A blog that was supposed be made up of bits about cab rides and blurbs about beauty products but, instead, is about other things.


If Ever I'm Shot, I Hope That Guy That Looks Like Vince Vaughn's Big Brother Goes Crazy And Solves The Case While His Pretty Partner Nods Beside Him

I hate mystery. And suspense. I always read the end of a book just after I start the first few pages. And I skip around the rest to find out everything I want to know. In my own order. On my own schedule. And it all seems to make sense. To me.

I never saw Law and Order. On TV. I saw them shooting it. Many times. Most notably when I crossed Cooper Square one morning on my way into the office and there was a city bus overturned and lots of people milling around, but everyone was so calm and quiet, and I got really scared. And then I saw the photocopied “no parking because we’re filming” signs – only after I believed I was about to see a bus full of people so dead that it shocked the crowd into silence. (Also the time I saw a van dangling over the water east of the South Street Seaport, and people were screaming about children and a field trip, and lots of police cars – and all of it was fake and for some incarnation of the series.) So I‘d a feeling I’d no desire to see the show.

But then I saw it. And then I saw the website: When Is Law and Order On? And then I started DVRing all three branches of the series. And then, in the span of one week, I watched 21 episodes. And now, tonight, I found myself asking the suddenly sketchy-seeming cab driver to drop me off down the block from my home. And I walked into an apartment building that isn’t mine. And I stood in the lobby and watched through the window until I was sure he’d pulled away, and only then did I walk over and into my house. Just in case.

No more mysteries for me.


Things, some.

  • Something about standing up in the backseat.
  • Something about saving your receipt.
  • Something about drowning a pomegranate in order to set its seeds free without staining anything.
  • Something about dying a sheet set with beets.
  • Something about splitting the fare.
  • Something about dry air and bloody noses.
  • Something about knowing which end of the train to take.
  • Something about a phrase etymology page.
  • Something about how there are not any good ones.


Did I Make You Cry On Christmas Day?

(Well, you deserved it.)


Reading In Cabs With...

I sort of love most of this page. (#441, from Pynchon's V.)
But the appropriate bit:
Its landscape is one of inanimate monuments and buildings; near-inanimate barmen, taxi-drivers, bellhops, guides: there to do any bidding, to various degrees of efficiency, on receipt of the recommended baksheesh, pourboire, mancia, tip.


Playing Tag

I haven’t figured out how to summarize my ride in 7Y89: The Taxi That Saved Me From Suffocation, so maybe I should be glad that I was tagged with this Five Things You Don’t Know About Me thing. Therefore, I admit:

1. Once, while I was making out with a boy, my Blackberry beeped a few times. “You want to get that, don’t you?” he asked. And I said “no.” But sometimes “no” means “yes.”

2. I used to take my intern to the tanning salon during the work day. I think I taught her a lot about how to work for an ailing alternative newspaper.

3. I don’t like weddings, and I don’t feel bad that I sometimes have a hard time hiding it. Even (and especially) when I am your bridesmaid.

4. I take hundreds of photos at a time but I have pretty much no organizational system for dealing with them all. And I do not know how to use Photoshop. And I do not know how to use any of the non-manual fancy functions on my cameras. (This may be why I haven’t updated my real website in over a year.) (Also, this may be me asking for help.)

5. I'm really bad at sleeping. Even with the pretty little pills, three hours, tops.

You’re it: Ed, Izzy, Emily, Ten Words, Doug.


Girl Talk

My grandfather went to the News Corp. holiday party on Friday night.
While there, a 20something-year-old girl who worked for one of the other papers asked him to kiss her. "On the lips."

He said that she was pretty. And that she wanted to listen to his stories. And, I assume, she was at least a little drunk.

Next July: our 87/27 joint birthday party. Ladies?


Exit 117A

I drove from Brooklyn.
And then I drove back.
Two passengers.
(No panic attacks.)



Things, Some.

Something about a nationality.
Something about a novelty act.
Something about borrowing body armor.
Something about layering.
Something about a leotard.
Something about sleeping.
Something about five rides in four days.
Something about snaps, stupid.



Today, a new pair of glasses.

Or, I love you Optical 88.
(The one on the corner of Mott and Hester, not the one in Hong Kong.)

Here's how it works. Some girls have problems and so they buy lots of glasses frames. But then they remember how expensive it is to fill them. Except at Optical 88. It's my own cheap crack. But it works. You bring them your frames and $45 cash. Then you go back in 24 hours. And you have glasses.

It's not magic, but it's pretty.
And my new glasses are tortiseshell with an overlay of a slightly shimmery green and silver plaid pattern. Like cheap crack. But pretty.


Art History

Uptown, but not uptight.

Yeah, you think so.


You, Tube

Yes, I have a video of you crying in the back seat of a taxi.
Yes, it makes me sad.


