Wednesday, May 07, 2003



...the disfigured faces pressed against the doors of the jam-packed subway trains; young Japanese woman and I pressed chest-to-chest for two stops. She handled it by not looking at me. Getting off, one is assisted through the crowds by being pummeled and shoved, in a neighborly way, by the person behind. It is helpful under the circumstances, in propelling one, for then the choice between polite and speedy progress is taken off one's feet. I merely bounced along, shoving people aside, kicking ankles, stepping on toes, bumping heads; those receiving this treatment were helpfully implacable because they knew that I was being pushed from behind; it is very important that one convey this, whether or not it is true. Even as it was, I felt my 'propellor' was a little too zealous, giving me a few too many sharp poundings in the kidney area. When I was finally cast into an eddy in this sea, I found out why. My propellor was a very old and tiny woman, who could reach no higher.

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