September 4th, 2007


some stories should never have to be told

On the commute home today, on a small section of the 163rd St. platform, I encountered that smell again. That horrible smell. The first whiff caught me so hard I nearly vomited (and considering that I had Chicken McNuggets for dinner, it's a miracle I didn't). But it was unmistakable.

Those of you who read this journal regularly know exactly what I'm talking about.

I did a double-take and walked back to that part of the platform after I had passed it, and walked away until I couldn't smell it anymore, and walked towards, and away, and towards, and away, to make sure that it wasn't just some kind of post-traumatic flashback. It wasn't. Nothing else smells the same way of semen, shit, and urine, and that terrible sickly otherness that I can't even begin to describe--and psychosomatic odors don't fade out when you walk away or cover your nose. If I didn't know what it was I would have just scrunched my nose and forgotten about it. But I had the curse of prior experience. I panicked. Like a horse.

It must have happened earlier today. The platform was wet, sprayed with hoses, and I could see no residue (aside from some questionable sticky black threads on the tracks below). There was nothing special about the section of platform itself, about five feet in diameter in between a metal bench and a map board. But walking across it made me violently ill. I don't want to think about how it happened, or why.

I tried not to think of it, tried to bury myself in the book I was reading--but Murakami's Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is terrible for things like this; so much of it is about vague, uneasy feelings.

There's a dead cockroach rotting on the floor of my bedroom. I'd sweep it up and throw it away, but I can't even look at it right now.
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