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January 16th, 1981
Three days and nights now, huddled in this apartment drinking juice and taking my temperature and leaving only to walk Sadie or scurry to the store. Eating vitamins and staring at television. Finally, today, feeling better– nearly well. I feel as if New York has just won a round, and I sit in my corner of the ring plotting my new strategy. I have no desire to leave this apartment, this shelter against the storm. Winter rages brutally. The city howls like a madman. I tuck myself away in my little home and sip orange juice and read books and make dinners of fried chicken and mashed potatoes for me and my dog. And knowing that I have a choice– to be in here or out there– makes me enormously happy; I curl up on the sofa with my dog and listen to the sounds of the city like distant waves outside my window.
Today I cleaned out my hallway closet, which, since the day I moved in has just been a catch-all for all the debris I carted up here from my cluttered closet in Washington. The process took all day, as I stopped to look through pictures, re-read journals, sift through scraps of paper. All the slips of paper with tricks’ names and phone numbers– most of them blurred into a blank memory. Still, I cannot discard them. I find an old candy tin and put them in it. Relics. Each a night in my life. Each a body that I held and loved and needed for a night. No, I cannot discard these. Treasures. All that is left.
And the journals: Reliving entire periods of my life that have otherwise become blurred and lost. The emotional roller coaster I have constructed for myself– plunging headlong through the past ten years like a dying actor. Oh, Larry, Larry, I adore you. If the world has never quite done the job, at least you have been untiring in your efforts to amuse yourself and to dramatize your life. Tonight, snug here in my womb, I look back on all the passions and sufferings of the journal with the wry amusement of someone older and wiser. And I know that just as surely as I was doing it when I was 19, so I still go at this role with melodramatic passion.
Allan has an intrigue tonight. Yesterday he was cruised at Gimbel’s by some number looking at furniture. They spoke and the number gave him his business card– president of some corporation. Said he would call Allan today– which he did, and tonight Miss Allan is being wined and dined at the Plaza. This is what we cam to New York for, wasn’t it?