September 1st, 2001

I am one large sexy piece of manliness.

And I can stand to look at myself without a shirt on. In fact, I don't look half-bad.

Tonight, I did some cruising, on foot, but enjoying the sights of downtown Manhattan Island. I had forgotten, for the most part, how nice women are to look at. And before you make that sexism comment, or think what you were going to think, let me tell you about how I started out the evening having my heart wrenched.

It was on the subway train down to meet up with Chris that I saw a fairly pretty young lady. I was looking at her not so much because I'm a perverted lech, but because there was something wrong. I could tell. And, sure enough, once the train was moving, her eyes welled up and she looked about ready to cry.

Some of you know how I am about women, especially damsels in distress. I could go into my savior complex, or I could tell you to read A Catcher in the Rye. I don't think I'll do either just yet; and anyway, Catcher is not my story. As an author, I'm supposed to have a story of my own to tell, right? Some day.

There I sat, reading (still; I've been splitting time between it and Flatterland) Johnny Got His Gun, and laughing and smiling because I'd reached one of the happiest moments of the book. I look up, and this girl is on the verge of tears. Fuck. What can I do? Walk over to her and talk? I get off the train in two stops. So I look, and I smile, and she doesn't see me, or understand. Whatever it is, it's not that bad, my smile says. But maybe it is, because she's not hearing what I'm not saying. As I got off the train, I shot her a final plaintive smile, and my eyes fairly screamed: You are not alone. I think she saw. I was gone before I could read her face right. You don't just stop when getting off a train. Not in the City.

Today had the most remarkable weather. My brother had to move in to school today (Rutgers!) and we ran into about four seperate spurts of a big thunderstorm. It was also bright sunny for most of the day. So I was excited when the Raptorman himself IM'ed me an invitation to Stephanloft in Battery Park. I missed the damn bus (they run once an hour. BLECH!) so I was running late. Oh, well, no one showed up anyway. I wandered around downtown for a bit, admiring the river and the park, looking for a payphone to ring Chris' cel. Lovely weather. I called him, and we met up at his apartment, watched lots of TV (TiVo, technically. Sweet, sweet TiVo). We swapped stories and jokes and just fucking bonded. Then we went for food, and just walked and talked. There's a lot to be said for making friends. Chris has been, for the most part, a friend of a friend. Until tonight. Some awesome bonding went on, as it was just we two and the whole fuckin city. And it feels like just what I needed.
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