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I Heart NY II

Also, I ate this peach.
Today's encounter: I was walking my bike up 5th St to my office. The sidewalk is narrow there, & a young woman walking toward me & I both edged aside.

We're so polite! she said, & then we both exaggerated it: After you! with sweeping bows.

Then came the pause where one decides whether to go on.

I lived in California for 8 years, she said. People smile big but it was "fuck you" behind your back.

I'm from the Midwest, I said: the origin of politeness.

New York is straightforward: we do it or we don't, but there's no honeyed tones & last-minute "my grandma died, can't follow through."

And that was that. We were pleased & then we were finished.
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