Tuesday, June 12, 2007
In Albania, President Bush is mistaken for a rock star. He stops to greet the crowd in a tiny town, emerging from the trees near where his car's parked. They call his name, they reach out to shake hands with him (though you can see this every night on Jay Leno, people crowding the stage as the star prances on). Bush moves further into the crowd. Leaves are left behind. Monkey see, monkey do. People grab his arms. One woman plants a kiss on his cheek, another ruffles his hair. People wave little American flags. He climbs up on the running-board of his limo. He blows kisses just like Marilyn Monroe did. Suddenly his watch is gone from his wrist. Men in suits close in around him. He's lost track of time. His hands keeps shaking. Follow the stars.
Follow the stars, the receptionist tells them. Go in the Children's Hospital entrance, follow the beige and brown stars set into the floor, past the gift shop, past the live performance area and snack bar, past the outdoor garden. They get larger and more colorful as they approach the elevator, then the elevator itself with bright red, blue, and yellow stars, leading directly to the gamma knife. God's ray gun.Glow, little glow worm, glow. Glimmer, glimmer, dimmer, shimmer. And she thinks of her sophomore year in high school, a boy running for student council president that she had a crush on. She'd given him her sorority key for good luck, but it wasn't good enough. Keep looking at the stars, kid, he told her, slipping it over her head in the hall back by the lockers. Four months later she dropped out of school.