Subway Stories - A Red Line Memoir

Today, I was sitting on the T on my way to work. I was reading some articles in the latest Oprah Magazine about telling our stories, characters, writing and what we choose to share with our audience. The man sitting next to me answered his cell phone. The ring was the music that you hear when you are at a carnival and someone directs you to a sideshow. I smiled to myself and continued reading my article.

Honest to God, about 30 seconds later, a man sitting at the end of the train stood up, turned and faced everyone, did a handstand into a front walkover, smiled and sat down. Nobody said a thing or reacted in any discernable manner.

I put away my magazine, grabbed my pen and notebook and started writing what was happening. I noticed a man sitting across from me with very interesting tattoos. One said KENPO in a really nice font. I started thinking about the meaning of a "memoir" and how we take our "truth" and tell it. In telling and translating from experience onto paper, it transforms into a story that somehow elevates the experience to a different realm. After I write a Subway Story, it almost doesn't seem real anymore, even though it happened to me. I don't understand how it happens.

I noticed a young tanned unshaven man stand up. He had on jeans, a sleeveless T-shirt and work boots. He offered his seat to a pretty young woman and he was holding a book with the title "Intensity." She declined his offer, so he sat down again and continued reading his book. Sitting across from me was a painfully thin woman with a strained and very plain looking face. She had on a blue suit with practical black shoes. She was reading a book titled "Humility." How weird is that?


I am reading a book called 'Tormenting'

I visit Boston soon, so may have a subway story of my own.

Lisa Johnson said…
S- You are hilarious! : )
Anonymous said…
I confess to being cynical and checking on Amazon to see that indeed there are books titled Humility and Intensity. I was humbled to see that there are ;-)

Love the blog.
Lisa Johnson said…
snowstorm - LOL! Glad they checked out, but believe me, the stuff that happens on the T is so bizarre, it would be impossible to make up!
T. said…
Hi, Anali - Enjoying your blog! Great stories! T.

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