Although I did not admit as much to my companions, I had one of the best burger experiences of my life tonight: a turkey burger (!) at the Old Town Bar. Its fresh, juicy simplicity, topped with three thick pickle slices, was almost enough of a sensual experience to drown out the surrounding, overwhelming din of drunken college girls who sounded like geese.
I'm assuming the rain brought this on: the trip home and much of the evening was freakish. There was a woman in the lobby of the Village Cinemas East who made amazing, insistent, high-pitched alien sounds, like an exotic bird in heat. Standing in front of the ritzy club at the northeast corner of Union Square we came across a whole, zoological spectrum of hipsters: boys wearing both Armani suits and John Deere caps; strutting peacock men in well-cut shirts; sassy girls with tight, tight jeans. A drunken man came up to me as I was standing outside the Old Town, and asked me if they served food; "Yes," I said; he said "How fast?;" and what could I say? "Medium fast." He stumbled in, tripping himself on the threshhold. And then there was a cellist playing an amplified "Swan" with electronic accompaniment in the Times Square subway station; and a purple pile of vomit on the platform; and several homeless men cleaning out or sorting through a giant duffle bag in the 2 train, debating the worth of some weirdly shaped piece of silver (a retainer? whose?). Dirty socks, gloves, papers came out... "This looks like a welfare form." Everything went onto the soaked and filthy floor. What futile bureaucrat gave him that form?
It was a weird New York Night; I am home, buttoned up in my apartment with the remnants of the Indian food I had for lunch, and thinking about a clean tomorrow.