Slower To Get It, More Pleased When They Do, And Swift To Locate The Unfunny

A boy once promised me that I could try out to be a talking head on his I Love Last Week-type show just as soon as I learned not to laugh at every one of my own jokes. I was never given the nod.

Christopher Hitchens also makes me laugh. Mostly because it took him how many paragraphs to get to this:
"...but there are some impressive ladies out there. Most of them, though, when you come to review the situation, are hefty or dykey or Jewish, or some combo of the three." (Vanity Fair, January 2007)
I didn't see that one coming. I'll pass your number along to VH1.



The best part of Spencer Ackerman's blog is the "What Gives You The Right To Fuck With Our Lives" series. The posts are simple. He's stealing their words. It's the equal of and the antithesis to the NYT Portraits of Grief. Remember them? Every morning. (Remember their Pulitzer?!) Where are they now?


Embarrassed To Have Been Employed By You

Dear Editor,

Jonas Mekas, Andrew Sarris, Jim Hoberman, and Dennis Lim will appear tonight at the Brooklyn Academy of Music to celebrate the publication of The Village Voice Film Guide: 50 Years Of Movies From Classics To Cult Hits, and you didn't dedicate even so much as a 50 word blurb to the event. Classy.

Jen Snow
Brooklyn, NY


About Time

I eat dinner while you eat breakfast.

And we're in the same time zone.
And we're in the same kitchen.

It's possible that there's something wrong with both of us.


Yeah. Oh Yeah.

Yeah, we went there.
And then I drove you home.


Unrequited Love

I stole this title.

But Artforum really got it right.
(And I shot photos for the story, so I'm allowed, I think.)

I don't care what the mean man in the pageboy cap said; "The Book Of Love" still sort of makes me cry.

("The Luckiest Guy On The Lower East Side," and "Washington D.C." also make me cry. I can't really explain this other than to suggest that even I am guilty of occasionally dissolving into a big pile of ovary.)


You are not a lawyer.
You cannot turn off the meter in an attempt to "bill for your time."



Last Wednesday, I was at a wedding.
The ceremony was lengthy. (We learned later that the groom forgot to bring the rings, and thus he had to purchase something to use in order to get married. He had no money on him, though, so someone else had to give him a wedding gift (of $1.00!) so he could then go to the bride's father and purchase the wedding ring off of his hand to give, in turn, to his bride, the original ring-bearer's daughter. All of this scrambling was not explained, however, to the three-hundred of us sitting and watching the under-the-chupa commotion from our seats.) The women behind us talked incessantly. And they kept talking, loudly, throughout the ceremony. I turned around a few times hoping to shame them into being quiet. Eventually I "shushed" them. That's when one of them pointed to my chest and said, "If you're so concerned with what's appropriate, maybe you should adjust your dress."

Another adjustment: NYC taxi fares. As of today.


Subpar Subway Passenger

"What does your ring mean is it heavy is it gold?"

No, sir, you don't get to ask me that.


Brooklyn Will Fill The Beach Eventually (Or, Requiem For A Dream)

I wish that Coney Island was as simple as it should be.
But it's not.
And because I live with history, I should probably reproduce some of the debate here. Or somewhere. (Suggestions?)

For now, see this: Coney Island's Astroland Sold, Will Close Next Year (Bloomberg)

Look out for Poppy in the papers tomorrow.
(Lots of interviews today.)


Jew For Jesus

Ever since I left that place where I got paid per blurb, I've had little desire to write. Well, to write reviews. More correctly: to write blurbs.

But today I got my first (ever) Christmas present. And, at the very least, it deserves a blurb. (Not that it needs it; everybody loves it, it's already a star.)

At first glance: it's creepy. Superficially creepy. Something about the stickers and the short shirt sleeves. And the camp. And the cartoons. But the songs. Oh, the songs. In general I'm a serial listener -- and every night last week I played only "Sister Winter" as I walked home from the subway. It's a soundtracky song -- if only my walk was being filmed. "That Was The Worst Christmas Ever" is also perfect and pretty, and a little bit cheesy, in a terrific and triumphant way. But the essays. Oh, the essays. RM is RM -- all stoic and fantastically repetitive. And SS, if he's to be believed, is the suburban everyboy. In the best possible way. Here, his essay saved his songs. For me.


Something About A Voicemail Message

Something about having a question about hanging punctuation.
Something about that other coast.
Something about where the fuck are you?
Something about moving there to import wine.

Island Hopping

Continuing this week's trend of multi-event evenings on the big island, last night I:
- shot Jest Fest '06 (dorky? yes. delightful? yes.)
- shot, sort of, Ten Fucking Years: The Concert (A Daily Show benefit for 826NYC)

The rain was torrential.
I took two cabs.
I have pretty pictures.
You can have them soon.


