Did you know that once you swipe your subway turnstile ticket (the wrong way) it won’t let you on the train? Did you know that if you are traveling with 4 other women to Manhattan and they swipe their tickets correctly, you get to stand outside the bars looking in at them with horror on your face because you just spent your last cash on the tickets and the ticket machines are all temporarily down?
Did you know that you can push the emergency button at the bottom of the subway stairs and a crackling voice, (the subway authority) will come on and say this (while the trains rumble by), “Kkkkkzzzzzttt, your problkkkzzzztttt?”
“Oh, uh, I am not from around here, ha-ha-ha, and uh I don’t understand what I did wrong, but my friends are ready to get on the uptown train and I’m here, with no cash and the machine thingee’s are down and the turnstile won’t let me get to them and I paid, honest! I’m an upstanding cit…”
Wendy is rolling her eyes.
“Kkkkkzzzzttt, across the street to the zzzzzztttttkkkkk. Tell themzzzzkkkk and you can…zzzztt…pppbbbbb….ttttt…kkkk. Okayzzz?”
My friends stare helplessly at me. Not one to buck the system (unless someone is threatening my kids) I point upstairs and mouth, Be back in a sec! They nod looking various shades of dazed and confused.
I run upstairs and ask the hotdog guy. “The subway authority told me to come up here and cross the street to complain. Where?”
“Soorree. I doo nut no wut u r talking bout. Ask her.”
His assistant: “Subway stairs are over there, honey.”
“I know! You see, I spent my last cash on… I…forget it.” Back down stairs. “This is gonna take all day girls. I did everything I know how to find someone who works here. There is no one. So, stand back. I’m coming in.”
Wendy glances around. They all looked horrified. It was a curious mix of fear and embarrassment because my shoe got stuck on the turnstile on the first go ’round and the bar gave me a pretty healthy spanking. They train those things well. The second attempt was successful and I’m proud to say I suffered only minor bruises and humiliation. Happily, I was not arrested.