Nov 10th, New York
I was told to show up at 220 east 10th st at 6 pm sharp. I hurried there and found a bunch of people waiting outside a tiny storefront with the words “Magic Fingers” painted on the window. The door was locked, the curtains drawn, but something was obviously going on in there. A few velvet chairs sat out front next to a spindly waif of a shelf with some garlics displayed on it. A hand written sign advised that real garlic cost 50 cents and fake garlic 2 dollars. Oversized pennies lay on a chair.
An atmosphere of cheap witchy mystery was spreading in the East Village. I ran into some friends, nobody had a clue as to when we would get to go inside or what would happen. we hung out on the sidewalk. The night was crisp and everybody seemed happy. Warm energy flowed between us. A fortune teller emerged from the store front and sold a palm reading to my friend (bad news he said afterwards). Every so often people would show up that were allowed to enter the store. They would come back out, clearly initiated but only slightly transformed- one guy’s face had been kissed a couple of times by a mouth wearing a lot of red lipstick. He emerged offering apples from a cardboard box, I took one and he said to make sure to wash it thoroughly before eating it. When I asked why he just looked at me as if I was really stupid and said”just wash it”. I felt nostalgic for my early days in New York, when I would receive that look all the time. A woman in a large tiger print t shirt swept the sidewalk. Her giant wooden broom had a braided handle.
A funerary flower wreath shaped as a question mark was put on the sidewalk. A pretty woman dressed as a witch painted my nails in glow in the dark colors for 20 bucks.
Walking home I gazed at that atrocity called The Freedom Tower, a giant twinkling ruin on the make. Even that looked approriate through my reconditioned eyes- able to see and cherish my broken city in its true gothic beauty. New York has a nervous aura nowadays, an apocalyptic perfume.
Somehow everything looked so beautiful.
My gaze had been corrected by a spell; cast by the artist Danny McDonald and his alter ego, the ancient New York witch Mindy Vale.