Waking Up in Baltimore

Screen Shot 2013-12-10 at 4.57.12 PMI keep waking up in Baltimore. Not literally, of course. It’s just post-REM sleep confusion: those first moments of daze before you are fully awake in the morning when the heat in your room is turned up too high. You dream/imagine many wonderful scenarios for yourself. For several moments you really do believe you are a Turkish queen, Cuban revolutionary, or newly wed in Monaco. Lately I’ve been waking up as a peasant in Baltimore.

It’s because of the confluence of two great events in my life: I’ve just moved from the country to the city, and for several weeks I’ve been watching back-to-back episodes of The Wire.

You remember The Wire: heroin trade, corrupt government, people asking if their hair looks good just before they get whacked. The latter was a running joke towards the end. It was always said by a person with French braids. The joke being once your hair is thusly subdued it will always be perfect. In ten years it will look exactly as it does now. It even stops growing because the tight braids prevent breakage. You don’t need new hair, so your body doesn’t send out the hormones that incite growth.

Considering how lazy I am and carefree life is in French braids, I’m surprised I’ve never had it done. I think the cost for doing white people hair puts me off. It’s prohibitive. Nobody wants to do white people hair because it’s unruly and smells funny. It’s just too expensive for the likes of me, lazy as I am.

At any rate, with my head filled with scenes of B’more when I go to bed at night in a place without stars to guide me, my navigational system got out of whack. I continue to wake up in Baltimore.

Tonight I start binge-watching Breaking Bad. I hope I like waking up in Albuquerque.

Sue Lange




Waking Up in Baltimore — 7 Comments

  1. Come to my house! I got through the first 2 seasons of BREAKING BAD, before I fell into the vortex of the current novel. I want to blast through the last 3 ASAP.

  2. I love both Baltimore and Albuquerque, but I wouldn’t want to wake up as a character in either The Wire or Breaking Bad. I adored The Wire, but I haven’t been able to make myself watch Breaking Bad, not because I don’t trust all the people who tell me it’s great, but because somewhere in the last few years I’ve found it harder to watch stories in which the people you start to care about are on a self destructive course.

  3. I love Albuquerque — or I did, when I lived there, even though it was the most violent crime-ridden place I’ve ever lived, with the exception of New Orleans — which I also love. Albuquerque’s very different now, of course, except for the violence, crime and corruption.

    I have not lived in Baltimore, but I have and do spend a lot of time there, just as I do with New Orleans, but not Albuquerque. I love Baltimore. It’s one of the very places I can consider as a place to go when / if leaving NYC.

    Love, C.

    • Baltimore used to be affordable — I haven’t checked in recent years, but I think there are good neighborhoods that haven’t gentrified out of all financial reason. And the food there is terrific.

      But if you want a mix of good music and low crime, Austin is your town. They don’t call us the Live Music Capital of the World for nothing. Lots of cheap venues, lots of good local musicians.

      • I used to like Austin a lot, but not so much these days — despite a couple of my very best and longest friends of life living there.

        Love, C.