(suggested record to listen to while reading: Mike Tyler, 'Erection')

I rode my bike in the darkness of downtown NYC last week as all power was drained from lower Manhattan because of storm Sandy. It was exhilarating. Maybe, it was the danger (or difference that made you sense danger). Maybe it was just that the darkness felt so physical like it was touching you like you were falling through felt. Whatever the lightlessness was peaceful. Heavy drapes over your slithery soul.

This is our last American election blog as the election is 'bout to be over. Actually when you are reading this it will have been over (my deadline is a day ahead). You know something that I don't know. You know who won. I suppose I'm still bicycling in the dark. Whereas you, you have the lights turned back on. It's disappointing isn't it. I felt that way when we got the power back. At the end of Jean Cocteau's Beauty and the Beast, when the beast turns into a man, a famous French actress watching the movie in a theatre, supposedly yelled out in horror, "No, NO!"

The storm has been a tragedy for many people on my side of the country on our side of the ocean. I don't mean to make poetic wax trax about something that has hurt so many. The writer Christopher Isherwood felt the same weird thing about his "Berlin Stories" (which the musical Cabaret among other things) was based. The 1930's Berlin was a fucked-up time but it was his time and when he visited again 20 years later he felt embarrassed that he enjoyed it as a lark.

The election has been gruelling. A common theme has been the hope and change of Obama's first run turning into the bump (the opponent) and grind (it out) of his current run. His opponent, who for some reason I feel like should remain nameless at the moment, is actually trying to use this against him. "Obama got your hopes up you see. I won't." To me it's a common conservative political act; "I can't let you down because you already know I am an asshole."

Isn't this though when idealism is at its best? When it has been challenged. When it is tired. When the practical real and pragmatic has snuck up behind and given it a massive wedgie. Isn't this when you really find out how beautiful someone really is. How much their beliefs really matter. First love is wonderful because it leads to second, third, fourth … love; you get the idea.

By the way, I do know who won. Just like I was able to bicycle in the dark, and get home safe.

Fin


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Mike Tyler is a celebrated post-beat poet who has been covered over the years everywhere from The Times to Wired. He is releasing his debut UK album, Erection, on August 20th via The Art Can Not Be Damaged.

Read: Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3 / Part 4 / Part 5 / Part 6 / Part 7 / Part 8 / Part 9