a doozy of a day…

David Hammons, “Blizzard Ball Sale” 1983, sidewalk performance, New York City. Does this have anything to do with this blogpost? Yes, I really wanted it to snow during the record heat wave today…and Mr. Hammons’ thought-provoking, wacky, ad hoc, art on the street is good company.

I wanted to give this day a chance–afterall, I’m sure some lovely events have happened on 9-11, that simply didn’t ever make the news…And I try not to be superstitious.  But this began as a mean day, a slammed-in-the-face kind of day, and it didn’t let up even when I crawled onto the bench to begin knitting at 5:35 for the next 2 hours.  I said, “Ha ha, I’m not afraid of you,” and got in touch with the calm, brave warrior inside.  But the sun beat down, and I felt about as calm and brave as wilted lettuce.  I knit on.  First surprise: the young doctor rode right up to me on his roadbike in a skin-tight, red, racer outfit, the open neck revealing a crop of sandy chest hair.  When I told him that I’ve been lamenting the absence of my bicycle all summer (it’s stuck in Humboldt County–long story), he said I could choose from the 2 or 3 additional bikes he owns.  The trouble is, they are all one speed bikes…Slight problem considering this part of town is reknown for its sledding hill.  I told him, “Thank you, I like to sit on things.”  And he said that I had a nice place to sit.  Then J. the jeweler pulled up in her truck.  She was yelling stories to me through her lowered window like she usually does, her truck on the wrong side of the road–this scenario usually ends abruptly when another driver gets roadrage.  Today, she gave in and parked across from me in an illegal parking spot next to the fire hydrant.  She actually came and sat down, and we talked for over an hour.  She said, “artistic ideas are in the air–they don’t belong to us, they come and go.  All we can do is make ourselves receptive…” The whole exchange was like a popsicle dropped out of the sky from God.  To make things better, the sun had now dipped down behind the giant douglas fir and I was in the blessed shade.  And J. had the good heart to go home and bring back 4 beverages for me to choose from–concentrated cold coffee, green juice, coconut milk or water.  I mixed the coconut milk and green goo together (per her recommendation) and it slipped down my parched throat.  It looked like swamp water mixed with elmer’s glue, but I was past caring.  She said that today was her wedding anniversary (she’s divorced.)  Her furnace had broken down, and she told the repair guy on the phone to send someone “with a sense of humor.”  “Why?” they asked her.  “Because I have a Tiki bar in my basement!”  Yes, she really does, and it’s on my to-do list to have my photo taken in one of her giant rattan chairs before the end of this project.  I want to wear a faux lei, listen to schmalzy records, and pluck a ukulele.  After she left, I watched the glaring sun dip below the powdered blue mountains.  The dreadlocked artist and his lady friend were out on their porch watching the sunset.  They waved to me and I waved back.  I saw a whole bunch of testosterone-pumped guys with huge trucks, smoking and hanging out in the church parking lot, their animated voices enlivening the air.  Not your typical church crowd.  I think they were 12 Steppers, but when I asked a guy he gave me a vague answer.  Maybe he was just practicing anonymity, like the 3 inch spider that just crawled out from under my bed…This day’s not over yet!

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