I’m still getting used to the look of my Lomo prints. I’m used to (and I usually try to take) photos that are sharp and bright, with contrast so high it blinds you. The soft, dim fuzziness of my LC-A+ photos is a huge change for me, but I like it. It’ll take a while to get used to, and I’m not giving up my SLRs, but it’s nice. It makes me want to go out and buy vintage floral-print dresses… which is strange, because I usually wear very modern black. Hmn.
But, anyway, the initial point of this post was that I have more writing (yes, finally, I know). Inspired by the song “Lady” by Regina Spektor. So enjoy… or pretend that you’re enjoying, so that I feel better about myself.
“You singing today?”
She looks up at the man who posed the question, a large, surly bartender by the name of Ivan.
“What’s it to you?” she retorts. “You’re not goin’ to listen, anyway.”
Ivan flashes her a fleeting grin. They are friends; they go through this routine every night, sitting at the bar of this musty, smoke-filled lounge. Sometimes, the lady wonders if there will ever be a day when she doesn’t sing.
“I don’ think I will today,” she tells him, butting her cigarette out against her yellowed sheet music. Watching a circle burn through the paper, she continues, “Actually, I don’t think I’ll ever sing again.” She sighs and flicks the butt into someone’s open beer.
It is winter in the city. Smoky snowflakes drift down from the hazy dark sky, dusting every surface in a powder of grayish off-white. Last winter, she moved from the countryside to become a cabaret singer. She hasn’t made enough money to move back yet.
But this was her dream, wasn’t it? As she leans against the side of the building, staring up at the almost-black sky, she can’t help but to think that it wasn’t. She takes a puff of her dying cigarette and looks around, gazing morosely at the blank-eyed passers-by who hurry by, all trapped in their own hell of a dream. No, she doesn’t regret it, not at all….
“You’re up, lady.” Ivan stands at the open doorway, gazing down at her with a sort of pity in his dark gray eyes. “Comin’?”
“I’m not singin’ today. I told you that already.”
“You don’t get paid if you don’t sing,” he reminds her. “How’re you going to put your sister through school if you don’t get paid?”
Her sister. The only reason she’s still in this washed-out city of bleak realities and broken dreams.
“You’d support her, wouldn’t you?” she asks Ivan.
He sighs, shaking his head. “You know I can barely support you.”
“I know.” After one last drag on her cigarette, she lets it drop onto the ashtray. Maybe, one day, her sister will come and see her sing.