August 1, 2009 Yesterday my friend Misha brought me a small, brown package, hand-carried from Moscow. It had my name on it in Russian, and my phone number. It contained an old green corduroy skirt I had left hanging in my dear friend Allechka's closet. Friends of friends had jammed it into their suitcases until it finally found me.
August 1, 2009 When I moved into the mahogany tree house on the corner of Newton Street, there was a recently divorced mom and 5-year-old boy living on the first floor. They were kind of shell-shocked and so was the dad, living a few blocks away.
July 12, 2009 In the fifth grade there was a boy named Plumstreet. That wasn't his real name. We called him Plumstreet because he came from the projects.
July 12, 2009 One sweltering afternoon, a boy, still wringing wet, walked into Byler's Bar and announced, "I sunk Danny's rowboat." He was nobody's kid we knew, so Bill Byler, the barkeep and proprietor, made a motion with his hand, a little flick of the wrist, and simply said, "Sunk it or not, no minors allowed," but the boy didn't go. Instead, he balled up those little fists of his and said, "Danny's boat is in the Mississippi mud and I'm the one that put it there." His voice was kind of screechy and shrill and we all looked at him.
July 12, 2009 There goes our neighbor, Jim, running into the street again. He grabs one of the ducks crossing. Doesn't even look to see if anyone is looking, just scampers out — hunched over, elbows bent and reaching behind him like he's trying to grow wings or is throwing himself to the asphalt - then scoops a duck and holds it with both hands close to his chest and runs back into his house.
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