The Book of Laughter and Remembering

Metropolitan Museum, Sculpture Garden, NYC

The sculpture garden at The Metropolitan Museum, New York

(For Kay, who wanted me to post a review of my cry-fest locales in NYC, as they say you’re not a real New Yorker until you’ve cried in public here).

The other day, I walked by a coffee shop in my neighborhood, in which I had cried my eyes out some time ago before going to a day-time orgy. I had buried my face in his chest, trying to avoid eye contact with strangers, but of course they noticed, and either tried to look at what was happening out of the corner of their eyes or to avert their gazes uncomfortably. I didn’t say many words at the time, or at least not many coherent ones. I didn’t need to. He knew what had happened. Continue reading

Let’s Talk About The Weather

Sun, clouds, weather, cloudy dayShe noticed the gray hair that was starting to appear in his beard as she tapped her fingers on the wooden bar surface. He snuck a glance at her hands. Something familiar, but not. Stared at the ring for a fraction of a second, then turned away and fixed his attention on the bar maid for the next few minutes. Mojitos. The pint-size kind. The drinks are the same. Everything else is different.

-“How have you been?”
-“Good. You know….Busy….Working a lot,” she said. Continue reading

The Julie Chapters (part 1 of tk)

“So how was jail, Julie?”

“It was the best experience of my life,” she says.

“How so?” I ask, looking puzzled.

“It made me stronger. It made me tougher. It taught me a lot. After you survive in a place with no heat, no hot water and where everyone is trying to kill you or rape you all the time, you can make it anywhere. I wouldn’t change a thing.”

She tells me this even as she’s trying to convince me that she was wrongfully imprisoned and charged. Hhhmm… Perhaps Frank Sinatra’s song should be updated to: “If you can make it in a New York jail, you can make it anywhere.” Continue reading

The Dina Chapters (part 1 of tk)

champagne

My friend Chris often used to say that the two best sounds in the world are that of a woman’s heels against the pavement and that of a champagne bottle being uncorked.

I think of that often when I walk down city streets in high heels. Click, click, click. Regardless of where I’m going, it somehow implies a purpose… I’m going somewhere… I’m moving forward. I’m walking. And I’m making a sound. I’m being heard.

This time I’m walking to meet an old friend. One of my original partners in crime. The one with whom it all began. I want to look into her eyes… I want to ask her where we went wrong. I want to ask her where we were supposed to stop. But she will probably just laugh it off.

“Don’t be silly,” I can imagine her saying. “It’s not like we killed anyone.”

And then we’ll get a drink. Maybe we’ll even open a bottle of champagne… and celebrate. Celebrate what? Celebrate life. Celebrate having survived. Celebrate our adventures; old and new; bad and good. It was all in the name of experience, right? Cheers. Here’s to experience. Clink, clink, clink.

The noise of approaching fire trucks suddenly pierces the air and interrupts my train of thought. There are always sirens in my head.