Monday, June 03, 2013

Last Year at Marienbad

We ate at JEEPNEY on Thursday night: a Filipino Gastropub in the East Village. A splurge that exceeded my budget (in the wake of my computer meltdown), but sometimes you need to do things that other human beings do — if only to keep tethered to the human experience. I walked all the way down to the restaurant with the hope that I could hitch a ride back with someone; but everyone else was hitching a ride after dinner, so I just took the long walk back on my own. The long-distance walker is an invisible man.

The food was pretty good, for overpriced peasant cuisine. No utensils for the main course. A table with a banana leaf covering, topped with a long mound of rice which was buried in several classic Filipino dishes. Eaten with your hands to emphasize the peasant origins. A messy affair but an experience to be had. The interior could have used some fans to circulate the air better, as it felt like we were *actually* in a hot bus in the Philippines.

I've felt less than well. I've been battling a spring cold, brought on by the dreadful shifts in weather. Freezing for two days and then oppressively warm for se7en. I've been keeping peculiar hours, between dealing with the stresses of subletting the vacant room, and my computer catastrophe, and a sort of between-project writer's paralysis. And this cold that's left me with this lingering cough with my throat feeling like it's lined with hay.

Sunday afternoon, I took one of those unintentionally long walks I take now and then. When I know I need to go out but don't know precisely where I want to go. I headed aimlessly down into the Village and looped back up again. As I did, I saw more and more people using Citi-Bikes...

Very recently introduced to the NYC ecosystem, these are not an inexpensive ride, especially when considering that you could very easily be on the hook for mad extra costs if you extend a trip a little too long or get into an accident or have one of these two-wheel tanks stolen. Before Sunday, I'd seen three or four people actually riding one of these things. On Sunday's walk, I lost count of how many I saw riding these blue meanies. Most without helmets, of course. Through the convenience of these bike-rental-racks, they're encouraging a lot of inexperienced people to bike around the crazy NYC traffic without helmets. What could go wrong?

(I'm really curious about statistics because I can imagine quite a lot of things going wrong...)

As I walked through the city, the sound of sirens filled the air. Ambulances, fire trucks, the distance wails of patrol cars. When the weather is off — too warm, too cold, too wet — the city always sounds like a chorus of alarms.


We've landed in June with a massive sinus headache. We are NOT going to succumb to this year.


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