2004-08-16 - 5:31 p.m.
Sundays have traditionally been spent in the throws of absolute refusal to wake up. I stood solidly by the traditionally known fact that all those not attending theological ceremonies should not bear any semblance of consciousness until the day is at least half over. After all, I assumed, isn’t the very purpose of Sunday’s to sit idly by, rooting through whatever shards remain in one’s cigarette pack, bumming about in one’s underwear, and possibly, maybe, doing the dishes that have needed doing since the onset of spring. (I have come to accept the fruit flies as my friends and allies. Should a powder keg incident occur, such as a Brooklyn concrete frog assaulting our sovereign state, we will be united in our mutual assault against said intruder.)
Still, the idea that I am wasting away the majority of one of my few days off seems slightly wasteful. Within the bounds of these five Burroughs lay infinite possibilities: baseball games, museums, bars, restaurants, cock fights, the eclectic dance of the knock-off resellers and the private eyes out to nail them. Learning new slang in Spanglish by listening to the insurgents stationed outside my window seems less and less like the maximization of my entertainment and bliss.
Instead, there is an intersection of Bleeker St. On each corner is a restaurant made beautiful with the inclusion of external tables. By this I mean, fairly good food, placed on a dinky little table on the sidewalk with a wonderful view of all the various abominations wandering Greenwich Village mid-afternoon:
The NYU kids suffering their hangovers, and trying to remedy said mind boggling pain with the salves of pizza, “authentic” green tea, and a new bootleg CD mixing three live concerts Radiohead made during the 2001 tour. With hair tousled with less intent than most days, they wander the boulevards squinting into the sun, trying to ignore the nagging thoughts of psychology labs left unattended under the Jack Daniels bottle back in their subsidized dorm room.
Teenie-boppers rushing to enjoy their last few hours in the city before fleeing back to Metro-North and the Path, which will fling them giddily back into the warm comforter of suburbia. They will travel, however, with a smattering of small brightly colored shopping bags, each so dainty I can’t imagine them holding any more than a sock, which, of course means they could be carrying an entire ensemble in there judging by current trends.
Tourists taking in the supposed Bachinalia of the village, long since neutered along with most of New York’s well traveled streets. Picturing artists and musicians and the bohemian lifestyle writ large, the find a dense collection of pubs and high end stores catering to said NYU students who usually have a credit card tied to mummy and daddy for such purchases as three hundred dollar leather messenger bags, and seventy dollar “antique” articles of clothing. It’s rare but occasionally you see one snap a picture on the corner.
The SoHo-cialites finishing their tour of downtown before returning to luxurious lofts with fireplaces that go nowhere. Considering they’ve most likely paid two grand for a hand tailored dress by someone with a name, walking through this area may well be considered slumming it. Often times they walk past the dingier holes splattered over McDougal St., getting a cheap thrill from the banality of it all.
The locals, trudging with a notable air of frustration as they port their laundry awkwardly around gawking on lookers, who squawk and scream at the sight of a cute accessory. The appeal of living in “The Village” most likely tied them down to their inflated rents and cramped quarters, only to later realize that the area they visited with such glee can be a horror it call home. Unless, of course, they are the lifers who hang onto the Greenwich that once was, praying Woody Allen will waltz down with his woodwind and stutter all these interlopers out of this sacred land, with rhetoric bold and witty.
Eating a decently priced piece of cheesecake, that is causing a few of the diet-faithful to glower at me at full strength, I get to watch it all trip by my feet. I wash all my catty comments down with coffee, sitting beside a newspaper rather than an open ear, or better yet, another bustling source of sarcasm. It makes for an excellent afternoon, though it would be most excellent in the Bill and Ted manner if only the paper could comment back when I point out the woman wearing all lime-green, from the hair to the socks to the shoes.
Right now, all that springs to mind is "Disco Leprechaun," and I know there is more there to be mined.
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