I don’t remember now why I intended to title this posting with the letter L. I don’t know what I am anymore. I walked yesterday. It was hot, but among the midtown skyscrapers I had trouble finding places sun could directly hit my body. I wore a creepy, filthy, sleeveless shirt that made me look like a fucking pedo. I didn’t realize how dirty the shirt had become, permanently so, it seems. In the occasional reflective surfaces I saw someone I did not want to look at. I did not like what I saw. I learned to not even look at these mirrors and surfaces, which at times seem to be everywhere. I only go for the surfaces that obscure my face or contort my body into something impossible, like a needle or a mop.
I posted a video recounting the night I came about as close as ever to offing myself. It was on the walkway approaching the John Jay Walkway and on that walkway itself. high enough and with the todes low enough there were plenty of sharp rocks and who knows what else to land upon face first. Remembering that night made me close my eyes and recoil, feeling my fingers twist into a fist as I imagine would happen at death. Thoughts of that might terrify me now. They should. Think of all the world would have missed out on if I followed through. All this joy.
I walked, and hopped onto buses at random. I found myself outside the Met Museum, loving the fountains, and noting how a building address of 1001 looked to me like 181, but with the 8 lying sideways in the infinity position. 181 is bout infinity. The two zeroes were intertwined just a little bit, creating the illusion of a sideways lolling 8.
I thought this marked the start of a triumphant flaneur stramble but things seemed to fall into predictable patterns. An M79 crosstown bus sent me as far as Columbus Avenue. Original destination was the end of that route, by the old boat house, so I could see if access to the old green phone booths was available. Last time I went past the doors to the garage in which the booths lurked were locked, and I think the garage is being used to park bikes now. So you need a key for access.
I only got as far as Columbus Avenue after noting the bus would reroute because of construction at that site. On Columbus I passed a co-worker from this office. I said nothing because at first I was not certain it was him. But it was, and I stayed silent anyway. I generally do not want anyone from this workplace knowing much of anything about me. I only opened up to one or two people, and in very limited ways. I assume anyone I speak with here forgets everything I say about myself.
I ate cheap gruel of Two Bros pizza on 6th Avenue, after getting a downtown 1 train instead of the uptown. From 28th Street I walked to 6th Avenue, where the uptown Harlem bus was expected to appear in 8 minutes. Enough time to consume a slice of sausage and pepperoni. I was dutiful about getting out of peoples’ way, even though there were no people present. I poured powdered cheese onto the slice imagining it was salt.
At 40th Street a wheelchair passenger boarded. I wisely exited the bus and walked the remaining distance to Rockefeller Center. I say this was a wise move because, knowing how long it can take to set up a wheelchair passenger on the bus, I calculated that I would reach my destination in the same time or even ahead of the bus. I was right. I walked the 10 blocks and the bus I had existed was still behind me. I also wanted off because the seating was uncomfortable. A woman’s bare shoulder touching mine. I was subtly aroused by this flesh contact but not enough to turn my mind toward accepting it as an invitation, or flirtation. She was just rude. Between her and the delay associated with the wheelchair I simply wanted out. I imagined that woman looking on at me, impressed that I got to Rockefeller quicker than her. With that maybe she wanted to press more than just her shoulder against me. She would exit the bus and follow after me, initiating conversation in which she describes finding me sexified for my accurate anticipation of the bus transit time.
Looking for more of this hot October sun I decided to go back to Queens. There was decent sunlight on Park Avenue but still unpredictable. In Queens I baked in the sun, walking some old familiar routes around Socrates and Rainey parks, ending up at a bar where I played video games and ignored the women making eye contact with me whenever I looked away from the game console. I had a brief interest in one of those women but that interest passed.
Earlier I had received the nationwide emergency test signal, whatever it’s called. I got it three times, twice in Spanish, once in English. I was hoping to be on a bus or in a crowd of people when that happened but I ended up pretty solitary on a street corner, waiting for the light to change so I could inspect the Little Free Library at Ravenswood on 21st Street. There was little of note at the LFL.