Fan at the Top of the Stairs Crossing President at Fayette

Fan at the Top of the Stairs Crossing President at FayetteIt was another surprisingly cool and totally perfect late summer day (I can’t say “fall” yet–too real), so after a lazy morning I hopped on the bike and headed down the hill to Little Italy to take in a second day of fried dough–I mean the Feast of St. Gabriel. I’d been down the day before with N. and R. in a car, if you can believe that. Guess what? Way easier on the bike, though having those two to share the fried dough was a wise move. I locked up to a street sign next to the heavy police presence called for at events like this, apparently. I got my fried dough, ate it too quickly over Bingo, and slugged down their specialty cocktail, my blood finally running at full-sugar. That didn’t stop me from eating some of N.’s candy at the movie, however. Anyway, I got to lock my bike up in the spot that had been occupied by the abandoned Walmart “mountain” bike for over a year, and I was happy to see that at least some things change. I hope it found a rider. The movie was packed and complicated, especially in that last redemptive moment of full-circle called the Election of Barack Obama. I thought about that as I rode my bike home from the full glitz of Harbor East, through Little Italy, and crossing into Jonestown, a mile from where I started, but a world apart. I got off near the park where people without homes sit and spend their days, I smelled the urine smell against the wall of the church, and snapped this picture of an old standing fan that someone had left at the top of the stairs leading from one sidewalk to another at Fayette and President. A little late, I thought, as the coolest air I’d felt in awhile blew lightly. Yeah, I thought, that long arc of justice is long, and it most certainly does not arc in one direction. So much to do, so far away from the victories the film wants us to leave remembering. Yes, much has changed but as I continued my ride through the block-by-block segregated streets of this city, I thought how change is not simply progressively better, but I suppose that’s a harder story to tell. And if you are going to see that movie, don’t forget to see this one too, and ride your bike home; it’ll give you some good time to think.

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