A Novel Idea

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Grand Central Station is massive.

Yesterday nothing significant happened. I subway-ed to Grand Central Station. I worked. I subway-ed home. I picked up Chinese food. I watched an episode of 30 Rock. I went to bed.

Nothing cool. Nothing unusual. But I wouldn't be a Romantic if I didn't look for wildflowers fighting for life on a highway median or seek out poetry in humdrum prose; in layman's terms, yesterday I found beauty in the mundane. All of these insignificant occurrences occurred in New York City and I took a minute to confirm that I made it here. I MADE IT HERE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Let me tell you about the way New York makes me feel. The City makes me feel like writing. I want to describe every corner of this town. I want to write this City like a novel: fill its crevices with alliteration and chiasmus and parallelism. I don't want to memorize and later forget these experiences; New York deserves grand diction and sweeping similes and hyperbole, written in ink on a page (or lovingly typed by the click-clack of keys on a keyboard). New York is an epic love story, a timeless classic. There is literary inspiration everywhere. One city block contains at least six archetypes: a jester, a sage, an explorer, a rebel, a creator, a heroine. You could make up a thousand different stories in your head based off one eavesdropped exchange. Because it would take days to catalog stories from one trip around the block, I'll just stick to my story for now. Here is a revision of the previous insignificant recount of yesterday, this time with Romanticism and grandeur:

Grand Central Station literally takes my breath away. The smell, the big, wide departure room, the busy bustle of corporate feet, the great chandeliers, the resounding allegory of life coming and going, stopping and starting, beginning and beginning again. Someone angrily grumbles "watch where you're going!" as I am lost in the grandiose. I feel so small here in New York. Grand Central is a good example of this sense because it is one of the busiest places I've visited since landing in the City, particularly during rush hour. (A supremely different kind of rush hour than the kind familiar to me from Atlanta.) I merge into a throng of important-looking navy sedans suits and manage to get a foothold on the escalator, escalating to the 4-5-6 train heading home. The problem? The sedans suits ahead of us are backed way up due to the slowness of people passing through the tollbooths metro terminals. The escalator keeps pushing us down down down but there is nowhere to go. It is a phenomenon I didn't even think was possible and it is an experience that normally should have made me very uncomfortable (I don't like tight spaces). But when it comes down to it, I am thrilled to be in that crowd because I am one of them. I am a weary commuter in a suit pair of black cigarette pants and a polka-dot top heading home after a long day at the office. I am a young professional. I am a New Yorker! 

Making it through the terminal, I hop on the 6 and make my way home. Back above ground, I consider stopping into the grocery store (I LOVE grocery shopping. It makes me feel very domestic and also I love to eat.) for something for dinner, but later decide to pick one of the little holes-in-the wall restaurants instead. I settle on Chinese because Chinese take-out feels very New York and very necessary right now. (There really are a handful of good-looking restaurants on my way home that I can't wait to try!!!) Getting back, I let out a relaxed sigh, fling open the blinds, and set my eyes on the curves and edges of the city skyline outside my window as I unpack my sesame chicken. It is a good meal, a self-reflective communion. There was a bit of a journey (read: a brisk walk and avoiding running into other people) to get my dinner tonight, but it was the larger journey of getting to New York that I am thinking about and reflecting on all this time. Here I am, eating Chinese food in a tiny New York apartment, overlooking the sun setting on a crisp New York skyline. I've carried New York with me my whole life, in everything I do, in every piece I write, in every dream I dream, and so this moment makes me feel a lot like that famous e.e. cummings piece: 

here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart(i carry it in my hear)

(See what I mean? Poetry.)

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