This volume covers February 2005 to January 2007
Selections from the text:
March 7, 2006
Returning from the café, you walk past the coffee, bagel and donut kiosk and wave to Abdul. “Haven’t seen you for a while,” he calls out. You double back, shake hands through the plexiglass portal, tell him that most days you’re on you bike and zoom up Eighth Avenue just behind him.
Born in Kabul, he’s traveled to France and speaks Spanish as well.
“Was that you on TV the other night,” he asks.
“The World Trade Center documentary?”
“Yes, I thought I recognized you.”
“Yeah, they taped me for three hours and used forty-five seconds. They were going to release it at the end of September ‘01 but then the towers came down and they had to recut the whole thing.”
“It was a good show. You were good.”
The History Channel, Modern Marvels. The gift that keeps on something-or-other.
March 15, 2006
Lunch with Marithelma at the Korean place on Carmine, then back to her apartment for coffee and a dialogue expanded to include the interjections of her birds. She tells you that she tried to teach the parrot to sing Guantanamera, but instead the bird clearly chants: “Cuanto se scema!” Which sounds pretty similar, but means, in Italian: How silly you are!
Well stimulated on conversation and espresso, you walk uptown toward home, under a row of trees from whose branches, once upon a time, a splash of pigeon dropping got you. Funny, for all the walking around New York you’ve done, you can only recall getting pigeoned twice – though once in Washington Square park, a bird flew into your head with enough force to knock you sideways a step and furnish you with a wicked headache. Nothing descends from the trees this time, and you’re passing the basketball courts and the newsstand on 3rd Street when it hits you that Guantanamera means “the woman from Guantánamo.”