10 June 2005

we meet again

The gods of the Midwest have approved my departure from Indianer, and granted me the ritual gift of an Ohioan speeding ticket--there's just something special about being arbitrarily chosen for such acknowledgment. As our great country prepared to honor our war dead with domestic beer, professional sporting events, and plastic yellow flowers, Officer X (not his real name) targeted but one of the many many many speeding through Clinton County--breaking the law. He chose the largest vehicle on the road: me in my 16-foot Budget truck. Given the Sanctity of the holiday and the statistically proven prevalence of drunk driving, my 11 mph over the 65 mph limit presented a danger the extremity of which I am most likely incapable of appreciating. He gave this little lurch in his squad car before pulling out and accelerating (which I can't help comparing to the little jerk of the wrist fishermen hope will parlay the hint of a bite into a whole fish) and I knew I was donefor.

I do, however, find it humorous in retrospect that I feel grateful for Officer X, who was polite, soft-spoken, and professional. He wore inoffensive sunglasses which were assertive but not hubristic, and he revealed only his lower teeth while speaking. These teeth appeared to be staggered into a slalom and (this could be attributed to adrenaline) the teeth seemed to be lit from each side. Deep shadows grooved each vertical border. I have to say that my perfect driving record was obliterated without much pain, but 300 miles later, when Kyle took the lead into New Jersey, my nerves raved and jangled. Driving that Budget truck with my domestic trappings in tow reminds me of something: I am a damn risky fool. But I'm also fucking fearless when I have to be. And, ticket aside, you can tell my grandmothers I'm an excellent driver. Go on, tell them.

Kyle and I rolled into East Orange around 2 am, endeavored to squeeze the truck into the fenced drive behind his mother and step-father's house, gave up, locked up, and passed out. But only for five hours or so because we had to get up and unload Kyle's business in the morning. The fact that easy passage for trucks travelling from Jersey to Brooklyn (via the Holland tunnel) is now verboten was unbeknownst to me until I rolled up to the toll and this lovely gentleman leaned over to me conspiratorially and said, "Well, hello beautiful! You can't drive that in there!" He pointed seductively to a row of cops, all of whom were attempting to morph their glares into an evil sort of Care Bear Stare to tractor beam me over to the shoulder. After a brief search of the aforementioned domestic trappings, Kyle followed me to the Lincoln tunnel (way uptown) and we managed to wend our way downtown, through Chinatown, across the Manhattan, and down into Brooklyn. When I pulled up Wash. Ave., not only was there a parking spot directly in front of the apartment, but this spot was fiercely guarded by the hottt ticket ladyfriend, her ex-marine Republican Mormon Pops, the tough as toenails Wah T., and Josh K., this delicious, muscley, masterwork-of-gaymanhood-with-an-actual-bus-driving-license who immediately hopped in the Budget truck and parallel parked it like it was a Mini Cooper. Crying, while a desired signifier of relief, was not an option given my exhaustion. Long, somewhat bruising, story short, the crew managed to unload me, load the hottt ticket, and unload again within hours. But I could not have survived this migration without all the help I got from everybody I left behind in Indiana. Like I said before, standing invitation. We have guest towels. We have inflatable mattresses. Soon, in fact, we may even have air conditioning.

While there are a few photos to come of the new digs (thanks to the ladyfriend for l'appareil-photo), let's just say that the kitchen contains more cabinet and counter space than my fairy godmother could have ever promised, and really, the closets are pretty good. Cat Madness Cat approves (lots of flies and cockroach-looking things that are so small they're almost cute) when he's not passed out in the heat. The neighborhood is just about three blocks from Prospect Park (Star Wars I, I mean, IV, played last weekend to booos and claps as part of the first Saturday funstuff every month) and the Brooklyn Museum (Basquiat closed last week, but not before I got my googly eyes on it), which as many of you know, really has a Figment-(think Epcot)-style fountain that giggling/screaming kids tempt with their dry clothes.

Another development: I am now 26-years-old (that's 26 candles on the cake down there). I called my dying grandmother to tell her I'd had her pearls restrung, and though she sounded excited, all she said was, "Tell me, where are you now?" My uncle told me she's snuck me all the jewelry under the family radar.


Due to the fact that I've started working with a couple of dynamo-feminist-writer-people (the ladyfriend has generously shared them with me) who happen to be in their early-middle-thirties but who have each started a couple of businesses and nonprofits, feminist orgs, and written and co-written several books, I still feel young. But now I'm beginning to think I feel young because I really haven't done much as of yet. I am effectively unemployed. The notion of my yet-to-be-completed thesis has evacuated my head so thoroughly I actually had to look up the title I'd concocted. I did buy a toilet brush yesterday! Oh, but I am ripe for self-scorn! Best to treat that with some new age hokum pokum...Tahitian Noni Juice...hypnosis...I have some Koolaid! Your commune is ready, sir! Hari hari hari!

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