42 seconds ago
I float through the fall on a wave of booze, trailing nicotine clouds, fed by the kind of desperation that gets you through the night so you can do more damage in the morning.
I live in a filthy efficiency on the North Side. The neighborhood is changing, split between newcomers who don’t blink at dropping $250K on broken-down row houses and families who lived through the neighborhood’s worst days only to find themselves being squeezed out by taxes or landlords.
West Park sprawls across the street in a glitter of busted crack pipes and streetlamps, and the Light of Life Mission sits a few blocks down among the shuttered and burned-out buildings. The Garden porno theater flashes its broken neon welcome – sometimes a “Gard,” sometimes a “den” – to retirees and husbands and me.
There is an apocalyptic comfort in the collision, or collusion, of money and flesh, poverty and Williams-Sonoma cookware.
I pass through days like a patient through the rooms of an abandoned hospital: numb, smoking, scratching the paint from the walls. A six-year affair has gone bust. I'm scraping out a living in retail, swallowing shit as a daily vitamin. Looking for something to justify my outsized sense of tragedy. Waiting for an emergency.
And at last, at Halloween, one arrives. (1/9)
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