Friday, May 21, 2010

Any of it

Oh, no -- I’m doing drugs, drugs in my dreams but I guess if there’s a place in my life for doing drugs then my dreams are safest -- then I can crash, and I’m still in bed. First I’m with Ethan, we’re walking through the sun towards the water, we need to get to the water and it’s far, we’re driving far on this walk and the way the sun meets our eyes means we’re tired but alive in the way that drugs make you that journey, that journey towards the water and then I’m at a club, the coke in big flakes like glitter, I’m holding it in my pocket thinking when will I ever be here at just the right time for the music, exiting the bathroom and walking through that hallway with lights in the dark and I feel okay, maybe this time I’ll be okay, just a few more minutes on the dance floor before my sister picks me up and when I push through the doors it’s a hotel lobby and the music is so muted that I can barely hear it, when I look around there are all these big families at banquet tables getting ready for breakfast and a few club kids walking between the tables, what happened?

I look at my watch and the hands start spinning, on my cellphone it says 8 am but I went into the bathroom at 3:45 and outside I’m telling my sister: listen, I did coke. I’m holding the vial in my hand, plastic like the traveling containers I use for shampoo, and my sister says I’ll hold it for you. No, I say -- you don’t want to hold it, because then it will be too tempting, and when I wake up I think about waking up on the train at 6-something so I could get ready to get out at 8 and when I opened those blinds, no way. Like looking out my window when I woke up from a nap, and I thought: what the hell, what the hell is that? All this brightness and buildings, oh -- that’s my view, I’m in my apartment, this is crazy.

I want to mark my first impressions, my first impressions upon arriving back here, here with my heart in so many places. When I get to my block and step out of the car at some insane time in the morning, I look across the street, cars and people everywhere, the buildings, and I think wow, how could I ever live anywhere without all this going on? And then, the car exhaust: oh, it’s really polluted. When I the door to my apartment, I can’t believe all the contrast and colors -- this is amazing! My plants look great, growing everywhere. There’s so much going on in this apartment, my eyes moving around to take it all in, I almost can’t believe it.

And then: so much dust, how will I ever escape the dust? Randy just dusted for me, and it looks great but I can still smell dust everywhere, is it the books? In my next apartment, I will get cases with glass doors for my books, just to see if that helps. At least I don’t smell the mold -- maybe it’s gone away, I left the heat on the whole time I was gone, to see if that would help.

But then, when I get up from my nap, the first thing I think is: oh, the mold -- there it is, it’s everywhere. After feldenkrais, I hook up with someone on craigslist, and it’s actually fun, intimate, charged -- he tells me he likes my outfit, my body; the sex is actually hot. He’s so tall that I have to stand on my toes to kiss him, which isn’t something that usually happens, and then he does that thing that I usually do where he bends his knees to press his whole body against mine, and oh, that’s how this feels the other way like comfort. Afterwards we talk, and it’s not exactly connected but it’s not disconnected either. I mean he’s nice, and queeny, but his apartment looks empty even though he’s lived there for three years. I guess that’s the aesthetic most gay people aim for: white sheets, beige sofa, curtains drawn, porn on TV. I like the photos in the kitchen, though -- he says it’s kind of embarrassing, but I used to work in advertising for Banana Republic. Oh, I say -- and those were advertising photos. Right, he says, but I figured it was free art, something to put on my walls.

On the bedroom wall are two photos of some guy I don’t recognize who’s in a band, and then above them two photos by Marilyn Minter. He says people are starting to recognize her more, when I first heard about her no one seemed to know but now she’s getting kind of famous. I tell him I first heard about her when she had a show at SFMOMA and someone told me to go because of the enlarged and distorted pictures of my eyes on my wall and my cover photo for That’s Revolting with smeared makeup and I did love her work, especially when she remakes the photos with fingernail polish on metal.

Walking back home from Russian Hill, which way should I go? I mean, such a huge hill in either direction, I didn’t remember it was this far. Oh, no -- a raccoon staring at me, I’ll go the other way. One block up and people are standing in the middle of the street snapping photos, is it some kind of photo shoot? But wait -- that’s Lombard Street where it winds around for the tourists, how strange to live over here. I walk up, and up, and at every corner there’s one of those postcard views of bridge and bay and the air on the side of the hill, closer to the bay, is so much fresher. I keep thinking I should stop, and take a cab, I’m going to get too tired, I mean I’m already too tired, but then the cabs that pass me are full and when I get to California Street I figure I better balance my body by walking downhill too.

A few blocks further and the air gets clogged again, but then suddenly there are all these people, people everywhere and it’s kind of exciting, this is why I live here -- the Thai restaurant is packed, drunk people are trying to get cabs, a couple is sleeping next to the heating grate, bodies wrapped around one another. Onto my corner and I remember this was always my dream: to live somewhere like this, downtown where the buildings and people are falling apart and you look up at the lights that are everything you ever wanted. I mean my dream was always New York, but then I needed to get further away. I needed to get here. I got here. I found what I needed. I found what I didn’t need; I needed that too. And now, maybe I don’t need any of it, anymore.

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