By Pamela DeCarlo
Copyright 2012 Pamela DeCarlo
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I am not obsessing, Jenny told herself as she speed-walked down the subway platform, I'm just being vigilant. She kept her head down, the back of her throat poised for a gag should she meet the enemy, and surfaced above ground in a river of commuters, caught in the surge heading East on 42nd Street before maneuvering her way into the tributary splitting off north on Madison. Especially now, herded in this crowd, she needed to be careful. Across the street from her building she squeezed to the front of the crowd waiting for the light in time to catch a young man in a blue suit spit in the curb. Jenny squeezed her eyes shut, but not fast enough to miss the big shiny gob shuddering in the gutter. Shit. Why couldn’t she just once make it those spare four blocks between her subway exit and the entrance to her building at work without being assaulted by spit? It didn't work to not look down; the thought of accidentally stepping in it was almost worse than having to see it. She imagined the Post headline, "Coed Dies in Fall, Slips on Spit in Midtown". Maybe if she worked in the Upper East Side she wouldn’t have to contend with it. But she had already cursed herself: once you notice something in New York City, it’s impossible to close your eyes to it anymore.