Bagel Three friends are in town early morning. In a few hours two of them are heading home, flying off in separate directions, while the other drives along the country roads back to work. He’s brought his out-of-town friends to his favorite bagel place. Tucked away in a warehouse district, the joint’s made up of a long counter, a couple read more >>

Walking Lubbock Whenever Curtis and I meet we go out for a long ramble. It’s inevitable. Today he wants to show me around downtown Lubbock. It’s early fall and unseasonably cool; it has even rained a little this morning. We wear lights pants, t-shirts, sneakers, both have on backpacks filled with books and extra gear. It’s only a few suburban read more >>

Killing Time The bar opens promptly at four, the bartender dropping his cigarette and propping the door behind him. I have walked around the square twice, but still I am the first customer of the afternoon. The whiskey bar’s interior must have been carted across the Atlantic, piece by piece, including the old-fashioned ceiling: when I cross over the threshold read more >>

AWOL The young man sat down beside me in the aisle seat. He’d stowed a small carry-on bag in the overhead compartment but kept his shiny white Marine cap on his lap. The stewardess came around and asked if she could put the peaked cap in the bin above his head. The young man politely refused and placed it under read more >>

Table for One When I am downtown, working in my studio, I often walk down the stairs of the Flatiron Building, step outside on the sidewalk, and walk the few steps to Chai Pani, Asheville’s popular “street” Indian food joint. I usually get a mango lassi, or a local brew, to go with my samosa and the fabulous Chicken Parsi read more >>