Tuesday, March 14, 2006

A Little Bit of Pittsburgh

I often think of this passage on the first warm days of spring, and the first hot days of summer--and when I'm missing home terribly.

I went outside to rest and smoke at the top of the twenty six fissured concrete steps that drew close to my door. To the left, the Terrace, the kids and happy Schnauzers running there; to the right and all before me, the maze of tumbling stables and garages...

Along the tops of the garages ran apartments like mine, spindly creepers in their windows, various musics from radios coming through the wire screens. The late sun was still the major fact of the day, setting the parked cars around me to creak, heating the metal banister against my bare neck. A warm breeze carried dinner smells and birdsong across the neighborhood, ran lightly over my sweaty face, and stirred the hair along my arms. Four years of familiarity and unconcern with Pittsburgh had turned suddenly to arousal and love, and I hugged myself.

--excerpted from The Mysteries of Pittsburgh, by Michael Chabon


Blogger Paperback Writer said...

I love that book. I occasionally stare at the Cloud Factory to see what they are really up to.

9:32 PM  
Blogger The Girl In The Other Room said...

Never read that one, but loved Wonder boys. My parents actually have friends whose kids went to the same HS with him & knew him well. It's all just a small, inner-connected world afterall. ;)

10:31 PM  
Blogger Katy said...

oooh! i have to read that book. I love it here. I'll tell you what. Yesterday when it was pretend summer and everyone wore shorts and said hello to each other on the sidewalks and sipped iced tea in front of their interestingly varied buildings, it seemed like heaven here.

11:11 PM  
Blogger Melanie said...

I loved that book. I've only visited Pittsburgh a few times, but I love when writers can make a sense of place so real.

12:14 AM  
Blogger kate.d. said...

i knew that was going to be from mysteries of pittsburgh! great book.

do you think you'll ever move back there, or that you're gone for good? i know it's a hard question to answer sometimes (for a variety of reasons), but i am nosy and curious. feel free, though, to ignore me if you don't want to get into it :)

1:42 PM  
Blogger Paperback Writer said...

The Michael Douglas character in Wonder Boys was my professor. Or at least, that was the rumor!

7:45 PM  

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