Most people don't understand my bizarre affection for the self-contradictory conundrum that is the United States, and especially dirty, grimy, uncompromising New York. I don't quite know how to explain it myself, without sounding like a well-fed, bleeding heart, over-thinking liberal.

But of course, this morning, I'm reading Philip Roth's Sabbath's Theatre on my way to work and there it is, on p. 198 (hardcover version): "antipathies in collision". That's it. That's all there is. It's what Singapore will never have --- okay, at least not in my lifetime --- and what is so intoxicating about big-city American culture, American life. The impossible cacophony of clashing ebony and ivory.


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