For lack of a better title. I don’t know what to call this dude, but I enjoyed tracking him all over Tribeca. Presumably done by Graffiti artist C?

tribeca sticker bug C

tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug Ctribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug Ctribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C tribeca sticker bug C


My last weekend in New York my two ballerina girl friends and I went clubbing. Here is my stream of consciousness from this experience. I feel like many girls will be able to relate…


Is it really dark in here or is everyone black?

Well I think that one guy is Indian.

Shimmy through the crowd, try not to shove anyone or get the awkward backend of a grind.

Alright we’ve staked our dance-space claim. Three white girls in a corner. Fringe property is not ideal generally, but we’ll make it work. Besides, I appreciate the extra space to move. Also we are near the DJ which seems cool to me.

Bustin a move, bustin a move, throw my hands up, sexy hands, doing things with my hips, dancin, dancin.

Oh shit that girl just made props/respect hand signals at Heather! Girl’s got skills erybody gonna recognize.

Dancin, dancin, dancin some more.

Omg the photographer just was like “Oh no, girl” and started dancing with Heather. I am so jealous. She is literally making guys stop doing their jobs to come dance with her. Dayummmmm.

I wonder if any guys are gonna dance with me? Probably not, because I’m ugly. Also my braids are on top of my head. Guys don’t get that.

But I might as well scope out the place.

Dance and twirl, dance and twirl. Looking sexy and 360 view.

A guy just said/club-shouted at me we’re killin it. Ballerinas know what’s up.

I guy wants to dance with me! I feel validated.

But really why? I look like Heidi that  just got off work and then tried to do that day-to-night transition I read so much about in magazines but got horridly confused mid transformation and went Daisy-Duke. I have braids like a swedish milkmaid and have gotten hot enough to resort to tying my button down shirt into a crop top. In no normal situation would I approve of this look.

He just asked me if I was foreign… This explains a lot.

Ok hips side to side.

Ok hips circle.

Holy shit is the DJ really wearing a floral tank top? Wtf has our society come to? It’s like the consumerism machine has tricked him into thinking he’s a hipster because he bought that stupid ironic floral shirt, but really that just makes him more a part of the machine. What a damn fool.

Ug I’m bored. I’m glad I feel validated in my man-attracting abilities, but I’m ready to be an independent woman again.

A single lady, if you will.

I just want to dance and be free. Now I’m stuck with this dude upon my back who only knows two moves. Plus it’s not like I can syncopate my dance moves or play with the musicality at all. Homie can’t follow that.

Hips side to side.

Hips circle.

I am excellent at pretending I know all these songs. There are basically two formulas: 1)Put your hands up when the song says put your hands up. 2)Jump and act excited when everybody else jumps and acts excited.

Why is he squeezing my belly? It’s not even squeezing, it’s like a flat-handed paw. Is this respectful groping? Or is it a tummy check…?

I wonder what it’s like to be a guy. I mean we can’t see them so we make up hand signals for our girlfriends to tell us if they’re ugly or hot or if we want to be extracted. But they really can’t see us much better. I wonder if they’re hand signaling between each other too? Maybe there’s a whole hand signaling world going on in the club that we don’t know about.

Probably not, boys aren’t that smart.

Well they can see the backs of our heads, so I guess that’s something. Plus they’re the ones on the prowl, so presumably they got a good look at us before they made their move.

Hey! I actually know this song! I am revived from my philosophical reverie of paired-dancing boredom!

Wait. I don’t want my renewed enthusiasm for dancing to be misinterpreted as enthusiasm for this dude or extra sluttiness. Ack, quandary!

I just want to be free! How do I escape the confines of this monotonous dance prison without insulting the dude? For some reason politeness matters to me. Even though I have never met this guy and he is rubbing all over me. This is kind of an ironic social situation.

Ok I could jump from him to go dance with my girl friend. Then it’s like, “Hey I just wanna dance with my friend now,” not, “I am rejecting you.” The problem is I don’t particularly like grinding up on girls. It’s not that I have anything against lesbians, but I do not happen to be one, so I do not enjoy this activity. Well I will dance slightly closer to her and maybe he will get the idea.

She says he’s hot. What ho? I really cannot see this dude. But for some reason I now have slightly more tolerance for dancing with him. I am aware this says something fucked up about me.

He club-shouted his name to me. Obviously I have no idea what he said.

I club-shouted my name back. Are we supposed to have a conversation now? This is ridiculous.

Aha Heather wants to get air. Opportunity for escape!

Shimmy back through the crowd. Hold hands or else we might lose someone to the void.

Freedom and fresh, cool night air! Despite all my griping about the lack of artistic dance-freedom, that was really quite fun:)

img_2138 img_2144 img_2160 img_2163 img_2170 img_2183 img_2200 img_2202   img_4444 img_4503 img_4509 img_4513 img_4526 img_4528 img_4710 img_5067 img_5089 img_5093 img_5166 img_5174 img_5213 img_5249 img_5301 img_5413 img_5435 img_5441 img_5463 img_5541 img_5553 img_5554 img_5557 img_5562 img_5623 img_5663 img_5682 img_5689 img_5744 img_5782 img_5786 img_5801 img_5815 img_5828 img_5867

The front side of 5 Pointz is obvious, and yet people still walk by without bothering to look. I guess if you don’t come to Queens especially to see this, it might not be on your mind to put off your day’s tasks to appreciate art, even on this mammoth scale. But when they notice me stopped on the sidewalk, it suddenly occurs to them to stop as well. They crane their necks upwards, step in a little closer. And then are on their way.

