Letters From the Editor


Yesterday afternoon I was riding home on the subway after a fairly unsuccessful day (the day was just altogether unsuccessful), when three college students – two men, one woman – boarded the train, the two men each carrying a pot full of chili – the three of them presumably on their way to a Superbowl party. I should specify that these were cooking pots of chili – not plastic containers with rubber seals to keep the chili in the containers (and, say, not all over me). And these pots were piping hot; I could see the steam puckering out of the crack between the lid and the pot proper. Couple this with knowing that subway trains grind and shake and you’ve got a recipe for trouble (pun intended).

Now I’m already in a bad mood, and I’m standing there, gripping the pole, which is also being gripped by the woman, and I see that neither one of the men are holding onto anything – save their chili. They’re just sort of swaying back and forth – and laughing. And the woman’s laughing too. And I realize that they think all of this is incredibly amusing: the idea that here they are, in New York City, transporting their chili on the subway and, since they didn’t have any plastic containers, they’ll just take it right over in the pots! For some reason, I was at first convinced it was a fraternity initiation stunt.

So I’m standing there, holding the pole, and the woman – so overcome with laughter as she was by the sheer hilarity of their carefree hijinks (and possibly wondering if this is how Monica and Chandler would transport chili if they were without proper containers) – puts her face on my hand (the one that’s gripping the subway pole). Just puts it right there and continues laughing – actually tearing up and guffawing. None of the students seem to notice her face pressed so weirdly into my hand and, taking this action as my cue to remove myself from this area of the car, left them and stood next to the alcohol-soaked, passed-out bum sitting further down the car. He kept nearly falling onto the collection of plastic bags he had littered around his feet, but each time, at the last moment, he would catch himself and right his position.

And he was completely quiet.

Andrew Womack is a founding editor of The Morning News. He is always working on the next installment of the Albums of the Year series at TMN. More by Andrew Womack

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