Both women must’ve been epiphanies. There are no mirages in Las Vegas unless one is homeless or high.
At the bank to pay bills and withdraw cash, two uncommon sights filled my view. Uncommon for Las Vegas.
These visions were tall, slender, dressed in pleasant near peasant summer wear. Billowy dresses. Sandals only remarkable for their utility rather than bizarre design. Shades. Long and free hair bounced along the smooth shoulders of each.
Amazing. No wild-style coif that defied convention. No tinted tresses which burned retinas. Nor any sour couture that assailed good taste.
Neither had disfigured herself through ink, piercing, nor had succumbed to the apparent Southern Nevada female extremes – hypertrophy or obesity. These were normal women, no? Femmes I might’ve lent cursory views before relocating to Las Vegas. Now, though, they became revelations.
Each was a plain beauty. And I was grateful. Continue reading Saturated Flesh
Here’s a question that indelibly colors its speaker: “Where you at?”
Having lived in Metropolitan New York, I’ve doubtlessly heard it. Now relocated to Las Vegas the phrase echoes frequently. It insults my ears. It diminishes the level of regard the speaker will be held.
“Where you at?” sits among the worst of first impressions. Continue reading Bloody Mouth
Those Metropolitan Museum of Art bulletins are having an insidious effect. They remind of what’s been left behind. That’s why I’m already looking ahead to August 2015 for a return to New York.
Of course one upside regarding this move to Nevada is finally being able to enter contests whose grand prizes are all-expense paid trips to New York City. Before, sponsors never failed stuffing my inbox or mailbox with entries. For trips to New York City. Maybe if I lived in Buffalo or Plattsburgh the excursion offered might’ve been worthwhile.
Instead, had I entered and somehow won, travel would’ve consisted of catching a commuter train to Grand Central Terminal, then, depending on the hotel, taking a subway or cab there.
That sojourn wouldn’t have provoked any bug-eyed, screaming gratitude. That just would’ve been another weekend downtown.
Strangely enough now that I live in Las Vegas, I’m receiving pitches whose big prizes are Vegas vacations. Like I said, strange. Continue reading New Start at New Address
“There but for the grace of God go I.”
Who hasn’t at least heard John Bradford’s phrase? Usually uttered by some drip who believes he or she avoided catastrophe by the skin of his or her teeth, but actually missed misfortune by miles.
Now that I reside in Las Vegas, Bradford’s expression bears zero currency. Maybe when I lived back East one could’ve spoken or thought such in true, though heightened, honesty. There, fate at its most capricious could’ve convinced the devout that disembodied powers managed their destinies.
Here, personal calamities are manmade. Often after heedless headlong rushes. (Guess what topic I’ll occasionally bear down on through 2014.)
Decades ago during an particularly bereft of cheer Christmas season, a bunch of us congregated. In a bar. Oh, without a doubt.
Continue reading Another Camus Christmas
Before relocating to Las Vegas I considered resettling in Southern Arizona instead. An Arizona graduate, the university I proudly attended had been considered a gem in America’s higher learning crown. Now lorded over by a blithely unaware administration, alma mater is just overpriced and being overbuilt.
Hmm. Maybe this post should’ve been titled Leave-taking.
Only intuition kept me from reestablishing myself in Tucson. With rue let me state Homecoming 2013 proved my hunch and subsequent detour correct.
Continue reading Homecoming
With severe apologies to Andre Gide …
Does distance improve perception? Well, in my case perhaps 2400 miles have clarified a few escapades.
Relocated now to Las Vegas (too early to claim “settled”), several scenes and the actors upon those now far away New York stages stalk under brighter light. Those acts having concluded years ago, they can today be reckoned through lengthy contemplation.
Nothing has prepared me for the last two years. Disruption. Demise. Dislocation. Ready for such life occurrences as we swear, aren’t we forever caught out by these upheavals? Maneuver as best we can, coping is the best one can hope.
Continue reading The Amoralists – Part One
Ladies and gentlemen, the wages of sin are fairer than honest compensation. Years ago, such bombast might’ve been an exaggeration. Today, it’s not even laughable. In fact, such recognition deserves rueful acceptance.
Any following these posts know the writer has decamped across America; from Northeastern suburban splendor to the Mojave Desert. As chronicled, abject neglect beyond my control has transformed me into an involuntary economic refugee of sorts.
Imitating conquistador Hernando Cortez and his particular New World conquest, I’ve burned my boat. Truly, stranding myself was easier than Cortez’ and his band’s self-inflicted marooning.
Continue reading Burn the Boat/Marginal People
Ideally this post would flog Properly Stirred, the 2013 Slow Boat Media short-story compilation. The three interludes feature Paul Knox, a man who enjoyed his pleasures (okay, more than his fair share of pleasures), yielded to the demands of age and status, believed himself to have contentment, then got bushwhacked.
Better than a redo, Knox reverts throughout Properly Stirred. While not indulging in irresponsibility, he must no longer conform. Paul Knox has achieved an enviable state. He’s been released. And he returns to situations and conditions which had earlier occupied him to happy ends.
Continue reading Down Time