"A New York Treasure" --Village Voice
Category: Subway Stories

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The end of an era.

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Please stand clear of the closing doors.

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I’m on the subway last night and a short fat guy sits next to me. He takes out the New York Post and begins to read. Man next to him says, “Did you see the pictures of Caitlyn Jenner?”

The fat guy says he has not. So the other man takes out his phone and shows us a picture of Jenner.

The fat guy looks at it, shrugs and says, “So the hormones are working, huh?”

We talk about Jenner for a few minutes and the man with the phone says, “Hey, you gotta know yourself.”

The fat guy says, “That’s right.”

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I enjoy taking pictures with my phone and of course I’m not alone. Lately I’ve noticed, especially downtown, stickers and pictures are pasted to doorways and fire hydrants and the bottom of telephone poles. In an Instagram world, there’s a self-awareness about tucking things in small, semi-hidden places, so they can be discovered, photographed and shared.

I don’t know if that was the case here, but what the hell, who puts an L.A. Dodgers sticker on a subway platform in the Bronx?

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Kid on the train this morning.

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All City. Still one of my favorite movies.

[Photo Via: Mass Appeal]

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This morning I was sitting on a crowded IRT train, headed for work. At 86th street I looked up and noticed a beautiful young woman standing not too far away. Dark looks, thick eyebrows. Her face was as inviting as a cherry tomato and I imagined that it might look more like a beefsteak tomato when she got older. How much work does she put into trimming her eyebrows, I wondered.

At the next stop a blonde haired Latina woman got on the train with her son, kid must be about 9 or 10 years old. They stood next to the girl with the face like a cherry tomato.

I remembered back to a book I read last year by a therapist who is also a Buddhist. The therapist told a story about a patient who objectified women like I was doing now. The patient tried to move past his lust and imagine what women’s lives were beyond his sexual fantasies. I am often conscious of trying to do this while I look on with admiration at a woman’s looks.

After a few stops a seat opened and the boy sat down. He wasn’t directly in front of his mother, who was still standing, but a seat away, still within reach. I got a better look at her now. She wasn’t nearly as pretty as the other woman but her figure was something else–full bossom, round hips and a zaftig bottom. I thought about my mother, who was a single parent raising 3 kids when I was that boy’s age. Mom was also full figured and beautiful though with a more European sense of style.

Then, I saw the boy reach over for her hands, trying to get her attention. I looked up and saw a tear rolling down the side of her face. The boy held her hand and said something but I couldn’t hear him because I had my headphones on. She looked away from him and up to the ceiling. I turned and looked at my shoes, not wanting to stare. For a moment, I thought about my mom and then myself as a kid.  I looked at the boy once more as I got up to leave the train at my stop. I wasn’t thinking about his mother’s tits and ass anymore.

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What we’re reading…pictures by Reinier Gerritsen. 

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The train wasn’t crowded this morning, the day after Christmas. But that didn’t stop two women from yelling at each other in Spanish. They sat to my right and one of them must not have said “excuse me” or something when she sat down and boom, they was arguing.

Felt oddly comforting. Merry Christmas indeed.


Picture by Bags and Dennis Stock.

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Build ya skillz: Danny Lyon.

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Found over at Vintage New York. 

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Paintings by Hisaya Taira over at Faith is Torment (via This Isn’t Happiness).


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Ethan Kuperberg delivers.

[Photo Credit: Tony Gale/Getty Images]

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[Photo Via: The Inhabitat]

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Henry Chalfant at the Steven Kasher Gallery.

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Pictures of the subway back in 1981 by Christopher Morris (via The Wandrlustr). For more, head on over to Time‘s great Lightbox page. 


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subway lions

A New York City Safari – lions on the inside.

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Sunday was a fun day in New York.

Photo Credit: brnyc via This Isn’t Happiness]

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