Saturday, 24 May 2014
"One for You, One for Me..."
When Melody met me I was standing in a dusty corner of the Times Square station parked next to a staircase that led down to the 7 train, where I had been waiting for over half an hour. The day so far I had spent on a disappointing workout, a grueling shift, braving the tail end of Wednesday’s shiver, and idle time to lament it all while catching plenty of passing looks. “Having a bad day?” she asked me on the train. I nodded, a little embarrassed. I told her about my day, and she asked me if I wanted something to make it better. She told me that morning she was going to stop by Uniqlo. I even saw the bag, I figured maybe she got me a tie or suspenders. I had no clue. She reached inside and instead pulled out a small hazelnut box made of recycled paper, with a sun flare sticker smoothed over—the color of dark chocolate—sealing it shut. “Sprinkles” it read. I mustered some gratitude, though I wasn’t in the mood for cupcakes. “That’s nice, only I don’t have a big appetite right now.” She just kept smiling, oblivious to my lack of enthusiasm. “Read what it says,” she gently instructed. On the box she had written in pen “one for YOU, one for ME…” finished with a heart. I didn’t get it. Wasn’t that just being cute? Why is she so excited? She reached into the Uniqlo bag a second time, this time she pulled out a tiny paper bag—the same color as the box, with the same sun flare sticker. It wasn’t big enough to have another regular cupcake in it, it was much smaller. On it, in pen, was written “…and one for baby.” A dozen different Julians clamored over each other in my head. What? When! Hey, this is a special moment! Be excited! Remember this! But why now? Why here on the 7 train? Can everyone see me? Cupcakes? I nearly jumped up and woke up all the sleeping riders. She giggled. (01/26/2014)