Monday, January 08, 2007


The past couple of days have been extremely positive. I have not gotten to the writing that I would like to do for this blog, but some unplanned things happened that were nice, just the same.

So, I must apologize to the King Cake that could have been. I decided to make Pots de Creme instead because I could not find the right color icings for the cake, nor could I decide if I should make a real traditional King Cake that involves making a dough (and yeast I think), or just making a moist bundt in a Fleur de Lis pan. Turns out that my family doesn't like dark chocolate and they found my choice in chocolate to be too bitter and strong. So the King Cake will have to wait till another free day. And, there are three ramekins of chocolate that will have to be disposed of. Maybe I will take it to work.

And to the exhibit at the Bronx Museum that could have been, I must apologize for forgetting that on Monday many places like the MET, MOMA and you, are closed. So the exhibit will have to wait, but Ava and I spent a nice day together on my day off. I walked her to NYU and waited outside on Waverly fidgeting with my phone on a day that felt like the breaking of winter rather than early January. I stood in my Mossimo jeans and soccer shoes like I was in some Italian movie and waited. I felt so cold, and a little down as I watched the people walk by. They seemed so disconnected or in the middle of a tedious humdrum that I do not envy. There is something about Washington Square Park that feels flat like a postcard, perfect in every dimension, but slick to the touch and hostile to the taste. Maybe it is because I remember when it was a little bit different, more like Saint Mark's Place.

And to the evening that might have been, I saw Perfume last night instead. I was disturbed by its premise, amused by its denouement and disappointed in its ending. But most of all I was disgusted by the anti-hero. Rat-mo and Ava had great commentary on the film, and I was spazzing out afterwards as usual, reciting all the things I know about these 18th century novels that incorporate Egyptian mysticism and issues of self awareness. All this happened in the cab. Again I must apologize for the subway ride that could have been.

And to the blog entry that could have been, I apologize again. I went to Labyrinth on 112th and Broadway and bought a book on fascism and the male body. Studying fascism has become a sort of past time for me, and I did not feel very attuned to writing about growing up black and in the South, specifically Andre and I riding to the projects from our middle class neighborhood. It is so expected of me as of late, especially in NYC. Back in Nashville, people would find my tales no more amusing than any other, but here they are transformed into a Briar Rabbit smorgasbord of Americana, the type romanticised by the cosmopolitans. After buying the book I walked down to a Haitian restaurant, bought a snack and walked home. I also decided I would watch Rome on HBO on Demand. It is more important than my Southern sex and cigarette tale that some critic is sure to call a sort of Black Huckleberry Finn. I could do with out the shame as a result of my labour this evening.

Besides, I find that the Roman Empire and its operation spark my imagination like reliving a past life. Throughout the movie Perfume I thought about Roberto Fernandez Retamar's book Caliban, and his declaration that the history of Western colonization is a series of Roman conquest re-incarnated. Is that why we think of Pre-Revolutionary France and The Antebellum South as epic backgrounds. The masters and the slaves, the lords and the servants, and the enlightened senatorial classes that rule appeal to someone. Or shall I say, it appeals to some sense of the Western World. Art surrounding its celebration is beginning to bore me. Sometimes I think its praise and critique are part of a class status lexicon, a way of being esteemed in some obtuse manner, a way of sniffing out who belongs to the ranks and who has not done the sufficient reading. What about all the worlds that could have been, if the need for empire and subjugation did not exist? Are there not times and lands in our human history where empire did not existed to such an organized and exploitative extent: otherwise, there would have been no where to colonize.

Lastly I must apologize to the dinner on Wednesday night in Brooklyn that will not exist. I was scheduled to read from a set of vignettes, but a key member and friend is going to move away and start a life somewhere else. Plus, I want to work on new installments, I have a problem to solve with the next two. So, Sylvia we will have to eat and share our ideas for illustrations on another day. Gregory, I hope to see you and your art work soon. Have a safe trip to the borders of our empire.

And Simone simply get better.

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