Dimes Square, Circle, Triangle
A few years ago, just before the pandemic struck, I was in New York for work. I was staying in a shoebox ground floor apartment in Chinatown, a few blocks from the venue where I was scheduled to give a talk to celebrate the launch of my new book. It was just for a night or two, before I moved on. I felt a little alone in this windowless box. I walked around town, really walked, without an aim, up and down the vast canyons and ravines of the city, indulging in that strange spookiness that one gets as someone raised on a corn-fed diet of US cultural imperialism. Everywhere was haunted, haunted by a strange crypto-deja-vu, an almost imperceptible recognition of street corners and callboxes, skyscraper silhouettes, cop badges, pizza shops, as though I was raised in this city thirty years ago. Perhaps, in a way, I was. From Seinfeld to Ghostbusters, Kramer vs Kramer to Sex and the City, the streets of New York were a dominating locus of my imaginative world as a child, so different to backwoods and bungalows of my youth. When anyone asks me about New York, I tell them “It looks like a film set!”, and chastise myself for remaining a gawking rube.
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