Monthly Archives: May 2010

Saying my goodbyes to New York

In six days, I will be in a minivan while I am looking at NYC in the rear view mirror.

800 miles ahead of me, Chicago will be waiting for me and my co-pilot, Teresa. (She’s flying out to make the drive with me.  She’s the reason I am moving.  She’s awesome.)

A rental minivan full of my belongings.   Two people with intersecting lives.  A tale of two cities.

Soon, it will be, “So long, New York.”

Soon, it will be, “Hello, Chicago!”

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Filed under Chicago, journal, New York City

Two-handers

A man seated across from me on a Brooklyn-bound D train was looking at me.  I felt his stare and returned his gaze.  This was when his blank expression changed to a warm and slightly sloppy grin.  His face was a little crooked, like mine.  He was missing teeth, top and bottom, and his nose looked swollen and pulpy, like a boxer’s.  He looked as if he had just chased a parked truck.  His smile unnerved me, and I returned to reading the latest issue of New York magazine. A story about bed bug infestations in the Upper East Side had my interest.

I looked up and he was still looking at me.  Annoyed, I asked him directly, “Can I help you?”  I have a bad habit of talking to crazy people, and this guy gave off a crazy vibe.  I normally don’t confront people who stare, but I was lonesome for a friend who had just left the country so I might have been a little crabby, and I didn’t want this guy watching me.

“You look like Sam Shepard.”  This wasn’t the first time I had heard this from someone in the subway.  It must be the dim and ugly green of the fluorescent lighting that brings out the Shepard in me.

“Yeah, I get that a lot.”  True.  But I would like to state for the record that I resemble a young Sam Shepard.

The fellow started to seem a little less annoying and more clear-headed once he started speaking, and so I asked him the first thing that came to mind.  “Do you like his plays?”

“True West and a couple others.” He looked down then up again, and he blushed a little. “I write, too.”

“You write plays?”

“Yeah. Two-handers mostly.” Well, this guy was clearly an aficionado, because I had never heard that phrase used by anyone who didn’t love theater.

“That’s interesting.”  Sometimes, I say boring things.

“Yeah, I like turning two souls lose, letting them mix it up, and seeing what sort of salad they become.”

I laughed abruptly in a concussive burst. “That’s awesome,” I told him.

“Yeah.”  He opened the soiled baby-blue backpack at his feet and pulled out a school composition book.  He turned his head down to the rumpled pages and took a pen from his back pocket and started writing.  This ended our chat.

I should have introduced myself, asked his name at least.  I have a feeling he was disappointed I wasn’t Sam Shepard.  They would have had something to talk about.

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Lately, it seems that every time I open my mouth, I say “Chicago.”

I’m moving to Chicago.

May 30, 2010 will be my last day in Brooklyn.  June 1 will be my first day in Chicago.  Where I’ll be May 31 is up to the whims of my traveling partner and me.

Why am I moving to Chicago?  It has to do with the aforementioned traveling partner.  For an introduction to what she’s up to, visit Vincent’s Yellow and dip your toes.

I have had every intention of writing more often, of posting more often to this blog than I have been, yet I am busy and I suppose I am not compelled to write. In my heart, I am a writer. Writer’s write, however, and I don’t, not very often. I suppose I’ll just go with this: I am a sometime-artist, and I make things occasionally.

Did I mention that I am moving to Chicago?

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