“Anyone tries to give me a free hug,” I said, making my way along the south end of Union Square, “they’re getting knocked the fuck out.”
I love New York, but I hate New York things – the shit that young people, at least people who are now mostly all younger than me, try to pass off as cute or fun or “progressive.” It’s all bullshit, and it’s all been done before. Go see Rent. Leave me alone when it’s two in the afternoon and I haven’t eaten fucking breakfast yet.
The whole thing reminded me of the time I was getting off the subway with a rolling suitcase and some fat lady started screaming at me about being a “motherfucker,” et al. She also not-so-politely linked the “mother” and the “fucker” to my ethnicity, which roiled me a bit, but not so much as the fact that I was in a confrontation with a fat lady in the first place.
I don’t let fat people call me “motherfucker” in my home, so I responded in kind:
“Shut the fuck up! I’M NOT A FUCKING TOURIST!”
Anyway, I’m not that tough anymore. Probably never was, but the point is that I’m looking for something original around here – something I haven’t seen, heard or tasted thirty goddamned times already. That’s my biggest problem with New York right now – that people walk around thinking they’re reinventing the place. Which, of course, they probably are, because as I’ve said for years now, this isn’t the city I grew up in. Not by a long shot.
That place is gone. The city’s learnable now in five easy steps. People have no problem with that, now. Ask some carpetbagger and they’ve probably been everywhere already. They know the city better than you do, at least superficially. Knowing who Jim Jensen was doesn’t carry quite the cachet it used to around here.
Me? I don’t know shit anymore. I walk past a club called La Pomme all the time now, and I have idea what goes inside. I don’t even care. It’s a cloud of cigarette smoke on the sidewalk and a fucking nuisance. I buy food at the market and I cook it. I eat at Energy Kitchen all the time. Try the Tex-Mex Bison Wrap. Ask for hot sauce and put a layer of it on before you take a bite. It’s pretty good, and it costs $5.
I used to call this a holding pattern. Now I call it life – waiting for the next big thing to come along, trying some to get it to hurry up, and hedging bets here and there that it won’t ever show at all.
Also, I saw Avatar.