Friday, 20 February 2015

Journal # 02.20.15

Thursday. Judgment Day for the squatters, next door. The leasing agent was pissed. She woke me from my semi-caffeinated slumber around noon, yelling at a girl on the landing of the second-story apartment which has not yet been rented. Who are you? she shouted up from the yard, her platinum hair falling behind her. Her cobalt blue Scion was still running, in the alley.

"I live here," the girl lied.
Oh no you don't!
"I do!" she insisted.
You better get out. I'm calling the cops.
"The cops told me I could live here!"

The girl burrowed back into the house. They had tacked newspaper over all the windows, inside. This mess was gonna play out all morning. The cops wouldn't be here for an hour. The mp3 track was titled 'Leasing Agent's Lament'.  I could have used some more rest. Oh well. I went into the kitchen for another cup of coffee.

A friend of mine called. He was doing laundry down the street. He instant messaged me many times, and I got the feeling he could use some human contact, so I pulled on some jeans and a hoodie and stepped out for a little walk. I was daydreaming on the soft top of the kindle bestseller list, when my friend saw me by the laundromat and called out. Light like a spin cycle. He and the sunshine warmed my heart.

I gotta go, I said after a while.

Some guy had given us a strange look before stepping into his truck. This particular intersection was the kind of gentrifying line you don't wanna cross. I knew better than to stand there in a parking lot for very long, talking. The folks on the gentrified side were always armed with presuppositions. My friend looked enough like a drug dealer, anyway, and had been, long ago. Whatever a drug dealer looks like? And I once had a habit. In a past life.

Time to split, then. My friend, he gave me a a hug.

We could have stayed. It's not like we were breaking any law. The cops were pre-occupied down the street, placating the leasing agent. We could have hit the donut shop and interviewed the junkies. Then crossed over the imaginary line to the other side of the spinning cottons, to the fancy Italian delicatessen, and interrogated the special white mozzarella.