Walking around the subway platform at Park Place, having just gotten off the Path from work and heading home, when I pass by a regular guy sitting on one of the benches, waiting for his train.

As I pass by him he begins to talk – to know on one in perticular – and I make note to myself  'don't sit next to him on the train, since he seems to be a nutter' and I go a bit futher down the platform, while the 2 train I'm waiting for pulls up. Of course, he gets into the same subway car but luckily, even though we are sitting on the same row – he's at one end – I'm at the other.

Now, sitting across from Mr. Talktohimself, are two attractive young women. The two women are involved in their own chatter and as I listen in, I realize they are speaking kreyol. I eavsdrop, only to discover they're talking about topics only important to themselves - ie: a friends nwe house and how an aunt is coming from Haiti soon – nothing at all interesting. I pull out my book to read.

But Mr. Talktohimself likes what he sees. Likes it so much that he stops listening to the voices in his head and addresses the ladies "Oh, you girls are sexy? Are you sisters or mother and daughter?"

I look up and the two women – OBVIOUSLY – are of similar age. So not only is Mr. Talktohimself crazy but partially blind. The ladies don't answer him…they don't even stop their conversation, having moved on from the aunt to a book one of them is reading that may be of interest to the other – still in kreyol. I take note and return to mine.

I'm sure you know that there is no way Mr. Talktohimself will stop that easy. He tries another approach 'Oh man, you ladies sound so sexy. I be luvin me some Jamaican women."

Not only is Mr. Talktohimself crazy and blind but now I have to add stupid. Out of all the countries that black people reside - Jamaica is one of the few where the natives speak english. Granted it's the Queen's english, which may sound different to the untrained ear, but english none the less (and yes, there's patois which is maybe what he was referring too but really not by looking at these ladies would that be a person would think of). With this statement, for the first time, the ladies change the conversation and begin to discuss Mr. Talktohimself.

Going into detail of what they said, isn't important, just know that it was funny and as I listened to them I laughed out loud. Which made them turn around, take notice of me and as we all nodded and smiled – there was that connection. We three were in on it. We were from the same clothe. We knew this guy was a fool but it was funny.  And they went back to figuring out how many more stops till 42nd Street and I went back to reading.

But in typical New York fashion, now that he had been rebuffed, Mr. Talktohimself had gone from sauve charmer to hater in a quick a minute. Suddenly he says 'You know, I don't understand why you guys move here if you don't want to speak english. Learn the lanuage or go back to Jamaica. You seem to think your countries language is so great, you can't even speak english then go back then…we don't need your kind here."

With that, he got up and off the train at 34th street…ending the entertainment on the number 2 train heading uptown. I was pleased….the ladies got off the train at 42nd and it dawned on me that these moments are so very New York. London has it's fair share of crazy people – I'm sure – but it's the lil bit crazy/lil bit sane that really adds the comedy (if someone is fully in need of mental health care that is no laughing matter) and the fact that the ladies were Haitian, that made it unique.



Read and post comments | Send to a friend