VM and JF hosted a book party for me at their lovely apartment in Woodside last night. It was a spendidly casual and friendly affair, with plenty to eat and drink, and good talk to be had. Friends from my school mingled with friends from my other life, and the two worlds did not collide, but met on the common ground of a warm spring evening. Windows were thrown open. A police siren blared its passage through my reading at one point, but it was received like a needle by the fabric of the evening. Someone has just returned from Paris. Someone else returned from Japan with viral pnuemonia. And yet another person cycled to MoMA that afternoon and back, for it was the kind of day when one would cycle across the bridge into Manhattan.
Someone was there who represented a past love. Others came as husbands, and then became their own persons. Someone gave out flyers to his coming solo art exhibition. Someone else gave out namecards for the journal he edits. Someone brought a delicious pumpkin cake, and now I remember pumpkin cake as well as a dead daughter when I think of her. Someone loved the Thai desserts I brought from Sripraphai. Someone just came from a music rehearsal and is looking for a new neighborhood, Brooklyn or Queens, to retire to. Someone used to be a literary agent in Paris, and then a banker in New York, and now works for herself as a financial consultant. Someone who sculpts married the man who showed her work in his gallery.
Someone took advance orders for my book, since it is still with the printers and is now expected to be out only in mid-May. Somone who plays cover for a band whose name I cannot remember helped someone else to bring food in from the kitchen. Someone is always so chic, and I wonder if she is lesbian. Someone else is always so self-assured, and I wonder if he is gay. Two someones are graphic designers, one working, one not. Someone, who is lesbian, had a child with a gay man. Someone is waiting for the Boston Review to publish her review of Marie Howe. Someone loved the chocolate fudge. Someone else congratulated me on hitting the right note in my reading.
After I left the party, and fretted about not helping VM and JF with the cleaning up, someone said they would probably just go to bed, and leave everything to tomorrow, and how European that was, and how wonderful that was. That somone said he could never do that. Someone else said good-bye, and left us for the train. He had missed another party to attend this one.
Back in my apartment, someone said how wonderful a party it was. Someone repeated again the evening felt European in its civility. Somone else said that only in New York could you get such a diverse group of people together. I agreed, and someone else said that is why he loves New York.