Sat, Sep 2–Sun, Sep 3: More of the Same

– Woke up early on Saturday before 8:00am with a mild hangover. I can never get back to sleep once I’m up, so I made a pot of coffee and resigned myself to being half-alive for the remainder of the day. It wasn’t a particular difficult road ahead of me.

I laid in bed reading The Golden Compass for several hours, stepping out only to buy groceries at Key Foods, where I thought I was going to vomit but didn’t.

I made eggs and got back in bed. So passed the time.

– Dan, Chan, and Sarah came over around six. We petted Spunky and sat on the deck, then took a cab to Roberta’s. We waited for our table on their expansive patio, taking cover when the rain started to fall. I was nearly mad with hunger, but it was worth it in the end. I think they have the best pizza in New York.

– The rain didn’t let up. We cabbed to Duck Duck to see if anybody was dancing. They weren’t, at least not yet. A DJ went on at 10, so we stuck it out, but the mood never quite turned, outside of a few sad efforts to start the party. Chan left, and later Sarah, and then Dan. I stayed a bit longer, hoping something might happen. I was wearing my forest green anorak, so when there was a break in the rain, I walked home. It wasn’t too far, and it wasn’t too late.

– It rained all night. The grey, dark skies and the sound of the water against my window, and because I hadn’t drank as much as the night before, I was able to sleep in til 10:00am. I felt better for it. I haven’t felt like exercising all weekend, outside of these pushups I’m doing all the time now. The rain kept up the whole morning anyway. I made a pot of coffee and finished The Golden Compass. I read 400 pages in two days, which almost never happens. It’s a kids book, though, and there’s no pause in it; one event leads immediately to the next, so that you never want to put the book down for fear of missing what comes next.

– I was shaved and showered and out of bed by 5:00pm. For supper I made couscous and stir fried some onions and peppers. I could see some girls and a guy with a guitar were setting up a little stage in the courtyard behind my apartment. I went out onto the deck and they called up to me and said they were putting on a concert to raise money for the hurricane down in Houston. Over the next hour about twenty people showed up to watch. The music went on at 7:00pm, singer-songwriter stuff, mostly original songs with a few covers. They had pretty voices and played beautifully. It made me want to pick up my guitar again, but that also seems like a big waste of time, which is a funny thing to think when you’ve done almost nothing at all for two straight days.

– Near 8:00pm I took the L to its conclusion at 8th Avenue, walked further west to the Standard Hotel at the mouth of the High Line, where the same friends from the night before were waiting on the 18th floor. The bar up there, The Top of the Standard, offers panoramic views of the city. The rain had stopped a few hours previous, so you could see everything clearly, all the buildings lit in New York and most of them in New Jersey across the river. We drank fancy cocktails with absinthe washes and eggwhites and meat wrapped around dates in them. People at nearby tables kept taking flash photos, which I knew would make terrible photographs. It was a little touristy. But what isn’t.

– From there we walked to 55 Bar, this divey jazz club in the Village that I love a lot. The band had just started their last set, and after a few minutes we got a table near the front. They were good, a five-piece with a sax and trumpet player. The synth player was the big standout for me.

– After they finished up we were all hungry, so the next and last stop was Waverly Restaurant, a diner with mediterranean flourishes. I asked the waiter what to get and he said spinach pie. It came with grape leaves and olives and it hit the spot. I don’t remember what we talked about during the meal, or if we talked at all. Some of us took the L home. A man sitting next to me was reading a pamphlet titled, “Angels—Can They Affect Your Life?” The train was slow through the tunnel, but after awhile we made it to Brooklyn, and one stop later I was back outside and nearly home.


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