Eight Hours in a Car

IMG_1899And you’ll start thinking, falling asleep, waking up, going numb, keep eating trail mix and beef jerky, resort to energy drinks, and remembering things you meant to make physical note of and never did…

  • [PAST]       At the top of Runyan Canyon, while rewarding myself with a smoggy view of Los Angeles, my detention is diverted away from the giant movie posters eating up the city below and over to a group of sparrows.  They fly against the backdrop of million dollar homes and the Hollywood sign.  Up.  Up.  Up.  And then they dive, wings tucked close to their bodies, sliding on their bellies in an invisible upside-down bell jar.  It gets me thinking about the nature of work: the struggle, the battle,  the “up” and then the subsequent release in a swoop through the air, uninhibited by stress or gravity – the moment in which you can relish in the evidence of your efforts.
  • [PRESENT/ PAST]      Edward Sharpe and a song about the proverbial “Home.”  Yellow fields ripe for fire.  The sun is similarly golden and moves on my legs as the car winds around the 101.  I saw them play downtown awhile back.  My memory is red walls and multi-colored Christmas lights, low ceilings, and a band that inspires synchronized jumping and yelling and smiling uncontrollably.  Jade and Alex sing at each other on the corner of the stage and Stewart’s cheeks go big and round.  I go home feeling independent.
  • [PRESENT]     I want to get flowers on the way home for my Nana.  She is dying.  Tyler tells me that it’s morbid and I argue that it’s only morbid if you think of it that way.  It’s supposed to be nice.  They’re not supposed to be funeral flowers.  I would like to get her a potted plant because this is more her style but there’s no point because she will die soon.  The brevity of pink carnations seems more appropriate.  Otherwise I’m going to find myself in an empty house with rugs I used to play on when I was little and a new plant that will mock me with its life.  I buy purple flowers with white hydrangeas at a super market.  I stare at the bouquet while Tyler drives.  Four of one variety, three of another, one of the hydrangea.  Three silvery green leaves.  I focus.  Focus.  Focus.  And I get sad when I think that this is the last thing I will ever give my grandmother while she’s alive.
  • [PAST]     San Francisco night.  It is cold.  Well, it’s not actually cold.  It’s feels cold because I don’t dress appropriately.  I walk behind Tyler’s brother, his girlfriend, his old roommate.  We pass a building the color of the Cheshire Cat in Alice in Wonderland.  It is purple, too purple to be appropriate for an entire building.  For whatever reason I am already nostalgic for this moment.  Walking at 11 PM and being cold and thinking about me as a kid and the colors in that movie.  I imagine that when I die I will think about this moment and other moments and it will pain me terribly.
  • [PAST]     The dock is brown wood and not too splintery.  The five of us sit down, our tennis shoes dangling down and reflecting off of murky green water.  A bee has fallen in the pond.  It struggles on it’s back, belly facing up to a blue sky and our faces.  “Once the wings get wet, that’s it,” Taylor says.  Tiny fish nibble at him fiendishly.  His little bug legs bend and wriggle.  Turtles come up for air nearby.  Geese float.  And we get up and walk away before the event of his official demise.
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