Purple Magazine
— The New York issue #39 S/S 2023




Everywhere I go, the city lives in me. I wake up fast. My blood moves fast. I eat fast. Although I didn’t come here by choice, I do choose to stay.

When my mom went to the hospital to give birth to me, she brought a pair of jean shorts. They rode in my dad’s white pickup truck, with the cartoonish eyes spray-painted on the roof, to Long Island College Hospital (a hospital that doesn’t exist anymore), which at the time, in the ’90s, was located on Henry St. in Brooklyn. The shorts she brought were from before she got pregnant. It was spring, and she thought that maybe after I left her body, the shorts would fit right away like they had before, but of course they didn’t.

At this time, on 6th Avenue in Brooklyn, where we lived, there was a single deli on the corner, and three blocks away was Prospect Park, where we would have most of my first couple of birthdays (minus the one where it was raining, and we had it in our little living room). That same birthday, the kids were all too small and took too long to crack open the piñata my parents had bought from Fama Party Center on 14th St. My dad decided to put the multicolored papier-mâché horse in the shower to soften it, causing the ink to run and splatter on the walls as the kids started to whack it again, once rehung and now sopping wet.

A decade and a half later, I moved into my first apartment, a small studio on Elizabeth St., shared with my friend who was a dancer going to NYU. I would ride my bike home so fast down Lexington Avenue after leaving Hunter College that when inevitably I finally got doored by a businessman (getting out of a yellow cab in standstill traffic and throwing me a $20), the front of my bike was completely twisted. The bruise across my chest from where the mangled bike pressed into me turned a horrify ing green and had to be covered with make-up when I went to work on my first film in Europe.

As an adult, I tried living in LA. Work would bring me there, a lover would make me stay. The search for a new name and the space away from where I grew up offered me something. There, I made a tent-like room out of blue fabric inside an east-side industrial loft. But the fabric now lives folded in a box, back in the same 6th Avenue apartment I started in. There’s no passing up a good rent controlled lease.

There is a queer party I like to go to here in Brooklyn now, where the dance floor is foggy and warm. I see my friend, both of us having just shared a one year tranniversary for having gotten top surgery within the same week. We hug and decide to trade shirts. For a moment, we are topless in the crowd, deliciously flat in the dim light and full of ease. I hand them my black tank top and pull on their white crop top, feeling their sweat from the day pressing into my pits.


[Table of contents]

The New York issue #39 S/S 2023

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