Klimt and also master stylists/art directors Kattaca.

"The most important element of his fame is his reputation as a master of eroticism."

-Gottfried Fleidel, "Gustav Klimt 1862-1918 The World in Female Form"

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Lunar Masturbation

The other night, I was heading home in a rather foul mood. I don't really remember what caused it, and that probably speaks to how unimportant it actually was, but I do recall that I felt empty. I don't like feeling empty. I doubt anyone does.

In any case, it was a foul mood. I sat on the train absorbed in the electronic toys of my life: I listened to music, I played games on my phone, I ignored the humanity around me. My stop. I threw the phone into whatever bag I was wearing that night, I zipped it up, I stood. Trudged up the stairs. Foulfoulfoul. If that motherfucker who started to hiss at me had continued after I gave him a death stare, I would have clawed his beady eyes out of his tiny little head. Top of the stairs. Annoyed by the always slightly dangerous walk home ahead of me. The song I was listening to ended. A new song began. I took a deep breath, stepped onto the sidewalk, and looked up.


The moon. Round, and almost full, clear, and so bright it was surrounded by the most perfectly giant halo of light I'd ever seen. A perfect circle of moonlight. I almost laughed aloud for surprise. I'd never seen anything like it. And in this polluted city, no less? I looked to one side to see if anyone was there reveling with me. I looked to the other side. No one walked next to me. I was alone, so I enjoyed the beauty for myself.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

More Ruminations on Fall

Remember the smell of cold lunch? The peanut butter and jelly sandwich would combine with the apple and the brown paper bag to create this utterly unique scent, a perfume unlike any other. Your mom packed it at like 7am, so by the time lunch rolled around (which was, what, 5pm or something that seemed just as excruciatingly late)the smell would be especially strong. And you'd reach into your backpack, and the smell would hit you, and you would know that for 30 minutes you didn't have to pay attention to Social Studies or Island of the Blue Dolphins. For 30 minutes in the middle of the day, your time belonged to you.

Monday, October 6, 2008

There's been a sharpness to the air since last week. Gone are the dull-edges of summer, the circular days with blurred beginnings and endings. Gone are the hazy afternoons spent sipping cool drinks and blotting brows. October has brought everything into focus and heralded the return of the triangular 24-hours; days have a specific starting point, a peak, and a decidedly steep denouement.

Even though the crisp sunshine means that winter's bitterly bracing sunshine must follow, even though fall means the death of things which previously thrived, I'm happy. I'm happy! I can feel it in every step I take. The change of seasons always brings a certain excitement, a constant awareness of the beauty of living.

Now I wake up in the morning next to his warm body. Instead of pushing each other away in a sweaty attempt to keep cool, we curl towards each other, a tangle of limbs and hot lips buried under blankets. He smells of autumn all the time - that inexplicably sweet male scent. I'll stop in the street sometimes and put my nose to his scratchy cheek just to breathe him in, when we're walking together in the cool morning from his apartment to mine, or to the train, or to get a hot black coffee (me) and a cappuccino (him).

My head is clear and my heart is on a pedestal. I'm floating through fall, and I'm happy.

Monday, August 25, 2008

I had a fantasy about my future the other day that was unlike any I've had before. It occurred to me on a trip upstate with three of the most wonderful friends I know. To be precise, it actually occurred on our way back downstate (can you say downstate?), in the little town of Phoenicia, while standing outside of a real estate office. The office was closed, it being Sunday in small-town America and all, but there were pictures up in its window of the properties it had for sale. One in particular caught my eye. They were selling an old hotel on a vast amount of acreage for the unthinkably low price of $150,000.

The hotel needed work of course, lots and lots of work, but it was a beautiful, historic, white-washed, romantic 19th century building, and I saw the potential in it immediately. In that moment, for a fleeting second, I set aside the notion of big city living that I've had my entire life. I set aside visions of myself at 30, 40, 50 years old, hosting cocktail parties for fabulous people in increasingly larger and more expensively furnished apartments located in the various urban meccas of the world. I set aside the (admittedly vague, hazy and ever-changing) concept of a Career with a capital "C," one that I would possibly log 65 hour weeks for, taking public transportation home at the end of long days with the masses of other humans pursuing Careers. I let all of that go for one moment, and I imagined myself purchasing this old hotel and throwing my entire being into it. I imagined renovating, gardening, painting and sanding, giving my all to making it habitable. And instead of hunkering down in a dank subway car at the end of each day, I imagined stretching out on my wrap-around porch. Next to me, perhaps, would sit my lover, my soulmate; he would be strong with capable hands, himself a carpenter. Our bodies would ache synchronously from the day's labor, and we would drink a glass of wine together and listen to the trees.

I realized then, more fully than ever, that the only limits in our lives are the ones we impose upon ourselves.

Thursday, July 17, 2008


It's called Brooklyn, and I live here. I like the way my mouth feels when I say the word, when people ask me where I live. I like telling them, "Brooklyn." I live in this borough, the one across the river from the sybaritic City, that pulsing sparkling gem on the Eastern Seaboard.

In my neighborhood the air always smells saccharine, like burning sugar or baking cookies, because there is a cupcake factory around some corner.

My neighborhood is an industrial wasteland, full of warehouses and abandoned factories in flat gray and brick buildings. More cement exists here than I ever thought possible, and just down the street at D&G Mixers Inc., they are constantly making more.

