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Old Haunts

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My apartment.

I don’t need to rehash the story, mostly because it’s 17 years ago now, but in 1994 my life turned to shit. Oh, I wasn’t starving or addicted to drugs or all that damaged, really, but things weren’t good, and I needed a new start.

In 1993 (or was it 1994?) I moved to this place. Apartment 2R, in back, a one-bedroom with a big kitchen, respectably sized bedroom, a front room, a tiny bathroom, and a huge amount of storage space, between the closet and the attic. It would do. I got a cat shortly thereafter, who despite some recent corneal damage and diabetes is still with me and in great shape for an old guy.

I worked in Des Plaines, taking the El up to Rosemont every day and catching the Pace bus to my job on River Road. My God, that was a trek. At the end of the day I’d ride back, walk westward on Division—possibly stopping by Myopic Books or Wendy’s for dinner—then go home. Travis always greeted me at the door, like a dog, and then joined me in a visit to the bathroom. Travis’ litter box was directly opposite the toilet, so we’d be eye to eye as we did our business.

I liked that place. It was cozy. The neighbors, Brian, Elana, Ted, Claudia, and the old Latino guy who worked nights downstairs were nice folks. My friend Kathy lived across the street. The neighborhood was gorgeous. I had ready access to Division, Milwaukee, and Damen. Man, this hipster had it all!

I watched my way through most of John Woo and Tsui Hark’s oeuvres in that apartment. I had a great party with far too many people stuffed into my one-bedroom place. A few girls came over—shh, a gentleman never tells—the last one being Mike. And I wrote. A lot. On a Mac SE that would crap out if anyone dared to e-mail me an image. I love owning and living in my house more, but that was a sweet little place.

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