Wednesday, September 08, 2004

Rain: Train, Go Away

There are days, and there are days. Today began like every other. Startled awake by Tom Jones blasting from my stereo (side note: download his cover of Portishead's "All Mine" ASAP), I slipped my arms through two holes I cut into a Hefty bag, knotted my accompanying twist-tie belt, and was ready to conquer New York City. All would have been OK, had it not been for one tiny, small inconvenience taking place outside: THE APOCALYPSE. The sky had opened, friends, and rain was reigning the city, transforming roads into above-ground sewers and me into one helpless hussy. And, as per yoozh, the trains weren't running. Sometimes I think Jerry Lewis is raising money for the wrong cause.

Sure, the Starbucks latte I threw back took the edge off. But I was soaked to the bone, hefty bag and all -- apparently the 8 inch diameter of the cardboard umbrella I bought from that half-dead Chinese woman wasn't enough to block out the downpour.

At this point, I did what any unhappily-employed girl in her right mind would do when the trains aren't running: say "Am I retarded?", go home, put some sweatpants on, watch Maury Povitch and have a good cry.

By 11, ready to finally work, I re-emerged from my lair of unwatchable programming to an overcast sky and a yuge crowd of pissed off West Sidahs. The trains still weren't running. But to my bosses, sticklers for proper attendance and punctuality, even this wouldn't be a good enough excuse. "Couldn't you have hang-glided your way downtown off the George Washington Bridge?" one would inevitably ask. I even debated being dragged balled up on a small bodyboard behind one of the two insanely packed buses that passed, a la the hotly disgruntled Keanu Reeves in Speed.

But I'm a hoofer and a shaker, so I walked my ass down to 42nd street, about 4 miles, to catch the train. Not such a bad walk, but in heeled boots, a blister's paradise. After being man-handled and pan-handled on a subway car as hot as a desert crotch for around an hour, I finally arrived at my job, bleeding, hobbling, sweat shpritzing from the pores not yet caked with city dirt. It was 1:00 p.m.

"What took you so long?" someone hissed, while throwing a stapler at my face. "I need copies made."

Sometimes I ask myself if it was worth it.

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