Posts Tagged ‘conversations’
May 26, 2016 | by Sadie Stein
The same day I ate the hot dog—indeed, the same layover—I found myself in conversation with a group of other travelers. One commented on the crowds, and another said, “Tampa’s not a small place but it’s nothing like this,” and they all talked about the energy of the city versus the pleasures of having moved to Florida. It was very friendly. Then one woman said, “Not New York, though. I hate New York.” Then they all piled on with gusto, discussing the general crumminess that is New York, the rudeness, the filth, the overwhelming pace, and all manner of other clichés. It all happened so fast that I didn’t have a chance to jump in and defend my hometown.
I didn’t even have a defense, as such. People from other places seem to feel New York is a thing they need to have strong opinions about, like the election, or cilantro. And the truth is, most of us really, really don’t care. At least, those of us who are from here. Never having made the choice to move here, it’s akin to the affection and irritation one feels for a family member. Especially since our families are, you know, here. Read More »
April 25, 2016 | by Sadie Stein
“How are you?” asked a smiling acquaintance on the street.
“Well, I’m pretty down about Prince—but aren’t we all?” I said reprovingly.
“Oh yes,” she murmured. “Of course.” I saw her blinking quickly in an effort to summon tears. “It’s the end of an era, isn’t it?” Read More »
April 1, 2016 | by Sadie Stein
Guess who I ran into this morning? Three guesses. And if you guessed Jacob, my neighborhood friend, you’re right!
I was enjoying a toasted, buttered bialy, a coffee-cart small, and a newspaper on a traffic island, when who should sit down on the bench opposite but my old comrade-in-arms! He was looking very natty in a bright green fedora and tweed jacket. On his lapel was a button that read POLITE NEW YORKER.Read More »
July 17, 2015 | by Sadie Stein
My mother called me to ask how much to tip on a haircut. “A normal haircut,” she said.
“I usually tip upwards of 20 percent,” I said, “but of course it’s at your discretion.”
“That seems awfully high.”
“I don’t know, not for something you wear every day. And if you have a relationship with your hairdresser—” Read More »
July 15, 2015 | by Sadie Stein
I phoned my dad. I was eager to discuss the recent cover story on a New York City tabloid. It featured a homeless man who lives in my neighborhood, and I was indignant on his behalf. I knew my dad would have read the piece closely and would have strong opinions.
“Did you see that cover story?” I demanded, rhetorically.
“No,” said my dad. “We’re not reading any newspapers these days. Or watching any news.”
“Oh,” I said. “Why?” Read More »
May 11, 2015 | by Sadie Stein
One of the few remaining bastions of character on New York’s Upper West Side is its smattering of sidewalk booksellers. Up and down Broadway—displaying wares by American Apparel, blasting Bach, and hawking signed Roth novels in front of Zabar’s, dressed in velvet by the Eighty-Sixth Street Uptown 1—these are the folks who keep the neighborhood alive.
Over the weekend, I was perusing the stall of a certain bookseller when another customer—a “character” in a many-pocketed fishing-tackle vest—strode up and began barraging the mild-mannered proprietor with questions. Read More »