Thursday, May 13, 2010
Vignette: 59th and 5th
I was standing outside the entrance to the NRW train at 59th and 5th Ave. finishing my sandwich. It was a turkey and avocado sandwich on five-grain bread with raisins. I was standing next to a trashcan. A woman walked up to the newspaper stand and got a copy of whatever free city paper was in there. She was short and round and had a pixie haircut. She looked strong. She looked at the front page and said, loudly and to no one in particular, "Ha!" I looked up, a little startled, and we caught each others' eyes. She offered the paper. The entire front page was a photo of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Sandra Sotomayor, and Elena Kagan. Above the photo, in big block lettering, were the words, "The Supremes." "I think we should all call them that," I said. "Yeah," she answered. She spoke with a thick New York accent out of the movies. "I just love that he's finding all these New Yorkers," she continued. "And women," I added. "Yeah!" she agreed, enthusiastically. "Go Obama! He's using all these strong New York women!" "Yeah, it's great!" I answered, pretending I was a New Yorker, too. "Have a good afternoon!" I called, as I descended into the subway station. "You too!" she called after me, without looking up from her paper.