The official user's manual for sunshine

Summer Strategy: Rooftop Rebellion

Fireworks, Memoirs & Miscellany, User's Guide to Summer Add comments

We’re surprised by the sun every minute that we’re in it, on our Wolcott Avenue roof in Ukrainian Village. We’re shocked when we sweat so much that we have to take our sweaters off. There’s debris up here from previous tenants; discarded, dead and burned-out fireworks, partially empty beer cans—which we joke about throwing across the street to the Happy Village tavern—cigarettes unsmoked, and a very rusty chair.

The rain puddles trickle down the slight slant of the surface, and pour off of the roof. There’s no barrier on the western end of it and that’s probably why we’re not supposed to be up here. Our landlord, who is our enemy, has locked the hatch atop the ladder on the third floor’s indoor porch, where our buddy Brendan lives, but Brendan is a big boy and he of course has himself a hammer. He smashed the lock so we could get up here, and later when the landlord uses his key on the lock we bought to replace his busted one, we laugh forever at his failure. We bring the summer in by spitting into the puddles and pissing into the slant, agreeing that we hate that Willis Tower in the distance. We laugh our asses off as we toss and kick the garbage, which breaks and flies in the face of the skyscraper rainbow. (John Wilmes)

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