Big Time/Top

Last night I went to the National Book Awards ceremony. And then to the circus. And then back to the ceremony.

One was fairly innocuous, punctured by a terrific moment that some of the audience found fantastically humorous while the majority gaped, mouths open in horror.

The other featured a nauseating group writhing around while wearing tacky outfits and dated (1993) hairdos.

(Fran Lebowitz, at the first stop, was the winner. She caused the gaping. She's pretty much the reason I went back. The tightly-attired gymnastics trio and circus songs are going to haunt me for weeks.)


No, You Can't Paint Your Toenails In My Taxi

If a girl spends $18 on a bottle of nail polish, then perhaps she deserves to suffer through trying to figure out how she's going to get to Paramus to pick it up.

(And she's ruled out taking a cab. She's not so ridiculous that she'd spend upwards of $100 on procuring the polish.)


Now that I'm old, and leaning to the right, I can admit: unions are not so smart.

Garment workers? If you literally work in a factory, then sure, you can form a union.

Journalists? If you work at an alternative newsweekly, not so much.

The B(e)acon Theater? I probably shouldn't even begin to rail against this one. I guess it goes without saying that big scary union men would try their hardest to screw with a small charity, and then chalk it all up to "union rules." (And by "try their hardest," I mean "do as little as humanly possible and overchage and take lots of breaks.") Boo.

Cab drivers? Fine. Your alliance sounds sweet. Steven Greenhouse's NYT article reads as if it should have a smiley-faced emoticon at the end of the headline, though. But it got me. Enjoy your health insurance and archaically stringent rules of conduct.

(If you think I'm a spoiled brat today, just wait until I post about luxury nail polish tomorrow.)



Something about the way she told me to put the pills away.
Something about cinematic sleeping.
Something about riding around.
Something about running around.
Something about "synching."
Something about meeting your mom on myspace.
Something about paving a parking lot to put up a tennis court.
Something about ticketing.
Something about etched logos.
Something about blaming you for the time.


Out Of My Way

He turned off the meter.

I brought the map.

(Good, because it wasn't your fault.)


I've Been Here Before; I'd Rather Not Ride Back

The funeral was fake.
The flowers were not.

I took a taxi home.



What happens when your cab driver is a criminal?

(And you realize this, not when you're in the car, but months later when you see him on the cover of The New York Post.)


Over (There)

In all our time there, did we ever take a taxi?

(I remember you, but I don't remember this.)


Almost The Color Of The Cookbook, But Not Quite (Or, How To Cook Everything)

I didn't know it was possible to prepare a meal wherein every course was the color of every NYC taxi cab.


It also matched your bathroom fixtures. And your floor.

(So, points for that.)



I have never hit anything.
Or hurt anyone.
But I still shouldn't drive you home.


All The Way

Some rides are secrets.


Motion Picture

Doug Aitken + Melissa Plaut.
Making a short movie.
For the Museum of Modern Art.


Maybe I Missed It

If I'd jumped in a cab, instead of onto the subway, I would have missed this:

Maybe we just need to gentrify a little harder.

Yeah, I mean, all kinds of people eat food.

I'm hungry too.



"Two stops," we said.

Then changed it to one.

(Before making it quite a few more.)


People Talking and Sitting

For some time I've wanted to do a series of interviews wherein I'd take a taxi ride with someone, and we'd chat, and then I'd print what we'd said.

Some rules?
- We'd ride together only as long/far as the person was already intending to travel.
- I wasn't thinking so much about strangers, or persons of fame, as I was about people I know, and want to pin down, even for a few blocks.

Of late I've all but abandoned this page. Interrupted the lull with brief appearances, posted some throwaway things. But I've a renewed commitment.

(Also, a renewed friendship. Come back to Brooklyn, S.A.; we've a cab ride to take, an interview to do.)


No Newsies At The Curb When You Get Into A Cab

Yes, there are a lot of people on this subway car.

Yes, you and I are reading the same newspaper.
Or, I'm reading it, and you're holding yours, and leering over at mine.

No, it's not "so funny" that there are so many people reading the newspaper.
This newspaper is crappy.
And also, they give it out for free at the foot of the stairs.

So, no, I don't think that, "we were destined to meet."
Our reading habits are not all that aligned.




I had a feeling this love wasn't going to last.

Today, I'm afraid I've one of those entries that pretty explicitly says, "I like you, but I don't think I like you like you."


For you: Taxi! On Fifth Avenue in Manhattan an African-American man hails a cab.


If, By Screenplay Writer, You Mean CREEP (in a cab)

If you are my cab driver, and you hear me talking on the telephone, and I mention my website, it is because I am talking to a boy who is in the process of fixing it for me, NOT because I'm inviting you to Google it, visit it, and then send me an e-mail inviting me to go see the Miami Vice movie with you.

