Saturday, June 25, 2011
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Carlitos is the ghost and he has a little boy ghost too that lives there with him. There is a whole family of ghosts, actually. They all live in limbo.
I would like to live in limbo too with them in the stairwells in El Balcon, but only if a stark black nothingness really is death. I could at least watch the tango show every Sunday, as long as the doors to the building stay open and tourists continue to visit. Really, Carlito's eternal lingering was interrupted much more often in the nineties, in the heyday of El Balcon The Tango House, mostly by loud tapping feet on the wood floor and the amplified sounds of the classical guitar accompanied by the Bandoneón. Carlitos prefers the stairs, where now not many climb, to the balcony that overlooks the square where maybe he was assassinated many years ago when the foundations of the antique neighborhood were still being transplanted by immigrants from Italian barrios from across the Atlantic sea.
Carlitos has a peaceful afterlife now as the restaurant begins its descent into the same place he lives, partial-existence. No more do the tapping feet of dancers keep him afloat all night and through the week. Now with the limited hours, the weeks for Carlitos are sleepy and tranquil while the weekends bring on a subtle party that most don't know about and only find out by employees in the cold weekend street begging them to have a beer at half of the price of any other place in the vicinity. It will be closing soon and Carlitos will have his peace, a long needed peace.
One of the owners told me one day, as I polished the imperfect glassware, that on the terrazza there is a vortex. Where this vortex went, he did not say, but I imagine another dimension of some sort. I stayed away from the terrazza after I learned about the vortex. But he assured me, that the aliens, the ones he talks to, hover above the smaller mountains near Cordoba and usually stay away from the bright lights and the attention of the big city. For this I was relieved, but didn’t understand what this had to with the vortex on the terrazza. But then he went on to say that the Aliens told him that, compounded with his own research, the world would be ending next year. But not quickly like from a comet, more like a social decay, for which he was preparing by buying supplies i.e. dollars, weapons, and tools. But still I didn’t understand the vortex.
What I’m getting at here is that I won’t ever get my chance to witness Carlitos and his family of ghosts with my own two eyes, and I will never accidentally fall into the vortex because I don’t work for El Balcon any more.
Saturday, June 11, 2011
I enjoy Wednesday mornings. It is winter now, but it feels more like fall as I walk out of the apartment to the slight smell of smoke. I can see the yellow haze that comes from somewhere, that hangs above San Telmo, and that doesn’t seem like smog. As I walk down the stairs to the underground, I put the smoke to the past and the stuffy concrete scrawl that is the C-Line becomes my present. I search my pocket for pesos and I pay the peso-ten that it costs and I stuff my self in the tube.
When I emerge, I am miles away from where I started and the smoke is gone and I see the red, blue and white flowers that are being sold outside the train station and, sitting quietly beside is the Chacarita Cemetery. Tall palms guard the entrance to the graveyard and atop the train station large single orange letters read Frederico Lacroze Estacion. They remind me of the Miami Airport in the sixties, at least this is how I imagine airports looked in the sixties. It doesn’t have the turn of the century feel of the other Buenos Aires Train Stations. I walk inside, passed the Pancho and Magazine stands, and I wait in line for my ticket to Villa Lynch. I walk to the platform and board the train.
And then I think about naked girls.