Along the side of 5 Pointz a guard patrols. Signs say No Trespassing, No Climbing On the Roof. My eyes claw over these as they search the best way to scale the wall. The roof is clearly a treasure trove of works, but for now unattainable. I imagine further inquiry could get me a tour, but not today.

This side street is lazy with traffic. I step farther away to see more, back up all the way into the parking lot of the city buses. So this is where they go to sleep. Art winds up the fire escapes, creeps into the cracks of the windows, seeps behind screens. Color spatters the sidewalk. Painted faces look up my skirt. Poles, tree trunks, bear the stripes of the test-spray, the artist’s warm up, 1-2, 1-2.

At the very back a parking lot borders on unused subway tracks. Chain-link fence is cut, and pulled back, and colored like everything else. Dead trains on the dead tracks sit and watch.

Through the parking lot to the back corner, the second side-street framing 5 Pointz begins. This is my favorite part, because it is the place least like a museum, and therefore most pleasing for me to see art in.

It smells like a pond. Muddy, stagnant water pools there, putrid. The fetid smell lies low on the ground. My shoes squelch in the mud. Overhead the subway roars, rattles, screeches, squeaks. Creaking like a wooden roller coaster. White vans pull up and unload. Men sit on stoops and stare unabashedly, but no one really bothers me. Police cars drive in and out of view on the main street ahead. The wind blows and the stench of garbage, then falafel wafts through. In openings in the wall, too door-less to be called doorways, I see Hillal Carts. This is where they must come from. Middle-Eastern men hustle around them, cooking and prepping for the day. Trucks idle outside.

A deep rumble. Water drips on me from high above. There’s a roar, groan, shriek, sound of a knife being sharpened as the subway tracks overhead. Shadows move on the walls.

Every surface- wall, sidewalk, fence, pole, sign, is scrawled upon. Every garbage can has a face or something to say.

I think it’s quite ideal.

img_2796 img_2798 img_2801 img_2811 img_2816 img_2817 img_2827 img_2831 img_2833 img_2846 img_2848 img_2851 img_2856 img_2859 img_2861 img_2866 img_2869 img_2879 img_2884 img_2896 img_2903 img_2915 img_2918 img_2921 img_2924 img_2933 img_2952 img_2958 img_2959 img_2968 img_2977 img_2989 img_2992 img_3003  img_3008 img_3016 img_3020 img_3030 img_3045_-_version_2 img_3052 img_3063 img_3072 img_3087 img_3092 img_3098 img_3099 img_3106 img_3108 img_3112 img_3121 img_3129 img_3131 img_3135 img_3140 img_3142 img_3144 img_3152 img_3155  img_3160 img_3161 img_3168  img_3172 img_3177 img_3188 img_3196 img_3200 img_3205 img_4748

In another moment down went Alice after it, never once considering how in the world she was to get out again.


Bushwick, BrooklynIMG_4680

Bushwick, BrooklynIMG_2225

Soho, NYIMG_4530

Tribeca, NYIMG_5402

Bushwick, BrooklynIMG_2466

Bushwick, BrooklynIMG_4549Tribeca, NYIMG_5425

Soho, NYIMG_2136

Soho, NYIMG_4755

Bushwick, BrooklynIMG_2670Five Points, QueensIMG_2872

Bushwick, BrooklynIMG_2763

Bushwick, BrooklynIMG_4644

It was much pleasanter at home,” thought poor Alice, “when one wasn’t always growing larger and smaller, and being ordered about by mice and rabbits. I almost wish I hadn’t gone down the rabbit-hole–and yet–and yet–…
― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland

Bushwick, Brooklyn

IMG_2461 IMG_2766 IMG_4578

Hoboken, New Jersey


I was quite surprised to spot this little birdy so far from the nest…


IMG_2222 IMG_2347 IMG_2442 IMG_2516 IMG_2632 IMG_2652 IMG_2714 IMG_2791 IMG_3210 IMG_4578 IMG_4615 IMG_4757


It is about simple awareness — awareness of what is so real and essential, so hidden in plain sight all around us, that we have to keep reminding ourselves, over and over: “This is water, this is water.”