And, if one week passes, and I have not responded to you, you are not supposed to send me a second e-mail that says,"Hi jen what's up? It's richie the screenplay writer.jen e-mail me back when you get a chance. 1 sent you an e-mail last saturday. Thank you." (sic)

You are not a screenplay writer. And you are not my friend. And although I've never met an old dude who has such good Googling skills, I think you should leave me alone.

The third, fourth, and fifth e-mails -- even I'm not bitchy enough to reprint them here. Today.


Youwantcompany? No, thank you.

I got off of the subway. (The elevated train.)

And, at the bottom of the stairs, when I reached the street, there stood a small man.

And he said to me, “Youwantcompany? Youwantcompany? Youwantcompany? Youwantcompany? Youwantcompany? Youwantcompany? Youwantcompany? Youwantcompany?”

And he stood in my way.

And I, pissed that it was 3:00 a.m., and that it had begun to get cold, replied, “No. You want me to beat the shit out of you?”

He was a small man.

And he seemed shocked. And he stepped aside. And even though I had 8 blocks to go, I wasn’t worried that he’d follow me. I’m pretty positive that I don’t know how to “kick the shit out of” anyone. And every time I looked back he still stood there, at the bottom of the stairs. Blocking the way of any imaginary girls getting off of the train even later than me. And just thinking of that phrase made me laugh.


Sure, Not.

I'm not sure if this means that I'm back.
Or that I'm bored.


Miss You

1. One of the best songs ever.
2. The truth.
3. Love, this:

originally uploaded by jensnow


This One's For The Children

As long as there's nothing new here to read, let me direct you to something you should do instead -- SOME CHILDREN LIKE TO WRITE BOOKS, SOME CHILDREN LIKE TO EAT BOOKS: BUY TICKETS AND SUPPORT THEM BOTH.

Also, you should enter the contest.

And you should go see the show.*

(Umm, yes, I do realize that you can't win the contest because you are my friend, and since you are my friend you do not live in Seattle, but you should enter anyway. Please. And you should tell your westerly-dwelling friends to go to this, the penultimate stop on THE REVENGE OF THE BOOK EATERS tour.**)

*"People Talking and Singing," a benefit for 826Seattle, featuring Stephin Merritt, Daniel Handler, Sarah Vowell, Dave Eggers, John Hodgman, Smoosh, Colin Meloy, Ben Gibbard, and others who are good with words or music, or both.

** A tour put together to determine "words or music: which is better?" featuring Sufjan Stevens, David Byrne, Jon Stewart, Ben Gibbard, Fred Armisen, John Krasinski, Jenny Lewis, Stephin Merritt, Aimee Mann, Daniel Handler, Ira Glass, John Hodgman, Andy Richter, Dave Eggers, Sarah Vowell, ZZ Packer, John Roderick, the Mountain Goats, Davy Rothbart, Jonathan Richman, Mark Kozelek, Jonathan Coulton, Zach Rogue and some other people who are equally swoon-worthy not only for their style, but for their generosity in flying around the country to talk and sing and to raise money for 826 writing centers nationwide.


If By Blog, You Mean

Though I'd all but given up on riding around town in a yellow box, I'd recall my password each time I went to blog in a book. And by blog, I mean scrawl a note on the back of a receipt.

I think I'm back.

I'll backdate soon.

For now, you've only two more chances to catch The Revenge of The Book Eaters: Shows That Ask The Eternal Question -- Words or Music, Which Is Better? (A Series of Benefit Shows For 826 Writing Centers Nationwide)


Back in Business

If, unprovoked, your cab driver tries to sell you a script, then it must be a sign from Hashem that you should, in fact, become an agent.


Free Lunch? No Such Thing.

If a girl walks into Whole Foods, and immediately upon stepping through the door, and into a pool of water, falls backward, and hits her head on the floor, then the management will offer to put her into a cab. But they will not pay.




There are cabs here.
Or, more correctly, there is a cab here.

One in 24 hours.
One is better than none.


No Time For Traffic

I've no time for traffic.

I'll see you after the move.


Strung Together

Tonight I shot:
- a reading
- a book party
- a celebutant and his secret boyfriend
- a hipsterish dance-off in a bar basement
- some cops beating up what looked like a very respectable young man and woman outside on my corner

Tonight made me less sad about moving away.


Things He Told Me When He Took Me To Brooklyn

"I don't like to pick up those people."

"It is only my second day."

"They told me that if I find a cell phone, I should throw it out."

"Maybe I should get a map. Or call my uncle."

"I turn on the 'off duty' sign. Sometimes you just want to drive by."

"I'm not a racist. I just don't like to pick up those people."

"Those people have knives; they'll hold them to your throat."

