What a day! After my Blue Detective debacle of a morning, I waltzed into the city and saw a curious German film—The Strange Little Cat—in a New Directors/New Films press screening at the Museum of Modern Art. Afterward, still halfway in that poker-faced comedy about the life and times of a family kitchen and its pets, I wandered through the museum’s galleries of late 19th-century art, peering over people’s shoulders at Gauguins and Van Goghs and Matisses. What a way to look at such impertinent paintings, now heralded as sacrosanct. I walked down 6th Avenue to Union Square, ogling window displays of buttons and flowers and velvet trimmings, and munching from a little wax paper bag of cashews sold by a kind-faced, doleful-voiced street vendor. As I walked, I thought about how New York is like the kitchen I’d just watched: always changing, always staying the same. I thought about about how, as much as I like Brooklyn, Manhattan’s street smells—hamburgers and onions, hot dogs, pretzels, smoky and sweet nuts, quick gusts of trash and fancy flowers—trump all. And I thought about how alley cats like me—ladies of a certain age, ladies of a certain indestructibility, ladies of a certain scandalous independence—have been clicking in high heels down the city’s avenues for hundreds of years. I hope we always will.
I woke at 5:30 am to watch the True Detective finale because I knew not to watch it right before bed. I paused midway to bolster myself with a four-shot Americano and a chocolate croissant, and opened all the windows in my blue and gold nest to watch the rest with my small cat by my side. It didn’t help that it was dark outside at 7 am but, man, my efforts would have been all for naught anyway. I’m going to have nighmares tonight. What a series: So saturated in its own mythology that it seeps into your pores despite yourself. Some part of me will be watching that man with dead, wet eyes and scars on his chin fondling his half sister for the rest of my life.