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There was a lot mumbling and muttering (or whatever the equivalent is in written form) about NYC during the Das Boot section, and whether or not Jay would end up there next. Well, sure enough, in these pages we find out he did. This section takes up almost directly after leaving the boat, and tracks his efforts during the first months to navigate the city and find a job and, maybe, love. Continues for several months in this fashion.

Hello, NYC! i (3/26)

February 5, 1991

Choose a different dreamscape

I think I finally got the date situated right in my mind and in this book – woohoo! And, I have a desk! Trudged 20 or so blocks south to 108th lumberyard called (it’s true) “Wood-O-Rama”… purchased necessary 2x4s, trudged 20 or so blocks back w/what I began to fear might be a fag of uselessly short sticks. But no! Home again, hammered the mess together, slung the foam core door (desk surface) on top and… too high!! Forgot about the added 4 inches per side from crossbeam plus 2 more from door thickness. And so I sit w/my arms raised absurdly high from the shoulder, peering across a plane turned Serengeti through perspective, at a dim, moonish monitor glowing somewhere near the horizon. Oh well.  

But I was happy, there, at my new, strange desk, whistling whilst typing a letter to mama while the gray turned to drizzle outside and glazed a fire escape into a shining urban sculpture. The gray mist receded along the depth of the chasm which frames my view. I’ve got but one window in my room but still can’t do justice to the majesty of this modest and abbreviated peephole into the cityscape, but there it was. Suffice to say: the raw, lonely beauty of it made me want to sing. Which I most certainly did not! Or maybe I did. That moment is forever lost, like tears in rain, and better so if so, believe me (and A, or M, if fate somehow finds you, someday, reading this, I know that you are laughing).


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