Kay Rothman's MapSites -
Putting Lab School Writing on the Map

86th street between First and York

My One Place

A man in jeans with a pony tail and a goatee is running towards York, carrying a bouquet of pink and purple flowers. They look new and fresh, so I try to quickly sneak a whiff. But he runs right past me without taking notice. I keep walking, but I’m not really paying attention. I am still watching the man, and thinking about what I didn’t get to smell. But just in time I look dawn and quickly walk around what a dog had left behind earlier that day. I keep walking. I pass the Blockbuster on the corner, and just past it there is a boxed out garden to make the block more decorative. It is a windy day, and the bushes are yearning to pull out their roots, and do whatever a plant might do. Run around? Fly around? Could a plant fly if it wanted to? Would it be able to do anything if its roots were just out? I decide that I am being silly, and I move on. As I get to be about half way down the block, a group of three people walk past me. They are all wearing similar outfits and are all around the same height. But there is one specific thing that is extremely similar about them. They are all talking on their cell phones, silver and small, they all look the same. There is a woman walking, and she is eating something out of a brown paper bag. I couldn’t tell what is was, but I could tell that is it was messy and crumbly because her long black coat was covered in crumbs. She sees me notice, looks down, and brushes off the crumbs on her coat. Across the street there are the only 3 stores on the block. There is a garage, a small hair salon and a restaurant. The restaurant is a very interesting place. It has been through so many changes. Health food stores, delis, pizza places, and now it is a restaurant. And remember, that is only what I can remember. My building is on the corner, and as I come to the second to last building on the block, I see something very sweet. A little boy, who is maybe four years old, is holding hands with his father. They walk into the building, and I smile. As I am about to go into my building, I see something very odd. There are about five pigeons outside of my building. They are scurrying around, and taking fast little steps. Every once in a while, they stop to peck at the ground. I start to think about a dance that I did in my modern dance class. It was an improvisation where we would walk around, and have accents. Before we started, we pickeds two numbers between one and eight (counts) and would start to walk. Each step was a count, and on the counts that we chose, we would make an accent. I make a confused look, and I go into my building. I think about the fact that each block, even a block that nobody thinks about, (unless you live there or something) East 86th street between First and York, has interesting things to it, too. It isn’t Fifth Avenue, or around Columbus Circle, it is my home. My one place.

The story was posted on 2004-03-26