Thursday, January 9, 2014

Rose petals in the hallway


Eldrige comes in and starts pulling  up his pant leg. No, no, I don’t need to see that. Don’t need to see that. He’s got  another medical story for me. …will never ask me again….I understood that much.

Nancy’s in. We’ve got to pull papers, letters together for the other broker. Make our case. And go to see the apartment one more time. 

Ralph invites me upstairs. ETHEL is recording with Hannis Brown ( one of the hot new genre boundary crossing musicians. I can’t believe the gym. It looks like Abbey Road or something. Mics on every ETHEL member. Space mics. And an engineer. And every one with head sets. And to add to it, with the bitter cold outside, the string quartet is playing with fingerless gloves on. Coffee and donut holes on the side.  Ralph is loving the acoustic. And I see my first graphic score. Something very raw, organic about the music. As is usual for ETHEL.

Priska wanders in from the room next door which she has dived right into cleaning and preparing it. She didn’t know about the recording. She looks up with a look of amazement at the music. Part of the collateral benefits of being in this house.

Danielle is back at last!!! Her return from Iowa has become an odyssey. Stranded in Chicago for 3 days and two nights. Due to the polar vortex, which still sounds like something out of DC comics…having emerged from the polar vortex, the man of steel…..but she’s finally back. And I breathe a sigh of relief.

Regarding the still missing Rachel, Jeremy agrees with RL’s general perspective, you can’t save everyone. You need to apply your energy, creativity passion to developing programmatic work related to homeless. You can’t save everyone, especially those who don’t want saving. 

But there’s always the starfish parable…

Yeah,but you’re not even throwing  her back in the ocean. Just kind of throwing random buckets of water on every now and then.  

I get it. And when Danielle and I talk, as annoying, deadly annoying as Rachel is, I don’t want a once grand lady (if only in her own eyes) frozen like a bird in the ice in Central Park.

In the midst of the winter, I see rose petals strewn in our hallway leading to Martin’s studio. I look in, see Marina. It’s a scene from Antigone, she says, we’re rehearsing..scenes for backers….

Upstairs, RL is wondering why there are lights on upstairs. It’s Priska. Drill in hand, hard at work on her studio. She gestures to the walls, every inch covered with Chris’ unintelligible scrawls. Are you in love with the writing? She asks. 
Start with primer…says RL. 
No, I say.
 I can’t read, says Priska. My English is not so good. 
Even those of us with good English can’t read it, says RL. 
I look again. And I ponder the space between Chris’s scrawls and Peter Schuman’s walls at the Queens Museum. It is a continuum.  But there’s a distance greater than from here to Queens. And there is a line. Sometimes it just feels thin. Between madness and genius.

I’m off to check out Stephen and Cara’s new apartment.
Walking down the street, I run  into Rudy. It's been five years since he left and Rudy's gym officially closed. A generation of westside kids trained there. He's reestablished on 57th. Hell's Kitchen. But it's not the same. We're too old to have time to try and figure everything out. Why and what went wrong. It's enough to think of the future. And possibility. It's still cold. 

At Stephen and Cara's. I get a call from RL.  Someone is asleep in the sanctuary. What to do? 
Call 911.
Later, I find a message on the phone. All is ok. But he is flustered and frustrated. I’ll have to wait until tomorrow to find out.

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