I’m back on the blvd. now, with the people that wear their pain. The man coming up over my left shoulder is screaming as he walks. I’m screaming inside. I walked the blvd. for over three years and hardly…Read more
No agenda. No desired goal. No end result. No achievement required. Just the cathartic process of letting go. I just make music, I just make pictures, I just write words. Hyena.
THE BLVD INTRO
I spent 3 1/2 years on foot chronicling, looking for the last few glimmers, the last few rays of hope the blvd had to offer before that chapter closed. I too was cleared, evicted from my rent controlled Villa Carlotta. We gotta make way for the next big wave of money, and that wave, totaling billions, would change the face of everything. It already has. The graffiti, the spray paint, the murals have all been consumed, white washed, purged and painted over. The six mile circuitous walk I used to hammer provided hundreds of growing, ever evolving works of art in varying states of decay. The streets, the blvd, was a living breathing entity. That same walk today yields only two sanitized pieces. The voice of the blvd, born from the hands and minds of so many talented men and women has now moved on too. I am fortunate to have walked the blvd in its perfect time. We are both now obsolete, and our time in this era is now done. Above and below are excerpts and photographs from the blvd project.
For the blvd. it was a day that unfolds only so often. The convergence of souls, the dance between the atoms, the energy was perfect. It began in the deep light of winter’s shallow afternoon. A man, pink and sweating was running small twenty-yard non-concentric circles in the top half of an empty parking lot. I gather he’s getting some exercise and he must have a thing about waiting for traffic lights to change. Either that or he’s a human goat tied to an invisible spike in the asphalt that only he could see. I asked the guard who’d just let in his first car. “Hey, that guy been up there for a while, he’s really giving it hell?” “Yeah man, I think he’s nuts. He’s already fallen over twice. I’m gonna have to get the cops here pretty soon if he doesn’t leave.” “Good luck with that” I offer, heading back down further into the blvd. My window perch where I do most of my writing awaits, empty, screaming at my half tired cerebral ass. It has provided both a grace and graceless view, and today is no exception. The beanery of choice is Starbucks, not because they provide the best coffee, but because they have on offer an accessible bathroom that others do not.
At the moment, suffering through our current economic paranoia they have chosen poorly, and have overcompensated by laying off two of their four staff. This puts twenty people deep waiting to order and another twelve to fifteen have walked in looked at the line and left. In the middle of this silent debacle, a black stretch limousine pulls slowly into the red zone with the driver promptly exiting a man contained within an exquisitely tailored, immaculate suit. His shoes are also perfect, as was the hair parted perfectly to one side. Graciously, he made his own way to the door. Once inside, he briefly surveyed the line, and in a moment of inspired genius, swanned his way past the patrons to the front and tried to place his order. Some words were thrown, and the immaculate man was forced to wait with the peasants and returned to his place at the back of the line. He pulled out his blackberry and sent a text to his driver who pulled away moments later. He then scanned his PDA, looking for words of wisdom in times such as these, and probably found his own words staring back at him. The man standing before me was Deepak Chopra, forced into commonality. Out the window from a distance, came another vision. She was a Latina of average height, hair dyed auburn in a crème and beige perfectly matching ensemble with cheeks blessed with a little too much rouge. The mind bender was what she had balanced on her left arm. I stared in disbelief as she moved closer and closer into my view, my window. Onto my soft retina it settled. It was her gelatinous double, with the exact same clothes, same hair dye, and same make-up. And the way the arms giggled, man I tell you, it looked like her three-year-old identical twin. I can only imagine the conversations she must be having with herself. Or the guy on the receiving end, the guy who had to fabricate her miniature, taking all the measurements. I couldn’t tell if she was married, but that would be a tough work around for the husband. I’ve never seen her since, but that is the way of the blvd., all of us taking in the same air, all of us exhaling our converged energy. The man with the two Oscar’s license plate drives by for the second, still desperate time. I don’t know, maybe his two best friends are named Oscar? He’s now looking though at two other guys, and so am I. Outside, pressed against Frederick's windows are two tattooed handcuffed men placed there by the desire and hunger that has brought them here. The sun, it bends off the windows and into their eyes, while the sweat-less men in black do God’s given right. I snap their indignity into my little black box for safekeeping and reflection, entering the stream of consciousness that makes up our world. The blvd is simply a microcosm, a three block radius, and it’s a trailer to the movie I call life.