Ok there is a major transit strike in town. It’s pretty dire for a lot of people. It’s not so bad coming into New York City from Hoboken. But it’s a major problem for a lot of people. If you live and work in Manhattan you’re pretty much ok. A lot of walking is involved. But you’d be surprised at how many people rarely walk in this great walking city.
I walk almost everyday from 42nd Street and Eight Avenue to 56th Street and Park Avenue. That’s in the morning, in the evening I walk from 56th down to 32nd Street and Sixth Avenue. That’s a lot of walking I suppose. I don’t think of it. So when I heard people complaining about walking twenty blocks and act like it’s climbing Mount Everest, all I could do was larf.
Because of the transit strike, I had an excellent day. Very busy and very productive, and calm and peaceful. You see the three gorgons were out due to the strike. I woke up knowing that if there was a strike, they would not be in. It was a very good feeling. I didn’t hustle or make any extra effort to get to the office. I knew Christina wasn’t going to be there.
I had no idea who would actually be there though. I meandered on my way to work. Tony who I photographed as he made my egg sandwich last week was absent due to the strike. I couldn’t believe this! Fucking Transit Workers Union! Fucking MTA! I got over it and left. The substitute Tony was taking way too long.
I was in no hurry. I had Talking Heads 77 on the Ipod. Haven’t heard it in a long time Actually was thinking the other day that it’s one of my least favorites, but actually it’s so good.
Fifth Avenue was closed to traffic except for emergency vehicles. This was one of those moments when New Yorkers really do pull together and are actually considerate of each other. The ‘we’re all in the same boat’ feeling. It won’t last long though.
I got to the office at 8:05. Not bad at all. Imagine if I applied myself. Maybe could’ve gotten in at 8:03. If only I was more of a go-getter. The office was almost empty. At one end was John McGruff, at the other Gazi and Vinnie.
Gazi and Vinnie are two of the techs. The IT department. Good guys, pretty funny. Allies. But today was Armistice Day almost. Or maybe a cease fire, when the bad guys don’t show up, or in this case, the gorgons and the gorgons were out. Brenda came in, and we both knew it was going to be a good day. She’s no gorgon.
It flew by and there was free pizza. What could be better? I know it’s not going to last. The good feeling inside will fade like the good feelings outside. But be here now. Enjoy the moment.
I had wandered around midtown after work and enjoyed it all. Lot’s of people walking, subterraneans, troglodytes and me. The whole strike hasn’t affected me like a lot of other people. It really helped me out considerably.
I decided to take the bus home because I had a feeling the PATH would be crowded with people going downtown. They wouldn’t be heading to Hoboken. I lucked out, a bus was almost ready to go, I got in and sat next to a woman reading the Wall Street Journal, or more like hiding behind it.
A few rows up, some wild eyed guy, in a good way perhaps, got up and looked in my direction. Did I know him? Was he looking at me, or the person behind me? Or the woman hiding behind the Wall Street Journal?
No, it was me. I didn’t know him at all. No late night trick, that’s for sure. Too normal looking. He was wearing a navy Mickey Mantle T shirt and a green LL Bean hunter’s coat. Like I said, not my type.
He walks over to me, and holds out the latest Time magazine, Persons of the Year, and asks me if I know who the persons of the year are. I say, Bill Gates, Melinda Gates and Bono. He is stunned. He starts to go back to his seat a few rows ahead, then turns and gives me the magazine, asking me, ‘How did I know?’
I take the magazine and put it in the overheard compartment. He goes back to his seat. I ask the woman who is hiding behind the Journal, ‘Why did that happen to me?’ She said it was because I made eye contact. That’s why she was hiding behind the Journal. I guess she appreciated me sitting there.
I pulled out Man Ray in Montparnasse and dove right in. Crazy guy kept looking at my direction, at me. I furrowed my brow reading about some party with Picasso and Man Ray and Marcel Duchamp playing chess in some café in 1922. Crazy guy started talking to the guy behind him, then as his stop approached he moved to the front of the bus.
The girl behind the Journal asked if he was tweaked or what. He might have been. I said he could be a very happy yet lonely guy. Of course when I got off the bus a few stops later I had an eerie feeling that he might have snuck up behind me with a rolled up copy of the Persons of The Year, ready to bash my head in. Or maybe not.