After Sunday’s Terrible 22 Mile Three Bridges Run, some crazy part of me had the good idea to run errands…
Now, if you know me at all, you know that it is easier to get me to leave the country than the Upper East Side. In fact, I would have to look in my passport to recall where I’ve been in the last six months. I have, however, been to Brooklyn only thrice in the last…year?…and all three of those times occurred between 8pm Saturday and 6pm Sunday this past weekend.
Maybe it was the dehydration; perhaps it was the desire for adventure; most likely it was this continuing, bottomless need to fall back in love with New York. Whatever it was, I decided that I was going to go to the Brooklyn Flea to look for vintage picture frames, among other things. I’d gotten this idea while running past the Williamsburg Waterfront in the morning. So off I went.
(I feel weird, now, when I look at it. The first time I ever went up was just over decade ago with Legs and a bunch of people from our Washington days on a weekend away from the District. We’d been exploring downtown before heading up to the Thirties; had bought band-aids for blistered feet in the Duane Reade under the World Trade Center. It was just months before the world changed. It seemed weird, that following September, to have a box of Duane Reade band-aids kicking around. Like a relic from a million years before, when “a million years” had only been the previous April.
And then, fast forward ten years, my parents had insisted on going up because they hadn’t been in 40 years. But Frederic had called out of the blue, the day before, to say he was getting married. The world changed for me, again, but in a much smaller way.
I never really pay attention to what color they light it up now.)
So I walked into the market.
As I walked around the Brooklyn Flea, eee texted: whatcha up to today?
Bklyn Flea. Easy jaunt. L Train to Bedford.
And just like that, I had company. Once eee arrived, we wandered the stalls and the food tables; browsing the various vendors’ wares. When we’d had enough, I said: I have one more errand to run. We have to go to Park Slope.
We had to go to Park Slope because Union Market carried BluePrint Cashew Milk a la carte. I hadn’t had a chance to order any, and I wanted it as a recovery drink. (I realize this was an obsessive errand…but I when I get an idea in my head, I cannot be moved.)
(Ever been to Union Market? It’s like an uppity Dean & Deluca or Citarella — if you can imagine such a thing not being sucked into a blackhole of yuppiedom. But who am I to talk? I was there to buy a $12, 12 ounce bottle of cashew milk. I did that. I paid $1/oz for cashew milk.)
We took the R train to Union Street. The whole experience was weird and charming.
These are the things you find in Park Slope:
I bought my juice, and we skedaddled back to the Upper East Side, where we were meeting Miss B for dinner. Miss B is a fellow marathoner (she is an excellent runner, I am a mediocre runner), and she had taken care of Roo while I was travelling last week. We sat over beers and sushi, and contemplated our lives.
The consensus, was that, to varying degrees, men we knew needed to make some decisions; pull triggers; sort out their wants. In impolite terms: they should get their shit together, without forcing women to decide. Maybe, in some small way, I felt this way about New York City — stop waiting for me to decide. Get your shit together.
We parted ways on Third Avenue after our meal — the big questions still unresolved.
What I always realize when I try to force a hand is that hands cannot be forced. Men and Cities and life and love all work on their own time…
…Just as, in my own time, I was finally inspired to leave the Upper East Side for once.