Writing in Tabata Japan while trying to catch wifi from the neighbors

Starting To Write Again

I am trying to write again, just for myself, to see if I can possibly put something together that might resemble a narrative; a book.

I have been thinking of some ideas, that might work or that might not.

  • One was a girl walking along a street in a small town; she gets hit by a bus and dies.
  • Another one was of a black student who suspects that she is being lied to about how well black students are being integrated into white America.

Another one is just a discussion; an essay, about how Americans are not in tune with the rest of the world.  Just as you can’t expect a Japanese person to understand the civil rights movement as it was experienced in America, so how can an American expect to understand certain aspects of Japanese culture?  What would be the best vehicle for this?  I think of travelogues, but I am really not sure if there is a way that I can pull a travelogue off with the limited amount of travelling that I have done.

I wonder if there is some way to tie it into circus.

I like luridness, can I somehow make it a lurid tale of travelling through cities; trying to fit in as locals?

Can it be a love story?

Can it be a lust story?

A sexually-charged multi-cultural road trip across the world?

Encountering a million people along the way – roadtripping, performing – vignettes.  First person, like a diary, or a journal, but even more so as a confession or a discussion with a best friend.

Learning about life, meeting fucked-up people…

Everyone he meets shares a truth, so everyone he meets affects the way that he deals with everyone else, but this is a curse; people cannot understand the shit he is saying because they have not had the life that he has had; that is to say, that they simply cannot put everything into the same context.

She is unshaven down below, rubbing up against me in the dark.  My hands move as if in a panic as I try to touch every curve of her body at once as we whisper rudely, moving together.

“I will agree with you.  Not because I think you are right, but because you are certain that you are.  With my implicit complicity, you will lay your cards out on the table like a proud fortune-teller and predict the fate of our world.  And you might let me fuck you.”

The dark-haired, slender Polish woman I am agreeing with right now is not beautiful – she is smart.  A post-doctorate fellow in Molecular Biology, she is taking a week of from research at her university in Nyon.  In one hour, as the party sighs its last alcoholic breaths, we will leave together to wander down the famous Ramblas of Barcelona looking for an all-night coffee shop, and not find one.

We will pass unconscious junkies and overweight hookers spilling out of their white spandex.  A man dressed as a sailor will lose a fight with a parked car and tumble off a curve, break his teeth on the pavement and curse drunkenly in French.

Used needles will litter the urine-drenched back alleys that hide from the mercury-lighted marble flagstones that lead to the towering statue of Christopher Columbus, who will be forever pointing proudly westwards towards the new world while pigeons shit on his head.

I agree with Columbus.

I also agree with the pigeons.

But just now, the rum is making me smile and this is making her smile.  She is prettier when she smiles; she has nice teeth and full lips.  She is telling me about life in Poland when she was still a child.  She is telling me about how her mother died.  She is telling me about how her father doesn’t speak much.  She is telling me about her grandmother.

She is not smiling anymore.

Neither am I.

We have run out of things to talk about, so I touch her hand just as the overhead fluorescent lights flicker on and the music fades out abruptly.

“We should get coffee somewhere,” I say.

“We should,” she agrees.

And we step out into the salty Mediterranean air as the eastern sky blooms pink with sun.

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