scraps collected from the floor

The polished cement floors and tall white walls of the The Dance Center foyer give an impression of being professionally vacant and irrepressibly busy, all at the same time. I like it. The desk I sit at faces a long glass wall that I watch the street through, its beveled edges act as rainbow prisms on sunny days. I am mostly here in the evening, however, as the dinner-time crowd travel undistractedly past in long black coats and oversize hoop earrings. Sunday nights are traditionally unexciting.

Occasionally a man comes in who looks homeless, long scruffy gray hair, a bright yellow rain jacket with a small hole over one elbow. He collects all the new reading material that’s accumulated over the week, pamphlets, brochures, upcoming events, and sits quietly reading them at the table, one after another, until either he is finished or it is time to close. I don’t mind, it keeps him warm and he seems inoffensive. I only wonder what he does with them after. A favorite idea is that of a small cooking fire flaring in the dark back doorway of a rich downtown hotel.

Jenn’s party last night, I felt like I’d wandered into three years ago. I wanted to be wearing something improbable, a snakeskin dress, a PVC corset, something with unlikely handfuls of feathers, just to put myself off balance, to rid myself of the feeling that I will never escape this place, that I will always return to these same people year after year in these similar places. That I can’t evolve or forget.

Even dropping by Oliver’s birthday party on Saturday after going to see The Prestiege did not feel so alienating. Of course, I’d made sure to arrive as late as possible to ensure that the guest of honour would have been steadily drinking himself into inoffensiveness since five in the evening, and I’m certain it helped. That and Mark dragging himself out of bed at two a.m. to threaten making me dinner after to fix how I might be feeling.

This year’s global ecological debt day, which fell early on October 9th, symbolizes the day of the year when people’s demands exceeded the Earth’s ability to supply resources and absorb the demands placed upon it. This means that it would take the Earth 15 months to regenerate what was consumed already this year.

My ecological footprint, last time I delved into this, turned out to be surprisingly small, (minus that I live in a first world country), so omitting some regrettable things, like not being able to shop organically or fair-trade at two in the morning, I think I’m doing okay. What’s your excuse?