The night flies past too quickly on the LIE – Bayside, Elmhurst, the World’s Fair, an adventitious smattering of businesses and churches with signs in Korean. Asian Christianity intrigues me. Korean Baptist. Laotian Presbyterian. Cambodian Congregational. Japanese Pentecostal.
Lanes are changed. I’m in the back seat of a Cadillac Eldorado, donated to Gerry by the family of a priest – don’t know the relationship there – and peering into the pocket sewn into the backside of the passenger seat. I reach in, thumb tucked between my middle and index finger, and roll back and forth the sand that’s caught in the seam at the bottom as Queens – service road Queens – trundles (trundles?) past in a whirl of shit nobody can understand. A borough without a fucking face.
“I gotta piss.”
Gerry drives close. He’s one of those guys who need to be right up the ass of the guy in front of him. He doesn’t complain, doesn’t pound on the wheel and “fuck, fuck, fuck” the way I do. He just sits there, like he’s drafting in the fucking Tour de France. I can’t do that. Car in front of me hits his brakes, fucked if I’m not slamming on mine, and fucked if I’m not keeping my distance. Crack the window and roll the sand is what I do here.
“I seriously gotta piss.”
“I’m not pullin’ over.”
I blame them for everything, the dancers. Put on some music – that electronic shit – and they jump around and wave their arms and kick their legs and gesticulate in ways that would embarrass a fucking ostrich. I’d prefer to blame Ed Koch for everything – or even Lindsay or Beame – but it’s these fucking dancers who’ll turn the city to shit again, to the point where Tompkins Square Park is smoking tires and anarchy again. They don’t burn tires there anymore, but they did once – and they will again if these fucks have anything to say about it, which they do because they’re everywhere.
“Use a fuckin’ Gatorade bottle.”
My feet are under the seat, its curved, cushioned bottom in contour with my shins. I never know what to do with my hands, except in cars. In cars, I have places to set them. Sometimes I drive with my right hand on my hip. Nobody can see this.