Thursday, July 11, 2019


Recently, on a train, I stood near a mother and her son. I think he was about 6 or 7, he was getting cranky, the train was crowded and warm. I was getting cranky too.  A woman, seated, motioned to his mother that she’ll get up for the child. The boy sat down, didn’t thank the woman, and the mother didn’t tell him to thank her. The mother mumbled something. I wouldn’t have given him my seat. The woman who did was sitting next to a guy who didn’t budge.
            I see men and teenage boys watch women, the physically challenged, and the elderly stand all the time. Those are the brave ones, the real punks lose themselves in their apps, music or the filth of the subway floor. 

            It bothers me to see caregivers, usually women of color stand up while the children they “nanny” sit down. She should sit and put the child on her lap. I live on the Upper East Side where the children in my neighborhood are in a state of mass confusion. They are used to seeing black women take care of the young or the elderly. Nope, you are not getting my seat, I don’t work for you, and I’m not interested in encouraging your sense of entitlement.
            There are exceptions. A mother overloaded with a sleeping baby and bags; I’d give her a seat. A child who looks like he/she is about to faint, I would offer my seat, and roll my eyes at the guy nearby who didn’t.  I’m also not so fast to get up for a younger person because I’m a little more than five feet away from the floor, they, maybe two or three. Their lower center of gravity will come in handy. Mine is a crap shoot that I don’t want to know about.

- Yvonne


Saturday, March 9, 2019


            It’s been a while since we’ve/I’ve blogged. It’s not that we whipped the world into practicing good manners day in and day out. Au contraire. People continue to hold their forks and knives in odd, contorted ways as they “slaughter” their food.
Life happened, and we took a break.

            Not long ago, I was talking to a woman who was interested in what I do. I have mixed feelings about this question, but I’ve gotten over it for the most part. It’s fair, it just shouldn’t be the first question. What I don’t like is the new add-on, “are you still working?” I thought it was odd that she asked. And then I realized, her question was based on my gray hair and maybe a faint idea of my age. In her mind, I was definitely a candidate for retirement. That question is a bad as asking a woman, “Are you pregnant yet?”
What could she have asked instead? Maybe, “Oh, you write? Would I know any of your work?”  That would have led to a much more interesting conversation than fixed income chit-chat.  Depending on how much you have, that can be quite dreary.
So let’s make a deal, don’t ask me if I’m still working, and I won’t ask you if you’re still retired.