I’m from the city. Not just the city, but the inner city. I grew up in Chicago’s Little Italy neighborhood, which in the morning is literally in the shadow of downtown’s skyline. When I went to grad school, it was in New York City. Until recently, I’ve only lived in cities. I love the city. Almost all cities, in fact. I like crowds, I like subways. I like street food. I like city neighborhoods. I like feeling the concrete beneath my feet and like being able to walk down to the store for a soda pop. My dreams are all set in cities.
Today, I live in the country. Been here for a couple years now. Bordering on the Washington-Jefferson National Forest, so once you get to the property line, there’s just 1.9 million acres of Appalachian wilderness. There are maybe six other humans living within a one mile radius of my house. I’m happy here, but it’s strange, and has taken a lot of getting used to.
Next month, we’ll be driving to NYC for a wedding, and I am so excited. I haven’t seen a building over five stories since I went to Chicago in December, 2019, before we knew anything about COVID. I had planned to go back again a few months later for my usual quarterly visit, but we all know what happened then. I have not set eyes on a building over five stories since.
So I want to talk about cities. Songs about cities. With city or city names in the title. All sorts of cities. Places where people don’t even go out until after 11pm and there are stores that are not Walmart or Rural King. Places where I can get a slice of pie at 4am after throwing my body around a sweaty club until closing (not that I’m capable of that any more, but I miss having the option). Dirty, stinky, full of weirdos. Places with curbs and movie theaters and professional sports teams for chrissake.
Look, I’m sorry that I get so self-indulgent with these DUANs, but I can’t help it. What else am I gonna do out here? I mean, I’ll talk to the sheep, but they don’t really hold up their end of the conversation. Anyway, thank you all for coming to Deadsplinter, and for letting me be a part of DUAN.