Admirer in the Air Shaft

by Natalie Robin

When I got back to my apartment last night, I was sitting on my bed sifting through mountains of paper when my roommate came up our stairs with this:

My neighbor (a few doors down), who is unknown and faceless to me as of now, apparently has a window down in the same hollowed out air shaft that my window faces. The buildings around here are arranged quite intricately, for 3191 (which the letter came from),is not actually that close to me when you walk from my front gate to theirs on the street, but regardless– they heard me singing and playing guitar with my window open one day last week and sent this note in admiration, asking if I would do it more often. I know the sound carries well through our little community of windows so I rarely have mine open when I am practicing or recording, but I remember this day and since it was quite warm, I abandoned all apprehension and opened my window in hopes for any tiny breeze reaching my room. I suppose what also reached my room that day were actually the ears of a self-proclaimed “admirer”.

The whole thing had me stumbling around all night. I may have experienced true flattery for the first time in my life. It was not only in the kindness of the gesture, but the mystery in it and the fact that while I thought I was alone in some semi-subconscious state of creation one warm day last week, someone else was also there and I had no idea. It was all very simple..and secret..while simultaneously being animate and exciting..and I realized I liked it so much because it was the most normal and natural thing I’ve felt in a long time.