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2002-04-30

Lisa Lopes
B. 5.27.71 Philadelphia / D. 4.25.02 Sambo Creek, Honduras
SUV Accident / Mitsubishi Montero

Zoos have changed since I was a child. A feeling of relic-hood overtakes me on the wooded paths. They wind past vast enclosures where flocks of Canada geese keep company with peacocks and small herds of bison and zebra—while I’m old enough to have known. . .Rows of Cages! Driftwood Perches! Ropes and Water Dishes! Rubber Toys! Even the handful of peanuts for 25¢ and an elephant’s breath on my palm. . .dark ages.
Dear God.
Remember about seven years ago when I told everyone at work I was going to start coming in with a greasepaint stripe under one eye and my friend Denise said not to because Lisa Lopes wasn’t a nice person—but it turns out she really was! And remember how I predicted TLC would be our new Supremes from whose dramatic trials would spin—someday—a new Diana? Wrong Diana though!
Why do you play us this way?
Is the death of Lisa “Left-Eye” Lopes really supposed not to be more than a person can handle?
What gives?
Never more than that—right? Never more.
Why “Left-Eye”?
This violent extinction of a cherished life form.
Why not Beyoncé Knowles?
One of a species of one—outrageously rare.
(I don’t really mean that.)
(Yes I do.) Up up and away to the Bronx Zoo for a Saturday afternoon in the woods—with gorillas (a late but helpfully defining addition to a week-long plan to be passing those particular hours among trees—but where? Somewhere in New York, with woods—and—and—gorillas! You can see how everything fell into place)—and an excellent decision to take the #2 if you, like I do, love the airiness and interest of an elevated line.
A line like this one:
i go through obstacles like a whole box
of condoms you can't forget
where you come from
.
Clackety girl!
The intersection at the foot of the Pelham Parkway station reminds me of one in London (near Holland Park, to be precise) where two modest corners of greenery and streetfront shops look across at a row of tall white garden-frilled villas planted north to south as far as you can see. . .enchanting as the vista framed and shaded by a good-old-fashioned stand-up elevated line.
Like:
switch
throw his behind in a ditch
.
(Another late addition, this one to my knowledge base of Stars Like Me: “She said her father also used alcohol to bond with his young daughter. ‘He gave me my first drink,’ she told Vibe, ‘and my hundredth.’”)
And Saturday afternoons in the woods are reliable comfort. Whenever they see them, all children still point and shout—
Waterfalls!

Consolation Site: CRAZYSEXYCOOL (1994)

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