This morning’s commute was my usual death defying flirtation with a heart attack. I hotfooted down the 72nd Street subway station steps and dove into a 2 express train a nanosecond before the doors shut. When the express train pulled into the 42nd Street Times Square station, I catapulted across the platform to a 1 local that had just pulled in. With adrenaline practically pumping out of my ears, I was able to get a seat, stop huffing and puffing like a steam engine, and possibly return a second to my dwindling lifespan. Just as I was about to read The Talk of the Town section of this week’s issue of The New Yorker, I noticed that a woman sitting across from me was bare legged and wearing red ballet flats.
It was 35 degrees.
On my commute home, I exited the 72nd Street subway station amongst a listless end of day throng clad in winter down and heavy wool when I spotted a lumpish fellow in a nylon windbreaker, baggy basketball shorts, and dainty anklet socks, that seemed more appropriate for a toddler girl, as he dodged mounds of melting snow.
It was 41 degrees.
I ached to photograph Lumpish Fellow, but my camera is not mine; it’s on long-term loan from Elsbeth, my boss. From behind, Lumpish Fellow looked like the spawn of a sumo wrestler and a middle linebacker. Since the sun had set, I feared my camera might flash, he’d turn around and I would be transported back in time to almost 13 years ago when I saw the film Titanic at the multiplex with a former close personal friend called Va Va Voom (name changed to protect the ridiculous). The Father of Lumpish Fellow was sitting in front of us.
Here’s the setting, a sold out movie theater, where the masses are reverently watching this blockbuster epic. It is a few weeks into the film’s run so repeat goers are scattered amongst the first timers. Va Va Voom and I belong in the latter category. It is approximately one hour into the film when Va Va Voom groans loudly in the dark.
Va Va Voom: When the hell are they gonna hit the fuckin’ ice berg?
The Father of Lumpish Fellow stirs. Since I am inherently brave, I begin praying, “God, if you exist, please, please, please, make me invisible.” Unfortunately, God is either a myth or was preoccupied, perhaps dealing with Bill Clinton’s Monica Lewinsky troubles. Father of Lumpish Fellow turns, looks left at The Second Coming of Bettie Page and right at Miss Pothole. Can you guess whom he chose to address?
Father of Lumpish Fellow: One more word, you’re gonna eat my fist.
Fast-forward to the present as I walk behind Lumpish Fellow fils observing his cinderblock shaped head and alabaster calves that are twice the size of my thigh. His girth reminds me that I still have zero appetite for a fist sandwich. There may also come a time when Elsbeth will start reading my blog and say, “Give me the camera. Now.” I’d rather return it to her whole than in bite size pieces. Therefore, I conclude that the prudent course of action is to forego a gotcha! shot, keep the boss’s camera put, and my life intact.
Back to the original point of today’s lame tale, why do people think that dressing for the next season, in today’s case, spring, will expedite the end of the present season, in today’s case, a very cold winter? Clearly, these individuals were not a product of my style of upbringing and a mother who dressed me like the mummy just to go from the house to my father’s car … That was parked in the garage.