THE UNDERGROUND
1.28.2005

Tripping On the Stares...

The hull had all the ambience of a public library, replete with the same lights and dazed denizens. Half the crowd's minds intent on what awaited them at work, the other half maybe thinking of weekend plans or overdue bills or hell, maybe even library cards. The point is, as it always seems to be on the New York City subway system: it was just one of those days.

Except it wasn't. Today, there she was. Sitting there. Perfectly imperfect. On her way to her day. Holding her thoughts close and her bag even closer. For all accounts and purposes, a native New Yorker. She caught my eye, not so much for her sexuality, but for her simplicity. She is who the director may have had in mind when he penned Just Another Girl on the IRT. Maybe.

She sat there, unassuming and unaware that I was sizing her up, caught up in her aura. She had no clue I was invading her space; no clue that her presence during an otherwise blah trip had me tripping. I kept trying to put my finger on what had me staring. What could it be?

Her blue jeans clung to her body like a scared toddler to a parents' neck. Boots by Timberland had enough traces of the past week's snow to ensure that if she'd committed a crime, Gary Sinise could end that particular CSI episode early. Her jacket, a fire engine red, halfway hid her pink sweat shirt, the combination reflecting awkwardly off of the fluorescents and causing many a passenger to do a bleary-eyed double take as if the ensemble was an assault on their senses.

Her skin? A winter pale, yet still with a glow that harkened brighter days--brighter than the wintry ones the northeast has suffered through for the past month. She was a sista, no doubt. Maybe mixed. Her complexion was light, with high cheek bones and thin lips rounding out her facial structure. No makeup. A scar on her right cheek made all who looked try to mentally deconstruct its origin, empathetically retrace her steps to the scene of the crime. Her hair, a dark brown with honey streaks, was organized confusion, yet somehow complemented her hue.

Her eyes? Closed. Tightly. Her head nodded furiously with each turn of the train, each jerk and pull, with her at the mercy of the frazzled conductor, resembling a Latina marionnette in performance mode. As her head danced the jig of slumber, the shopping bag she clutched began to slide off of her lap, moving toward the ground with all the skill and determination of a stripper sliding down a pole.

Why was I mesmerized by this woman? What was it about her? Honestly, to this day I just don't know. Her stop came. She arose suddenly, frantically exiting the train, only to come back for her bag.

And then she was gone. Unlike my memory of her, which still remains. Maybe I'll see her again, maybe not. Maybe one day I'll figure out what it was about her that "made me look" like a Nas song. Personally, I'm blaming it on the fluorescent lighting. And the lack of a newspaper. LOL

That way, I can stop thinking about it, get on with my day...and stop tripping on the stares.

posted by Will at 4:03 AM
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21 Comments:

Blogger Yolie commented at January 28, 2005 at 7:12 AM~  

You so spaacial. But a good kinda spaacial. ;-)

Blogger Zantiferous3 commented at January 28, 2005 at 11:47 AM~  

Wow... see, I can't write like this. I wish I could. I'm in awe. Trippin on the stares. *sigh* this is why I cyber-love you. LOL

Blogger Diva commented at January 28, 2005 at 3:34 PM~  

Hi! I was blog-hoppin' and stopped at your spot. Glad I did...really enjoyed my stay. The read was awesome (especially the unexpected, yet amusing ending..lol) I'm sure I'll be "hopping" back your way soon. Take care!
-Diva

Blogger love hater commented at February 11, 2005 at 10:24 PM~  

wow. i actually know how this woman looks from this post alone. i love it.

Blogger Lambchop commented at March 22, 2005 at 11:48 AM~  

I'm making my rounds all "up-n-thru" your site! LOL!

Lov'n it!

Lambchop~

Blogger piranha commented at June 10, 2005 at 4:20 AM~  

hey what a wonderful story....before I moved to LA i lived in Berlin for a year and I had those amazing stories happening to me as well, all the time. subways rock.....and your writing is just ....it draws me in.....thank you for this image there....i know what you are talking about....you described it very well.
thank you
piranha

Blogger Danyel commented at August 17, 2005 at 8:32 PM~  

crazily beautifully weird.

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The ournal

Here is where I will blog my daily travails on the New York City subway system...Something I'm dubbing The Homeboy Journals.


bout Me

Will.Writer.Live from Harlem.Lefty.Thoughtful.Determined to figure out life.One day.Rambling into reality in the meantime...


Previously on THE UNDERGROUND
rchives

November 2004
December 2004
January 2005


logs I Read

Random Things About Me
Linga
The Black New Yorker
Sid
Leon/Hustleman
Mia
CocoaButterflyy
Wildly Sophisticated
Keisha
Donyell
Suezette
Cee
Ranada
Yolie
Jazz
The Brutha Code
Elle
Ms.Thing
Xquizzyt1
Rhapsodi
Buttercup
Singing Chick
Brown Shuga
The Kajuana Show






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