Clifton Clifton

— Jeanne Graff

Do you write about Clifton Clifton? The leak, there is not so much to look at, it’s gross and depressing, I’ll show it to you tomorrow. Stefan eats and instantly falls asleep on the table: he’s dreaming he’s wearing a fake suit with a fake tie.

It’s a mouse, her head just showed up through the cooker hole under the pot, I’m tired from the trip but I’m sure I saw it: let her live! There is a gap in the living room, the hall isn’t straight, and these rooms have been linked, it was two houses before. All these stuffs have been here for years, the laundry strings through the kitchen and this window, it doesn’t lead to anywhere, you shine with light bulbs all day long. The grand piano is new, Stefan can play. Behind the piano there is a closet with a desk nailed into the wall to write, the paintings over there, I don’t know where they come from, Stefan’s three fat little birds in plastic are nice, and the roof you see from the window upstairs, this white thing, it looks like a tarp on a tent. Close the door because of the cats, Mr Boo is on first floor, there are two others on the third floor. Start with vacuum cleaning the cat’s hair on the floors: Ei’s room is wood, concrete in the living room, fake wood in the kitchen, carpets in Sergei’s room at the end of the hall. The ventilators have been on the ceiling for years, years of dust on the stair steps, the dust piles feel like moss, it’s very comfortable when you walk. I’ve cleaned up Marion’s room does anybody know if she’s coming back? Ei, look at this pile and tell me if you need anything? I’m going to Cologne, I’ll be back on Sunday.

Is it yours? How about this? Is it yours? That’s mine. Try to put this up here, to have more space in the fridge. Is that all? You put your stuff on top. When you cook, before you throw everything away, can you put all the vegetables in a plastic bag? Because otherwise it smells. Did you notice the water is brown? The day they opened the road, the water started to be brown, but maybe it’s a coincidence. There is plumbing work in the house, we share the same water tub? You should wash this. You just bring this part. That’s confusing. Can we wash now? We should wash in the bathroom, wash there, in this plastic bucket. And the toilet, sometimes water doesn’t stop, then you have to do like this so it stops, you have to jiggle. Do you want to use this? You should try? Do you want the screen? What do you want to keep? This you can’t put in the street, you have to go to the machine store to give it back. You can throw away, this is the garbage. Can you put all the garbage you don’t want here? For the sharp objects you have to put a notice in the street, to throw away the e-garbage we take a taxi together after 2pm: I’m going to Japan for 10 days, I come back on Tuesday.

I’m going to LA, I’ll be back on Thursday. This you can have, Allsorts candies, that’s from Stefan for Sergei’s birthday. Sergei take the wallpaper. Ei is asking if you want the wallpaper rolls? I am teaching in Vermont: I’ll stay two days there. To teach sound, sound listening sessions, sound in architectures, how to make scores, how to listen, to listen to your surroundings, do you like this chair? It makes this sound. The house has been making strange noises for a few days, it cracks. Stefan is playing piano in Sergei’s room, can you hear?

The house is cracking, I hear it at night. Sergei is dreaming of someone in my room, he’s doing an installation, a big chair in the sink, little slippery fish, long and thin, they are coming out of his mouth, he is at a fish store, he is trying these little fish, a guy comes in and orders a penguin: you eat that? Yes sure! He turns around: he’s holding a penguin in a bag, and his whole head becomes a penguin head.

Do you eat meat? Don’t use this knife, it was used for meat, I have to wash it for you, you can get sick. This guy, he opened a bottle with a sword and he lost four fingers. Could you eat a gorilla hand? That’s cannibalism! A duck palm! A pigs’s head? You eat the chicks, that’s the best part. Nato with fake egg. Eels sperm? Fish sperm. The government is offering a reward if you do something with salmon’s sperm. They have thousands of tons of salmon sperm. Sperm smoothies.

That’s roux. Is the curry that makes it thick or is it the roux? You separate vegetables from the sauce to cook: it is called a curry. You cook potatoes and then you add roux. Gombo in the soup. You should make some effort when you speak, I don’t understand you: Roux. Rrrroux.

Do you like honey? Honey is healthy, it’s good for your body, it smells good. Every time Sergei drives to Vermont he stops and buys honey. Hi Stefan good morning, do you know how to cook rice? I want chicken. Ei is cooking a soup, this is soba, this is a Japanese tradition, you eat it December 31st.

That’s the cheese fondue soundtrack. It’s cheesy. Is that it? You only eat bread and cheese? Ei is having fruit before the cheese and Stefan has a new game, you repeat the same word over and over with different meanings: de light, delighted, delighted. He made a pumpkin pie for dessert with whipped cream: it’s called half and half, cremer? Cremier? Is that a brand? Cremo? Vacherin. Is like bitch. Quelle vache, vachement, the cheese is called vacherin. Endless strings of cheese coming out of your mouth. You can die if you drink cold water with warm cheese. I’m a little worried of all the water I drink. Is that muscade nut? That’s Hawaiian popcorn. Hilo, do you know where Hilo is? It’s in Hawaii where we stay. You can put curry powder: that’s Ei’s special recipe. Cheese for the photo! Everybody cheese! A cheesy song: this song is cheesy. That’s a cheesy song! What is cheesy? Is this cheesy? This is a song for your funeral.

