head throb. heatwave. temperature peaking at 113 degrees. i lay on the living room floor, beneath the white overhead fan with all the lights off, blinds snapped shut. tongue still stuck to my teeth: my migraine slows all reactions. like a pant—take two, three little blue pills; pain clears. the rest of the day is mine. spend six hours sitting in the wooden folding chair, typing up three months worth of “notes” for the clitoris project: the female spotted hyena’s six inch clit; henry miller’s “fucked out cunts”; gershon legman’s first brush with erotica: sitting on the floor of his mother’s closet, among a forest of dresses and panties, he reads through volumes of havelock ellis, which his mother kept hidden with all the other “forbidden” texts in the back of her closet.
when i am too tired to read or take walk or fall asleep, i do what i always do, stare out the window. bank tellers in subdued colors swish past, fan themselves with the palms of their hands. beneath the stucco awning to the left, on the 8x10 stucco platform, business men adjust their cuffs, wait for the metro. they wait and wait. the neighbor’s white window with little white shutters, white paint on the glass, even white curtains insofar as transparent gauze can be “white.” sometimes the white window is open, and other times, a small white hand tugs it shut.
first flush of evening traffic then steady accumulation. cars moving in a single mass up del mar, down arryo blvd. beyond this street, another: stiff palm fronds, clumps of green offset by 20ft streetlamps , the occasional weed spidering across the concrete. stink bug on the sill, its mad patience, trying to fly with half its body crushed by a black ashtray.
there are thirty-six single unit apartments in my building. three floors with long long brightly lit halls, like a hotel, with light red carpet, clung close to the floorboards. the number on each door is fake gold. #206. the walls: paper thin, white interrupted by more white or the occasional picture, poster, tattered tapestry. already the cacophony: four different tvs, two phone conversations, a lone dog scratching at the door of his apartment, howling every six, ten minutes. delivery men clutching plastic bags filled with every kind of food; they pound on the door or buzz the call box, punching whatever number into the ten digit key pad lit by a red motion sensor. more often than not, the wrong apartment is called. instead of eating my usual rice and beans, i fantasize about eating my neighbor’s curry or “southern style” wet bbq; my whole face smeared with its gaudy red sauce.