Lights flickered down the tunnel. The rumble of the train got louder. In an instant, a picture from another era emerged. A vintage 1930’s era subway train rolled into the Second Avenue subway station at 63rd and Lex. We had waited an hour and now we were getting ready to take a ride in yesteryear.
This was the 1st anniversary of the Second Avenue Subway. For this occasion, the MTA rolled out vintage subway trains from the 1930’s and 1940’s.
The older trains looked out of place. They were boxy, government green, and industrial and riveted. Inside, the seats had woven cushions. Unusual comfort for a subway. Advertisements lined the ceilings of the cars. Ads from a bygone era, Lucky Strike cigarettes, WNYC Radio, Burma Shave, Alka Seltzer. And a little known fact. Did you know that 84 out of 100 women prefer men who wear hats? You never know what you’ll learn riding the subway!
Steel loops hung from the ceiling of the cars. Riders would hold on to keep their balance while the train rolled along, giving birth to the term ‘strap hangers”.
New York City celebrates anything and everything. They will throw a parade or a festival and just go at it. And they dress for it too. They fall out and show up in full costume dress fitting whatever the occasion would be. Today looked like a picture out of the New York Times from the 30’s with a line of New Yorkers boarding the subway to go to town.
This town knows how to have fun and we love being allowed to be a part of it.