“I’m so bored. I hate my life.” - Britney Spears

Das Langweilige ist interessant geworden, weil das Interessante angefangen hat langweilig zu werden. – Thomas Mann

"Never for money/always for love" - The Talking Heads

Thursday, September 06, 2007

zazie dans la banlieue

Well, I’m back chez the shambles I call home. Of course, my suitcase is out there on its own, in that black hole called American Airlines, but I hope with all my pea pickin’ heart that I get the fucking thing at some point in the near future.

LI has always been an urban guy. Right, we did our Thoreau time in Pecos New Mexico, but the horror the horror of heating the place – a house that originally aspired to be a restaurant, developing an odd allergy to insulation along the way – and the distance I had to drive, me and my tithe of CO2 for the fifty mile roundtrip into Santa Fe to support my unpublished masterpieces, plus of course the curse of the House of Usher that seemed to dog me, D. and H. as we fumbled through the outlier lifestyle of artists, will keep me from ever repeating that mistake. Probably that sentence will bring down all kinds of curses on my head, by the way. The sacrifices I make to amuse, god damn it!

But mainly, from the sprout time, I was attuned to urban locales, and desirous of draining the drop of burbia in my blood. What happened in the last twenty years, however, is that burbia invaded the inner city. I have lived in many an area where the prostitute bloomed on the corner by night and the crackhead loaded up in the apartment complex just up the block 24/7. Places where the corpses were always being discovered and filmed to send a frisson up the spines of the watchers of the local newsshows. Being a liberal sort, at one time I thought it was unfair that the poor had to bear this shit, this lousy policing, this breakdown in services. However, I was not being very foresighted. As soon as they drove the sisters of mercy and the rocks in their pockets type out, the riskless symbol pushers came pouring in – of course, displacing us. And they created that ineffable boutique blandness they all love. Dark corners, the wild west, the rough and tumble lifestyle – that has been shoved out of valuable city property and distributed elsewhere. In Austin, it is the North and Southeast, and perenially the East – although we all know they have the East in their fucking range. So living restfully in Gwinnett is now not that much different from living in Austin. Less clubs, admittedly. Although when I said that to my brother D2, as we were paddling kayaks around the Stone Mountain Lake, he claimed that the roadhouses in Gwinnett were simply discrete. And – after a night of drinking we did go to a fine Gwinnett establishment promising, for a five dollar cover charge, bikinis, which was, it turned out, more like a wan hope. It is an old dodge, the Royal Nonsuch with swimwear. There was, instead, a buncha pool tables and a bartender who was, unconsciously, all about the way the Atlanta area has broken open – she was a Romanian exile in Italy, come to the States for a lark, and briefly marooned in a roadhouse near the county line. She would have been a complete exotic twenty five years ago, but now – when the major Clarkston Georgia grocery store advertises a Hallal deli – she blends into the scene comnpletely.

So, that’s the end of Zazie dans la banlieu. I will now return to our regularly scheduled programming.

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