So here are some interesting things that have happened lately!
(I mentioned that whole “suddenly being in the U.S. Virgin Islands” thing already, right?)
I was sick for some number of days starting the Thursday after I got back; that is not all that interesting, though.
The other day, when I was standing on a Manhattan street corner fiddling with my phone, a man with wildish white hair and a beard and clothing perhaps a bit down-at-the-heel strode past me, and said not loudly not softly, “Ah, the matrix has got you”.
More recently, walking up 8th Avenue on the way to work, I put a dollar into the cup that a youngish man had put out, along with some packaged cookies and clothes and a skateboard, and somehow we got to talking. I spent something like twenty minutes talking to him, and he told me that he was a Swiss Guard and a Mason, had taken a vow of poverty, and paid children to read various holy and spiritual works, and he read to me the part of the Koran (in English) that talks about the birth of Jesus, and he read to me a chapter of some epistle or other of Paul (I vaguely think it was Ephesians chapter 4, but reading it now it doesn’t sound the same; maybe it was a different translation, or just the context), and talked about how semen and (I will use his phrase) pussy juice are the most sacred substances (he got a hole all the way through his foot once, climbing a fence looking for a particular skate venue, and the juice healed it right up), and how everyone needs air, water, wisdom, and Woman (or Man, if you go that way), and when you’re depressed you need air, water, tobacco, and weed, and the whole time he was smiling and clearly having a good time. I asked him if he’d read any Buddhist scripture, and he said yeah man, they’re my favorite!
While we were sitting there talking, two rather unkempt bearded guys sitting crosslegged on the sidewalk of 8th Avenue, a man came out of the little deli or bodega or whatever that is there, and looked at us, and went back inside, and shortly after came out with three sandwich-sized things wrapped in aluminum foil, and asked us if we’d like some sandwiches. I said I was okay, but my interlocutor said sure he’d eat one, and he’d give the other two to people who needed them. Which I can’t help but feel was wonderful all around.
(And then when I got into work 20 minutes late I discovered that I was just about to start an on-call shift, but it wasn’t until noon, nearly three hours away, so that was okay.)
And even more recently, having dropped M off on the G train to go to a class in Brooklyn, and riding back and forth between Grand Central and Times Square on the Shuttle just to see what that felt like, I met this amazing couple of little kids, the boy maybe 11 (maybe; I am terrible at estimating ages) who was rapping for tips when the car was full, and otherwise talking and bouncing around and doing pullups on the subway car bars, and asking me why I wasn’t getting off (“waiting for my daughter to text me back and see if I need to be anywhere”, I said, which I was), and his little sister maybe 9 (maybe), who he said a guy who was painting faces in the next car had rudely shoved aside and he’d better not try that again or he (the brother) would do him violence.
So many people!
And there are lots of metal rods with these plastic clamp-things on the ends on at least one platform in Grand Central, which I think are new (click for extra-giant version):
I find myself not really approving of the plastic in terms of long-term durability, but that may be an irrational prejudice.
So how’s things?