Notes from the neighborhood

The Town Shop, a Broadway emporium that sells fine lingerie, announced it will be closed, except for “bra emergencies.” I have not yet interpreted this.

A long walk yesterday down Broadway — see above, re Town Shop. Not many pedestrians, not too many masks, either. Everything except for food stores is closed. It feels like some sort of all-encompassing holiday, all those days rolled into one — Easter, Christmas Day, New Year’s and Yom Kippur. Except there is today, too, and tomorrow.

I’ve heard from a couple of socially distanced friends who’ve told me they’re cleaning their kitchens and bathrooms, re-organizing their closets, throwing things out and other domesticities. I am a lousy, i.e., lazy housekeeper but their plague enthusiasm inspired me. I cleaned one shelf in my fridge. I’d planned to clean another today but don’t think I’ll get to it. Maybe tomorrow.

I’m feeling an interest in buying several 50’s style little white women’s gloves at Century 21. Maybe I’ll do that, tomorrow. I could wash them regularly in my sink, couldn’t I?

My sister and her daughter are both doctors and are working in hospitals without full hazmat suits. I’m worried about them and about my city, its strengths — three or four restaurants every block, now all closed; music and art, now closed; Broadway shows and clubs, now closed. Our crowded sidewalk culture, our towers. What will we be when this is over? The last moments of Götterdämmerung? Shit, whatever happens should not make reference to Wagner.

Today when I got dressed, I put on a red cashmere sweater (from a local thrift shop, really inexpensive, almost as cheap as a t-shirt). Then I searched through my socks for a copacetic pair. I don’t have a sock drawer. I have a sock box. And all my socks are wildly patterned and brilliantly colored. But I couldn’t find socks with red, to go with the sweater. So the socks I’m wearing have big big polka dots in a variety of colors, two of which are orange and fuschia. I’m thinking the proximity of those two colors can read as sort of red. But why am I fussing? I’m also wearing long velvet pants that cover the socks. I’m the only person who knows the socks are not really coordinated with my sweater. Maybe I should have changed the sweater.

Now that Fairway no longer sells them, I have determined to find a temporary replacement for Happy Herbert’s wild rice snack crackers and oat bran pretzels. I’ve tried many different things — flavored crackers made of lentils. Bagel chips. Some cheese things with jalapeños. Sheets of seaweed. Nothing has worked, so I wandered among the snack shelves at Citarella and realized…popcorn! Before I lucked into Happy Herbert, I used to eat popcorn as a snack.

Just had some. It’ll do for now.

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