"Those people pay with hundred-dollar bills."


Pretty Girls Make Greatness

Today I visited two pretty stores owned by two pretty girls:

- Yanina Landsaat is the proprietress of Don The Verb, an adorably curated (and named) consignment shop on Delancey Street. She lined the walls with the metal shelves of the trimming store that previously occupied the space, and her stock of pocketbooks is one of the best I've ever seen. Lots of little framed bags, shoes in great shape, a mix of vintage and contemporary castoffs -- great finds, great labels, great prices. (Don the Verb: 61 Delancey Street, NY, NY 10002, 212.219.7633, www.dontheverb.com)

- Anne Saxelby might be my favorite cheesemonger. Might be because she recently opened Saxelby Cheesemongers in a stall in the Essex Street Market. Might be because she talked about how cute two of her farmers are. Might be becuase she's redefining "American cheese." Might be because her logo and her packaging are impeccably well-designed. Might be because her dairy is delicious. (Saxelby Cheesemongers, Essex Street Market, 120 Essex Street, NY, NY 10002, 212.228.8204, www.saxelbycheese.com)


Moving (me)

Some time ago the question was hypothetical.
Not now.

I'm leaving.

And I've no van to move my stuff.
So I'm doing it in cabs. And mom's car.

Which is sort of like a cab. Because I won't drive.
And she'll tell me how pretty I am (when I smile, fix my hair, wear a little lipstick, etc.) And I'll tip her and kiss her goodbye when we're done.



Despite my lack of peripheral vision, attention span, and coordination I admit: in lots of ways, bicycles do win.

Have taxis ever had so catchy a theme as the song from The Triplets of Belleville?
(All my rides would be accompanied by that song. Perhaps this is why I'm not to be trusted with a bicycle.)

This morning, apparently, bicycles did win.
So taxis are for losers.
Join my club.


Reading in Cabs With Girls (Again)*

"The–-the–-damn it, are you deaf too? Who said undertaker? I said taxi; can't you hear what I say?"

"You want me to call a taxi, sir?"

"No; I don't. I already told you so. I'm going to walk."

Edith Wharton, from "After Holbein"

*A sometimes series


Carry The One

Sometimes even the least logical of girls needs a mathematical equation that proves...fuck it.
Sometimes that illogical girl just wants a proof to make sense.


Service Station

Pretty smart: car services/cab companies are advertising on hand-stamps used by doormen at clubs.

Not that I go to clubs.
Not that I drive.
(Although I do have a drivers' license wherein my shirt is falling-off in the photo.)
But still.



Sounds like a gun.

Is honest.


Jolie Laide

When I was young, the story goes, a friend walked into a hair salon in North Jersey and asked for "the Jennifer Snow haircut."

This is nice, but I'm no Aniston, and my hair at age 6 didn't exactly spark a trend.

But I understand the impetus. Of asking.

Last night I walked into Sephora. I was looking for black eyeshadow. I have black eyeshadow. More than one kind. Slate. Midnight. Smoke. I have a whole host of non-colors with which I attempt to make shadows around my eyes. But I'm looking for a specific shadow. And until it came out of my mouth I didn't recognize that it is one that I probably will never achieve.

The smocked-lady asked what I wanted and I realized, "Can you make my eyes look like my French roommate's?"

So now I have an "Onyx"-colored kohl pencil that has a smudgey-sponge at the other end. And buying it, and calling it such, pretty much affirmed that I'll never have that shadow.

This is all sounding like I'm trying to be grossly poetic. It's not. It's simple. I just need to convince myself. I'm not from Paris. My smudging looks less like a smoky shadow than it looks like a mess. A mess I made by drawing on my eyes with a big black crayon. I think that if I start to cry and then rub my eyes it will look better.

This seems like a perfectly viable option.


Pretty Pants?

Yesterday I passed a girl on Essex Street -- such aplomb she showed by wearing not just leggings, but leggings with huge dots! (Cream-colored circles on black, more Marimekko than polka. Surprisingly flattering!)

Even so, I like that someone is attempting to right such important wrongs in public. The stickers ("NO MORE BLACK LEGGINGS WITH DENIM SKIRTS. PLEASE!) are polite, yet firm. And they're even more special when placed inches from the snoozy "9-11 was an inside job" and "The Bush Regime Engineered 9-11." (Near the bottom of the frame.)

Also there is a cab behind the pole.


There's Some Truth In Your Advertising

"You're pretty," he said.

So I ran.


Backseat Shooter: Well, That's The Law in New York City

One day later.
No joke.
How refreshingly colloquial!


Backseat Shooter: Tissue? I Don't Even Know You

So if someone gets into your cab – drunk, and surly – and they’re about to light a cigarette, they’re careful to mind your allergic condition?