-David Foster Wallace

IMG_2221 IMG_2356 IMG_2366  IMG_2382 IMG_2386 IMG_2392 IMG_2375IMG_2397 IMG_2478 IMG_2485 IMG_2508 IMG_2511 IMG_2533 IMG_2541 IMG_2544 IMG_2547 IMG_2561 IMG_2569 IMG_2617 IMG_4583 IMG_4589 IMG_4601 IMG_4608

I’ve never been to Brooklyn, and I’d like to see what’s good…

IMG_2208 IMG_2221 IMG_2227 IMG_2260 IMG_2273 IMG_2283 IMG_2313 IMG_2322  IMG_2328IMG_2329 IMG_2332 IMG_2340 IMG_2360 IMG_2473 IMG_2586 IMG_2603 IMG_2639 IMG_2669 IMG_2673 IMG_2691 IMG_2701 IMG_2705 IMG_2717 IMG_2727 IMG_2731 IMG_2740 IMG_2742 IMG_2754 IMG_2767 IMG_2771 IMG_2776 IMG_4550 IMG_4562 IMG_4566 IMG_4568 IMG_4572 IMG_4577 IMG_4605 IMG_4626 IMG_4635 IMG_4652 IMG_4664 IMG_4674 IMG_4677 IMG_4684 IMG_4688 IMG_4691IMG_2773

Spring yields, Paris’s time is up. It’s summer in New York City.

When you arrive in New York you always realize you haven’t brought enough clothes. Moreover, the sneakers you dutifully packed to assuage that nagging common sense of yours are suddenly turned upon with a scornful eye. Walking all day in heels not only seems perfectly practical, you realize now it’s the only proper footwear to be considered. If things get desperate you’ll abdicate your platforms for flats, but by God you’ll not be seen in tennis shoes.

On the street everybody is eyeing everybody else, sizing up their outfits, their attractiveness, their craziness. But there’s a security in knowing that as often as their eyes fall upon you, it only lasts a blink, and then they’re out of your world again. In the short-term memory of this constant promenade you can be anyone you like, confident that whatever judgement you face will only last as long as it takes you to pass your appraiser by.

In the morning, the sidewalks are lined with donut wagons, coffee stops. In the afternoon- Halal carts, cupcake trolleys, smoothie shacks, roasted-nut rickshaws, frozen yogurt trucks. Dark skinned women are selling sliced mangos in a plastic bag with hot sauce, a snack you’ve never heard of, and can’t muster an inclination to try. On the subject of fruit, why is fruit on the street so insanely cheap compared to in the grocery stores? On the subject of grocery store prices, let’s not go there- it’s too painful a subject, we try to suppress the thought.

Walking down the street, men will purr at you, honk from their trucks, wink from the passenger’s seat. On the outside you cock a disdainful eyebrow, but as you walk away there’s a renewed swish in your hips betraying your internal, “Yeah, still got it.”

In lower TriBeCa “The Shirts” purposefully walk the streets on their way out to coffee or back to an important meeting. Black dress pants, light blue button-down  shirt is the dress code of professionalism. Standing in front of Citigroup feels like standing in a strange aviary- the shirts flit in and out all around you, flapping and fluttering in the wind.

Any tall, beautiful woman you see on the street you mentally label Model, and you’re probably right. Strange fashions start to grow on you. All these women wearing potato-sack full-length rompers… perhaps you should try it. As long as you’ve got on your wedges.

Museum exhibitions come and go. You wait in line to see upside-down waterfalls, indoor rain, nude people, cartoons. Free exhibitions lure you off the street to discover some the newest art concept of some draped fabric or a box comprising a plastic spoon, a leaf, and whatever the rest of that shit was.


Trips to Brooklyn are remembered by the sight of greenery and the taste of some sought out specialty food- pork belly, famous thin-crust pizza, chocolate-dipped key-lime pie on a stick. Trips to Queens are concrete, bricks, boards, and broken glass. Coney Island is a crowd and a racket; a spin around and hurtle down.

The subway roars in the shadows. It’s always so much more humid and hotter down below. In the tunnels of its lair, the beast rushes, rockets, devours its way towards you. The wind preceding its approach is like a foul breath on your face, and yet nonetheless you’re slightly grateful for the breeze.

Between your breasts your bra rests always slightly damp. Stand too long catching up with a friend on the street and the sun starts to juice you like a lemon, drops of sweat beading your hairline and rolling down your back. Your hair always looked better in the morning.

In parks all over the city, thousands sit to eat, to rest their legs, to cool in the shade. A musician coaxes soulful notes from his instrument, soon joined the banging of a drum, or a bucket. A dancer follows, tapping, twirling, spinning. On paths the runners and bikers form an endless stream, an endless exercise.

The moon rises, the city glows and throbs with life. No one has to tell you the city doesn’t sleep. Spend that time directing me to this large apple I’ve heard so much about.

You go. Eyes slide past the homeless, the begging, the soliciting. Do you ever want a Metro News? Hands on the metal pole, weight shifting, lurching over the tracks. Feet slapping the pavement. Shoes heating up. Looking at signs, your phone, faces, graffiti, clothes, stickers on the mail-box. Your dress swishes around your legs, the weight of your purse bumps reassuringly against your waist, pulls achingly down on your shoulder.

It’s a time and a place. It’s like your memory of Christmas- the years change but the setting is the same, the feeling is the same. All your memories fall in the same genre, set to a backdrop of sticky air, hot sun, damp sweat, rumbling trains, bustling crowds, tired feet, excitement. It comes every year, you flock every year. The city is full of sun and life, and you are full of the city.


Leave a Comment

Comments For This Post

January 2018
« Dec    

Recent Posts