Looking Out My Window
The other night I put on some music and sat down at my desk to eat dinner, as I usually do when I'm alone. I had a bunch of things out on my desk I thought I might work on, but I'd been working a lot that week, so I put it all away and just looked out my window and ate.
Some birds sitting on a power line caught my attention. They space themselves out so freaking perfectly on those power lines. How do they know where to sit? Do they have assigned seating? It makes me wonder if they might be better drivers than humans if they just had the faculties to do it.
Anyway I was watching these birds and it occurred to me how little I've looked out this window. Like, really looked. I've lived in this apartment for 13 months now, and I mean the apartment is the view. Here, look.
TELL ME I'M WRONG. Now, most of you haven't seen the rest of the apartment so you can't really judge whether or not I'm wrong, but trust me, I'm not. I'm hoping I prove to be a reliable narrator here, guys, fingers crossed!
I see this view nearly every day. I show it off to everyone I can and take pictures of it when the sunset is really pretty. I scooted my desk in front of it so I could have a nice backdrop for my daydreams when I get tired of working. It was my entertainment and muse when I had a concussion and wasn't allowed to read words or look at anything on a screen for days. It's a damn good view.
It is also just a window, though. I look out it when I wake up to make sure it is, in fact, morning. Sometimes I spit out it (I'm sorry if my loogie has ever hit your car. Sincerely, I try to avoid the cars but I mean a loogie is no match for the force of the wind, and, you know ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ ). I stick my hand out it to feel the temp (today: hot!). I watch the light displays of the Omni and Reunion Tower and take in the sights and sounds of my neighborhood, which is Brooklyn except in Dallas. Loud band across the street. Helicopter. Police Sirens. People leaving the Scientology church at night. You know, everyday shit.
But there's this whole picture framed by my massive window, the details of which I know almost nothing about. I mean, I look out this window and I can maybe name like four of the skyscrapers on a good day and then sort of guestimate where some restaurants and bars I know are and point kind of in the general direction of the nearby neighborhoods, but what do I actually know about what's outside my apartment window?
Sadly, not much.
Part of me is nostalgic for a time I never knew (at least as a functioning adult). A time where you always knew where you were going because you had to because if you didn't you wouldn't get there because there wasn't Waze there was just people and street signs and experiential learning and mental fucking maps! Right? Whatever, we don't live in that time anymore, it's fine. And I like Waze. It helps me and the hundreds of other people taking the same "shortcut" outsmart traffic. But just because this is ~the time we live in~ doesn't mean it's necessarily right.
I want to know my city. More than just knowing generally how to get around and where the good places to eat and ride your bike are. I want to really know it. I want to be able to get from one place to another and have a story to tell you about every block along the way. I want to live where I live, when I live. I want to leave my iPhone at home and shut my laptop and escape the endless cascade of pictures of what someone else was doing somewhere else last weekend.
I get overwhelmed by this feeling of disconnection from what's real. I don't know how it happened, but somewhere along the lines I stopped reading books like I used to. I have a short attention span and a self-imposed bedtime and an apartment with this huge-ass window I don't look out nearly enough and a full-time job that I got after I left my first full-time job because I wanted to have more time to "become a writer" - whatever that means - and this blog post, the first and only thing I've written for myself seven full months later. I'm distracted. I'm distracting myself! But I want to get back to the real stuff. To what's real and here, now, all around me. Outside my apartment window.
So, that's what this series is going to be about. Stay tuned.