I have walked the same streets as Danny Goodman. We have fucked the same woman. She lured me in with her glossy lipstick, she followed me home, she opened her legendary legs, she tumbled like an Olympic gymnast, she made me scream her name even though I’m not a screamer.
Yet I was surprised by her affection. After she fucked me tender, she held me so gently I thought I would cry. I told her secrets I didn’t know I had, and she accepted them; she told me a few of her own. As I dozed off in the dawn haze, her soft breath on my neck, only then did I realise how one individual could transmute my life so indelibly. And even then, after having traded so much, she stepped on my heart as she climbed into the cab in the morning.
Yes, I have walked the same streets as Danny Goodman. We have fucked the same woman. But New York doesn’t return calls. What did I expect? Nevertheless, I can’t stop thinking about her. I can’t stop talking about her.
Let me let you in on a little secret I was told post-coital. New York is merely a reflection of her residents. When the city is raw and uncontrollable, indecisive and manic, so too are the lives of the bankers, the bus drivers, the bagel makers. City and citizen as mirror images: Goodman understands this well. Perhaps too well. And like his characters, that impetuous city held the reigns the moment I dared to call myself a New Yorker. It was the city that drove me to drink until blindness, act on impulses, overlook opportunities, throw thrift and reason to the wind.
But as Goodman will surely attest, New York can equally be magnanimous and magnificent, from the unexpected kindness of near strangers to the endless frenetic energy of her latticed streets. There are dumpsters lined with gold scattered through her boroughs, waiting to be discovered. Which is why I will never forget her; she has worked her way far under my fingernails.
Somehow There Was More Here by Danny Goodman is available now from Found Press for $0.99 on its own, or as part of the Winter 2011 Collection for $3.75
This special guest post by Kurt Wong. Kurt currently lives in San Diego, but pretends like he still lives in Brooklyn. Except with more tacos and sunscreen.