POV

Under the Boardwalk

Story by Drew Bateman - drewbateman1000@gmail.com Photos by Matteo Lonardi

By Drew Bateman

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Jeanine is a paradox, growing old on the outside, becoming younger on the inside. She is stuck in a perpetual state of old age while the young world surrounding her passes by like an express train, neglecting her lonely local station. Some days she wants to feel young, so she’ll go to Coney Island, dress up as a mermaid and soak in the smiles and attention of little children. Jeanine works an office job at a life insurance company. As she stamps seals of approval on documents of anxious preparation and defeat, she daydreams of youths ephemerality and illusion.

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

“There were these little holes dug out all around us, and in these little holes you never knew what was gonna pop out. A gook, a bomb, some flowers, a ration. Just then the LSD kicked in, and the trees all around me morphed into moths, flitted their wings and took off, and in their place were crystal trees and shrubs, with this red substance pulsing through everything. Everything turned grey and became withered, and I felt myself kind of float back from everything. All around me the world turned into dust and the sun turned into a red giant. From the desert trees started to sprout, and these little saplings turned into babies. The babies started to grow up and turn into humans. I witnessed genesis, and it was some sort of circle. All the sudden I felt like my body melt into the earth and began streaming out in four directions. Before I knew it I saw a light of a color I can’t describe and my body snapped back together.”

“I was standing in a clearing, I heard some creeks bubbling in the background and a shadow stood in front of me with their arms raised like Jesus on the cross. The shadow sank into the ground and I blinked my eyes a few times. I noticed that my rifle was gone, and I stood holding nothing. I lost all recollection of how to get back to camp. I had an intuition though, and I followed that. I ended up at a little village near a lake where they shared some fish with me. And later that night I met the shadow in the forest, I met her.”

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Earl’s haul today has been six beer bottles, a pair of grills, some loose fencing, a WWF championship belt, some old school, tin lunchboxes, and seven pirates dubloons. The Inca’s were the richest empire in history, but had no concept of money, that is at least according to the Spanish. When Earl finds a pleasing beer can or scrap metal, he keeps it. All the dubloons and flakes of gold are thrown back to the sea where they’ll wash up and be found by someone who will revere the stone as if it held intact divine powers, more so than any other rock or stone. “After Sandy, you can find all sorts of neat stuff here. I found a bust of Christopher Walken yesterday.”

 

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

When Humans want to live like birds, they build machines and contraptions to help them obtain that pure visceral feeling of weightlessness. When birds want to act like humans, they simply take a big messy shit on something.

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Joaquin paints his milk bottles with little blue moons and tells his customers to aim for them. One day he was hit in his forearm and lost motor coordination in it for the next seven hours. The day after that he decided to get stars tattooed in the spot.

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Andre always has trouble predicting the weather, but he’s thought of a solution. Capri’s and sandals, with a parka, sunglasses, and a heats cap.

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Johns style influences include Eazy-e, Humphrey Bogart and the Pope. He is Deacon Supreme in the church of swag.

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Dan “King of the Playground” Ruiz

Height: 3’7”

Weight: 55lbs

Blood Type: AB

Fighting Style: None

Special Move: Sandal Clap

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

“This isn’t even our baby.”

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Dat shallow depth of field. “a couple of months ago I noticed there was a baby growing on my shoulder. The doctors told me this was one of their more unusual cases, but nothing harmful. Ive grown used to it. They say fashion is a game of who can follow fastest. I figured making babies the trend would wreak a lot of havoc.”

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

In nature there are no squares, and no straight lines, only curves and circles. When we see a roller coaster and it makes us excited because we think of a journey with a beginning, middle and end, as well as the loops and corkscrews along the way. It’s a path with an end in sight. There are no square rides in an amusement park, because we go here to escape the squares of our skyscrapers, cubicles and rooms. When we think of circles, we sort of become lost and feel a kind of emptiness, like a guiding light has been snuffed out. Maybe that’s why ferris wheels are so relaxing, nowhere to be, nothing to sort out, just a never-ending cycle. This is what Ayesha thinks about while she sits at her booth, organizing her weekly schedule, concentrated on lines and squares.

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Photo © Matteo Lonardi

Albert was sure this was one of those fortune-teller booths. He was apprehensive though when he saw the twenty dollar fee. If there is anything in this world that he is sure of though, it’s that he doesn’t want to see the Sunday matinee of “Mamma Mia!”. He’s realized this too late though, as he tries to lunge in his hand and take back the twenty. The attendant, desperate to sell tickets, will tell him that he’s already put in the payment and he can’t give him a refund. Albert will tell him that’s impossible, anything can be refunded, especially something that was just bought. The attendant will say it was just twenty bucks anyway, he can leave after the first act if he so wishes. Albert will ask to talk to his boss, he will be answered with a lie that the manager is out on lunch break. Albert says that’s fine, he’ll wait here until he’s back. The stench of abba wafts out from the booth as the attendant sits back and says fine. Albert asks the mother walking past him if she’d like to buy a ticket. She grabs her child’s hand and leads her away from the crazy scalper.

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