I am an inveterate reader – put it in front of me, and I read it. The only thing I don’t read is my smartphone – mainly because I don’t have one. Because of this, I’m free to read signs – neon signs, metal signs, wood, plastic and paper – in windows, on walls, up on billboards, on the sides of buses and the walls of subway cars. In fact the subway is where reading all came together for me.
From infancy until I started kindergarten at age 4-1/2, I spent two torturous two hours riding the subway from Manhattan to Brooklyn ( and two hours back) each Friday to visit my grandmother in Brooklyn. Subways have changed a lot over the years but, back then, as today, passengers avoiding eye contact are prisoners of the ads staring down at them. I still remember the light of recognition flashing at me when I noticed that the letters, c o f f e e on the ad looked just like the c o f f e e on the can in our kitchen. I don’t recall what I said but my mother said it brought smiles to all the fellow N’Yawkers on the train. (I also knew the word BAR since there was one on every corner in our neighborhood.)
Well, I don’t ride the subway quite as much but I still read signs, always, all the time, and some of them merit a second look. Speaking of coffee, let’s start with this one.
Do you remember when coffee was the flavor?
And how about this in the front of Office Depot.
Empty cardboard boxes – -$1.00 ( the ones from which they’ve already sold the paper?) .
And now for an internet moment……
Note it’s a page with yoga-related links
What I’m puzzled by, is the box of related links. Hold on, let me enlarge it
Coffin for sale? Just think – all these years I’ve been thinking yoga was good for me.
So you see – friends who chuckle and think I’m referring to writing when I say words are my life don’t know the half of it!
Ladies of a certain age. Ladies who lunch.
I’m not sure which phrase I dislike more. I find both rather condescending. Having said that, I realize I have reached that certain age, especially having just celebrated a birthday which while it wasn’t a milestone, does bring the next milestone into clearer view. But, hey, I’m okay with that. I’m still going strong, and so are a few of my contemporaries who recently made the news for their prestigious new jobs at an age when most people, male and female, have retired.
The first is Carmen Farina, the new Chancellor of New York City Public Schools, lured out of retirement in Florida by New York’s new mayor, Bill DeBlasio. In fact, mayor DeBlasio’s announcement came on my birthday and served as a present of sorts. If I was experiencing any concern about moving up a number on my age, it vanished when I heard that Chancellor Farina, at 70 and assuming such a demanding job, is (even) older than I am.
A few days later, Janet Yellen, who just happens to be five months older than me (but who’s counting) was nominated and confirmed as the new head of the Federal Reserve.
So what can I say? Ladies of a certain Age rule.
Now if only people would stop offering me their seat on the subway when I go into the city to lunch with ladies who lunch.
My goal for the moment is to live in the moment. As I’ve mentioned previously, I’ve set myself the task of taming my monkey, and appreciating what’s in front of me now. Sunday turned out to be a lesson. You see I’d planned to visit the Westchester Cat Show on Sunday with a friend. But she called me Saturday to tell me she was ill. I was disappointed, but decided to put the now-empty Sunday to good use. I’d continue in my quest to rid the House of Mars of the carpet of leaves surrounding it.
Well, the House of Mars still wears its collar of leaves. I awoke on Sunday deciding it could wait. I’d planned on a day for myself and that was what I’d have. A meditation group I sometimes attend was meeting in the afternoon. It centers around the lectures of Eckhart Tolle, one of the biggest proponents of living mindfully. His book, The Power of Now says it all.
I looked at the clock on the night table. It was 9 AM. The group started at 1:15 – in Manhattan. I could make it. So after showering, a cup of coffee, feeding all three Mars, feline and canine, and walking the canine, I managed to arrive at the Peekskill train station in time to catch the 11:21 train. I even had time to just stand on the platform and appreciate the sunlight sparkling on the Hudson River. How’s that for a now moment?
After listening to the talk and engaging in the meditation, I was ready to put one of Tolle’s points into action:
We spend a lot of precious energy waiting for, worrying about, and over-planning for the next moment. But by the time the next moment reaches us, it’s the now; and more often than not, whatever we were worrying about, or planning for never materializes. But no matter, now we’re busy fussing over what we think we see down the pike.
And here I was in the middle of a prime example. I wasn’t at The Cat Show, was I? With that in mind, I decided to take advantage of the mild November and meander along The West Side rather than taking the subway back to Grand Central Station. I would just walk with no particular route in mind and appreciate whatever unfolded. (And if it so happened I passed one of Manhattan’s ubiquitous vegetable stores, I’d stop for the parsley I needed for the casserole I planned to make when I got home.)
But enough of my narrative, I share my hour’s walk with you.
Ah, Christmas preparations, I love the hustle and bustle of Christmas, but this calm before storm is nice too.
Along Broadway in the West 60’s
Oh my, look where I am – Columbus Circle and 59th Street; and I just wrote about my first summer job at Woolworth’s in the last blog. Let’s see what’s in its place.
Just what NY needs – yet another Duane Reade drug store.
I’ll avoid Central Park South. I hate seeing those poor carriage horses. I always feel so sorry for them. I’ll head east on 58th Street instead. Ah, look, an alternative to animal abuse.
- One of the pedicabs gaining popularity among tourists
And another, and one built for two.
Too bad they’re all idle.
I’ll bet those %^&!! Horse carriage drivers aren’t.
Oh, look more Christmas preparations.
Along East 58th Street
And look, how quiet – wait until next week.
The famed FAO Schwartz toy store
Well, I’ve walked thirty blocks south and seven block south and not one vegetable store. But not to worry, I’ll get it here in Grand Central Station
On the Main Concourse
Is this parsley?
No, here it is.
PS. See, I did use the parsley.
Chicken and Noodle Casserole with sour cream, onions, & parsley