Today I had lunch at Coogan’s, a saloon on Broadway and 168th Street. I’d finished one quarter of my half a panini with salad and was packing up to go. (Half a panini at Coogan’s equals two whole paninis anywhere else so I was taking half of the half home for dinner.)
Near the entryway, two waitresses, one of them with her long hair in a high ponytail, were having a conversation. The ponytailed waitress turned her back to the other waitress and bent backward. She had asked a question I had not heard.
“How many do you think you have?” asked the second waitress. Then I noticed the ponytailed waitress had three small blue columns emerging from the top of her ponytail. Sort of like chopsticks, except not chopsticks.
Ponytail then whirled around, pulled the three columns out of her hair and stuck them into a pocket at her waist.
They were the restaurant’s pens.
Walking home from the 59th Street subway, I decided to wend my way through Lincoln Center.
I took at left off Broadway at West 63rd Street. As I reached Columbus Avenue, I passed two women who were talking.
“He says he has protection,” one of them said to the other.
And instantly, instantly I knew she was talking about Giuliani.