I had just had lunch at an Italian place in Chelsea with Jacob. He was heading back to Brooklyn to do stuff for school and I was headed up to the E stop to take the train over to MoMA. I checked out Grindr on the walk to the train, exchanged a few lines of text with a pictures of abs, and soon was at this abs picture's house on 21st Street. He opened the door and I think there may have been something in his look that wondered if I was hot enough for him, that awkwardness of sizing someone up in person that you have only talked to online and seen pictures of, all of course self-selected to make them look as attractive as possible, and then you quickly try to take in the difference between how they represented themselves and the person that now stands before you, deciding whether that difference is small enough to be acceptable. That may have been the look but then there was also something about his look that made me think he had just done meth, an intense, sex-hungry, fuck-anything-outside-of-this-room look, slightly menacing.
There was a brief second when I was undressing that I wondered if this person was going to go all American Psycho and kill me. There is a thrill and it is reckless and it is putting yourself out there in weird situations and this I love, wondering how things will go, the not knowing. There's no real reason to do this. I can get sex from Jacob, can get it from the gym, but I wanted a thrill and something pulled me to this guy's house. Across the street from his apartment was what appeared to be an elementary school letting out, young kids, innocent, everywhere, and me feeling particularly dirty, a thrill in that contrast, that the block can contain both these things. He pulled down his shorts and I sucked his dick until I got really hard. This was in his kitchen. I had only taken about three steps into his apartment. He pulled me over to his couch, which had a white sheet over it for this purpose, our meeting, apparently, and there was lube and condoms set off to the side. He bent over the couch, his ass up in the air, and I fucked him for a while, and then he told me he wanted me to cum on him. He laid on the couch and I jerked off on to his chest, him cumming at the same time. The man was insanely ripped, probably the most buff person I have ever got it on with, and the entire time we were having sex, I was into it but also was not into it, was too self-aware of this person's porn star body, waxed ass, and cartoony six pack. It all very bizarre, a fog, a dream maybe, and ten or so minutes after entering his apartment, I departed it, out on to the street, my mouth tasting like lube, me attempting to spit out the taste.
I got a cup of coffee and got on the train towards MoMA to see the Abstract Expressionist New York show. It's a big show and like most big shows, I moved through it in spurts, landing in one room, moving past another entirely, thinking that I would return on some future date to take everything in, the things I didn't see, didn't talk to. I stopped in front of things that struck my fancy and glanced in passing at things that didn't. Most ab-ex art bores me, is a little too blank, too much of a Rorshach for you to project whatever you want on to it, some of it seeming like lazy or wild scribblings on canvas. But then there are pieces that explode that notion, that cut through all of my nay-saying about these paintings and really move me, sing a song that I recognize and like, that I will stop to listen to. There is a room of Barnett Newmans in the show and had I seen one of them isolated, I probably would have moved past it, but encountering a room of maybe six of them had an entirely different effect on me. They were really quite beautiful, a painting of solid color, a feeling, thrown into relief by a vertical strip of paint, another color, a figure in this space, man in this world, a moment where you catch your breath and feel all that is around you. They sang from every wall in chorus the same song, different voices, but the same song, and it was a gorgeous one. I hummed along.
I know it is possible to have moments with probably all of the pieces in the show, but perhaps not possible to do so in one viewing. I'll return and try to allow for other moments, other encounters, other rooms, other brief fucks, memories of which I'll hold on to for far longer than the act, the feeling inspired it, its life, extending far past the viewing, that physical encounter.