Tue Jun, 13 2006
The Vampire State
By way of crying the coming Spitzer disaster, Thrutch points out a New York Times story about the lights going out above the Rockland-Putnam line in The Vampire State. Let me put the thing to you this way:
I cannot remotely imagine that a reporter for that newspaper could possibly impart the scope of the disaster up here. In fact, I'm tempted to just call him "Sam Duranty" and press on.
Just in my little village, the flight has been traditional for thirty years. Bradley's in Nashville and has been forever. Amy is at The Trib. Charlene ran off just about instantly to Phoenix and lives well on the escape. Brian went to L.A. and made his name with Pro Piano, and so did his brother Bernard. Everybody in my family went away for a long time, and Agnes and I are the only ones dumb enough to live here now. It's interesting to me in all kinds of morbid ways, but they're also tragic, too: this is the most beautiful place in the world to me, except for all the stark ruinous bullshit that the kommissars constantly rain upon it, like they have for at least as long as I've known it.
Really: there is no serious hope here. It's just a disaster, if you've got your life ahead of you. You come back here after you've done something Out There In The World, for odds & ends reasons when you look at some of those who've done it, but the whole thing, added up, is really about Home just getting stomped out.
I was taken with Buffalo this last time, at my cousin's funeral. I hadn't hung there in a while, and I would say the whole thing would be shocking if not for understanding it. The only thing I don't understand is why anyone with a brain in their head would live there.
...except for my cousins, of course. It's home, to them. So, they live there, watching it going dark.
It's a really horrible thing to see, and I see it from the crowded Erie shore to the way people almost never wave to strangers anymore out here on the cow-lanes.
"There's a feelin' in the sky tonight(Little Feat -- "Changin' Luck", 1988)
Tough as nails and I feel the cold wind start to bite
Folks I meet seem so cold
Blown like leaves their faces hard and set in stone..."
Been coming a long time.