My friend, the under-employed artist, sold photos to the Sunday edition of the paper. Strictly freelance, not a regular job. “Shoot anything but put three kids in the middle, in red, blue and yellow.” The formula never failed. Every Sunday, $25. It paid the rent.
A five-minute walk from my workplace lies a red building of great mystery. It is worthy of capitalization: The Red Building. I have walked around it hundreds of times in eight years and did not see it the first seven. It is accessible but guarded by taller structures. No one enters or leaves. A view through the windows shows abandoned lab benches, hoods and offices, covered with dust. No bodies are visible, at least not directly. It is unacknowledged — the campus map pretends it is a wing of an adjacent edifice, which it is assuredly not. It is a place of someone’s fear, an unsettling enigma, a place of desperate ignorance.