The Crazy Garlic Woman
I am in the process of getting rid of some old blogs and making new ones. Here is one of my favorite posts from a blog in 2009:
It was like any other Saturday in New York. I made plans, took the R train from Astoria going downtown, and then decided I was too tired to do what I had planned.
This week I scheduled an improv practice session at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre. I paid for it online and everything… but after sitting on the subway, and having a generally crappy week, I just wasn’t in the mood to pretend I was a robot or caveman or something ridiculous. And my friend Shaun Diston who suggested I sign up for it, dropped it as well. And in general, I was beat. So, instead of getting off at 34th Street as planned, I got off at Times Square to transfer and go back uptown.
Now near times square is W. 40th st… the most glorious place in all of New York. Just one glance leaving the subway and you can see Midtown Comics, The Drama Book Shop, AND the Midtown Buffet (Chinese)… Vices, vices, vices. All they need to put there is a shop specializing in cartoon ducks, and I would be in heaven. (Disclaimer: I am obsessed with cartoon ducks. Donald, Daffy, Scrooge, Baby Huey, you name it. Even Ducky from Land Before Time and Jar Jar Binks count… as they are funny and have bills. It’s an odd obsession).
4 hours later, after my impulsive detour, I got back on the subway to head back to Queens. I was pretty relaxed by this point… and very full. I had a copy of Y: The Last Man in one hand, and Truth in Comedy in the other. I also got the most peculiar fortune from my cookie… and it had me quite disturbed: “You enjoy races, but your horse will not win.” Looks like I won’t be betting on Old Bones this week…
I sat there for a few minutes, relieved that the car I was riding in was practically empty except for me and one woman that was an exact replica of Mokey Fraggle:
Well, naturally, the second the doors closed, this woman comes and sits directly next to me. There were empty seats everywhere, but she chose to grace me with her presence in extremely close proximity. She sat silently. I read my book. And then she pulled her “lunch” out. Now, it always disgusts me when people eat on the subway, because I just consider it the most dirty place on earth to put something in your mouth… snacks OR penises… mouths should remain closed on the subway. So there I am, trying to not look at this woman, dressed like a fucking druid, and she pulls out a container of GARLIC. Straight up, nasty ass garlic. CRUNCH. CRUNCH. CRUNCH. Are you serious?
I gave her a horrified look. “That smells wretched,” I said. “Please don’t eat that in here, you’re stinking the whole car up.”
And the following dialogue ensued:
“People like me.”
Her breath wafted straight towards my face and into my mouth. I could taste what she was eating.
“I write my own poetry”
Uh oh. Here it comes. And with a breathy voice, aimed in my direction, she proceeded:
“People like me. I am liked. I am loved. People like me. I am liked. I am loved.”
By this point, I was visibly gagging, so I got up to move to the other side of the car. And she followed me!
And then she spoke faster, “People like me. I am liked. I am loved. People like me. I am liked. I am loved.”
GARLIC GARLIC GARLIC
“People like me. I am liked. I am loved. People like me. I am liked. I am loved. People like me. I am liked. I am loved.”
“Leave me alone!” I yelled.
“The moon revolves around the sun. The sun revolves around the moon. Sun. Moon. Sun. Moon. Sunny Moon…”
It was on “Sunny Moon” that the train stopped briefly at 59th and Lexington and I ran out and switched cars.
I can still taste the garlic.
-Tyler J. Gilmore