Sunday, May 25, 2008

Park


Yesterday I went to the Guggenheim to see the exhibit by Cai Guo Qiang: I Want To Believe. Unfortunately, by the time I got there, there was a line to enter the museum, which I've never seen at the Guggenheim. A straight line at that: surely the queue should have been rounded? Regardless, I left without seeing the exhibit. I want to believe, but I'm not going to wait in line to do so.

Too nice a day to be disappointed, I went to Central Park. I walked for a while in looking-without-thinking mode, and watching the people play and interact, I was overcome with a sense of euphoria, mixed with feeling like an idiot for being so happy that I was on the verge of tears. A guy was playing the vibes and a short distance away, a duo of girls sang while playing violin and acoustic guitar. I searched for a spot where I could hear both equally, hoping to mix Scott Joplin's "The Entertainer" with Guns & Roses' "Sweet Child O' Mine." At one point, I thought of the park as Heaven, except that most of the people were white. I sat on the ground, taking photographs of birds and running my hands through the grass as if I was patting the Earth on the head.

It was a familiar sensation. On July 12, 1997, my friend Lynn and I took Ecstasy and went to Central Park. The reason I know the exact date is that Sleater Kinney was playing a free show in the park, and to my ears at the time, their music sounded like RUMBLE RUMBLE RUMBLE "Yeah! Yeah! Yeah!" which I now know is not a bad description of their sound. We sat there talking and I ran my fingers through the grass and I felt good. But after yesterday, I wonder if it wasn't the Ecstasy so much as it was the park.

I feel its necessary to record these moments of bliss, of pure joy at being alive, to remember when things in life aren't so good.

11 comments:

Iva said...

Thank you for telling us about it...it is beautiful.
Mom

erin said...

"I want to believe, but I'm not going to wait in line to do so."

This should be written on our family crest. That's about as Hanlon as you can get.

Bob Fingerman said...

You, sir, are touched by the Muse.

Or something like that.

the hanged man said...

It's not the first time I've been accused of being "touched."

Julie said...

Two points;One, not wanting to wait is the Hughes Family Motto. Waiting in line rarely bothered Dad.
Two,I'm fascinated by by the way you just let Mom know you've taken ectasy, but it was so poetic she didn't care - you're good.

the hanged man said...

Ssssshhh! I'm hoping that part just sort of slipped past without notice. Besides, it was 11 years ago and this journal did start begin with my tales of getting super-high in Amsterdam.

erin said...

Julie--okay, true. Dad could wait in line forever. I was thinking of the 4 of us, and our last name is Hanlon. And, we hate waiting in line. At least I do. Really, this is about me.

John--I think the fact you are talking about ecstasy 11 years ago helps. Now, if you called Mom one day and said, "Hi Mom! I'm on ecstasy! Wooo!" Then she might be concerned. Besides, she found the Amsterdam entries very funny.

Kate said...

i love this.
i totally agree about recording those moments.

lynn said...

Holy cow! I haven't been here in a while, and there I am, namechecked in the very first entry! Wait, or is it the last? I can't tell - I'm on Ecstasy...

Lynn

Iva said...

I think that Erin has hit the nail on the head...what can I do about it at this point?
Mom

david calamoneri said...

Hippy!