New York Stories: ‘Rabbit Hole’

The Black Rabbit pub in Greenpoint is Edgar Allen Poe’s wet dream. Before I get to that…

Walking up the steps from the subway to the dark and almost vacant streets, it felt as if I was in a movie from the 70s or early 80s. All that was needed was a leather or denim jacket, a cigarette hanging out of my mouth. It’d be lit with a match. Hypothetically speaking.

I strolled into the pub as if I belonged there. A couple people were hanging around outside, actually smoking, and I entered with a faux determination.

Erin works behind the bar — beautician superhero by day, bartender by night. The bar, similar to the rest of the furnishings throughout, appeared to be black. Perhaps it was the lighting: all red with the exception of candles, which were too far away to determine if they were electronic or real. Regardless, it was beautiful. It is Al’s without the music and wall of booze. Plus, the only vibrant redness are the walls and the the sign, telling patrons to bring an honest face. The lounge, aside those aesthetics, is not as darkly lit.

It’s an aura of confidence, not arrogance.

It felt as if I was Prospero (far from “prosper,” oh, mind you), walking into the last room of “The Masque of the Red Death” to face his metaphorical destiny. As this was the end of my night, it was quite apropos. Instead of meeting an unavoidable fate, a gift presented by a figure in a cloak, I had a beer.

Knowing she couldn’t talk for long since she was working, the free moments were spent with bar-provided Trivial Pursuit cards. We quizzed each other, caught up. In the meantime, I scribbled incomprehensible thoughts in the notebook.

Looking at her, she helped me pinpoint a very mild jealousy that dwells within. She packed up her things, moved to the city, and now she is doing well. She’s affiliated with Upright Citizens Brigade, does hair and makeup for productions, and she helps out at her sister’s frame shop.

The pattern is similar to my friends and family in the city, but it’s a trigger that I cannot pull. It doesn’t look like it will be (any time soon). For me to be able to move to a larger city, there has to be an established monetary confidence. I’m not at a “NYC Level” of comfort.

After heading out, I opted to try Uber, a door-to-door driving service that is quicker and less expensive than the standard cab. The car arrived immediately, the driver asked if I wanted to plug my phone in and play music, and it was off we went to Park Slope.

I didn’t play music, but faced out to the city. The music featured, of course, is part of the soundtrack to the trip. Funny how song titles fall into place.

As the buildings passed by, it was great to look up. It’s important to look up. It’s especially true upstate. There was a roof deck that caught my eye; it was decorated with white lights. It’s pretty clutch, a great hang out spot for the late 20s and 30s folk, with or without kids.

For a quick moment, I reflected on the last decade. Literally a decade. After graduating in 2005, the next step was to find a job, move out of the old homestead, and then live life as an adult. There was elegance to it. I’d never go back aside wanting to change a few things. Tipperary Hill was a bittersweet home, and only some people, although poorly done, had light strand-lit porches.

As the ride progressed and we crossed the bridge, I — wait. Bridge? I’m in Brooklyn. I have to go to another part of Brooklyn. A bridge should not be involved. Well, it is when headed to 6th St. in East Village. Luckily a very friendly taxi driver around to bring me back to where I needed to go.

That wasn’t the first time Uber failed me, but we’ll leave it at that. I’m content with getting half a refund rather than not.

I eventually made it to the brownstone bed. It wasn’t a cot, but it was as large as one. My feet slightly hung off of the end. However, it was actually comfortable. I don’t remember struggling to drift off to sleep.

 

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