Thursday, December 20, 2012

Variety Show Called Life

A couple weeks ago I visited New York City. One night in order to meet some friends, I had to ride the subway alone for the first time. Needless to say, letting a young girl travel on the subway by herself is not recommended.

After getting dolled up to go to a Broadway show with high heel boots, red lips, and a long pea coat I stepped off the stoop from where I was staying, embarking on a trip to the subway. About half a block from my temporary home a somewhat scary gangsta' with a bandana approached as I walked past a church. "I'd like to compliment you on yo boots." As he looked me up and down. "But really, it's the legs that make the boots. Not the boots that make the legs… and a fwine pair of legs they are." One creepy grin and odd laugh later I hurriedly crossed the intersection.

After crossing the intersection a Jamaican man approached. "Where are you going? I wanna come wit you, pretty lady." Me, lying through my teeth, "Oh, I'm meeting my boyfriend. I don't think he would like that." Jamaican man, "We don havta worry bout' him. Jus lemme come wit you." After one uncomfortable smile and laugh escaped my lips, my pace grew faster. I only had a couple more blocks to go until safely underground. Or so I thought…

As I went to swipe the metro card in a reader my swipe was brought to a halt as I looked down to see the card reader was covered in a mound of white powder. A heavily accented female voice erupted "You don wanna wipe a card thru that one, honey!" Still have no idea what that powder was in the slot, just glad I didn't get anthrax poisoning. I merged to another stall to swipe and discovered the card was empty of funds. Fantastic!

The 2 scary men, the powder, and the missing funds threw me off but I was determined to get to my destination. While trying to purchase a new metro card from a dispenser a haggard looking man with a busted lip, heavy wobble, and a major slur walked into the station. Of course he decided to nestle up next to me, leaned in and started mumbling. I frantically pushed the touch screen buttons. No luck! I moved one machine over. He followed. This time, I could see that mucus was pouring down his nose and over his lips and chin. Ugh. Gross! He moved closer and started mumbling something about "I dint call yo Puertow Ricain. Eyee like Amerecans." Ah! What the hell? Panic. I grabbed the new metro card and ran for the subway. Mucus man followed, walked up to me, started mumbling, and poked the side of my arm. One thing useful I've learned from my mother… the evil eye. I turned to face him, gave my evilest of evil eyes, and very slowly and commandingly said "Don't fucking touch me."

The subway rolled up just then (thank heavens). I walked in, sat down, let out a sign of relief… and looked up. An Elton John impersonator entered. Why not?! He had a blue and white striped suitm oversized glasses, and a briefcase. I'm assuming it held very sensitive and important documents. Elton squeezed into the seat beside me. He smelled strongly of body odor so much that my best option was to just not breathe. As the train departed he turned to me with a big grin, peering through large orange colored glasses and said in a raspy weathered voice "You smell like cookies."

At this point I gave up all hope for normalcy and started laughing. Right then "You smell like cookies" was one of the funniest things I'd ever heard. Partly because of the fact he smelled so horrible, but mostly because I decided at that moment to give into the weirdness that's NYC. Instead of seeing the thriller, the comedy appeared. At that moment the train stopped and an accordion player stepped on playing the most beautiful accordion music I'd ever heard. Granted, I'd never actually heard an accordion before but it sounded heavenly. I felt lucky to be there in that moment with this odd collection of people. Ever grateful for the variety show called life.


Here is a picture of me from that night.


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