06 December, 2020

Small Bites Of The Big Apple

It's big, it's bad, it's New York, a city on the make, where anything can happen and probably will

Small Bites Of The Big Apple

I TAKE a walk to the local supermarket on Second Avenue. The bookseller, as tall as he is illegal, has spread out his weird and wonderful collection on the sidewalk outside Food Emporium again. I get a glimpse of Sartre, back issues of Cosmo, 100 Great Tips to Save $$$ and the African-American Bible—all priced at a dollar. "Bob Dylan's Tarantula—see ya got taste lady, you can have that for $20." He pushes, I fall.

Two weeks later I spot it at Barnes and Noble—priced at $7.99—where an Indian salesgirl in rainbow silk is trying to convince me of the literary advantages of Shashi Tharoor and Rukun Advani at $15.99. Crank my neck to look at Rushdie's spine. "Oh Salman, he's not really one of us," she says, Kanjeevaram rustling with national pride. Days fly, I spot the bookseller, browsing through old books marked 50 cents in the New York Public Library on 42nd and Fifth. I try a pointed glare, there is not a flicker of recognition.

This is New York City: always on the make, always on the quick, always trying to grasp...



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