Tuesday, May 31, 2022


I put the penultimate load of things we’re moving to storage in the truck and, as I’m walking back, I pass a man staring down at his phone, and he’s doing the typical zombie shuffle of the hypnotically online, sort of meandering back-and-forth across the sidewalk, but I pass him much closer than a typical New Yorker would deem acceptable without any reaction from him, which automatically makes him suspicious. He continues to linger a little too close to the truck, so Katie stays downstairs to keep an eye on our stuff while I run back up to the apartment.

A little later, after we’ve finished loading and are driving the truck back to the storage place, Katie spots him again, this time crossing the street several blocks away from our house, and even as he’s crossing the street, he’s still staring into his phone, walking like he's mildly intoxicated. We decide that our suspicions of him were entirely unfounded, and he’s just really into whatever he’s watching on his phone, and, while his behavior is kinda creepy, he’s not a criminal or anything.

Nobody But Us In Here

“Watch out,” the man mumbles as I swing the exit door outwards, nearly hitting him on my way out of the market. The syrup I was looking for was no where to be found, and I only have a couple of hours before my guests arrive, so I’m in a bit of a rush.

And anyway, I didn’t touch him, or even mildly inconvenience him, so what’s the big deal, and what was he doing walking on that side of the sidewalk anyway?

I’m a block away before I realize I’m having another argument with a person who isn’t even there, and who has likely already forgotten about me, to boot.

Monday, May 30, 2022


We’ve gone back and forth on these shoes for almost a half-hour, and she still can’t decide. As she tries on the sandals one more time (never mind that they haven’t changed, color, size, or shape in any way since the last time she tried them on) I can feel my shoulders ratcheting up toward my ears, and a cold dislike creeping into my chest. 

But what if she was Katie, or my sister, or my mom? I would hope that someone would be patient with them, and I realize that every person I sit with to try on shoes, every person I meet on the subway, all my co-workers and bosses and friends, are all just going out into the world, looking for things, trying to get stuff done, and all of them do this with various degrees of faith that people will be nice to them, patient with them, kind and understanding, and so I take a breath, smile, and say, “So how do they feel?"

Sunday, May 29, 2022

Bodies at Rest/In Motion

The train is stopped between stations - somebody pulled the emergency brake and it takes awhile to reset it since apparently the whole thing has to be done manually - so here we are, waiting to move.

Katie holds my hand, her fingers tracing my index finger knuckle, ruffling the sparse hair and then smoothing it down again. This is the shape of my body, I think to myself, this boundary of skin in which my consciousness currently resides. 

The guy across from us stomps his foot in frustration at the delay, but when I look up, he looks completely bored and still, as if he never moved at all. 

Friday, May 27, 2022

A Splash Of Cold Water

The water in the shower runs warm down my body, and I close my eyes to feel it better. I flex my fists and breathe in steam and feel the boundaries of my body against the air and the water and the world.

The thought intrudes suddenly, bringing with it a certain regret, that one day, without a doubt, I will be dead, and that one day shortly after that one there will be no one who remembers that once I was alive.

“I really should start writing my Four Each Day again,” I think, and turn the water as cold as I can make it.