Rather than sharing your medical history, you could have added: “IT'S ILLEGAL.”


Put Your Thing Down, Flip It and Reverse It

Those guys that walk up to the windows of cabs stopped at traffic lights (to beg for money) -- it's sort of like they work at a twisted kind of drive-through.

But they don't.



I took a cab to work today. Because tonight:

(I'm still a dolt at this. Click on the image, and all will be clear.)

*Coworker Michael Weiss describes it all with flair at Snarksmith.


Other People

Sometimes people are funny.
And sometimes people ride in cabs.

Noted: Chelsea Peretti, Andrea Rosen, and Michael Showalter. In a cab.

You should laugh at them.
Also, you should laugh at them on Wednesday.
At the launch of the Jewcy reading series.

More details tomorrow.


Oh, See Dee?

I guess I should be flattered that you'd think I could do that compulsively.



Upon meeting a boy, it is not romantic to think, "I'd like to break up with him."


I Am A Cinematographer

You know that I've a thing for New York Noise.

That's where I discovered, amongst other things, The Cloud Room's "Hey, Now Now," which tends to find its way onto my getting to work in the morning playlist almost every day.

Today (on Gothamist) Jen Carlson linked to the video for the song (and to the videos for other New Yorkish songs). You should watch it.

The show, incidentally, makes me want to make music videos.

Who wants to help?



This morning I got off the subway at 59th Street.
Had I missed my stop, I wouldn't have been able to get off again until 125th Street.

The train and my attention span (or lack of paying-attention skills) won't always work so well together.


Backseat Shooter: That Time of the Month

NY hearts women? Only until today, I presume.


He was gross, and he was singing.

I don't like to sing.
And, to be honest, I don't really like it when other people sing.
Most of the time I feel embarrassed for them.
On their behalf.

So as we rode home and he sang along to the radio, I couldn't help but squirm.

The chorus: "As the sun shines/I'm going to be there for you baby."
Over and over.

And he continued even after the radio was on to the next song: "I can see in your eyes that you want to be mine/something something northern skies/whoa-oh-oh eyes"

Now mix in the bit about the sun shining, and being there for baby, and ugh.

I thought about vomiting on his feet on my way out of the cab.
(He hadn't picked the station though, so I thought it best to forgive him.)



The hybrid, which is much larger than other cabs, passed me by.


A Lot of Art Is Boring

If we've ever discussed art, you know that I'm concerned with price.

Not merely when I'm shopping, or selling, but as a legitimate factor in thinking about/talking about work that's being shown today.

A gallery is a storefront.
A gallerist a salesman.
This isn't a bad thing.

This article
, however, might be. I'd be interested in reading someone address non-blue chip names, and prices, and sales. Something less glossy, and more numerically heavy. No one needs New York magazine to tell them that Thomas Ruff, John Baldessari, and Takashi Murakami will survive an inevitable crash.


And Some Other Things That Aren't As Scary, Maybe

If you think I'm pretty,* you should buy this book:

Noisy Outlaws, Unfriendly Blobs, and Some Other Things That Aren't as Scary, Maybe, Depending on How You Feel About Lost Lands, Stray Cellphones, Creatures from the Sky, Parents Who Disappear in Peru, a Man Named Lars Farf, and One Other Story We Couldn't Quite Finish, So Maybe You Could Help Us Out.

If you think I'm not pretty,** you should buy the book.


Or I'll never ride in a cab with you again.

*By "you think I'm pretty" I mean: you'd like to help fund the teaching of writing to children.

** By "you think I'm not pretty" I mean: you are stupid.



For my money, I've always said that The Forward building would be the prettiest place to live.

I'm sad that spaces inside are finally on the market and I don't actually have the money.

Perhaps someday I'll buy re-sale.

See: Live With Marx And Like It by friend Michael Calderone (NYO)



The West Side is a different story.



I always forget to figure travel time into things.


Cab Gab

"Abie! I want to thank you very much on behalf of cabdrivers for the new Flushing hack stand. Give us the spiel about it."
(from Cab Gab, by Jennifer Bleyer, NYT)


Grape Crush

For those keeping score: I just got off the bus.
Two swipes. (A transfer.)

It's almost 3 a.m.
And we brought a grape soda along for the ride.

This, friends, is the height of class.


Overheard Inside New York

"Look, I think that maybe we should just get married," he says to her. On the phone. As I sit there. On my phone.

"Look, I think that maybe you should just not have this conversation while I'm riding in the back of your cab," I say to myself because it doesn't seem right that I should be witness to this. Or that he could ask her this way. On the phone.

I got out before she could answer.


Mapping Sitting

He told me that I have Geographic Tongue.
He said this wasn't such a big deal.
It's not contagious, but it still sounds as if my tongue is on a journey.
And this worries me.



