FIVE SUMMER MEMORIES

  1. PISS [Camp Dudley // Westport NY // 1996]
    An anxious Jew-child's first and last summer at a Christian (why?!) sleepaway camp. Only three of us signed up for Drama, so they cancelled it. I cried onto the letters I wrote home, so my parents would turn tear-stained ink into a ticket out of there. Our counselor (a Notre Dame hockey player named Brad) came back blackout from a night in Montreal, and unmaliciously pissed in our closets. We woke up to the stench. Later he apologized, saying he'd had "twelve or so beers, most of them chugged."
  2. REGRET [Oxford University // 2000]
    Summer study program abroad, just before senior year. I develop a hard crush on you. You're a poet. Gangling. Mischievous. You've not only heard of the Blues Explosion... you like em! I think I'm in love. It's our final night. Tomorrow we go our separate ways. We sit on the ground outside the debating chamber, our backs against an ancient wall. Your cheeks are flushed, and your rolled-up shirtsleeves expose a wisp of armpit hair. You lean your head on my shoulder. We will never kiss.
  3. MSG [Chinatown // San Francisco // 2005]
    Kellen and Alexandra and Max took a road trip from Los Angeles to Seattle, a week or so after the guys graduated from college. Alex had another year to go, and was spending her summer in L.A. Max felt like a bit of a third wheel, but that didn't prevent him from enjoying the trip. They found a dinner spot in some guidebook, and split Chow Fun, Ma Po Tofu, another something else. Soon their noses would tingle, the sweat would pour down their faces, and they would collectively need to lie down.
  4. KISMET [Nye's Polonaise Room // Minneapolis MN // 2012]
    I have a day off on tour with Dirty Projectors the same day @zoe and Paul are here promoting their film. After the screening, we and the directors link up with the Projectors ladies at Nye's. Best bar ever -- all Naugahyde, stiff drinks, and the benevolent ghosts of Polish grandpas. We take over piano karaoke. Wild combination of people, place, song, vibe & ticking clock make this an all-time great night. In an unfamiliar place. With people you love. Making memories that will outlast the bar...
  5. LAST NIGHT [Los Angeles // 2015]
    You finally got that closure you sought. So no need to reply. But you probably will. You'll eventually cave, to reopen a barely there wound. And you hunch at a table re-reading this shit as the sun creeps down Double Trouble and the scoops melt down your thumb. The Genius Is Out. The wind picks up. And you really should be getting back. But you stay. Hoping that someone you know will walk by and see you. And also hoping that they don't.