Guy on the train

I’m rid­ing the brown line from Albany Park to The Mart.

The ride itself is a bit med­i­ta­tive, every­body in my lcar is absorbed in their devices, you could hear a mouse fart. Some­times, you do get the occa­sion­al per­son who feels the express need to express them­selves and broad­cast their con­ver­sa­tions about noth­ing at all, actu­al­ly. I idly won­der what would it be like to steal frag­ments of these intru­sive con­ver­sa­tions and piece­meal them into a sound byte, just for the sake of self enter­tain­ment. Then, I’m not that moti­vat­ed to squan­der the ener­gy in doing sil­ly thin­gies like I once used to be, so inter­ac­tive with my sur­round­ing envi­ron­ment. In a world of dig­i­tal dis­trac­tion, real­i­ty does pro­vide for cheap end­less enter­tain­ment when one looks and observes the world around them.

The Clocktower (photo)

The clock­tow­er I would always hike to when I was a young pup.

When I pass this clock tow­er, I’m remind­ed of my youth. I would jour­ney to Ravenswood avenue and hike along the metra tracks look­ing like one of the boys from the movie Stand by me, and this clock tow­er would be my stop­ping point. I used to think it was so ter­ri­bly far from my home, and it was the most vis­i­ble place you could see visu­al­ly. It’s fun­ny how some places are sat­u­rat­ed by a moment of our own time­lines, and we for­get these things. Take them for grant­ed, scarce­ly real­iz­ing that some­day, we will look back and real­ize we were in those places, we lived a part of our exis­tence in them, they sym­bol­ized a place in our­selves. I saw my young pup self, an imprint from my frac­tured mem­o­ry hik­ing along, hav­ing fun being on an adven­ture’, an intre­pid urban adven­tur­er look­ing to dis­cov­er some­thing lost or valu­able in hid­den places.

Mortal Trash by Kim Addonizio coverRight now I’m read­ing : Mor­tal Trash by Kim Addonizio. Some­times I do dig her work, and a few poems I found were replete with allu­sions to past expe­ri­ences and blun­ders, tri­umphs, and ennui from life. Of course these are pow­er­ful shaper’s of our­selves, since they were things we par­took in, like a play and we the actors in the the­ater of minds. I real­ize this now, that I’m in a place I nei­ther wish to be in, from, or asso­ci­at­ed with, but rather in some oth­er world entire­ly. Yet I sup­pose not learn­ing and know­ing of such places helps, for when I arrive I don’t want to feel like I’ve arrived, or I’ve been there my entire life before even hav­ing stepped foot on its soil. Yet I didn’t find her work as me’ as Richard Silken (who wrote War of the Fox­es’). There was a way in which he flowed and detailed his poems that res­onat­ed with me. It was clean, descrip­tive, and beau­ti­ful, a touch of melan­choly and a smat­ter­ing of cun­ning.

I ran stoops this morn­ing at the park, he was quite hap­py. Late­ly it’s been too arc­tic cold to even ven­ture much far­ther than I ordi­nar­i­ly would like. I was able to cast the ball yes­ter­day as well so he’s going to sleep in good today while I’m at work. I see my friend Amra at The Mart now, she’s such a sweet Bosn­ian girl, and I made friends with her and her hus­band just from walk­ing stoops at Eugene field so much. I also befriend­ed my neigh­bors Angela and her son Chris, who some­times dogsit stoops for me when I go on road trips. I took a lik­ing to the kid, he’s an hon­or roll stu­dent and takes his stud­ies seri­ous­ly. I was men­tor­ing him for a spell, until his moms tried mak­ing me his free tutor/​babysitter. Fun­ny how some peo­ple try to take a mile when you give them an inch. I won­der to myself what would hap­pen if I asked them a favor or leaned on them expect­ing their help with this or that ? They might for a lit­tle while.

I gave the neigh­bors upstairs in unit 3B some last minute gifts. This sweet woman named Paris I gave a Japan­ese style note­book I got from Kinoku­niya at Mat­suwa mar­ket­place, and her son a book : How to Draw Almost Any­thing. Small, neigh­bor­ly gifts, I like to think that they enjoyed them. Every now and again, I like prac­tic­ing ran­dom acts of nice­ness if only to bright­en up some­bod­ies exis­tence. Restora­tion in human­i­ty starts with giv­ing, not always receiv­ing and wait­ing for oth­ers to ini­ti­ate life.

I have vol­umes of jour­nals, sketch­books, note­books that are dying for me to bleed ink all over the blank pages. These days I seem to be too busy, pre­oc­cu­pied, I have to exhaust myself to the fullest just to make it anoth­er day. My world is such like a fine­ly tuned pre­ci­sion orches­tra, one wrong wave from the con­duc­tor can send my per­for­mance into full dis­as­ter mode, and unlike in IT there’s no dis­as­ter recov­ery from that. One instru­ment fails, they all do, as one. Sync or swim.