It’s one degree out but the sun is shining and the air is crisp. I’m riding my bike on the West Side Highway going north towards the George Washington Bridge, to one of my favorite spots in NYC: right after the underpass of the bridge, up a steep heel, there’s an opening on the left hand side with a view of the bridge, the river, the trees, the skyline, filled with only the sound of silence. I listen to Roar by Katy Perry as I ride. I’m not ashamed to admit that I love this song.
This is the first bike ride of my thirties. Everything I did yesterday, I did for the last time in my twenties, and everything I do today, I’m doing for the first time in my thirties. Ten years ago I turned twenty. I had just come back from Boston where I visited my very first girlfriend and we had broken up. I had spent six months in the Navy Seals at that point but was dropped a crew, so I had four months to spend at home. I had all of the army and training in front of me. A lot of fears and unknown. For my birthday we went to see Mystic River. Continue reading
On the north east corner of 35th street and sixth avenue, lies an empty Chicken Nuggets Box. It has just recently been dropped, it seems. People are walking by and around, taking care not to step on it. A heavyset man in a baseball cap is the first one to step directly on it and keep moving. After that a domino effect kicks in and the box is stepped on and kicked. A small Asian man, a little kid in a hoodie, a woman on her phone.
We’re almost at 36th street now. A blonde woman in a business suit kicks the box across the sidewalk next to a line of people waiting for the bus. It looks like the box is just waiting for the bus like everyone else. As if the bus will come and the Chicken Nuggets Box will get on after the old lady in front of him and swipe his metro card and ride the bus back home to his family of Chicken Nuggets Boxes. His mother will clean him up and bathe him and scrub all the shoe filth off of him and pop his corners back up until he looks fresh and good as new. She’ll tuck him into bed and tell him she loves him and that tomorrow will be a better and brighter day. She’ll kiss him and close the lights and the Chicken Nuggets Box will forget that he spent twenty minutes of the day getting kicked around by people. Continue reading