"When a real East Coast summer rolls in, everyone sweats. It’s what we do, it’s the humidity’s fault. So we’re not blaming each other, we give a little more grace. We don’t judge. We’re all in the same heavy, moist boat.

I’ve been doing a lot more walking in our little city lately, and that keeps the heat off somehow. But maybe not the sweat.

I knew I would be seeing my friend David Dabney this certain Wednesday, but I didn’t know it would be so early in the day. I was riding back down George Street to pick up my car when I saw that swinging painted guitar case and sneakers. He was going to meet and film a video with Kevin Olitan and invited me to come along. I’ve been making a short film about New Brunswick, so I figured maybe I could do some meta-movie work. Such is my life these days.

New Brunswick is a city of small circumstantial connections made on a regular basis. This is the best kind. Bonds are formed through meeting up continuously, sometimes planned but a lot of the time not. Seeing each other at parties, running into each other on the streets, in class or in restaurants. There is an ease in connections. This is perhaps what I love most about this place, and what I will miss very much.

The permanence of home is a rare feature in our mobile “go” culture. We swing around the world like a carousel, and staying too long feels like an error. Our sense of overstaying the moment has shortened; a minute is now too long to wait. I’ve been trying to sit more lately and be still to rebuff this notion. But even stillness doesn’t override the fact that New Brunswick has a shelf life, or maybe New Brunswick is the shelf and we are the objects expiring on it. What I mean to say is, we leave. Not many stay here, and it’s hard to be the one watching people go, and then when it’s your turn, it’s hard to be the one who’s leaving. But I have no regrets here, no bad blood. I know I will return.

I admire David because he is staying. And it's for the sake of service to this town. Sometimes he wears himself out trying to hear the calling of his heart, but I can relate to that. I think plenty of artists can. So, I can support the journey that he's on even when it hurts. His sense of who he is and his purpose is inspiring because it acknowledges the passion of a holy God to create a lesser, yet still divine being: man. Dave's knowledge of this makes his entire life an active pursuit for a higher way to live, with deeper roots, higher branches, with bigger more glorious flowers. Growing. And his music encapsulates some of this, and then even more his searching high and low for the Water that never runs dry.

Sometimes our spirit outgrows our body, and then we live in the tension of life between the tree of Eden and the tree of the New City. And when this happens, service is the only option.

And we let the nets down once more."

-- Pilar Timpane

A Project With David Dabney and Pilar Timpane
Images, Sounds and Edit by Kevin de Wilde
Text By Pilar Timpane
Filmed in New Brunswick, New Jersey
Spring 2010

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