Next Stop the Twilight Zone

by

02/28/2021

Neighborhood: Subway, Upper East Side

One afternoon this summer I was on the subway. All was normal. Well, except that we are in a pandemic, which makes venturing down into NYC’s netherworld — one with poor ventilation and tons of non-mask wearers – feel like I am putting my life in my overly sanitized hands. It all seemed surreal. The recent crime surge in New York coupled with a heat wave didn’t help with my anxiety either, especially when being in the subway at midday now feels like it’s 3 A.M. because of the desolate stations. 

I sat daydreaming about life pre-Covid as I headed home on the Q express. But a stop before I reached my destination, I found myself alone. My subway car had completely emptied out. The train signage suddenly changed to say it was the 8th Avenue Local – K train to World Trade Ctr. (I was on the Upper East Side headed uptown, nowhere near 8th Avenue.) Was I hallucinating due to oxygen-deprivation from hours of wearing  my mask in 100-degree heat? Or was this just another glitch in the matrix that is 2020? I had never heard of a K train. Was this the universe’s way of talking to me?  If so, what was it trying to say? 

I quickly googled, and oddly it turns out that the K subway line did once exist – it was originally called the KK line (my initials and nickname!)– but was discontinued in 1976! I couldn’t believe my eyes. Feeling inspired, I snapped a picture of my subway car. This was a great start for a Twilight Zone episode. But in 2020 it was par for the course. 

As I shakily exited the train, I momentarily wondered if I’d be thrust into 1976 – which might have been better than what we are currently facing. I shrugged and headed off, the sun too bright in my eyes, Clorox wipe in hand, like a white flag being used to surrender. 

***

Kelly Kreth is a freelance writer who often feels trapped in a Seinfeldian Hell. She’d like people to love her for her flaws, not in spite of them. That rarely happens.

You can read more by her at: https://youmightaswell.tumblr.com

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