I needed the L to the Q, so I parted ways with the others and headed to my train, awash in the glow of a magical night and donning my headphones so I could bob my head to Janelle Monae’s Queen while I rode home. Sitting on the wooden benches on the Q platform filled with girls on platforms and hipsters in trucker hats, a semi-drunk guy with dark hair and a plaid shirt sat next to me and said, in a friendly voice, “Mind if I smoke”? “Well”, I said with a smile, “as long as you’re asking, yeah, kind of”, thinking to myself that surely, I had seen at one point in time “no smoking” signs on the subway platform anyway. He looked surprised and said, “well, I appreciate your honesty. Most people seem to have trouble expressing themselves”. I laughed and lifted my eyes upwards towards my elaborate hairdo and said, “clearly, that’s not a problem for me”. He squinted and said, “Yeah, because most people, you know, they’d let me smoke”. A low rumble behind us indicated the train, and I said, “well, sorry”, and got up to wait at the edge of the platform. His initial friendly demeanor had given way to a scowl, and I thought to myself, “well, you DID ask, after all”.
#subway #JanelleMonae #Queen #NoSmoking