November 18th, 2009
I received this letter along with a cut out figure of a little boy from my cousin's daughter who is in second grade in Charlotte, NC:
Dear Cousin Jacoline,
My class read a book called “Flat Stanley”. Stanley is a boy who gets flattened by a bulletin board falling on top of him. When he was flat his parents mailed him to see a friend in California. The friend sent him home. We are sending Flat Stanley to you to spend time with him and take him wherever you go. Please write me a letter and send Stanley back. In the letter, please tell me what you and Stanley did together, where you went and if you enjoyed his visit. If you have any pictures of flat Stanley’s visit, please send me copies. I hope you have a good time with Flat Stanley.
So far, I have just had a lovely visit with my flat guest, Stanley. This morning we shared a coffee as we read the New York Times, this afternoon we chatted with some New York City firefighters after they saved him from falling into a trash can and we even did some comedy together at an open mic. I have to say, for his first time on stage, Flat Stanley had unbelievable stage presence, rich writing and the ability to really feel the audience. A total natural. I’d still like to take him to see The Empire State Building, eat pizza at Lombardi’s and introduce him to the homeless man with a ”heart of gold” in the West Village. I look forward to sharing all these endeavors with Joanna when I send Flat Stanley back.
However, Flat Stanley and I have experienced some things that might be best not to share with a second grader. FS and I had an instant connection as soon as I opened the envelope to meet him. That might seem odd as I am a human being and he is a two dimensional piece of paper of a little red head boy with freckles. It wasn’t a romantic feeling as much as my strong desire to show Flat Stanley how the wild side lives in New York. Oh, how fun it is to play host. That’s the southerner in me.
Our debauchery started off light. We called several local Kentucky Fried Chicken restaurants and if a woman would answer, we would say, “How big are you breasts?”. Hilarity ensued. Next, we bought an excess of toilet paper so we could roll the trees in Central Park. Sadly, the inclement weather prevented this so we just rolled, egged and spray painted a porta potty. Our last endeavor was ever so scandalous. We had no money on our metro cards so we ducked under the turnstile without paying the fare. Shhh..don’t tell.
So that was some of the crazy shiat that we did before I stuck him in an envelope and sent him back to little Joanna.
Oh yeah..almost forgot. We also hung out with investment bankers who accommodated Flat Stanley with hookers and blow.
Flat Stanley the Boy will be returning to North Carolina as Flat Stanly the Man.