Avatar No. 18
Feb. 2, 1968, p. 11

Avatar in New York

Well it was the third day and the wall was six feet high and it was time to eat so Eben gave Tom some money and out he went. Back he came with no food and a sad look — lost by the Holland Tunnel he said — so we jumped into the car and headed east. I wanted to show Tom places he could get food cheap because he doesn't know the city; he's come from Canada to help the Avatar. We passed through the italian section looking at cheese stores and I kept going east and showed him the Essex Street Market and then we stopped at a little jewish butter and cheese store. I double parked and we went in and the man was very friendly even though I looked so funny, my head was covered with a gypsy looking scarf and my face was dirty and my hands were grey from mixing mortar — I looked like a cross between a pirate and an egyptian pyramid builder. He gave us a taste of cheese — we took a pound and a half and said thank you and he told us where the bread store was; sorry no black bread but here's a good onion rye so back to the car with our bread and cheese but standing by the car was a great big policeman, yes I was double parked —"$25 ticket you know" "oh I didn't know, I just went in to get some lunch" "let me see your registration", into the glove compartment I go, in vain, no registration, "well lets see your drivers license" (I was really feeling stupid now) "my drivers license is on wooster street, that's where I'm working, I didn't put it into my work clothes". It was hard for him to believe, no license, no registration, out of state car with 67 plates. "If we go back to wooster street and your license isn't there you're in trouble", "it isn't, it's up in Boston" —he was pleased to hear the truth. "Well who owns the car?" "Pat Keating" "where is she?" "she's gone over to IBM to find out about a typewriter but she may be back at wooster street by now", "okay I'll follow you over there but don't try to lose us". "I wouldn't think of it", I said with a smile. The policeman had a well fed fatherly manner and I kind of liked him. Well back at wooster street, no Pat. "I don't know what to do with you" he said, "I don't either". I nodded. "I can't let you go with this many violations" "right" I said. "you don't have a license—no registration, and you were doubleparked! ......... "well, I guess I'll let you off on the driving without a license and registration", he said (telling me how much trouble it would be if he got me on those), "but I'll have to give you a parking ticket" "thank you" I said. So we went back to his car and he asked what I did, "I'm helping some friends build a room" "are you getting paid?" "no, just food" "will the owner of the car pay for the ticket" "no, I'll pay it" "where will you get the money?" "I don't know, I'll get it somewhere". He leaned into his car and told his partner that I was a nice guy and didn't have the money to pay the ticket anyway, and why don't we let him go. "Okay kid this one's on me". Thank you I said shaking his hand, and in I went and found Eben sitting upstairs and I laughed and laughed, — god it felt good to be forgiven and we went downstairs and Ronna made me a bread and cheese sandwich and Tom was amazed and we went back to work on our new york office.

Joey