In a Pinch, Tires Will Burn / by Julie Conquest

The reading on November 9th at Mass Gallery surprised me. Or maybe I surprised myself? Or maybe both? In any case, waking up on Wednesday after the election there was a stillness in the air and on faces. The shock everyone was feeling was completely palpable. Amidst this stillness, I felt a sure horror that nothing I could say seemed meaningful in the face of the election results and their implications. After struggling with myself about this, I decided the best I could do was to offer everyone who made it out to Mass Gallery a bit of a departure from things through the work I am doing. I decided to read a piece I temporarily titled "In a Pinch, Tires Will Burn" set in Slab City two winters ago. It plays around with narrative structure and there are plenty of playful imaginative moments. I think it worked. 

What is more, I really enjoyed the opportunity to hear the work of local writers Benjamin Reed and Allie Rowbottom. Benjamin admirably brought some wit and humor into our gathering and Allie took us on a rich and very visual journey into time and relationships. I think we all came away from the uncertainty of the evening, the uncertainty of our times, remembering that it is our sharing and connecting with one another through doing what feels most true, that makes us most powerful. Thanks to everyone who came out and made this such a beautiful evening!