Wednesday, March 16, 2005

PC got some badass food poisoning from Chinatown, an issue of soup dumplings containing small, nefarious shrimp. In spite of this he was hunched over a bowl of fried chicken wings.

"I gotta eat something!" he said with a note of desperation.

"You know how guys can write their names in the snow?" Steve said as I stood before them, gleaning details.

"Yeah?" I said.

"Well Pat Canavan can do it with his ass."

The last time I got food poisoning was from Chinatown too, years ago. I had some tomato and beef dish from a place PC liked that was open all night and where the walls were papered with dollars. It tasted fine but I was shitting torrents of liquid for the whole day after. I like Chinatown but there's a deep funk there. An indelible Third World blot. The piles upon piles of fish left out all day, pickled and salted only on the very precipice of decay. Garbage piled on the sidewalks, drifting in the streets; stacks of empty crates and, underfoot, the shucked leaves of some strange, skunky green. And up behind the windows, by the ancient Jewish tailors' signs. Who knows what. A family of fifteen sleeping and fucking in shifts. White men ejaculating between the flat breasts of an aging masseuse. Sullen gang boys smoking crystal meth.