Thursday, June 13, 2013

My Periphery

When I lived in New York in the 90s, I worked in Tribeca at a place called Bubby's that was a few doors down from the building where JFK Jr lived. Every day at least 3 photographers, and sometimes as many as 20, stood outside in the street waiting like dirty sick pigeons for a crumb. When the door opened, no matter who it was, they'd start yelling John, John, John.

---except they were not funny. John knew some of their names and occasionally he would say hello, but usually he just walked past with his head down.

I saw him enough that we recognized each other when we passed in the street, enough to nod, half smile and keep walking. He had an unspoken signal that said Don't Talk To Me, but so did most New Yorkers. Once we stood next to each other waiting at a juice bar. He was sipping wheat grass juice and I asked him how he could stand the taste of that stuff. He laughed and said yeah it's pretty nasty. It's one of those weird meaningless exchanges that drops into my head at random times. Now, horribly, it's attached to the image of a plane going down near Martha's Vineyard, then to Jackie scrambling up the back of the convertible to grab part of her husband's head, then to plane crashing into the towers, then to a weird GQ image of John and then back to Bubby's: one of those weird pinwheels of silent movie clips.

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