The pleasures of being a…


This morning I boarded the “B” train near my house and after the first stop was able to wrangle a seat. Shortly after that a woman across the way becan asking the person next to her about the the train we were on and how she could get to the “6” train. After hearing the tentative suggestions being offered I had to put my two cents in and offered an alternative, and of course correct route. Next to me another woman piped up and offered suggestions and reassurance. The original questioner got off where we told her and I turned to my bench companion and said “well that’s one thing all New Yorkers love: giving directions.” She said “Well, that’s because we know all the answers!” and with that we launched into a conversation that took us from Atlantic in Brooklyn to West 4th in Manhattan. She told me about the office she worked at and all the personalities there, and when I revealed what I did for a living she said “Oh really? Nayland (we had progressed to first names by then), do you have a card?” I never do, being pathetic that way, so she pulled out one of her own, explaining that she wore many hats and that sometimes she needed photographic services. I said that I might be able to hook her up, whereupon she said that she and her sisters had a singing group. I asked what kind and she said “Oh 80’s style R&B, some of our songs are still on the radio..” So then I pestered her until she revealed that the group’s name was Skyy. Their big hit? “Call Me” :

I been watchin you boy
And I got what you want, got what you need
Though your girlfriend’s a friend of mine
Here’s my Number and a Dime – Call me any time!

Call me
If you need someone to talk to
Call Me
Satifaction Guranteed

Love love love this city.


  1. Even cooler that it was the last thing she mentioned – she barely brought it up and then was cracking up at how much I was gushing about it. She and her sisters are performing later this month, and I think I might just go.

  2. i not only love nyc, i love the friggin’ subway. disneyland convenience but something went hideously wrong and sexy and great mandela better. thanks for taking me along for the ride.

  3. I love that song!

    One time I was working at this macrobiotic restaurant in houston as a dish washer. I was there for probably about a month working right next to this crusty old beautiful black fella. He didn’t talk much, but when he said something…whew. One day I said something about how I liked some of the bebop that was playing on the radio we were listening to. So he casually says that he used to play sax for the neville brothers…and benny goodman…and billie holiday. Holy crap!

  4. That picture made me 1) want to cross my legs and clinch my cheeks in sympathetic pain, and 2) made me enviously impressed that some people wouldn’t have to cross their legs and clinch their cheeks in sympathetic pain.

  5. That is tremendously cool. I have distinct memories of that tune—namely that I thought the band’s lead singer was a man until I saw them on Solid Gold. Or was it American Bandstand? In any case, I’m dating myself!

  6. Oh…wow,…Thats so cool. Bumpin into some cool old time 80’s rnb chick on the train…In San Francisco,…its more like,”hey…see that guy over there…the old dude smoking a cigar with the pencil moustache…He was the fuckin JAMES DEAN of PUNK once…”

  7. When I was in NY in June, I went to see Jonathan Richman (finally – and he was one cool rockin’ Daddy – though he didn’t do Pablo Picasso or Girlfriend, which he has been known to sometimes) and the person I was sitting next to said: ‘Isn’t that Ira from Yo La Tengo?’ (I was in some club called Bar Six or the like). At first I thought: ‘Like there couldn’t be ANOTHER curly haired Jewish gent at a Jonathan show’…and then we saw Georgia. 🙂

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