Thursday, February 14, 2008

the tangible vs. the real- a tricky EQUATION

The equator is an imaginary line comparable to my childhood friends Sheila and Michelle. However, unlike them, the equator does hold some geographical properties. The latitude of the equator is, by definition, 0°. The length of Earth's equator is about 24,901.5 miles. In relation, the geographical mile is defined as one arc minute of the equator. I think all distance should be measured in time.
The Earth juts out slightly at the equator. It has an average diameter of 12,750 km, but at the equator the diameter is approximately 43 km greater. I learned much of this information from Wikipedia. I hope it is true.

Here are some photos of people at various points on the equator:

Check back for forthcoming entries on the prime meridian and arctic circle....wait in vain.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

a cup of this, that too.

On Sunday in the late afternoon, Joe and I set out for food near Silent Barn in Ridgewood. There's this place called Breakfast Lunch Dinner around six blocks from his house that I really like because the Matzoh Ball Soup is quite good- I'd venture to say some of best I've ever had.
Anyway, the wind pushed us there and I smoked a cigarette under the awning of my hood. Breakfast was over, lunch too, had to be dinner. There were maybe ten people in the whole place, including the employees. We sat in a booth behind an old man hooked up to a respirator that was placed on the floor beside him. It didn't block the aisle though. I faced him, Joe faced me. He sat at the table alone with napkins shoved into his shirt, unshaven, smiling.
We talked about trips and the night before and the idea that to rationalize something in our small lives is to actually ration it, to allocate parts, to divide and organize. Individual importance must be derived from order, from arrangement, from maintenance coupled with a drop of creation. Explanation falls behind proportionality. Do I ration parts of myself for a later date in order to interpret and conceptualize my current actions? This is muddled, I know.
I got the soup and toast with jam, Joe got various eggs and muffins and sausages. Coffee too. The man got mashed potatoes and peas and turkey, which he blended with a fork in order to properly swallow without choking. Plastic tubes in his nose. The waitress kept calling him Romeo and asking him if he was ever going to take her on a date, screaming to him that Valentine's Day was her birthday, screaming to no one in particular,
"Ok, it's time to do some real work now, real work, ok"
"Romeo, Romeo, more coffee?"
"Romeo, Romeo!" like he was asleep or dead or something.
The point of life is productivity not happiness. The point of life is productivity not happiness. The point of life is productivity not happiness?
He twirled his finger at me around his right temple, grinning, motioning her insanity. I started feeling water in my eyes, smiling back, looking down at my soup. A guy came in and asked the waitress for something to go, he milled around the front and looked down at the old man at the table.
"How you been, Joe?"

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Friday, February 1, 2008


Last summer I met this boy outside of a show who said my name really long: wide a's, harsh b's. He drew marker tattoos all over my arms, with maps to his apartment, lists of nice bands, and diagrams of his brain- with the overused parts enlarged for effect. He told me he wanted to make me macaroni and cheese, like the real kind with the crust on top, so I gave him my phone number, drunk. In the morning, I woke up fuzzy. Not home. Not with him. The ink had become big blue amorphous gobs, muddled by sweat.
I met him that day in the afternoon after he had called me twice, and we smoked a joint by the water and then walked up to the northern tip of Greenpoint where there's this park I really like: all views, no people. He kept trying to kiss me, but I just wanted to say all the things I never say because clearly I would never ever voluntarily look this person in the eye again. The pity of my glazed over heart was no match for the conversational road less traveled- weird bodily function dilemmas and aspirational difficulties.
He had: really bad teeth, like all brown and small and yellow, and auburn hair and green skin. If you squinted, he kind of resembled a gnome or a junkie. But eyes wide- he was just a pathetic, strange looking kid. Nothing as I had remembered him through blurred vision, I thought he had been tall or something. He said he liked my eyes. I wish he said he liked how my face turns really red for no reason or that I had cellulite on my stomach or that my skin was really dry around my forehead. But people don't say those things.
Things he did say:
1. You're pretty (Like the eyes thing, generic, not endearing)
2. I hang out with Allen Ginsburg's son/grandson (I do not remember which).
3. I have seventeen tattoos (I did not verify this claim as I did not want to look at his body, it was gangly and disgusting, though he did have several, hasty demarcations on his forearms)
4. I grew up in New York.
5. I hate young, affluent, unwiedly, annoying people who move to Brooklyn (read- you know what)
2 and 3 were meant to impress, 4 and 5 to initiate self-loathing. Neither did either. I did not care. My apathy stemmed from ugly teeth and gross skin, not any notion of idealism. He said a bunch of other stuff about not having a job, various drugs he could procure in a half hours notice, and his dump of an apartment in Bushwick. Maybe I should have at least wanted to be friends with him.
He kept saying my name before every comment or anecdote he offered. GaaaaaaaaaBBy. GaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaBBBBBBBy
I hate the sound of my own name normally, but it's really a fucking nailsonchalkboard response when people I don't know say it commonly, like saying- hi, hello, like, yes, and, maybe, sure, please. Not the same. Gabby, try it out, roll it around in your mouth, gargle with it. But don’t regurgatate it back to me, jesus christ. Fucking swallow it up, guy, don't spit it out.

Test. I never tried to recall or learn his name. I remember this blankness making me so happy, giddy almost, at the time. And the very reason I kept the whole thing going- because I still didn't know what the hell he was called. I kept tossing around possible monikers in my head, smiling with delight, the endless possibility from such a simple thing. I thought of titles that could be chopped up eight different ways if necessary- Richard, Robert, Benjamin, Stephen. Not that they really could.
I wondered if he had been made fun of as a little kid by other little kids because of it, or if his mother or grandmother called him something different. Had he been named for someone who died? Did he have old jerseys from sports he used to play with the word etched in the back or front? Had he ever fucked someone so deep and so good and so hard that his name had sprung from her mouth again and again?
Around five in the afternoon, around the time I was supposed to go meet my friend to go to this show in this backyard, he went,
"So, my dad said, 'John, you've gone too far this time,"
I had been tuned out for good fifteen, twenty minutes, staring off into space, manic with myself for thinking him a Thomas this hour, and it hit me like a slap, like when someone tells you they're cheating, or that you're the part of their life that they hate, or that they don't love you. I reached up, I felt blood coming out of my nose and ears and mouth. john, john, john. So short and bland, like a stump or a chode, not even emblematic of something else. He kept talking. Lips moving, hands gesturing, feet walking. I lit a cigarette and told him I had to go. Pop.