Journal entry: morning commute

IMG_0106So here is your daily life at the beginning of October. You get up at 7:25am and put on your nice jeggings from Uniqlo, the soft, tight-enough ones in dark business colors that you wear with a thick brown belt and knee-high boots. You drag one of your two leather jackets across your shoulders, the pink one on some days and the black on others, and your mother drops you off at the train station and you get the 8:36am express, which is usually late now that the weather is changing. Some days you get a window seat and listen to music as Connecticut bleeds into New York—this is one of the best parts of the day now that it’s too dark at night to see much out the windows. Sometimes there are couples who commute together, passing sections of the New York Times back and forth and kissing each other goodbye in Grand Central and you think to yourself, I want that. You envy these smart, tender, executive partnerships of people going places but taking the ride together.

You take two subways to work, the shuttle to Time Square and the 1 downtown to Canal, and that’s another best part of the day, watching hundreds of people step in and out of the car, listening to their iPhones or reading new hardcovers or watching the faces of others like you are. People pull faces at babies to make them giggle while their mothers skim their Kindles unaware. It’s fast and crowded but you always feel safe which you haven’t learned to take advantage of yet. You fall in love daily with attractive strangers who have nice hair and good outfits. There are a lot of suits. You smirk at your reflection in the train car windows and check your twitter mentions and plan your next blog posts. On the stops you get 4G, you Tinder next to some NYU student who is also swiping left. You bond before he gets off at 14th.

In SoHo the security guard sometimes recognizes you right away which is the best because then he doesn’t have to ask for your name at the desk and you don’t have to fish out your license. Sometimes you take the elevator up with a coworker and you start the day off feeling like part of this world, absorbed into the open floor plan and the free Diet Coke and bagels in the kitchen and the wide, brilliant windows. Everyone seems to have accepted you by now with the help of a few well-timed Miley Cyrus references during Global coverage, and you feel less young and less clueless every day. And you sit down at your desk and work. This is another best part of the day.


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Ella Dawson is a sex and culture critic and a digital strategist. She drinks too much Diet Coke.

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