09 November 2009

Chinese man turns around because he recognizes the dialect. Pleasant lady next to me is wearing a yellow patterned satin hijab and staring at a piece of paper that looks like it has been photocopied fifty times over. It’s a black and white illustration of a human cell – the anatomy of a cell. At the top of the page it simply says “The Cell”. On the N train to Manhattan she sits staring deep into the basic structural and functional unit of all known living things. By the time she flips to the next page, my mind has moved on. Ironic girl across from me is reading a yellowed $1 Salvation Army paperback classic: “Postcards from the Edge” by Carrie Fisher. Pretty soon this whole damn town is going to one big ironic mustache. Cookie cutter girl dressed to kill in her Ray-Bans and paint by numbers outfit looks longingly at the lost Wayans Brother playing a wanna-be “Little Wing” blues walking through the car with a portable amp on his belt and a cheap Stratocaster copy. She’s thinking “Wow, I just love the culture in New York.” The lost Wayans Brother isn’t looking for nickels, dimes or dollars – he’s hoping to be “discovered” and handed a business card from some A&R guy who’s late for work. Things change. No quarters. Get it? I sure could use a shoeshine but unfortunately I ain’t got no time. Some guy is still handing out Jack Chick’s Protestant evangelism tracts. I haven’t enough wine in my fireplace to discuss the occult, Bible prophecy and the theory of evolution at this hour unfortunately. I will say though that a short trip on the subway for a writer is like a trip to the gourmet supermarket for a chef.

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