There are girls here.
Tall-as-a-poles girls and narrow too, girls whose hips and shoulders switch in line like they’re wrapped in glass tubes, whose eyes don’t rise or drop but stare straight ahead to make sure the light’s red so they can cross the street. Girls with their jaws ajar and their lower lips jutting out and their bottom teeth showing down to their pink quicks, not to be rude (though they look rude) but to get where they’re going without anyone stopping them up.
There are girls whose mamas teach them how to ride their pink bicycles late at night when their daddies won’t — the same pink bicycles any girl would have anywhere, with the same ice cream-white tires. Girls small and doughy but fast forever, with each of their mamas hands wrapped around each of their soft shoulders for now, and smaller brothers (bald like old gentlemen) hobbling behind on plastic-wheeled trikes, and older brothers cautiously butting in (feetgohere, handsgohere). Girls who giggle as they step their bicycles along the sidewalks in the dark, mamas laughing so hard they have to pause, curl over their girls and wait, for safety’s sake, for the laughing to subside. They’ll learn to ride, but maybe on a night when it’s not so damn funny: a mama, her girl (feet nowhere near pedals and knees east and west at right angles like stoop steps and quite scared of their bicycles), her boys, a bottle of Sprite, way past bedtime.
There are girls whose too-long legs dangle down their stoops like garlands, and they lean back with their elbows against the cool corners of the steps and their clavicles pushed out toward the light, and they just talk. Maybe one will smoke a cigarette, maybe one will hug her knees up so they’re glued under her chin, maybe she’ll even flip her head over her knees, bored, so her ponytail dangles over the tops of her sneakers like stretched taffy. Maybe one will bat with one hand at the opposite side of her back, mistaking a stoopward locust pod, shaped and rusted brown like an old banana, for an ambitious centipede or some other creeping horror.
On the subway there are girls who sit all the way back in their seats and let their feet swing back and forth, acting like they’re walking the whole train away from Manhattan across the Williamsburg Bridge. Girls whose eyes shine like nail polish bottles as they moon, unblinking, at the East River, and dig around in crackling bags for more Doritos, and suck the orange cheese paste off their fingers or rub it into the roots of their teeth so it lasts and lasts.
There are boys here too, boys all T-shirt and ankles. Boys who I swear stay out all night long in front of that deli, howling in its purple glow, smashing Takis into the gravel long after the girls have gone to sleep, like they never had any mamas at all.
… remember Tasha? She lived on the floor above us Freshman year.
Wow! How is she?
Great… she says…
Hahahhaa, literally, classic Tasha
I know iknwoiknow! I was like yeah you also said you weren’t pregnant and then you disappeared second semester hahaa
Obviously I didn’t really say that but lol
She should be careful on that bike, in case she’s you know, with child
I know, she also “says” she’s a careful rider hahahaha
not careful enough lol
because she got pregnant freshman year
I get it
She looks good tho, not kidding
Ben always did good with girls too. Like, people don’t think it, because they look at him and see that he’s so short and he’s so green and he doesn’t have any features, and they think, oh, you know, girls aren’t gonna wanna talk to him…
I carry a vial of pepper spray in my purse at all times. Sometimes I palm it when I’m walking home from the subway at night, but this is only if I’m taking The Scary Way Home.
I’ve never had to use it. I don’t even know if I’d have the wits to use it during an incident that might call for me to use it. It just tumbles around in the bottom of my purse with 600 empty lip glosses, acting as a safety placebo.
One thing I hate is when people find out I carry pepper spray, and 90% of the time their response is “Do you know that’s illegal? You technically aren’t allowed to carry pepper spray, it’s considered a weapon.”
You know what else is illegal you guys? Rape! I’m gonna keep carrying my pepper spray.
ever stop yourself and think, “Why am I feverishly cycling through Facebook photos chronicling the pregnancy of an acquaintance from high school instead of doing the work I am paid to do at my job?”
So you know how every summer Urban Outfitters and similar shops unleash collections of casual flats and sandals that they either hang on hooks or toss into bins to trick you into thinking you’re shopping for like toothbrushes when really you’re looking at FOOTWEAR, as in SHOES, as in a thing that some people only own ONE pair of?
Urban Outfitters’ assortment of these simple summer casuals are usually cute to lure you in, but upon closer inspection (if you’re blessed with a KEEN EYE and trained by the most persnickety shoe-buyer in all the land, my mother Doris) they turn out to be depressing as hell, as in, so cheaply made they’re practically disposable, crafted from 100% polyurethane so a simple jaunt to the bodega could turn your feet into a criminally smelly and sweaty situation, and with soles that I swear, I swear, were made of paper covered in nail polish.
I don’t know if there was some kind of ~court order~ placed on Urban Outfitters this season by the Shitty Footwear Victims Alliance or something, but this summer’s crop of hanging and tossed-in-bins flats and sandals are SO MUCH BETTER! First, they’re all leather, second, the soles are durable gum rubber and third!!!! they’re all still~~~ under*** FoRtY DoLLaRs$$$$<3<3<3<3’
Does this rock you like it rocks me? I mean SURE Urban Outfitters is headed by scary Obama-hating conservatives and SURE most of their wares are cranked out in combustible factories in South America but if you’re a budget-savvy fashion gal living in the Big City, sometimes you need a bone thrown, and this summer, that bone is shaped like adorable $34 genuine leather woven peep-toes. I’ve spent more on canvas! This is going to be the BEST SUMMER OF OUR LIVES. Here are my faves:
Peep Toe Skimmer in Peach, $34
LEATHER! (Maybe I bought these today, maybe I didn’t. Depends on whether or not you’re my Dad and you’d get upset that I bought another pair of shoes on a limited income…)
Almond Toe Oxford in Mint, $39
LEATHER as FUCK! Also Mint is the color of the season. I mean, [intelligent opinion about Michele Bachmann not running for re-election next year].
Braided Sandal in Navy, $34
SO LEATHER AND NOT SO NOT SYNTHETIC YOU COULD CONCEIVABLY EAT THIS MOTHERFUCKER. A great everyday sandal and perhaps swimsuit depending on how you spin it.