sex and urban reality

yesterday i walked out of work floating on air. i'd just completed my twelfth day at my fancy new job at mit, during which time i:

-finished transcribing an interview i'd done with a theory professor examining not just extraterrestrial communication but the actual ideas underpinning communication itself as a social function

-finally overcome my fear of my predecessor's filing system and jumped right in, already making plans for how to make it better

-given my first solo tour of frank gehry's stata center to a group of twenty upward bound students.

i felt witty and urbane, intelligent and snappy. i have brain power, organizational skills, and a phenomenal job, and i was wearing a bright pink dress and heels in the rain. as i strutted along, i passed a group of girls, one of whom said "for my birthday, guess what i got? the complete sex and the city!"

and i smiled all full of self-satisfaction and thought, darling, i wrote my thesis on that! it was an insightful, possibly ground breaking look at the ideas underpinning the ways we make ourselves in cities. am i not the most charming, sharp, enviable creature you've ever met?

and then my heel promptly got caught in the sidewalk, stopping me short while i tried to untangle myself. i may have conceived of my thesis purely because carrie bradshaw is the only other person, living, fictional or dead, whose footwear seems to conspire to put her in her place more often than mine does to me.

with that said, it was sweet to think of the way my favorite cities seem to, on a fundamental level, have things saved up to keep me from getting too grand or carried away with seeming, reminding me to focus on what i am: a fabulous, if clumsy, girl who's just learning all of this from scratch. the glamour is fine for a television show, and it made for a spectacular thesis.

but every time I get splashed by water in an SUV, or stub my toe coming out of the T, i try to think of it as boston's tough love way of telling me to remember: remember the mundane. remember its beauty. ultimately, to remember myself. if that means tripping on the occasional sidewalk, i think i'll take it.


today i rode the t in a powersuit and sharp, sensible heels and felt jittery and stripped of something essential, worried and on edge, frightened and on the wrong team.

tonight i came back to somerville, put my piercing back in and took my bra off, threw on a dress and cowboy boots and went to see jose gonzalez at the mfa. his show was soothing, lush, lulling, quiet, wistful, driving, plaintive, primal and achingly lonely. i closed my eyes and let the patterns of the lights play on the operating theater ceiling of my brain and it was as if a disembodied someone was singing in my ear. it carried me like the gulf of mexico: i felt clean.


five years of college resulted in extensive training in semiotics, photography, installation art, situationist derives, flanerie - and a useless liberal arts degree. now that i've moved to a city, watch me attempt to put my studies to avocational use (while holding down a real job to pay off those pesky student loans).