08/22/09

Michigan to Montana

THE DRIVE

My mother and I couldn’t get over it.  We were inside the patchwork landscape, entirely different from flying over it, and I for one was terrified.  ”Where do they buy things?” My mother wanted to know.  ”They must drive an hour each way to the store.”  

The Cows, numerous as they were, never failed to make my heart explode in my chest.  All in all, a boring three days.

ARRIVAL 

Missoula is completely unreal.  There are tiny bookstores and independently owned coffee shops all over the place.  People ride bicycles along paths designated for them.  There’s a river with some sort of summer time festival alongside it where children frolic with balloons tied around their wrists and people clap along to the music.  I’m suspicious that the girl in the flowing dress with flowers in her hair is a paid actress.  There’s no sales tax, so a 64$ pair of Birkenstocks actually cost 64$.  I think everyone’s phone number here starts with 555.  

Right now I’m an impostor, but for once, I feel like I’d like to fit in.   We’ll see how that goes.

08/19/09

Down from the Heavens

So I’ve been building this site forever, faced with many obstacles, challenged mostly by limitations of self.  Without further adieu, it’s time to post something already.  

My friends and I in Detroit started a little club called “The Synagogue writers.”  (We are mostly Gentiles but the Jews are a generous people and allowed us to use their space.)  The other day we did a writing exercise wherein we wrote, by way of secret ballot, one line of dialogue for the person to our left who then incorporated that into a story.  We took 20 minutes to write the piece, and I took another 10 or so to edit.  I will supply you with the two sentences given to me, and the devastating results.  This, I feel, will make a fine first blog post.  

This day is a complete fucking waste.  What fucking day is it anyway?

Schrodinger’s uncertainty principle basically says that most of everything is empty space.  Lately, I’ve been freaking out about falling through the cracks.

* * * 

“This day is a complete fucking waste,” Lucious said. 

Tom and Lucious sat suctioned to a hot leather couch on a day they hoped, futilely, would be the last day of their lives. 

“Schrodinger’s uncertainty principle basically says that most everything is empty space,” Tom agreed.  He cracked open a Stroh’s and let some fizz drip down his bare chest, into his lap and onto his underwear.  He swam in the blood and the sweat and the beer.

“Heisenberg, you fucking idiot,” Lucious said.  “Heisenberg had the uncertainty principle.  Don’t make me hit you again.”  

It was 105 degrees faranheit.  A week before, the hottest week of the year in Michigan already, God came down from the heavens and told everyone that not only was he real, but he was going to raise the temperature one degree a day until the people learned to act right.  That was 98 degrees ago, and still, nothing doing.

“That’s not the point, Lucious.  It’s just how I feel.  With this God being real business and everything.  Lately I’ve been freaking out about falling through the cracks.”

“We should be so lucky,” Lucious said. 

Their dog, Hopscotch the pomeranian, that had become like a son to them, panted sadly in the window pane.  The power went out suddenly with a loud, disturbing surge.  Hopscotch squinted his eyes.

 ”There goes the end to cold beer,” Tom said.

 ”There goes the end to everything,” Lucious agreed.

 They sat silent.

 ”Schrodinger’s thing was with the box.  You put a cat in a box, and then somehow you don’t know if it’s alive or dead, and it could be both at the same time, because of quantum mechanics or something.” 

 ”well,” Tom said.  “That sounds pretty uncertain, doesn’t it?”

 They sat in silence again.  No more fans.  No more television.  No more cold beer.

 “What fucking day is it, anyway?”

 ”Monday,” Tom said.  “It’s 105 degrees.  By Saturday it will be 110.  By August our blood will turn into sludge.  People will be rioting in the street for water.  We still won’t understand how to act right.” 

 Lucious already missed the television.  They didn’t have much in the way of books.  He had already been thinking about moving out earlier that month, before God revealed himself and turned out not to be awesome.  Now they were in this thing together.  To the end. 

 ”Sorry I hit you earlier,” Lucious said. 

 ”It’s okay.”  Tom slugged back a slippery can of beer.  It was already warm.  “Nothing matters.”