photo posted from my iPhone
This city seems like one party after another. Cafes filled with young people all afternoon, like no one works. Marijuana’s legal. Coke is affordable. Tijuana’s not too far. I need to get out of here. Go hug a tree or something. Instead I find myself in Hunter’s Point on a dead end road overlooking marshland of the bay with a street party happening. It’s only 4:30 in the afternoon and the PBR kegs are empty. Someone is parked over by the chain link fence with a motorcycle that operates a grain alcohol still with heat from the exhaust, and in turn the bike runs off the alcohol from the still. There’s a jug on the side car seat, which is part of the still, and the bottle gets passed around. “Leave a little for the ride home,” the owner says.
Someone else is doing brake stands on a scooter, another guy from the crowd kicks everything over. The band, AC/D-She (all female cover band) kicks into TNT and the scooter gets set back on its wheels and someone pours water on the rear tire to decrease friction. Burning rubber ruins photographs and lungs.
I need a cabin in the woods. Down here in Hunters Point garbage is dumped on street corners and cars sit on blocks for years. I want to dig a hole in the ground. Not for any reason. I don’t have anything to bury. I just want to be in earth. I’m standing on a skim coat of concrete that covers 49 square miles called San Francisco. Someone gets pushed onto the hood of a Mustang slowly going through the crowd. The Mustang stops and lights up the rear tires while a fistfight works itself out on the hood.
Wouldn’t it be nice to have my own tomato plants? Stand in the yard at night and smell the trees? I miss seeing bats swoop and circle after bugs. A big cheer goes up from the crowd when someone finally manages to pop a rear tire by gunning the engine while clamped down on the brake, burning through the half inch of tire until it explodes.
This city wants you dead. It becomes a monster that feeds on dreams and the hustle involved of dreaming bigger and better dreams burns you up, and I’m burning right now as I try to dream a big one, that no one will forget. It’s not like out in the apple trees where you might have a wish a two. There’s big trucks on the road and cops all over the place. It might be that I’m drunk from the night before, but I’m still on my feet today, so I send my dream up into the air where it comes back down a few blocks away and hits the gutter and drains into the sewer where the city, The City, feeds. The monster called The City where good people go and work shoulder to shoulder and get something done and have a good time while the old gods and goddess’ of fertility rights and young brides and tight knit families grow weaker and claw at the consciences of those that left them behind.
Tomorrow I’ll get up and walk down to the cafe and have a three dollar cup of coffee while Rusty Sunshine is already on the tractor and thinking about the weather, the rain that’s supposed to come, because the weather directly affects him while here in the city we keep working, or not working, regardless.
(Thanks to Paul Brown for throwing an awesome afternoon of entertainment known as The Dirtbag Challenge)