Do you have a headache? Do you want this special water from Georgia? It’s good for the stomach, it has potassium. Is it common to have a little pain in the ear after the fondue? It hurts right here.

Stefan’s jaw comes apart at night, it’s the most painful, it feels like a spike is coming in your cheek, he has this every night when he’s falling asleep. He sleeps on his left side, because he feels all the blood is going to his left side: his mother’s organs are reversed. You see the blood? He has blood in his eye, because it’s overstrained, he can only see out one eye, this one is blurry, he sat too close to a fire, put his face in the fire and burned his eye. He does not have good depth perception, the longer he keeps the eye open, it gets darker and darker, that’s the bad eye, that’s the good eye.

Sergei got hit in the mouth. He gets hit in the face a lot because of the basketball. Here there was a cut, and after the cut this huge thing, it’s like a cut but then it gets white. He has to use this cream, he got hit here, here and here in the last three weeks. The nose is a little crooked here. He broke his finger, this part got upside down. The legs, last year he bruised a rib, he couldn’t lift his arm up, the doctors said it was either broken or bruised, but very painful, because somebody hit him right here. He couldn’t walk on his left leg because it was so painful. He just got hit again on the table, right on the knee.

Kerstin got hit by a truck, on the street with her bicycle, she went to the hospital but she’s fine now: she’s in Japan with Ei.

Juliana had major stomach issues, food infection. Your intestine track would attack itself, your stomach would digest itself, you have crazy mucus and extreme pain: you can’t process food. It’s your immune system. Is this a soup? She doesn’t like eggs, she was eating meat, then ate too much cheese, pasta, flour can be bad too, it was really extreme, she did a juice fast for three weeks, once she got everything in control, she started to eat a little meat again, but only specific types of meat and you don’t do GMO: the poop was great. But things are still slow, grains, in Europe she can’t use the bathroom, bread and cheese, olive leaf, probiotic tea, it’s ok but it should taste better. If she feels she is getting sick, Amy makes vegetarian dumplings: you make a mix of sesame oil and raw garlic, you make a puree, you pour garlic inside, and take vitamins all the time.

I can’t believe there is a fire under us while eating in that restaurant. We have to go out, wait, I don’t want to leave without paying, I like this place, can we have the check? There are about thirty policemen outside and five fire trucks, they’re forcing the cellar. Can you see the fire? It’s under us, the smoke smells pretty bad, we should leave. Let’s get the check! Let’s make sure we pay before we leave! The firemen are all over the restaurant, it never crossed my mind all my life, is there a fire escape here? Now I think about it all the time, you remember at 11:11?

I’m going to throw this in the back you don’t have to come. Look at these pigeons, they sleep here, they all live here in this yard, it’s red bricks, this window on the yard is nice, no sun ever comes in but it’s fine. Take off your shoes because they’re dirty. The shape of this room is weird, they just did it like that, to have a kitchen. You don’t know how it was configured before. The bathroom, they just made it, they’ve just built walls without planning, it wasn’t here before. It’s a little wet because Amy just took a shower. She’s out of it, didn’t sleep that much, woke up early, had this infection, went to this city doctor: Urgent Care. They gave her medications that made her so sick, she had fever, she felt cold, she was freezing, her stomach started feeling bad, she stopped taking these medicines but it took her some days to feel better end to recover. Her stomach hurts, it was like they were sticking a knife in her stomach, first she felt like throwing up, then it turns into sharp pain. Maybe it was a bad dose of medicine. She was freezing on the train, she came back home and felt asleep, hardly woke up for several days, now she’s awake again, she bought this house and she’s been working on it nonstop, it’s almost done, she had to redo everything. She took everything out. Serious renovations. The bathroom, new tiles, the room is now like that, it’s perfect for one person, maybe a little too small for two, but she wants to build an extra room, and extra cabins. There is a lot of land, so she can build extra stuff. It’s in the wood, in a canyon. And there is that other house. She changed the floor because it was carpet. She changed the kitchen. So two renovations at the same time. It’s close to San Onofre. You remember when we surfed?

I’ve never been on the rooftop, there are roof rats, take the ladder, it’s tight, and pass over here. There is a big garden there. We’re crawling, we’re over Sergei’s room now, that’s Ei’s room, that’s the kitchen, and here is the leak. Do you see that hole? It’s raining in Sergei’s room. That’s the leak’s area. Here you have the buildings, the view must be amazing from that building, I used to live over there, but I didn’t know it was so close, I thought it was far and got lost all the time. Here, you see the city. Do you know the story of that house? This is the house, Clifton Clifton, this is where we live, and here are buildings, and when we go here there is actually a path that goes through these buildings, you will see a park here, and you will see chess boards here, you just take this little path right over here, you go that way, go through the path, and this is it.