Friday, May 25, 2007

Sincerity Assault

I'm going to get hella sincere on y'all for a second, okay? (And I swear I haven't had more than a glass and a half of this pleasant, subtle, inexpensive Chilean pinot noir.)

The past few weeks have been a major adjustment period, as you all know, but a major savior in all of this has been New York City.

If you've never lived here, know that New York is the town that can kick your ass and take your lunch money one day and then save your bacon the next.

I can't count the number of times I've been at some horrible hipster party on the LES some Saturday night, standing in the corner while drinking a bottle 0f Bud Light and trying to appear fascinated by a weird neon-colored painting on the wall because no one thinks I'm cool enough to talk to. I've been dissed out loud at fancy job interviews and forced to smile through the remainder of them. I've had $25 in my checking account that had to last one week.

But these past few weeks, there has been something uplifting about the city that's not unlike a heavenly hammock of distraction. I was downtown in the early evening today, and I looked up at the short-ish brick buildings and the new summer clothing everyone walking down the street was wearing, I felt the weight of the totally decent bottles of $1.99 malbec I had just procured from Astor Wines in my palm, and I caught a glimpse of myself and my oversized sunglasses in the bar Butter's reflective glass, and I became sublimely, inexplicably happy.

Why?

That this is my life -- carrying good wine through Astor Place like I owned it. That I came from a nondescript town deep in cow country that no one's heard of and that -- years later, despite near-poverty and random, assorted disappointments -- I am Still. Fucking. Here. That I have developed that exoskeleton that every New Yorker knows about. Not only that, but I function. There's cause and effect at play between me and the city, and it gives back now. I've worn it down with persistence, and it sort of likes me sometimes, when I'm not annoying it by talking too much or asking it for favors. It lets me win at five-card stud occasionally, and I walk away, counting my bills.

I refused to be swallowed up, a Jonah in the city's belly, and I wasn't. That deserves another glass of pinot. Or two.

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6 Comments:

Blogger Bond said...

Lived in the city for 3 years. It is an incredible beast that can smile or growl at a moments notice.

7:29 PM  
Blogger NewbietoNYC said...

Exactly. See, you're picking up what I'm throwing down, Bond!

8:04 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

Hi Jane,

I had an old girlfriend who had also moved to New York City, although that was a long time before Mayor Rudy took and tamed the wild beast.
She was kind of wild and hot headed, funny though she went there to study up on Opera and Classical Music, wouldn't figure her to be like that, at least most wouldn't but I knew her better than most and she was the kind of gal who had more guts than common sense.

She wrote back to home town telling about how this purse snatcher grabbed her purse and went running down this long dark alley way chasing after him. Not too bright of a move.

Like I said she had more guts than common sense. It was really lucky that she made it out of there alive and came back to the home town.

Never really kept track and am not sure what she did with all that learning but she was a bit too much of a hot head for me to keep up with.

9:04 AM  
Blogger NewbietoNYC said...

"She had more guts than common sense." I love that line. Good story, Phil.

12:30 PM  
Blogger Dave said...

Keep drinking good wine. Good post.

5:21 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

Thank you Jane,

That is always nice to hear that from a wonderful friend like you.

That was a true story, her name is Diane and I don't want to give out too much information because I want to keep her anonymity in tact.

I usually do tell true stories unless I specify them to be fictional in which case even then I have told stories that were partly fictional but there is a small part of the story that is partially factual like the time I wrote a lengthy story about a fella back in the mid 1800's a old Mountain Man who lived up in the high altitudes who would bring into town his collection of Gold nuggets and get his money out of that and by some supplies in town for his next venture and he always came across this mean old Grizz and with his know how of surviving in the wild he knew how to keep an eye out for this mean old Grizzly Bear.

Now the part of that story that was true is the fact that I have lived deep in the sticks for many years and I used to do a lot of hunting in my younger years so with the knowledge that I had accumulated I just added the fact of the Time Frame making the story much more interesting about the mid 1800's.

9:15 PM  

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