man on train.

Be careful where you point that thing.

When I was little, my mother used to defend the  invasive gaze of passers-by with one simple explanation, “They stare because you’re so beautiful.”  I accepted this, I took it in and let it rattle around in my little girl mind and I decided after much application that it made perfect sense.  Now that I’m older I understand the world’s obsession with beautiful children.  You see their small beauty bursting with potential, their perfection frozen for a moment in time; its awe-inspiring.  However, as we grow older the last thing we want to experience is someone sitting across from us staring without end.  Not a slow wave ‘hello’ to break the confusion, not even a blink.

Today on the train, a man stared at me from Fulton street to Kingston Throop (20 minutes on the subway).  He sat shiftless, eyes blankly unfastened targeting my face for the entire ride home.  I tried to focus on something else…the lyrics of Karen O. and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs blasting through my ear-buds; the sailboat rhythm of the train as it bustled underground; the lines on the palms of my hands.  No matter what I did to distract myself, I found that looking up to see if he was still glaring at me was totally irresistible.  He stared as people got on and off the train, his eyes creating a focal point in between the motion that separated us.  He stared as the train operator announced a delay.  He stared as a mariachi band toting wooden instruments and wearing charro outfits began to play loudly with incredible balance in the middle of the aisle. Nothing seemed to distract his mission.

After a while his ogling became hypnotic.  It became ubiquitous, reeling me in like a vacuum, calling me to its mercy.  I was one stop away from home when I finally conceded.  For an entire four minutes I surrendered to his menacing vortex.  We sat four feet across from each other staring relentlessly and I was determined to force his eyes to the subway floor.  As we pulled up to Kingston I realized two things.  One, that he was clearly retarded.  And two, that I had met  defeat.  I buckled and decided to take the consolation prize.  Before standing up I crossed my eyes, scrunched my lips inward like a whistle and held the face until the subway came to a halt and the doors opened.  As I stood up to meet the platform and the summer heat outside I could hear the man laughing to himself in deep bubbly chuckles.

He brought the pain, but I arose victorious.


The Weather Outside if Frightful

Today was quite a frosty Saturday in Brooklyn.  The cotton-like piles of snow create a thick margin between the slushy streets and bank at lakes of slushy puddles that rise to the ankles.  It was off-and-on overcast with peek-a-boo teasers of sunshine intermittently appearing then ducking for cover.  My friend Princess (also co-editor of Rivyrse Magazine) came by around noon to touch base on website stuff.  Before that I logged onto AIM and had an interview/chat with photographer Mike Schreiber, who will be featured in our premier coming soon.  Once noting that neither of us had immutable plans for the day, we decided to go check out a thrift shop in Gowanus called Union Max. It ended up being a pretty perfect little field trip.

We stopped by the Fall Cafe on Union street.  They have AMAZING croissant breakfast sandwiches with the fluffiest eggs we’ve ever had.  I had to ask the guy behind the counter how they made them and he explained that they use only STEAM to make them (straight out of the espresso machine).  Infusing them with hot water and introducing air creates an incredible effect perfect for a breakfast sandwich.  Yum!

This is Hero, his owner was very cool about me snapping pics of his dog, explaining that “It happens a lot…”  🙂

This is only a small corner of the treasure box that was Union Max.  I even found some old vintage Nancy Drew books hiding in the corner.  Check out our premier issue of Rivyrse with more amazing photos from this Brooklyn favorite soon to come!

Tattoos Gon’ Wild

So maybe I can’t accurately explain to a specific thesis why I have a chocolate dipped strawberry tattooed on my lower right side of my stomach.  I can, however, argue that it’s hot.  Plain and simple.  It’s not often that people actually see it, short of beach wear and times of intimacy (snicker…), it’s usually hidden by my clothes.  Needless to say, in the 8 years I’ve had my strawberry, I’ve never had an ounce of regret.

I also don’t regret the lotus flower on my left foot.  It means a lot to me and represents my soul and self-progression in life as well as my reflection of the past.  It has meaning and it’s pretty and feminine and subtle.

What’s my point?  My point is this.  Today on the F train as I rode to work, I was visually assaulted by a woman in front of me who had to be sprouting the most ridiculous tattoo I’ve ever seen in person.  Etched in black script were the words:

Betty Boop”

Now…perhaps this has some deep meaning.  Or maybe she had a cat named Liontiger and another cat named Betty Boop that she accidentally maimed and wanted to honor by shitting on her shoulder with permanent ink.  Understandable (snicker).  But I’m thinking there is a much more colorful story behind this.

What happened is that one night after a long binge on crack, PBR and apple twizzlers, the perpetrator (who shall hence forth be referred to as “Crazy Eyes”) decided to go to the village to enjoy the mind trip that was about to set in.  She stood at the corner of West 3rd and 6th, slowly leaning over further and further until her forehead was almost touching the ground- this is a super power many crack heads enjoy.  After about four hours, Crazy Eyes finally was able to realize that she was in public, stopped leaning over like a limp house plant, and wandered over to Whatever Tattoo.  She sat down in a tattoo chair and stared wearily at the tattoo artist.

“Can I help you lady?”  She asked through several lip piercings and glitter gloss.  Crazy Eyes nodded and tried to tell the artist what she wanted engraved on her shoulder.  She told her to draw a mural of birds flying over the glistening East River with a rainbow stretched out above the New York skyline.  She wanted a halo of light to extend around the area that the World Trade Center once stood.  She asked for explicit detail and wanted every color available in the shop to be used to paint such a haunting and heartwarming portrait of the city in which she was born and raised.  Just after describing in great detail the intricate artistry she wanted permanently drawn to her skin, Crazy Eyes nodded off again. When she awoke her crack-haze had worn off and she was still sitting in the tattoo chair.

“Welcome back” the tattooist said to her, waving.  “Can you pay and get the hell out already cause I’m tired of watching you drool?”  Crazy Eyes asked for a mirror and gasped in horror when she realized that the beautiful mural of her beloved city was not tattooed on her shoulder at all, but instead just random and mysterious nonsense.  She asked the tattooist why she had “Liontiger Betty Boop” on her shoulder and all the lady offered by way of explanation was that those were the only words that trickled out of poor Crazy Eye’s mouth before she nodded off in the chair.

To me…this is the only viable explanation to why one would have such hogwash on their body for the rest of eternity.
I’m also bored at work…so there you have it.

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