jolie laide

jolie laide

I started this when I lived in Brooklyn and struggled for grace in a city that grants moments of beauty and ugliness breathtakingly close to one another. Now I live in a place where things are a different kind of ugly and the beauty is pedestrian. I struggle with that.


I am out with a bunch of writers. And they ask each other about writing, but they don't ask me about writing, they ask me about running. I don't tell them that last night I was running, running, ecstatic until there I was bent, with the palm of my hand against a wet rough trunk, vomiting into the tree pit there next to the road. I turn my head and the light of the bodega comes into focus in the muzzy night, the man sitting out front on a milk crate watches me, taciturn.

Leaning over I can feel the lump of my celphone, pressing into my spine, zippered into the back of my shorts. I have come to a wary truce with my phone after a spate of inappropriateness, the last annoyance being merely a buzzing text message at midnight from a skinny blond writer, but this one is not beautiful or not beautiful enough to me, to get my attention, and he is young, too young, and I have had enough of boys.

One of the writers, a small plain woman with a flat chest, flat affect, flat hair, says "I don't go out. I live alone. With my cat. In Bushwick. It's not as glamorous as it sounds." I search her face for irony, for humor, but I find none and this makes me sad.


Blogger remue-menage said...

cold angular contours of steel and emotion

of passionate youth not beautiful enough - enough for what?

1:41 PM  
Blogger slickaphonic said...

I am hoping this small plain woman is tres adept at delivering her humor completely dead pan.

2:06 PM  
Blogger ttractor said...

r-m, calling me in the middle of the night is a demand for attention, the right to which he has not earned, neither the attention nor to demand anything. Is this a harsh judgement? Yes, which is why I juxtaposed it with the statement from the plain writer woman, the cautionary and absolute endpoint of wreaking harsh judgements on people.

slick, I swear I searched her face for any trace of humor and it simply was not there. I think she actually believed her isolation might sound glorious and romantic to me.

2:20 PM  
Blogger famjaztique said...

She may not have seen the humor, or the sadness in her statement, but both are surely there. It's too bad. She could be her own material.

12:18 AM  

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