The Great Plotnik

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Isabella is Learning to Skip

Isabella wants a tuna sandwich. The Plotniks stop at Subway. To get water you have to press a small lever underneath the Mr. Pibb dispenser. Every time Plottie presses the water lever, holding his cup underneath it, a chemical red liquid shoots out of the next spigot over, which is Hi-C Flaming Punch. It paints his hand bright chemical red and is very, very sticky.

Turns out the water spigot is empty and there are no restrooms in the Subway.

An elderly but well dressed woman walks in, rushes over to the soft drink dispenser, steals all the straws and runs out.

Brooklyn is nicer in the winter when it's cool than it is on the first day of autumn when it's still hot. Plot and Duck aren't used to East Hot anymore. West Hot isn't sticky, especially when you don't have Hi-C Flaming Punch sticking to your hands and wrists.

Everything is an accommodation. For this many people to live in this small a space, people have to agree. They agree they all are miserable, but that misery is ok because they are also excited to be living together where so many fascinating things happen, where so many interesting people intersect.

It is probably like this in a bee hive. We wonder why all those bees are satisfied to tuck themselves down in that hive to work for the Queen, work work work and then they die. The reason must be that they like it. There must be some secret hidden in the psyches of all living things that tells us to merge, to become part of the mass, to work work work and then when we die they give us a new gasket.

Isabella is going Brooklyn. She says "I have juice every mawning." She says "I'm holdin the doe-aw open, Mommy." It takes as long to walk from Lafayette Avenue to Myrtle Avenue with B-Bone as it would with Mummy Plotnik. She stops to look at everything. Everything. She says "Come find me, Papa. Let's take giant steps, Papa. Look at my shadow, Papa."

She wants the pumpkin-colored plastic headband at Walgreen's. "Why, of course," say Papa and Bobo. The sales clerk is a large teenager who wears a short sleeved shirt and on her arm is an enormous tattoo that says E B O N Y and is festooned with geometric shapes. On her Walgreen's shirt is a tiny white name tag that says EBONY and was probably unnecessary.

Brooklyn seems to be working class losing out to middle class. The working class is hanging on and the middle class is expanding to the East. Well, not expanding, pushing. Middle class people have discovered Bedford Stuyvesant and they are pushing the people who live there already further East. Bed-Stuy is the neighborhood of "Do The Right Thing," of endless police sirens, the place, when Plot and Duck lived in Manhattan thirty five years ago, that was all about junkies and abandoned factories and people getting in Plotnik's taxicab with a lead pipe.

Now it's all about the pizza and the beautiful old brownstones and the schools and proximity to the A Train.

If Plottie lived here now he would buy a brownstone in Bed Stuy. If you're a bee, you may as well climb on into the hive.

But The Great Plotnik is not a bee. He is a California Poppy and he's got a Queen already. And it's hot. And they haven't had any pizza yet.


At 11:33 AM, Blogger mary ann said...

This is such a beautiful post and it sounds like you're having a great time. Love to all!

At 8:04 PM, Blogger Karen said...

Enough with the heat already. This is not hot. Tomorrow will be hot. Winter in Brooklyn is not cool. Winter is freakin nasty. I think you're trying to push the locals over the edge. When are you coming over?


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