Friday, January 27, 2006

We're heading for Venus (Venus), And still we stand tall

Four 1/2 hours left. Not that we are getting misty or anything, but we keep seeing things that have reminded us of why we do actually like the Loop a little bit. There is that feeling you get when you come back from being out of town, where you had just started to miss home like the dickens even though you've been gone only a few days, and you are driving in from the expressway back from O'Hare or Midway and the buildings rise, filling your field of vision with their brawniness and might. Words of Carl Sandburg hum through your head, and home has never felt so good and you love it here, and of course Algren was right too, loving Chicago is like loving a woman with a broken nose, splendid and fierce.

Last night we ran into our favorite troubadour of the Chicago subway system, Tampico. We bet you've seen her around. Here, have a look:

Tampico has played one song, and only one, since we have known her. In that regard, she is like Lungfish, for her song is very near perfect. She taps her feet, strums the guitar, saws the violin, and whistles at the same time, which creates an epic drone that only ends when it is drowned out by the Blue Line roaring by. We have stayed and listened to Tampico, dropping dollars into her guitar case occasionally, for the better part of an hour. Three and four trains have gone by, but we are hypnotized. We are afraid Tampico may even think of us as a stalker. But how could we not listen to the perfect song? We wish our words could do it justice. Something ancient, like gypsy music, or a lullaby, or some piece of inner-being stillness takes place. You have to hear it for yourself, friend. Ride the rails until she shows up.

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