Friday, December 10, 2010

New York Minutes: a phone, a bookstore, and some killer gams

Yesterday my phone committed suicide. Well, perhaps that is extreme. But the touch screen decided it didn't want to work anymore, so after work I decided to take a quick trip to the wireless store to see if they could help my plight. Lucky me, working in Times Square (otherwise known as the black hole of suck that has gridiron traffic at 3AM), there's a Verizon store in Bryant Park. Or so the internet told me (word to the wise, just because the internet said so, doesn't necessarily mean it's true), but I walked around Bryant Park for approximately 5 minutes, essentially lost (give me a break, it was 23 degrees outside) before I hightailed it to the 4-5-6 train (because I knew there was another Verizon store on 86th, because Verizon is like Starbucks and/or bedbugs in this city).

But that's one of the problems with New York. You KNOW that there's restaurants, subway stations, taxis, Starbucks, Anthropologies, pizza places and seemingly available men everywhere, but when you want that ONE said thing, it's absolutely nowhere to be found. Like the time, the other night night, when I was headed to Athropologie after work to kill time before meeting some friends at the movies (Black Swan. So messed up. So good. See it as soon as you can), and I walked the wrong direction for three blocks (Broadway always messes me up) and then basically walked in a circle around Anthro (I thought it was on 17th street, walked uptown toward 18th, then back down all the way to 15th...the store is on 16th), and was staring pretty much at the door without realizing it was what I was looking for. Or last weekend, when my parents and brothers came to the city, and I had found a perfect Pizza/Italian restaurant to dine in Friday night, only to find that when we got there, it no longer existed. We then walked around for almost an hour trying to find another place to eat (fat chance. Midtown on Friday night is a circus). Irony of ironies, when my parents were headed to a cigar bar later that night, they saw the ideal restaurant, Pizza/Italian, cozy lighting, waiters in pressed white shirts, a block east of their hotel. Good thing we had walked west, right?

Anyway, I came up from the subway onto 86th and, lo and behold, cannot find the Verizon store. But, there in front of me, beckoning with whispers and shelves upon shelves of books, was Barnes and Noble, where I, powerless to the pull of everything that has to do with books, quickly ducked inside. I browsed and perused, perused and browsed, wishing I had endless money to buy books and books and more books. Books and puzzles and games and calendars and empty journals. What is it with me and books? And then, as I was about to leave (taking one last lingering look at the Christmas cards) a man clad in a dirty-looking green jacket with a mustache and droopy eyes interrupted my sweet fantasy.
Man: "Um excuse me..."
Me: "Yes?"
Man: "I don't want to insult you have....very nice....legs."
Me: "Um, thank you..."
Man: (as I walk away) "Sorry, I"
He may or may not have been homeless. I blushed and then, couldn't help myself, smiled. Finally! Someone appreciates the way I look!!! And then, I was horrified. I took a compliment from a guy who is probably my dad's age sitting in Barnes and Noble (not reading...probably sitting there to escape the bitter cold) and was FLATTERED? How pathetic am I that I need validation from a strange stranger? Why was I not spooked? And then, because I freaked myself out, I was spooked.

So much so, in fact, I hightailed it home and never made it to Verizon. Good thing this morning my phone decided it wanted to live after all.

But seriously, homeless man, wherever you are, thanks for admiring my legs.


  1. ha, so true. I can never find a bar or restaurant to drink or eat in when I need it. And while flying home for thanksgiving a baggage handler guy, double my age, told me "nice legs" and it had the same impact on me :)

  2. love this! sometimes, it's the comments from people you don't know that mean it all in the end..

  3. Nice words go a long way.. no matter who they're comin' from! : )