Saturday, August 06, 2011

There Are No Cats in America

Last Thursday I went down and over to immaculately coiffured Brooklyn Bridge Park to eat a picnic dinner with the estimable Daniel Marks, who as you can see, is way ahead of that bottled water fad you're all still following.

We saw an open air movie: An American Tail, about the transit of some Jewish mice from their Old Country to America and freedom. (I had to ask Daniel, who is Jewish, why the movie was portraying Jews as rodents, which are also known as vermin, and he's still explaining). The recurring refrain, sung with gusto throughout the film, is that "There are no cats in America / and the streets are made of cheese," and despite what we all know, think and feel, a warm glow was radiating from my heart as the movie came to an end. (Or was that because of the Jameson's brought by Daniel?)

But! That was not all.

During the movie showing, I had noticed the hurrying and scurrying of tugs and river traffic, right behind the big screen, up and down the East River -- with lower Manhattan, the green light, the orgiastic future, just beyond -- and as the film ended, I noticed this bloody big barge just sitting there, as if parked, or stuck, or stalled. I remember thinking "what's that sinister big barge out there?" even entertaining the brief, lunatic thought that during the movie, the river had turned to molasses and things like barges were now churning fruitlessly in the grips of sweet glue, but then...
...out of the barge came forth fireworks! Happy 50th birthday, Mr. President!