It’s hindsight, but the summer of 2001 was so carefree. Oh, I had cares, listlessly pushing around the last pieces of a heart broken in the spring, really filling out the contours of some petty grievances with friends while becoming more friends with the friends who would be my tight friends in the next ten years, the exhilarating feeling of being generally peeved and deliciously, frightenedly, independent.
But from here, oh, here, I see myself and us all and because we had no idea what was coming, all of June-July-August is just aglow. Or whatever art practice descriptors apply: a bas-relief of freedom and fun, a monograph forever preserved, blah and blah.
I don’t know. Most of what I saw was from over the handlebars of the bike: the vanishing point of the L tracks over Lake street heading west, the discovery of dried, spilled chocolate on the street next to Blommer’s Chocolate factory,
The smell of the lake and acrid, cooked chocolate, and sewer gas from manhole covers in the Loop and pissed-in corners, and Coronas.
I bought this tape at Coconuts, which was in the new-ish retail space on Damen, Across from the Pontiac. Then I must have taped the most suitable songs for biking onto a second tape, abutting it with Madonna and...god, what else? Do I still have that tape? I don’t think I do. In my haste to move on and shed items (and after almost two decades of moving all my tapes around, I got rid of these mixes. I must look for it.
And, later, maybe I will think back on a more recent we-didn't-see-it-coming arc of sky, and what I saw under it, drawn-out September-to-February sunsets from Brown line windows, buildings moving past me, and me, always moving.