written upon waking
on a jumbo jet plane that lands in a vacant lot
“where are we?” i ask the girl next to me
“looks like we’ve landed in burundi,” she says.
puts her hand on my arm
“better gather your stuff”
exit the plane and everyone starts running as if trying to escape from something.
flight attendant calls out
“the passport office is across the street!”
i grab all my bags (three – two shoulder-mounted carry ons and a small suitcase w/ no wheels), run to the other end of the dusty vacant lot and enter a colonial house.
a woman rushes into the kitchen
“the passport office?” i ask, reaching into my carry-on bag to produce my passport.
“across the street,” she says. “Two One Four Seventh Avenue. This is Two Four One. Everyone gets confused.”
“Oh,” I say.
Leave the house. Get out to the street. Looking at the numbers as i walk .
Then, smash-cut to a restaurant with my family.
taking off my winter coat, i turn from the table for a second as I place my hat, gloves and scarf into the coat’s sleeve. i turn back to hang it on my chair and someone has taken my seat.
from behind, i recognize this person as a former neighbor who couldn’t stand me (the feeling was almost mutual, though i took the high road). he is now jammed in and making friendly conversation with my mother and brother.
“don’t worry,” says my father. “things are bound to change.”
“well, i gotta go to the rest-room,” i say, slamming my outerwear onto the table and heading to a set of stairs on the far side of the restaurant.
down into the dank.
slimed walls, blackened wet floors. steam everywhere.
find the unisex bathroom.
two toilets. one low and and dry. the other high (~3-4 feet off the ground), almost overflowing with a frothy blue milky gurgle, but the liquid is staying just under the rim in a bubbling cold-boil.
decide to use the high one though questioning the choice out loud to myself.
as i’m relieving myself, awkwardly, a crazy skinny nerd kid with coke-bottle glasses bursts into the bathroom, spouts out gibberish words, bends down by the high toilet and proceeds to drink from the frothy blue gurgle.
“filet of fish is a filibuster of french fried forgeries and fickle…” he just goes on and on
“hey!” i call out. “I’m using this!”
the kid suckles his mouth over the side of the toilet, catching a mouthful of the liquid as it splashes up to the rim, stands up, looks down and spits it all onto my right converse high top
“what the fuck!” i scream and jam him up against the wall
he knocks his head on the tile and begins to moan more gibberish
woman runs into the bathroom and pulls me off of him
“what are you doing?” she screams at me
“he attacked me with filth” i respond with force.