Today, on the occasion of my first commute, I fell off of the subway.

The reaction of the woman behind me: "Oh, shit!"
(Before she rushed to her train.)

I'm a bit bruised.



On my last day:

I walked to work in 8-minutes’ time.

I had time for neither breakfast nor lunch, but it seemed necessary to take a break for a drink, upon which I got quite drunk. All the while, I was in charge of taking photos for an article, so it felt like I was doing the right thing.

I witnessed the end of the beginning of a sad scene.

I skipped the Biennial opening in favor of fruit tart and french fries with friends.

I walked out, and past the spot where I would normally catch a cab when I carried as much home.

On my 12-minute retreat, I didn’t cry. (I sniffled once.)

And I almost got hit by two cabs.


Return Trip

“We’ve done this before,” he said when I got in.

Confused, I didn’t have much to say.

He did know where I was going.

“About a year ago. I picked you up here and dropped you off there. But last time you seemed quite sad.”

He was right, of course.

And now I'm not.

And he got me where I was going.



What the fuck are you doing in the shower for two hours?

You're far from pretty.

And I have to pee.



It's pretty clear that the day won't be pretty when the first thing you do upon waking is count the number of hours until you're allowed to return to that spot.


Reading in Cabs With Girls

"He handed her into the taxi as though she were a package marked glass – something, she thought, not merely troublesomely womanly, but ladylike. 'Put your legs up on the seat,' he said. 'I don’t want to, Miles.' Goodbye Missis Butter Put your legs up on the seat. I don’t want to – better luck next time Missis Butter Put your legs I can’t make out our window, Missis Butter Put your 'All right, it will be nice and uncomfortable.' (She put her legs up on the seat.) Goodbye Missis But . . . 'Nothing I say is right,' he said. 'It’s good with the legs up,' she said brightly.

Then he was up the steps agile and sure after the fruit. And down again, the basket swinging with affected carelessness, arming him, till he relinquished it modestly to her outstretched hands. Then he seated himself on the little seat, the better to watch his woman and his woman’s fruit; and screwing his head round on his neck said irritably to the man who had been all his life on the wrong side of the glass pane: 'Charles Street!'"

Tess Slesinger: from The Unpossessed (1934) (reissued in 2002 by New York Review Books)


Reading in Cabs With Boys*

"A bus's circular steering wheel is not only larger but is set at an angle of incidence more horizontal than any taxi, private car or police cruiser's wheel I have seen and the driver turns the wheel with a broad all-body motion which is resemblant of someone's arm sweeping all the material off a table or surface in a sudden fit of emotion."

David Foster Wallace, from "Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature," page 184 in Oblivion.

*A new segment in which I read things, find the word "taxi," and then reprint bits here.


Two Stops. One liners.*

College Humor's Ricky Van Veen has a blog.

It has nothing to do with taxis or prettiness, but it is, often, adorably hilarious.

And today, topical:
All's Fare in Love

*Not one-lined this time, but usually.


Tongue. Taxi.

Houston Street, at Ludlow.

Pretty friend Nina Lalli and I shared tongue with strangers on a bench outside of American Apparel. (Village Voice)


And If We Talk, (Mis)communication

“Avenue P?” he asks.

“No, Avenue B,” I reply. (If only he knew how appropriate his question actually is.)

“Oh, he says, “I have trouble with “B” and “P.”

I don’t know what to say. He does have trouble with those two.

“You have talent,” he says. “In the lips.”

I’m not sure how he knows this, because it’s dark, and I’ve said little, and I’m not even remotely close to kissing him. And, if he confused the two, then it’s due to my saying them too similarly. Which would indicate a lack of talent in my lips. Or in his hearing.




Masada String Solo

It was snowing.
He had an upright bass and a ton of street cred.
I let him grab my cab.



This past week-or-so I've taken more cabs and had less time to write, than ever before.
This is not a model of efficiency.


Fill In

I won't even pretend I can advise you on that front.

(I hope to backtrack by the end of the day.)


Sure I Love You Baby, Like I Love Fresca.

I've always liked that Tab tastes like liquid pennies.

I guess these boys do too.

And, of course, the design is so pretty, so clean.
They could teach something to the kids who (recently) messed up Fresca.


Get(ting) a life

I took the bus.

But the driver was bitchy.
(She got on at the same stop as me. She barged on and we thought she was cutting the line. She made us wait.)

Bus drivers tell me...


Transportation Alternatives

No cabs.

I'm preparing for poverty.


Long Division

It was the first time someone closed that sliding divider for me.

That ride was rough.


Sweet dreams

I can't remember the last time I saw my bed on this side of midnight.


Street stalkers

If, when we passed eachother on the street on Sunday morning, I laughed at you and you laughed at me, and we kept walking, and laughing to ourselves, then we're totally dating now, right?


