I am sitting here, seven stories above
downtown Vancouver in the clothes I have been wearing
for the past four or five days. The windows are open-full
allowing me to air out the stink and, occasionally, to
pour bottles of water down into the street onto passing
cars. You should see how the water breaks into tiny droplets
about three stories before it hits the ground. No matter
how much water you drop it will break into those drops
about four floors down, and spread out like rain just before
it hits the ground.
I am typing in between shots of vodka and stale Pepsi.
The vodka was given to me by our next door neighbor, Jimmy
or Tony, or actually, I have no clue what his name is.
He is old, and Kent tells me, Russian, and since I met
him in the hallway twenty minutes ago he has offered
me two joints and the vodka that I accepted,
knowing full well that Back Home people that looked
like this guy didn't drink actual liquor.
I have been boxed up here for days, reading mostly —
Kent has a fine selection of HST books. On the off
chance that I do leave, it is usually out of necessity.
Quick trips to aquire food in order to sustain life;
walking the shortest route to the eighty-five cent pizza
place and then back upstairs to my lookout above the
street to eat and pour things onto the people below.
Tonight is different though, as the bells of a nearby
church carry loud across the street and down two blocks
straight through my window as I type. Tonight I have
been inspired by Tony's words, his philosophy on life
that he shared with me, just before I stomped his toe
and slammed the door in his face.
"Do whatever you can
get away with," He said, "While you're young. Because
some day, what you think is important will be.. will
Granted the man is high, drunk and wearing
a purple jumpsuit, but did Gary Simmons of the Los Angeles
Kings hockey franchise not once wear a purple uniform?
(Years '76-'78) And was he not from my hometown of Charlottetown,
Prince Edward Island? If this all isn't some sort of
sign, some cosmic alliance, I don't know what is.
So it is with the Lord's bells ringing in my ears,
and Tony's words in my heart that I dumped my last bottle
of water onto an elderly couple unloading luggage from
their car and the last of my vodka onto their small
rat-like dog and headed for the door.
needs you to pray for him. His wife is Italian.
+ + + + +
I didn't sleep again last night. The twisted inspiration
I gained through a mess of weirdness kept me tossing
and flipping all morning. And I knew I had to be up
early to pick up the car downtown.
Last night the key broke off in the lock when Mike
tried to get his clothes out of the trunk. We laughed.
Our failing Internet connections made updating Forget
harder than usual and I did it while he looked over
my shoulder; though frustrated and swearing, I felt
a kind of special when I took the elevator downstairs.
Like it was something we couldn't not do, no matter
the obstacles. We had to.
It is morning now and out the window the birds are
awake and if I turn a little to my right I can see the
city opening its arms and the squeegy kids wetting their
When I got here a little while ago the office was
dark and Mike was asleep. I read the entire prototype
for Jetplane, Mike's zine. It is issue two "Under Falling
Skies" and I was moved in ways I couldn't put words
He is still here while I type this; wrestling the
covers over himself, gold belt buckle sticking out.
He looks a little like a wounded cowboy and if I imagine
hard enough I can decide that his ear was injured riding
some great bull through some dusty bowl, but the trumpets
of bus and car make any kind of prolonged imagination
hard. And Mike is alseep still and I don't want to wake
him, and I type so loud; but now I am happy that we
have this thing — whatever it is — that binds us together,
and though we pull and fight — like him now with the
massive blue blanket I got in Maine with my first love
— we know we are in it together, and it is not just
is trying to sleep on the floor, on the mat.