While waiting for the ferry to come, I sat down finishing the burger at Dumbo Pier and saw tourists taking selfies and enjoying their burgers. We were all happy and free.
I saw a sparrow jumping towards a mass of translucent melted gummy candy sticking to the pier and piercing its little beak.
Surprisingly, it stayed there. No matter how much the bird flapped, it was stuck. It tried to use his feet to take advantage of himself, but he got stuck.
I thought someone had to help this bird.
I got up and looked for someone who might come to the rescue, but no one else seemed to be aware of what was happening. When I realized I was someone, my heart began to throb.
I was able to raise my head by spilling a selzer on the bird’s beak. I tried pouring a little on that foot, but they were too stuck to make a difference.
Thinking about the reason why I didn’t touch the bird, I took out the handkerchief and gently scooped the sparrow from behind. The bird jumped out of the mass and flew away.
My boat was pulled in and I rode like everyone else, except that I felt like a hero.
— Michele Millisora
Rainy Queens Saturday in early 1968 — or was it 1969? — My friends Andy, Karl, Charlie and I gathered in a weekly 2v2 basketball game.
Karl, a student at St. John’s at the time, suggested going to the college gym instead of playing outside.
A match was scheduled for the night, but the building was open and empty. As we walk down the hallway towards the polished wooden floor, we should come out of his office, the venerable St. John’s coach Lou Carnesecca.
“What are you doing here?” He asked.
The coach said he just wanted to play the hoop.
“Get out of here,” he said, not unfriendly.
— Danny Domov
I was in Q for a job interview. Looking down, I noticed that the button on the left sleeve had been removed. I tried to push the button back several times, but I was nervous about the interview and my hands trembled.
The elderly woman sitting next to me noticed that I was having a hard time.
“Do you want me to help you?” She asked softly.
“Yes, please,” I blushed and said, moving my arms toward her.
She carefully buttoned her sleeves and we silently rode the rest of the way. When I stopped, when I got off the train, I turned around and nodded to her. She smiled at me.
I got a job.
— Abigail Murray
Something about life
On one of the last snowy nights of winter, I was walking through the village, taking my umbrella, scarf and rain shoes to the uptown train and trying to avoid the freezing point on the pavement.
A young man in a black pea coat and hoodie, probably in his mid-twenties, approached me. I was ready for him to ask me for directions to the New School or PATH train.
He stopped in front of me with a reckless look.
“Tell me something about life,” he said.
“It’s important to attend,” I said. “Stay in that moment as much as possible.”
He was still looking at me.
“And get rid of your worries. Generally useless.”
He kept standing there.
“Are you okay?” I asked.
“Yes,” he said, and he walked in the snow.
— Robert Mauruslop
My college roommate grew up in the suburbs of Massachusetts and soon moved to Texas. A few years later he visited me in New York for a week’s stay.
When I picked him up at the airport in Newark and returned to my apartment to catch up with each other’s lives, we talked about what to do and where to go during his stay.
It quickly became clear to him that the idea of relying on public transport to walk his daily work and activities was new to him.
When we pulled into the garage of my building, he later asked if the jacket should be left in the car.
“You don’t understand,” I said. “I can’t see the car again until I get back to the airport.”
— Brian Jaffe
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