The iguana in the glass box.
I am waiting at Carnaval for Felipe, the cleaner, to come and open the door, so I can get in with my gear for tonightıs performance. I see all kinds of people passing by here on the SW corner of East Houston and Allen. Itıs 7 pm and the noise of traffic is tremendous. People are walking hastily, anxious to get to and from work.
Women are dressing down by now due to the heat, enough for the male observer to take great pleasure just watching. All kinds of treats: juicy, apple shape, obese, anorectic or just plain indescribably beautiful rounded shapes of breasts and hips of different ethnic heritages, out of which I must say some corners of the world seem to have bread their species out of a very obvious pursuit of the perfect but. If Paris is all about eyes I would say New York is all about behinds.
Amongst this enormous wealth and richness in delights and rear ends, I come to spot a rare combination, a woman walking with what seems to be her boyfriend - my short time in America has taught me the improbability of seeing such a combination walking the streets of a big city, the difficulties involved in maintaining such a relationship in an environment like this are so great that most people fall into the gay trap or just canıt be bothered, the price is too high.
In a true capitalist environment the only relationship a person can have is that of the individuals own existence. True love if virtually nonexistent in the heart of the city, however, I have heard that true love is to be found in the Hamptons, in the tri state and less populated areas, havenıt seen it though. My firm conviction so far is that capitalist existence calls so hard that there is little space for any emotional or social extravagancies.
What strikes me more than the rareness of this combination is that they seem to be in love. Judging from their smiles and way of looking at eachother they reveal affection, also so very rare, their hands are filled with plastic bags and utensils from a shop they have been to, the bags are big, white, with green text on them. The excitement between them I have only seen at Ikea in Stockholm on Saturday afternoons when all the hopeful new couples go shopping for new home decoration, unknowing or simply denying the small probability of their relationships ever to be successful.
The joy close to euphoria I see in the womanıs eyes is so striking it looks like that of a woman just after having given birth to a well shaped infant, I have seen it before. The difference in this case however is that the utensils are not from Ikea but from an animal shop and inside the glass box not bigger than a shoebox, carried by the woman with such joy, lies not a baby but an iguana.
I have observed the sad fact that people in the big cities buy dogs and cats because people are so tricky, so I guess then that even a lizard can be a way out of the loneliness for a couple in love that wants to go their own way. The lizard as a sublimination of a child is somewhat less appealling but that is what this looks like. The woman has bought herself a lizard, she has gotten her boyfriend in on it. The iguana is her new baby and now they look like the newlyweds that they always wanted to be.
My attention now goes from the woman to the iguana. My eyes lock on the iguana, it is looking at me with its cold-blooded reptile eyes and my periphery sight gets hazy like if someone has put Vaseline on the lense.
Cabs become sharks in the big sea and people small fish. The iguana looks like it does not understand what was going on. Are the cabs big yellow tailed lizard friends? and the grin on its new ownersı face. is she itsı mother? Why is it not possible to break through the walls of the container when it is fully possible to see through them? And all this noise, where does it come from?
So clearly has this poor animal been taken out of the only environment it knows, apart from the jungle perhaps, that it makes it look very lost, and my sympathy is all with the iguana in the glass box, so far from its elements.
The iguana tries to communicate something to me I donıt know what but its clearly trying to say something. One thought comes to mind;
In the concrete jungle,
we are all like newly born iguanas in glass so far from our elements
so not knowing what the hell is going on, so many cars, so many people, so much noise,
trapped by seethrough walls, so incapable of breaking out.
I donıt remember last time I had fresh air run through my lungs
The iguana looked at me and I looked at the iguana then they were all gone.
I could only wish the fresh parents my very best with their
newly bought iguana baby.