Sunday, May 6, 2012

Fragmented Toys

Early Sunday morning on any sidewalk in the inner Mission discarded objects remain as material witnesses to the previous night's partying. On my regular laundry trips at this hour it would be rare not to encounter a few living relics as well, tweakers still in thrall to prolonged internalized chemical celebrations. While I was photographing this sinister-looking group of damaged toy-parts found this morning scattered about on Danvers (around the corner from the laundromat on Church) a rumpled college-age suburban-looking white boy wandered past, twitching, and decided to crouch down on the ground next to me.

He pointed at the spider and said, "That's a spider."

"How did they get here?" I asked.

He reached over and picked up the Disney domino. "Jasmine and Ariel."

"Did they belong to a baby?" I asked.

"That penguin doesn't have a beak. Or else it has a hole, if it does have a beak."

"That green eight has water in it," I offered.

"That's infinity," he corrected. "And that's not water."

We discussed each object with this same thoroughness. Then we did it again. In some ways it was oddly similar to passing time with Mabel Watson Payne.

The bent black rod in the bottom picture is a broken-off antenna, I was told. "There has to another one. That has to be a fact. There is never just one."