Debbie Downer

His name may as well have been David Downer.

As he drove me home he regaled me with a tale of the fire raging in SoHo.
And as we passed a taped-off 14th Street he pointed out the remains of a dead body in the middle of the road.
(He’d witnessed the hit-and-run earlier in the night.)
I, in no mood to talk, nodded.

He pushed for my name.
I told him it was Debbie.


Backseat Shooter: 6M50

Perhaps it was my stunning beauty that casued this man to forget to run the meter.
Or perhaps he was as intrigued/confused by the hanging flip-flops as I was.

Niether one of us noticed the other until it was time to pay.


A Pretty Place to Live

The thought of moving to L.A.

I was delusional.

The L.A. that I'm looking for doesn't exist anymore as such.

And we all know what a stellar driver I am.



"You're a good girl," said the caller, inexplicably.

I hung up.

That is not true.


Please hang up.

No, but you did catch me at a bad year.


A suivre...

"Anyway, I am sorry it's in French, but it's such a lovely book and there's always pictures, right?" she wrote, on the note she'd slipped under the cover.



All things go.

Speaking of Jesus. And beautiful: last night, Sufjan Stevens, two times.
Now I'm tired.
Details (and photos) later.



A check register that ended shortly after I started.

Were you with me at that ATM?

(I don't know what you looked like then.)



"Goodbye beautiful," he said as I shut the door.

Minutes earlier he had been singing, out loud, about Jesus; so maybe that's just the kind of love he has in his heart.


Things, some (more)*

- something about backing the car up, down the highway
- something about thinking the cab driver's going to get you killed
- something about middle management
- something about music you've missed
- something about selling me a reconstructed blazer
- something about reading your blog like a book
- something about the best time to have a baby
- something about the necessity of flattery
- something about Steel Wheels
- something about flying away

*Last time I neglected to mention that I unwittingly stole this format from friend, Andy Selsberg, via his Citizen Truth. He's forgiven me. I think. He should feel free to steal my bit about cabs.


Flyover. Or, Stuck in the Middle With You.

Boys from the Midwest.
Boys from the Mideast.

Same difference/distance.

In a cab.


Her Side of the Story

From Naomi's MySpace page:
Friday, December 30, 2005

Current mood: sore

... After a sleepless night, I woke up, got ready for work, Jennifer and I leave, and as I shut the door I say, "This is the first time I am leaving my apartment after I got mugged." We part ways as I enter the subway to go uptown to work. As I go through the subway turnstyle I sigh as a train is just leaving. I walk down the stairs to find one of my taekwando heroes walking towards me.

He casually says "Hey."
"How are you fee..."
"Did you help me last night?"
"What?...did you just asked if I robbed you last night?"



Today I had day dreams of leaving the office, hopping into a cab, heading home, and watching The Office.

Alas, I'm still here.


Backseat Shooter: 3M63. Or, Happy Heart Day.

A bit early for the "holiday," it looked like it had been decorated for years.


XO, Me

We pull up to the corner of Vanderbilt and Dean, I pay, and as I wait for the receipt:

“Umm, I try never to ask these things to the customer, but I just, I, uh, I just really want to.

You’re that psychiatrist, right?

I mean, I see you walking on the street and I think it is you, and then you raise your arm to stop me, and I think, ‘Wow, her, in my cab!’ But then I didn’t say anything, and now I think ‘I know I’m not supposed to say it when I pick up such people,’ but then I heard you speak and now I am sure that it is you, and so I just have to ask…”

I feel bad.

I stop him.

“I’m not a psychiatrist,” I laugh. “I could probably use a psychiatrist. But I’m not one.”

(“And how does that make you feel?” I can picture my roommate chiding/mocking me when I relay this whole bit.)

The fact that I’m going to write about this when I get home makes me sure I should see a psychiatrist, I think. To myself.

He asks for my autograph. He says he’s sure it’s me. He looks quite sad when I try, again, to protest.

I'm not sure whether he wants me to sign as Dr. Joyce Brothers. Or Dr. Phil. Or, I can’t think of any more, and I am so far from figuring out exactly who he thinks I might be, that I scribble “Thank you for the ride. XO, Me” on a scrap of Sunday’s New York Times Arts and Leisure cover. And then I dash.

Although I do think, for a moment, about asking him for his autograph too.


Only Naomi

Only Naomi would run into one of her saviors on the subway the morning after such a ridiculous circumstance.

She's recounted the story on her MySpace page, but I think she'll kill me if I link to it here.

I'll convince her.
Stay tuned.


jensnow(AT)gmail(DOT)com. All content Copyright 2008. You can visit me at Things I Don't Understand And Definitely Am Not Going To Talk About (thingsidontunderstandand.tumblr.com) and at www.jensnow.com.