March 7, 2014
Spiritual atheist in that my feelings and sense of wonder run deep, but I have about as much patience for an adult who believes in an interventionalist god as I do for an adult who still believes in Santa Claus. My range extends from a near death by laughter...when Roberto Benigni, in Jim Jarmusch's film Night on Earth, described the heartbreak of having his family reject his romantic relationship with a sheep...to busting out in tears over the magnificence of a star-filled sky. My life has ranged from being a 60's hippie so hardcore I dropped out of high school, to go-go dancing my way through designer school, to making six figures on Wall Street to put my kids through college. I have also, despite the lack of a high school diploma, been certified by NYS to teach creative writing, published a novel, been published in the New York Times, and worked as senior editor for a literary agency.
MOVIES: Birdcage, Bladerunner, Cinema Paradiso, Crash, Death Becomes Her, Juliet of the Spirits, The Full Monty, MIB, The Messenger, Shawshank Redemption, Sheltering Sky, Sin City, Sunset Boulevard, To Kill a Mockingbird. BOOKS: Heart of Darkness (Joseph Conrad), In Search of Lost Time (Marcel Proust), All the Names (Jose Saramago), Naked Lunch (William S. Burroughs), The Martian Chronicles (Ray Bradbury). TV shows: Don't pay for cable and generally detest all the tabloid-style junk on TV but a guilty pleasure I have enjoyed via Netflix is Breaking Bad.
Daybreak in the ancient city of Pagan, part of the three cities that make up Katmandu in Nepal. Pigeons, flying like swallows, dart about. An ancient, pagoda-like temple seems to have burst naturally from the ground, like some stone outcropping. Slowly the people arrive, so ravished by hardship that they too appear stone-like. Yet all are jovial...except for the sacrificial goat, no fool, who has to be dragged in. The people bring food, drink, and are soon visible on all the balconies, apparently settling in for a long stay. Children play. A woman hangs her laundry out to dry over a high railing. The "band" sets up, and the place starts rocking, people singing and swaying along with the music. I'm expecting the whole building to sprout a smiley face and start swaying too, like some old Merrie Melodies cartoon. And I realize, deep in my bone marrow, that whatever they're doing in there has been going on for a very, very, very long time.
A cohesive group of like-minded people, overflowing with the joy of life.
I must admit that, except for the money I put aside for travel, I'm big on free and/or very cheap. Also I'm a health food nut, on a fairly nutty diet. (Combine the last two and the astute may deduce correctly that I'm not big on eating in restaurants.) I tend to favor things we can do in each other's homes, including watching old movies, playing games, just plain talking, and potluck dinners (where I'll at least know I'll be able to eat what I bring). I also love walking, ogling old architecture, photography, and availing myself of the many things NYC offers for free or very little, like pay-what-you-wish nights at the museums and free films on big screens.
Semi-retired writer living in Brooklyn's Ft. Greene.