Sunday, April 10, 2011

Barber Pole

On 9th Ave:

Somewhere in the 40s.

16 years ago today it wasn't Sunday, but Monday. And it was Monday night, sometime after 8 when I got a curious call from a friend in New Jersey. "Have you seen him?"

I thought it was strange he was asking me this on a Monday night.

"He didn't come to work and nobody's heard from him all day. We think he might have come into the city. His girlfriend hasn't heard from him either."

Well of course I'd give the word if I heard anything. It was odd, but I wasn't particularly worried. Later that night I was having an internet chat with someone I had gotten to know in an AOL room. I told her that a friend of mine had gone missing. I said, "If he's dead, I hope I get his bass."

We say these things. We say this ridiculous stupid things. We say them because of course there's a reasonable explanation for why he didn't show up at work. We say them because even if we covet someone's musical instrument (and someone who could play it better than you could ever dream of), we don't actually want the thing, and especially not that way. We say these things because in reality, everything is fine. All is well. He just wandered off for a day but nothing terrible has happened. Of course not. Terrible things don't happen to us.

Terrible things never happen.

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