Launching Under the Influence

I’m part of a group show that is up at Deutsche Bank at 60 Wall St:

http://ecoartspace.blogspot.com/2011/05/beyond-horizon-at-deutsche-bank-nyc.html

The opening was Wednesday the 15th. I drank too much afterwards.

It was cool to be down on Wall St late at night. After all the khaki pants and blue shirts have blown away it is so quiet that it feels like a ghost town. As you wind your way through the narrow streets and make your way to the Battery, you can feel the history of the city, and imagine how it all got started at the tip of this island. Maybe it was the booze, but I was rather touched. Looking out onto this amazing natural harbor, you are very aware of the geology and geography of this place and it’s easy to picture the Dutch setting up shop. If you want to learn more about the amazing geological history of this island I strongly suggest you get this book:

http://www.amazon.com/Mannahatta-Natural-History-York-City/dp/0810996332

Without much ceremony, and looking every bit the wino, I tossed the bottle in the direction of Governor’s Island. There’s a drawing of a Greater Shearwater inside.

photo by Edward Hemingway

I can think a lot about what I’m doing when I toss these things (booze still coursing strongly), who I’m trying to make contact with, how I’m trying to give something away. Surrounded by the built up shores of our estuary, it’s easy to see what we’ve taken, how we’ve used these incredible natural resources to create an incredible metropolis. I get a little sad thinking about how amazing this place would be had it never been developed. Yet I am so happy that it was developed. And happy that it has become what it is, warts and all. And happy that I live here.

So let’s say that I tossed that particular bottle as a thank you to the Dutch, as an apology and a thank you to the Lenape, as a deep apology to the wildlife that can’t live here any more so that we can. I’m sorry that black bears can’t forage on the Upper East Side, sorry that wolves don’t run down deer in Greenwich Village. But I am happy that there are still Native Americans here, and Indians, and Russians, bankers and drag queens, writers, artists, doctors, lawyers, friends, and jerks.

And the coyotes are coming back.

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