I got up early on Saturday morning, around 8 am, got my coffee, camera around my neck, the new Roots album in my ears, no hangover from the Friday night before, brimming with excitement about the day’s possibilities. I entered my local 1 subway station, ready to head uptown, and I noticed this young guy kind of gearing up for something, you could tell he had an outfit on that he felt cool in, he looked cute, urban, he was spit shining his Nike high-tops, positioning his Yankee hat perfectly to the right side, pulling his jeans down just enough so you could see his whole ass, he had plans. I was watching him intently, I was so curious, trying to figure out what he was up to, where he was going so early, it was too early for a date, but I could tell that it was something important to him, he was nervous. The subway came and I made sure I got on the same car as he did, I had to see more, the doors closed, there was a few other people in the car with us, he put his bag down and proceeded to practice an entire dance routine right there in front of us all. It wasn’t a weird, I’m gonna use this pole and perform for you dance, he was obviously working on a choreographed, I have an audition for Jlo in 20 minutes and I don’t give a shit where I practice kind of dance. At first I got a little embarrassed by him for some reason, he was dancing about a foot away, I didn’t really know how to react, but then I saw that he had no self consciousness, he was just doing what he had to do and didn’t care about what anyone thought. And then I realized that New York kind of erases a bit of everyones self consciousness because we’re all faced with each-other so much, we just start to care less about people looking at us. When I first moved back here I was so aware of everyone being so close to each other all the time, I was nervous about each move I made, what I was wearing, what someone thought about the book I was reading, was someone staring at a zit I had. But then as I got more comfortable with the presence of everyone, I started to realize that no one gives a crap, we’re all just doing our own thing, and staring at one another on the subway usually means that we forgot our Time Out at home. It’s relaxing in a way, my guard drops when I see a guy in a suit on the subway change from his dress shoes into his gym shoes, or a cute girl finishing her makeup on a Friday night, it’s a little more exposed, and that vulnerability can lead to a closeness that not many cities can duplicate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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