Friday, August 27, 2010

blinking "01"

You know what's a good record? Elephant Shoe is a good record.

Arab Strap, Elephant Shoe (most of which is in the YouTube playlist above)

When I got my first little mp3 player - a Rio something from Radio Shack that could hold 100 songs if you ratcheted the quality down;  a two-digit track number its sole readout - one of the first albums I put on it was this one and I would skulk the office in Kansas City silently with "Cherubs" throbbing from therein, blinking "01" at me.

I was walking up this huge spiral staircase they had, exhausted from overwork and a relatively new baby and saw the first snow fall against the massive atrium windows to "I see cherubs swarming all around..." and a heartbeat.

I can taste the cheese fries at the terrible little bar where we ate lunch nearly every day. I remember one guy had a motorcycle with a sidecar and we tore off to that bar in it one day. Riding in a sidecar is so weird because you turn laterally, like no lean into anything. It was like being on the turn of a conveyor belt: straight ahead... pivot....straight ahead. Another guy was a stock car racer and he had removed the interior door panels and glovebox and most of the dash to make whatever souped-up piece of shit he drove lighter, and it was a much more terrifying a ride than the sidecar. My own car had exhaust problems and developed a habit of stalling. I ended up driving to lunch one day and a co-worker told me he was too scared to ride back with me and within days, we got a new car. Something about the winter on the Kansas/Missouri line promotes ignoring the shoddy state of one's conveyance through life. You're just happy to get there.

I remember walking all the way to the Starbucks through the crunchy ice, at least a 20 min trip each way along the vast arc of a slippery sidewalk in the neighborhood behind the building a with Elephant Shoe going and someone was on the far end of the parabola coming this way and we met at the middle and it was really weird. We smiled weakly when we passed. It's what planets do on long, slow orbits.

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