"Ordinarily, the fact of someone’s coming from New York might have held a certain prestige, for to most of the children the city was an awesome, adult place that swallowed up their fathers every day, and which they themselves were permitted to visit only rarely, in their best clothes, as a treat. But anyone could see at a glance that Vincent Sabella had nothing whatever to do with skyscrapers. Even if you could ignore his tangled black hair and gray skin, his clothes would have given away: absurdly new corduroys, absurdly old sneakers and a yellow sweatshirt, much too small with the shredded remains of a Mickey Mouse design stamped on its chest. Clearly, he was from the part of New York that you had to pass through on the train to Grand Central—the part where people hung bedding over their windowsills and leaned out on it all day in a trance of boredom, and where you got vistas of straight, deep streets, one after another, all alike in the clutter of their sidewalks, and all swarming with gray boys at playing some desperate kind of ball game."
~ Richard Yates, Doctor Jack-0’-Lantern from his collection of short stories, Eleven Kinds of Loneliness
(pic © Rebecca Lepkoff)