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‘Every Subway Trip Started With Me Taking the B or C to 59th Street’

‘Every Subway Trip Started With Me Taking the B or C to 59th Street’
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‘Every Subway Trip Started With Me Taking the B or C to 59th Street’

‘Every Subway Trip Started With Me Taking the B or C to 59th Street’

Dear Diary:

I lived on the Upper West Side, which meant every subway ride started with B or C to 59th Street.

And so, one muggy morning in August, it wasn’t until I took the train to Brooklyn for brunch at a friend’s house that I found the Sunset Park address on my phone.

It took over an hour to get there. When I finally did, I peeked out the apartment door and saw half a dozen people gibbering happily.

Long after doing the dishes, I apologized: I had another meeting that evening, so I had to take the metro back to relax before leaving.

After getting home, I took a late afternoon nap, then woke up, filled my water bottle, and walked back to the subway.

As the train passed 86th Street, I found the address of where I was going. I blinked several times. It must have been a mistake. I checked the original email. It wasn’t a mistake.

I texted the friend who hosted the brunch that morning, “Looks like I’m having dinner with your downstairs neighbor.

– Jeffrey Zuckerman


Dear Diary:

My sister wanted me to know that she loved me, but also, when was I going to move out? A week of finding an apartment had turned into two weeks, then three.

It wasn’t supposed to be that hard. I was not picky. I had already given up on my crazy dream of a bedroom window. Dozens of tours through Brooklyn and Queens got me nowhere.

On my fourth week of failure, I sat in front of Wah Fung No. 1 Fast Food and buried my tears in a $ 4 can of barbecue pork.

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What did this town have against me? I wanted to give up.

A man on a nearby bench watched and, uninvited, offered me a cigarette. I guess I looked like I needed it.

Sometimes I still regret not having smoked that cigarette. But the gesture itself was such an honor: New York had given me a minute.

– Robert Yang


Dear Diary:

It was a rainy night, and I was on my way home from a date in Brooklyn. I contemplated the return trip to Manhattan and treated myself to a shared ride.

The car took another runner. As he climbed up, I picked up my headphones and prepared to spend the trip in pleasant silence.

Then he started to talk.

“What brings you to Brooklyn?” ” he said.

– A date, I said with a wink, pleased with myself.

He asked how we had met. With a sigh, I mentioned a dating app.

We started to moan on the dating scene. It’s all in apps these days, and no one is confident enough to strike up a conversation. No more classic New York encounters.

We spent the next 40 minutes talking about our work, our life in New York, our plans for the weekend. He made me smile and I made him laugh.

Everything calmed down and we watched the rain hit the window. I had the view of the river and my eyes went to the Pepsi-Cola sign.

“It’s so funny, isn’t it?” ” I said.

He asked what was so funny.

I realized I didn’t know, so I said, “New York. ” He accepted.

We stopped at his stop.

“Well I don’t think it’s going to work out with Brooklyn boy,” he said with a smile. “You will never be able to follow this route. “

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– Virginie Girard


Dear Diary:

It was another afternoon rush hour on the metro. The wagon I was in was filled with a crowd of people standing.

Trying to find where to look while avoiding eye contact, I looked down at the floor. My eyes focused on a pair of shimmering ruby ​​red slippers that looked new and totally irrelevant so far from Oz.

I couldn’t help myself. My eyes drifted to the face of a young woman who was staring directly at me with a look of expectation on her face.

I felt compelled to say something.

“Uh, does it work? I stammered.

“Well,” said the young woman, “when I click my heels three times, my roommate from Kansas walks into the room.”

We were at my stop.

– Good answer, I say. “Bye.”

– Tom Zebovitz


Dear Diary:

I was rushing to pick up an order from a restaurant in Chinatown and was confused when I walked through the door.

“I take an order of rice rolls, milk tea and something else that I don’t remember,” I told the host.

“Pick-up for rice rolls, milk tea and a je ne sais quoi!” he shouted from the back of the shop.

They found my order.

– SengMing Tan

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Illustrations by Agnès Lee


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