and life is just like a motorcycle.
You go and you go and you go until you run out of gas.”
It used to be that I was much too fast for the J and the A train, so I got myself a car and used that to go wherever I wanted to because that’s what fast boys did back in those days. Funny thing is that sometimes driving to the city took longer, or as long as both those trains anyway, but it didn’t matter because in a car I could pump up my music louder than any headphones and I never had to fight for a seat or sit next to smelly people. In my head the car was faster than the train by miles.
It used to be that my mind was too fast for those trains too. They stopped way too many times to pick up way too many people and it would always make me feel like I would never get to where I was going. Until one day fancy cars would take over my world and show me a planet different than anything I ever knew; shit was never the same again.
The cars went were the trains never could, and then it got to a point where I didn’t want to see another miserable train for as long as I lived. And then my life only got faster and faster, and sometimes it wasn’t the trains anymore that couldn’t catch up, but me instead.
there’s something strange about you,
what are you running from?
One day something changed. Maybe it happened over the course of a year or two, but looking back it feels like it all just snapped into place in one single day. I learned patience.
I let my hair grow out for the first time in ages. I had not let it grow out before because of the whole patience thing. I took time to walk every inch of NYC. I spend sunny days in Central and Riverside Parks finishing books. I cycled around the island on weekends—sometimes alone, and other times with groups of friends. I began sipping fine wines instead of chugging cheap liquors. I started enjoying full course meals instead of flying by drive-thru windows.
That’s what the last four years of my life have been: me meticulously chewing every piece of the world I am in and ingesting it slowly.
A few weeks before moving to LA, maybe at the start of September, I found myself on the J train heading into the city. I was reading Adultery by Paolo Coelho and before I knew it I had arrived at my destination. I couldn’t believe how fast I had gotten there; it left me scratching my head in disbelief. “This ride should have been four times longer, no?”, I thought to myself. I looked at my watch and it had taken me the exact same amount of time that it always had ever since I was a boy.
It seems today that those same trains from yesterday are the ones that are now way too fast for me.
and I’ll only know my future once it’s my past.”