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New York Minute

I saw a young woman crying on the subway platform today. From fifty feet away I could tell–her head was bowed, her hands covered her face. As I moved closer, she came into focus and yes, she was crying, the corners of her mouth turned down. My first instinct was to offer her comfort. That was quickly replaced by another thought–Who do you think you are, bro? What are you going to do? It’s none of your business.

Why was she crying? Did someone die, did she get into a fight with her boyfriend? I wondered as I walked past her and said nothing.

[Photo Credit: Le Xuan-Cung]


1 Ben   ~  Apr 7, 2011 9:57 am

Tough call.

Maybe there was a time I felt obligated to say something nice to a woman like that. Super nice guy that I am. Then I moved away from that, realizing, like you said, that that orientation is kind of self-important.

But then, you don't have to be 'somebody' to be kind. Without taking too much on, you can always slide by her, give her a piece of gum and a smile or something and move on.

I've been on the receiving end of that kind of gesture before -me and Blanche Dubois- I've always appreciated it.

2 Alex Belth   ~  Apr 7, 2011 10:06 am

2) Very well said. It was one of those things where their wasn't an opening for a gesture without intruding so I just skipped it.

3 Raf   ~  Apr 7, 2011 10:53 am

Nothing wrong with asking someone if they're okay

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"This ain't football. We do this every day."
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