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By Alley
Coolest Tweener Spaces: Part 6 of 9: 9/9/2022
© 2022 James LaFond
The places where 1970s brats used to play and hide out and hunt each other as kids, where homeless guys now gather, where drug deals and prostitute occurs, where a good place to be mugged can be found, are often found by the walker and never noted by the driver. Since I walk everywhere I live I stumble upon some of these tweener spaces, such as described by Ace Backwards in his book on being homeless some 25 years ago.
Here is a brief inventory of some such places that I find of interest as a novelist for potential Creep State assassination venues, in no particular order in a generally east to west recollection:
#1. Rahway, New Jersey, the tunnel-like stairway down from the New Jersey Transit train platform, where two feral Bantus were skulking about observing my descent.
#2. Metro Transit Park, New Jersey, the tubular concrete tunnel under the rail-bed to get from the station to the Southbound platform, the rails below yawning like a gravel bowling alley for giants, utterly deserted at 4 AM. I used this in the opening scene to the discontinued novel, Red, appended to the other incomplete novel, Wonder Fall.
#3. The creek-side park near the grain terminal and railway outside of Denver Pennsylvania, where some white woman will some day be raped and murdered by a man of color.
#4. The railroad tracks along the canal at the bottom of the hill in Lititz, Pennsylvania, where one of those high-trust upper middle class hipsters will one day fall afoul of the dark hand of Darwin.
#5. The dead-end side streets that run from east to west between Oakliegh Road and Loch Raven Boulevard, which are linked by tree-shaded concrete stair cases running next to culverts. This includes a 16 foot wide one block long Baltimore County Park!”
#6. The sometimes walled and sunken back alleys in the Ridgely Oak subdivision of the neighborhood of Baynesville in the Towson precinct of Baltimore County, where I had many adventures from 2016 thru 2020.
#7. The footbridge across Bear Creek to General Stricker Junior Highschool, Gray Place, Baltimore County—closed. Used as a scene in Out of Time.
#8. The footbridge from Patterson Park Highschool, East Baltimore, over I-895, into Eastdale, used by the three Yutes that killed Pauli in April 2015—closed.
#9. The foot bridge over MD Route #702 in Essex, Baltimore County, Maryland.
#10. The Ostend Street Bridge past the post office in south Baltimore down to Pig Town behind the Raven’s Stadium. The actual scene of murders.
#11. The park between the 7-11 and Middle River Bridge, Baltimore County, where I saw two attempted abductions of pale females by dark males.
#12. The cedar-lined sidewalk between Boxhill Swimming pool and Craigston Lane in, Abingdon, MD. Eventually imported subsidized renters will kill someone there.
#13. The basement bathrooms in Pittsburgh, at the Lincoln Avenue Brewery, Jackman’s dive bar and Pimanni Brothers deli in the Strip District. The last one did have a murder committed in it some 22 years ago.
#14. The train yard, across from the biker bar, in mostly Bantu McKeys Rocks, PA. The bar is great, the surrounding hillside area is sketchy to the max.
#15. The back street bar parking lot, in an industrial strip, whose owner drives a red pickup, that faces the fence and the train tracks in a small town in Indiana that I have passed by for four years.
#16. The train station yard in Rugby North Dakota.
#17. Gardenville, Baltimore, the mini cemetery in the middle of octagon shaped Oaklyn Avenue, a block from Echodale, looks like something from the Serpent and the Rainbow by summer. [1]
#18. The alley and stairs above the quarry and Hilltop Avenue between White Avenue and Glenmore Avenue, overlooking Belair Road in Northeast Baltimore. [1]
#19. Unpaved Kavon Avenue on the other side of Belair Road. [1]
#20. The lonely, dark stairwell of the Amtrak station in Joliet, Illinois during an evening power outage after a tornado.
#21. The rain slick bridge over the canal in Chicongo between the Amtrak station and the unmarked Hilton hotel.
#22. The rental office outer cage at the Knights Inn in Emmeryville, Ca., not to mention the room-sized empty closet next to the kicked in bathroom door...
#23. The Sunken farm road and the concrete spillway to the creek at the head of the Ozark hollow that leads to Eureka Springs, Arkansas from Exeter Missouri.
#24. The deserted, pueblo-style Depression Era squatters houses built UNDER the cliffs in the 20 mile long hollow to Eureka Springs from Exeter, Missouri.
#25. The many grassy, muddy alleys in Southeast Portland that bisect the street grid diagonally and perpendicularly, in which some homeless camps are partially illuminated by streetlights, used in the novel By Gaslight.
#26. The service roads, that run parallel to Powell in short sections by at the foot of Mount Tabor, where blue tarp and pallet huts are gathered in homeless camps at the end of nice, side streets lined with well-manicured yards and single-family middle class homes.
#27. The bridge on the unlit country road over the Weber River running parallel to Utah Route 32 by night, when the dark canyon of the river bed causes a chill breeze ten degrees colder than the rest of the road to chill you as you walk over the paved bridge in the dark.
#28. Oakley Utah, town center, after dark, when the post office, gas station, government building and kens cash are closed, and two American flags flap in the wind that blows down from the Smith-Morehouse Canyon. Last summer, 2021, when walking home drunk from Garland’s fire pit I saw four men in a pick up truck abduct a pretty, 90-pound young woman, snatching her off the road berm as she tried to get away, leaving behind two other young women crying in the shadows. I used this seen in writing Holiday blue.
#29. The Cauc-Asian Inn parking lot, across the street from the dive bar in Lovell, Wyoming.
#30. The riverbank lots behind the shops and inns on the west side of single-street Cooke City, Montana, sandwiched between mountains so close together you couldn’t turn the town into a football field. Used for the novel Uprising.
These are some of the creepier locations I have experienced as a pedestrian. Many of the Baltimore scenes will be used in writing the novel Porch, when I return there, Hate willing.
By Street
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fiction anthology one
masculine axis
son of a lesser god
honor among men
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