Utne Blogs > Literature

Just Another Gritty Night in Baltimore

by Elizabeth Ryan 


Tags: Great Writing, Baltimore, Smile Hon You’re in Baltimore, zines, Elizabeth Ryan,

shyib-coverWilliam Patrick Tandy, editor of the zine Smile, Hon, You’re in Baltimore, recounts a recent night he lay awake in bed listening to the all-too-familiar sound of gunshots ringing out in his neighborhood. A frequent reader of the police blotter, Tandy notes that single gunshots are relatively common and go unreported, but on this particular night, he ruminates on an even more unsettling experience:

“I counted 10 shots that night before drifting off to sleep, none of which were accounted for in the following week’s blotter—not for 9:53 or four or any other time. Nor were the splotches of crimson that staggered up the sidewalk from the adjacent alley the next morning, steadily eroding in size before vanishing entirely a few doors down, like the ruins of some long-forgotten culture…”

Source: Smile, Hon, You’re in Baltimore! (article not available online)