Good Narrative Principles

Sandy Stories: Day Six Without Power


A painful day in the city with our son, his black eye and sore shoulder. We walk listlessly around Brooklyn, checking out Crown Heights, Prospect Heights, decoding the signs of gentrification and realizing that we’re too old and unwilling to wait the dubious five years or so until the Jamaican Patty place gives way to the cheese shop. We see the community gardens, the comfy restaurants, the yoga studio in Prospect Heights and feel a sense of generosity and possibility.

We head back to my son’s apartment and watch “Sound of my Voice” a mesmerizing and deeply uncomfortable film working hard to maintain a balance between ambiguity and clarity. You could sense the goal of the film was to generate heated arguments on the way out of the theater.

We probably should have chosen a comedy.

We left feeling dispirited and tense. Seeing our son in pain is hard. Sensing that he’s lonely and a bit isolated is harder.

We’re home now, a bit earlier than we wanted. We fall back on our new routine. We do yoga by the fire. Try to drown out the growing roar of the generators. Our neighbor has purchased one today. The guy across the street whom we suspect of working for Homeland Security has one. Take a hot bath and lie under impossibly thick layers of blankets grateful for the extra body heat and hoping that sleep comes.

Eventually it’s dawn.

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