Monday 9 January 2017

A year on...

Overheard in New York on 10 January, 2017.
One side of a mobile phone conversation.
Union Square.
So this was weird… I was in the Strand bookstore, just down the block from here, and I was browsing the stacks, you know, and I was looking at an old paperback copy of Nineteen Eighty-Four… No, I’ve never read it. So I was flicking through it, and this guy next to me looks over and says, “Great book, that,” and I look up and nod, and he smiles and says, “Seriously, if you’ve never read it, you should. That’s on my list of the top 100 books.” So I smile back and tell him I’ll buy it for sure, and we talk for a while. He tells me he’s a regular at the Strand, comes here all the time. A real nice guy, you know? …. I don’t know, somewhere in his sixties I guess. Sharp dresser. Anyway, I go to pay for the book, and the guy behind the counter says, “Ah, George Orwell, a classic!” and I say, “Yeah, it was recommended to me by one of your regular customers I just met,” and the guy says, “Oh yeah, who was that?” and I said, “Nice guy, glasses, wearing a cap, and I noticed he was carrying a Greek newspaper, which was strange, because he sounded like a Brit,” and the guy behind the counter just went white as a sheet and looked at me like I came from Mars… I know, right?

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