Pancakes

Pancakes

Pancakes
by Judith Sharlin

My husband David called them “Best Pancakes.” On Sunday mornings, we had my creation—whole grain pancakes with sliced bananas.  Our son Hillel enjoyed them with chocolate chips. At times, he had them with both chocolate chips and sliced bananas. 

I had handwritten the recipe on an index card that became soiled from the flour and eggs used in the pancake batter ingredients.  Then, later, I typed it out because David urged me to make it more permanent and include it in my “next cookbook,” he said.  I taped the recipe to an index card. 

Continue Reading

Notes on Nudieland

Closetalker live

When I was finding my way into worlds of music beyond the Top 40 and classic rock of my hometown, I thought it was immeasurably cool that Ian MacKaye from Fugazi had also been in Minor Threat. Or that Vernon Reid from Living Colour had also been involved in the downtown NY jazz scene. The first hat trick I recall was realizing Erasure’s Vince Clarke had also been in Depeche Mode and Yaz(oo). 

Continue Reading

Black Punk Now

Guitar amplifier

Black Punk Now
by Camille A. Collins 

Punk at its heart is a search, a demand, for truth. Beyond the cliché emblems of studded chokers and spiked mohawks lies a creed that has served the angst of young working-class white men in Britian in the 70s; cool east coast girls of the same era, like Patti Smith and Joan Jett; and Black youth. Black tastemakers have been active in punk from the very start. 

Continue Reading

On Seeing Someone

Lens image

On Seeing Someone
by Cole Cohen

 The glasses that were supposed to mimic loss of central vision arrived while you were away; first at a work conference in Baltimore you hadn’t told me about and then another conference after that, I forget where now. I waited for a couple of days to pick the package up from the mailroom, until I felt more like seeing the world from your perspective. My work as a writer feels so abstract compared to being a doctor. We’re both working on the problem of cognition just from different ends, and anyway anyone who has tried to heal knows that it’s also an abstract art, with its own setbacks and triumphs often appearing out of order and without warning.  I thought that I might be well suited to care for the person who cares for all of the other people, or at least it felt nice to think of myself as someone like that. 

Continue Reading

Shapeless

People walking

Shapeless
by Emily Alexander

Late summer soon after moving to the city, I take the train and wander until I have to pee. The streets smell vaguely of garbage and excrement. I don’t know where I am. Sunglasses, cobblestone, the sure strides of locals and the tourists’ chatter, wide eyes. A cop car parked on 5th Avenue has its windows rolled down, cigars attached to the arms of faceless shadows hanging out of them, smoldering into the heavy air. A woman with bright pink sneakers jogs by.

Continue Reading

Writing Berlin Like It’s Made-Up

Berlin

Writing Berlin Like It’s Made-Up
by Kat Hausler

When people hear that I’m an American writer living in Europe, they often summon up images of the Lost Generation hanging at some Paris café. But I’m not an expat on a sojourn here; I’m an immigrant. I work a German office job, file German tax returns, have a German driver’s license – not that I use it much – and conduct my daily life in German. I’ve spent almost my entire adult life in Berlin. At the same time, I grew up in the U.S. and write in my native language for an international, but largely American audience. 

Continue Reading

My Central Park Office

View of Central Park

My Central Park Office
by Lee Matthew Goldberg

I’m a born and raised New Yorker, used to the city’s grit and urban sprawl, but I retreat most days to Central Park when I’m writing. I have a tree, which perfectly contours my back where I’ve written many of my books. I sit in the grass, take off my shoes and socks, and locate a sense of calm in a city where it’s often hard to find moments of peace. Since office spaces cost a lot of money, and I enjoy leaving my apartment to write so it feels like a job, Central Park becomes the perfect respite to fuel my creativity. 

Continue Reading

Dad Died Twice

Stylized ocean image

Dad Died Twice
by Laura Claridge

I recall him as mostly asleep after days of riding his postman’s bicycle under the Florida sun, delivering mail during those long, unremittingly hot Florida days. No wonder he fell to the cool terrazzo floor and lay there, more unconscious than just resting.

The tan mailman’s shirt and shorts had replaced his decorated Marine’s uniform. At nineteen he had gone to war in the Pacific and fought in the famous Battle of Saipan and on Iwo Jima. He came home with many medals, Bronze Stars and Purple Hearts—and a chrome plate in his head. My young, handsome father was grievously wounded, how wounded no one knew at first; but as time wore on, his brain injuries worsened instead of abating. We did not know then that he had begun to die. My dad, William Powell, was the first in our family’s series of serious brain injuries, and I have reason daily to think of him, and with regret.

Continue Reading