My neighborhood is lorded over by Hasidic Jews, populated by Puerto Ricans, driven around by Mexicans in big sleek cars and provided essentials (cigarettes, toilet paper, Poland Spring) by dark men from the Middle East whose language recalls hot sun and dry desert. To get from place to place I walk, or ride my ruby red bicycle, or take a train that sometimes works and sometimes doesn't.

My neighborhood is covered in graffiti, monumental works of art everywhere, new ones popping up every day. It doesn't really get covered up here like it does in other places, some ruffled business owner hurriedly slapping a coat of paint over it so that no one sees the vandalism. The graffiti stays around for all to see, as a reminder that the people, not some faceless Authority Figure, still rule this neighborhood.

I wake up and walk upstairs to the cafe in my building every morning. I say hi to everyone I see, because a lot of us have been here for a couple years now and we all understand the trials and tribulations and fear, the joy and lazy afternoons on the block, the summers when everyone is outside all the time, the stigma that was always attached living here. We all understand this and no one else does, or could. We are all watching the transformation take place together. We don't want our bubble to be popped just yet, but we can feel that everything is poised to change. This feeling creates a kind of kinetic energy, a quiet buzz over everything that fascinates and terrifies us and never really goes away.

It's called Brooklyn. We used to live on the edge of the universe, but the center is getting closer every day.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

I saw a girl on the train today. She was sitting across from me and a little to the left, and she was chewing on her fingernail. She was beautiful, but not effortlessly so. Not in that typical New York starving thin glowing skin "I just grabbed this $300 t-shirt off my floor and threw it on" kind of way. She had curves hidden beneath her navy blue sundress, a soft and subtle voluptuous quality that spoke of health and happiness. Her hair was long and chestnut brown and pushed to one side. She looked as though she was preoccupied with something lovely, because her dark eyes danced and I could tell her mouth wanted to smile. She carried a straw bag with a bouquet of small red flowers sticking out, and I imagined she was taking them back to place just so in a green glass vase on her kitchen table. She was not a one night stand girl, a girl you take out on a date and never call again. She was the kind of girl you fall in love with, madly, deeply, scorchingly in love, the kind you think about from the second you wake up until the moment you fall asleep, the kind you dream about in between.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


It wasn't quite summer, but it wasn't spring. It wasn't nighttime, but it wasn't morning. In the middle of a country, in the middle of a city, in the middle of a street, a cold wind blew. Two people shivered. Under the orange light of a street lamp, they were the only two people in the world, and the only thing to do was hold each other. So they did. They held each other against the wind, against the past, against everything that had come between them. They held one another so tight against all of these things it seemed impossible that they would ever let go. They were thinking thoughts that weren't really thoughts at all, but memories in the fleeting form of sounds, colors, smells, sighs, laughs; all the good things and bad things in the universe. This kind of embrace had happened before and it would happen again. Actually, it was happening somewhere else at that exact moment. But they didn't care. They couldn't care and they wouldn't care, because for them, there was no such thing as time or space, or light or dark, or here or there. The wind was blowing and it was cold and that was all they knew. They held each other to forget, but also to remember and commemorate, to make sure the order of things understood that there was such a thing as love.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

"I feel fine, talking 'bout peace of mind....."

What a beautiful day! My sunburn hurts from having spent a drunken, drug-addled weekend half naked in fire Island sans sunscreeen. In addition, making matters worse I have humongous scratches on my calves from fighting my way through a patch of nettles in the Pines, and a blue ugly bruise the size of metrocard on my knee from when my friend Mark tried to throw me over his shoulders on the dance floor but dropped me on my knees instead. I can't recall whether it hurt at the time, but it certainly does now.
Now, back in the city, I'm trying to find a job. Walking around Manhattan squinting in the sun and trying to pass out my resume to whomever feels kind enough to take it. I feel like a Free Mumia pamphleteer with whom everyone tries to avoid eye contact.
Who will hire me looking like this? I can't work at Hummus Place! I'd be too embarassed. I have too much pride for that, even if it isn't very much. But beggars cant be choosers, right?
Despite my joblessness and roughed-up appearance, it is a beautiful day.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Tell me, please...

What is it, exactly, that you see in me? Because I don't think I see it in myself. And it would be really helpful, right now, if you could just tell me. I'm sinking and I need to know. What is it about me that makes your blue eyes light up like that? Why did you look at me across the room that cold night, over the heads of all the others? What sets me apart? I'm not always like this, I promise. I usually take care of myself. Usually, I kick and thrash and fight to float, and no one can get near. But tonight, my head is underwater. I need to feel your arms strong and your voice soft. Tonight, I need your help.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

As I stumble into adulthood...

...things become clearer every day. Not in a steadily advancing, forward-charging way, but in an ever-evolving, one step forward three steps back, progressive/regressive kind of way. Moments of clarity are sprinkled in like powdered sugar - lightly, delicately. They aren't frequent, but they've been happening more and more, and they feel good. They feel like the way things should be, like the first day you realize you can breathe through your nose again after a bad cold. They usually happen during a moment of rapture, while listening to a desperately beautiful song or rounding a corner in this cement-addled city and coming upon a patch of sky.

I don't know what the fuck I'm doing.