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.


It has taken us two days to make a set of keys that will unlock the mailbox that has the important documents in it in front of a house 34 miles away. Someone has a wife that requires legal notification, but she's somewhere in a barely developing country, and hasn't been seen for years. A set of numbers has damning consequences for a series of people and they all should have known better but they couldn't help themselves.

I am sitting at my computer looking at the San Mateo County Housing Department when all the hairs stand up on my arms. It's a primal response, not to the website, but the delayed response to what happened earlier. There was no time to feel the horror when the man with black hooks in his ceiling came into the office, he was posturing his demand for attention, and I met him in a room with observation windows for safety. The chip on his shoulder was as big as the bag of legal documents and "evidence" that I did not allow him to show me. He wanted a fight but he didn't get one.

That made me need to take a walk. And when I got back I took a call from a lost soul who had perfected the art of not getting what she wants. Native americans don't use central heating so why should she have to have her house kept up to building codes and she looks white but her grandmother is full blood. Her husband was a black panther and they used their house as a community resource and halfway house for drug addicts, one son was killed and another one DJs anti-violence parties and maybe you'd like to use him sometime. Her daughter has had her child taken away and her godson wants to come up from Fresno to live with them and he has two babies, a two year old and a one year old, but the roof on her house is just tarp in some places and no-one knows how to contact Extreme House Makeover. Who is she talking to again? She has short term memory loss.

I have a lot more than that. And much more day ahead of me. I'm sorry, I have to go.


Blogger slickaphonic said...

whoa. i keep trying to form further thoughts, but the only word to come out in my head is "whoa."

3:13 PM  

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