“Watch out for power-trippers and dipsomaniacs in work/biz realms. They’re deluded and angry.”
"This is a “gloves off” moment. Situations demand that you express your power and personal Awesome. Nothing is served by you playing small or dimming your aura so as not to freak others or even yourself out. Don’t let old demons keep you dull or broke.”
<3 <3 <3
June in NYC is like literature, language disposed toward cases of humanity and want, towering stories of love and attitude. The days are donuts. Evening lowers a slow dry hand to a bare humid back. Bethesda Terrace in Central Park, where the angel from Angels In America lives, bestows peace on the naval dead of the Civil War and the sun stands tall and gorgeous. Then at night it rained and turned the hotel windows to LCD screens; when raised, a deep demented nightsmell came up from the street like sensations of a well. Moldy, moody, migratory. Speaking forever.
I’m listening to The Bends, which transports me to 1997. Yes, I know it wasn’t the year The Bends came out. It was the year OK Computer did. The latter reminds me of being in a dorm room at Trinity College. Elise, the New Orleanian sometime stripper, and her sometime Irish boyfriend, bought it the day it came out and made us all listen to it. I don’t remember if this was before, or after, the party that Jody and Nora threw, in which I spilled red wine down my Festival d’Avignon shirt and changed into someone’s pajama pants, and watched people snort phenobarbital through rolled-up Euros (was it Euros then??? I can’t remember), and heard Todd tell everyone he packed a karaoke machine with only the song “Ben” by Michael Jackson and planned to hitch his way through Ireland only singing this song, which made me laugh, and laugh.
I remember buying The Bends in the post-Ireland portion of that trip, maybe at Gatwick?, and playing it in my Discman, as I stared out the window of a plane somewhere between France and Ireland, on my way back to Dublin, after a thoroughly screwed up post-summer-school jaunt across the continent, retreating to Botany Bay, the computer lab, the cricket pitch.
I didn’t even mean to talk about Ireland. I wanted to unpack another trip. Yes, Brazil, More Brazil.
So you heard about how I landed in Sao Paulo. But that was just the first part of the trip. I didn’t tell you about the three-and-a-half days I spent there. And I sure didn’t tell you about Rio.
On the taxi ride from Perdizes to Congonhas, I talked on the phone. This phone call to the office, I’m guessing, cost me about 1/3 of the $600 I owe AT&T.
Congonhas feels like it’s in the middle of the city. In NYC terms, imagine rocking up to Washington Heights and suddenly your cab pulls in to a departure gate. I check in, I wander through a mall, pass through the silliest airport security line in the world, and find myself awash in Brazilian business travelers.
Where to? Florianopolis. Porto Alegre. Brasilia.
And yes, they’re all wearing wedding rings.
I take another call. At this point I’m glamour-pussing it up. Who is this woman on a Wednesday afternoon speaking English on a mobile phone? The flight is canceled. The gate changes. I board the 45-minute TAM flight to Rio. The previous flight’s ticket holders can sit anywhere beyond Row 15.
I take an aisle seat. Someone who looks like a Jesuit priest takes the window. Later, he’ll get up to use the bathroom and wink at me. Between us comes a giant Michelangelo figure, Mr. Brazil, all tight curls and tan and, I discover, Tourette’s. His muscles jerk uncontrollably through the whole flight. The woman across the aisle from me attempts to tell me something in Portuguese — it seems like an insult? Like she can’t believe I didn’t offer the giant man my aisle seat? — but I can’t tell and go all Nova Iorque on her. Silent and indignant.
And anyway, I’m pissed at Michelangelo, who prevents me from chatting up the Jesuit in the window seat.
This is also not what I meant to talk about, but I suppose I’ll get there eventually.