Friday, October 22, 2010
I smoke Parliament cigarettes. At all my jobs over the years I take a break two times a night and step outside to smoke one or two and look up at the sky. I inhale the moment and exhale the smoke towards the stars. In between my mouth and those stars are the thoughts that represent that moment. Sometimes I’d think about a girl, or the future, or how crazy people get when they’re inebriated. I’ve seen and thought about a lot of things. In each place, in each city, season, state, and age I investigate infinity, or at least the time remaining between now and forever. I dream because I can. I must. If I think hard enough I can imagine each individual view of the sky from each location. From the back of a steakhouse in my home town, from the back of a loud nightclub in Nassau County, from the Meat Packing District in downtown New York City, From the West Village, From Harlem, From Chelsea, from the alleyways behind Disney world, from the college bar in Upstate New York, all the way to Southern California. I’ve been working in bars a long time. They always make a man’s brain dive deeper. Deeper into himself, based on what he sees sinning or not sinning in front of him, deeper into music, deeper into a bottle or two, into the past, the future. Not the future because it relates to the past, but because you see how others are living their lives and how you are living yours. The future is always greener if you have a positive attitude, unless your present is nirvana. I didn’t grow up in Tibet. I don’t know what nirvana is, and the one man I know of who claimed to be the leader of it ended up shooting himself with a shotgun. I’ve come close to a lot of things. I’ve touched greatness with my hands and with my brain, and drank from a troth of dirt. I’ve danced all night long under lasers, in my sheets, in my head, and with mine and your demons. I dream more than I do, but I do dream. I win some, I lose some, but I’ve only been able to win as much as I have because I’ve lost so much, behind bars, in alleys, in others arms, in Brooklyn.
But I always work in a bar, and there’s always a back door to step out of and contemplate infinity or the myth of it. I’m just glad the smoke travels with me and I have a sky to look at.