I just got back from my first NYC book club meeting where we discussed Consider the Lobster by David Foster Wallace, which, if you’re interested, is a much easier read than Infinite Jest even if the postmodern footnotes get a bit annoying. I’ve still been applying to at least four jobs a day and seem to have at least three interviews a week. Don’t worry, there have still been adventures. For one, I saw one first bit of Brooklyn wildlife with the above praying mantis that posed for me. Unfortunately, the next day I killed my first cockroach in our kitchen.
Last Thursday night, I worked at an art opening and then we consumed much free food and drink as part of Fashion’s Night Out. The idea was to keep all the stores open late and offer glasses of Veuve Clicquot and sugar cookies in order to get people interested in buying new fall clothes. However, I’m not really in the market for thousand dollar dresses, so I just enjoyed seeing the stores in SoHo, sampling Earl Grey ice cream, and savoring each glass of free fancy alcohol. We also walked through the Feast of San Gennaro, taking place on the last street remaining of Little Italy.
It’s hard to articulate what it was like to be in New York this year on September 11. In a way it was like every other day in the city and everything seemed normal despite the relentless rain. Which is expected, of course, as I don’t expect every New Yorker to walk around with a look of horror to mark each anniversary. The only moment I really felt the tragedy was in the morning when I was sitting in the quiet of my apartment and heard church bells tolling. I looked at the clock and felt that the silence wasn’t just in my kitchen anymore, but flooding in from all over the city as people stopped and remembered.
On Saturday I checked out the Room Tones exhibit in Greenpoint, which is about a 10 minute walk from my apartment. It was four stories of art and installations in a closed and now unused convent, with paint peeling off the walls, stained curtains, and ajar closet doors. This deterioration combined with the often creepy art made me feel like I was in a haunted house, which came also from being the absolute only visitor in the whole place. Imagine watching a grainy experimental film in an old chapel and then going upstairs to see the above scene: a ghost under a black sheet dancing on a TV screen while rain thrashes against the window. Imagine finding a basement full of laser lights and a sculpture made from mangled crutches.
I guess the best art evokes a reaction, it’s negative or positive. So in that way Room Tones was very successful. I’m not sure it’s the best installation art I’ve ever seen, but it’s definitely the first I’ve viewed in a convent.
That Saturday a friend came up from Yale and we watched the OU football game and then walked along the river to see the city at night. The next day I volunteered again at Housing Works, this time in SoHo and later got a delicious juice made from apple, pear, pineapple, mint, and wheatgrass. I guess I’m working on my Brooklyn image.
On Monday, we went to an opening at the Jewish Museum and Tuesday I saw a bit of the DUMBO neighborhood in Brooklyn. As you can see, I’m still keeping my eye out for Space Invaders, although I believe Elizabeth spotted this one and I made us cross four lanes of traffic to take a picture.
Yesterday was my one month mark in New York. I can’t believe it.
If you’re interested, I made a post on the Audiography community today about my top five songs at the moment. Check it out here and get some new music.