I’m sitting at the cafe in Open Book Co-op, every table full, looking at some of the same faces I used to see at Schwartz Bookshop, in the place Schwartz once was. Never thought I’d see tables, chairs, and coffee-sippers sitting in this spot again, thought I’d see a parking lot. Or a mega-Pick ‘n Save. Still could.
Now a friend walks in, and we pick up where we left off last year when we ran into each other at Sendiks. Except that things have changed since then. Hollywood Video, China Palace, the Mexican incarnation of Jean Pierre’s (was it called Juan Pedro’s?), the Chiropractic Clinic, all are gone. Last time we chatted about the streetscaping, my friend was afraid he’d trip on the concrete frames. This time he said to me, “All that fancy streetscaping, it doesn’t bring in businesses.”
I gaze at the lawns as I walk along Jarvis and, hey, the grass isn’t supposed to be this green, this is December 5! It’s time for holiday parties, not garden parties. Holiday parties, that’s what I’m supposed to be contemplating, not blades of grass.
This Friday, December 11th, all three floors at 181 North Broadway should be jumping. There’s an opening reception for a photography show at Rosenblatt Gallery, and there’s the Artasia and Cuvee holiday party. The new show, Five Wise Men, is five different views of the world by five men between the ages of fifty and eighty-two, Art Elkon, Ted Friedman, Keith Knox, Steve Plamann, and Bill Tennessen. There are, as always in Rosenblatt Gallery, sculptures by Adolph, who keeps adding, and occasionally subtracting, pieces in our show and paintings and drawings by me. And in the rear of Artasia there's an exhibit of paintings by Eli Rosenblatt.
The young man was seated opposite me near the front of the bus. I knew and liked his parents; I try to avoid their son. He always asks me for money; I always refuse to donate to his alcohol fund.
“Mrs. Rosenblatt, how are you?” he yells across the aisle. He slurs the words.