I’m on a subway in NYC–the 1 train, bound for uptown, the 66th street stop. A slick business man–wearing an expensive blue, pin-stripped suit was sitting across from me moments ago, but has now exited the train. Now sits a beautiful, fair-skinned woman with long amber hair, gentle pink cheeks, wool coat, and hipster tall boots (which for some ungodly reason only lace up from the mid toe to the ankle). They come and go, in and out–through the doors onto the next train or up the stairs to the street. Rhythmically, they move like bees in a beehive, a human beehive. And here I sit and think. I climb high above the station, just observing the train move through the tunnel, my body below, writing in this notebook; riding the number 1 train uptown with a whole mess of other human bodies. I’ve come to notice that despite being in such a crowded city, everyone sort of keeps to themselves. I think it has to do with all of the iPods and smartphones, everyone is plugged in (to a million little electronic gadgets that seemingly occupy your mind, all the while making you feel more anxious as they unplug you from this present moment, as they unplug you from the earth). And it is truly ironic that all the while everyone is texting and face-booking virtual people, they are surrounded by real people, whom they could connect to face to face–personally. I really need to get off this train and find a restroom, and in this thought it dawns on me that the primary function of humans, on a most basic level, is to move water from place to place. And here we are in a busy beehive, stressing about a whole lot of nothing (first world problems). And though I long to be back on my beloved rivers and streams of Baltimore County–I am happy to be here in New York City, riding the one train uptown, with a whole mess of uptown train riding comrades.
By Austin Green