Noon — A biannual magazine which explores art and commerce in contemporary culture

Noon is a biannual magazine which explores art and commerce in contemporary culture

Joanne McNeil

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USERS

Here in New York, I know women from pilates class or dinner parties who might recount, quickly, some fabulous occasion that happened fifteen, twenty years prior, in the fading neon years, when the World Trade Center was still standing, life was untroubled and society was easy. They were lounging by a pool or pool table, they tell me. Someone’s dad was a producer, whatever that means. It was his place and he was out of town. Or it was the hotel room of an actor in all the magazines then, like Jonathan Rhys Meyers or even Leo. Maybe Leo paid for the drinks. He spilled a drink. Or Leo was in the movie they watched at the hotel room. A suite, probably. Leo in all his Leo-ness is the raw essence of these bright, desperate memories. Someone lost something or they blacked out from drinking. A dress was torn, maybe. A broken heel or a case of mistaken identity due to a fake ID. Mislaid plans and frazzled but not unglamorous complications churned a vibe of nostalgia into a story with a beginning, middle, and ending. They walked home barefoot. Or they hitchhiked back home. They got home and lived to tell it. The memory was vivid and deeply felt, but I can’t connect. I think they tell me because I look like I could identify the texture of it, recognise it and infuse it with recollections of my own, but I usually stop paying attention before the storyteller has wrapped up.