Photo by myself near the Park Avenue Armory at Park Avenue and East 66th Street.
The annual Whitney Biennale is on display there until June 1st, 2008. The event shows current work from around the world. The Whitney Museum is located several blocks away in a striking Brutalist building by architect Marcel Breuer.
For more information about the Biennale, click here
This morning I had my nose buried in the latest New Yorker. The subway was lurching along between the first stop in Brooklyn stop and Manhattan.
Suddenly out of nowhere, a woman yelled out, 'Is there a doctor on this train? Is anyone a doctor?! Does someone know CPR?!!'
My view was obscured from the sick passenger. Fifteen feet away from me, most people seemed calm. I doubt there were many doctors on a subway at nine in the morning, but there could have been an EMT, who knows.
Not to alarm anyone, but no one rushed over to the troubled end of the train. In fact, some riders went back to reading their magazines, or closed their eyes to get back to napping.
I was shocked. Maybe people decided that since they didn't know CPR, they could do whatever they pleased? Maybe they judged the lack of panic (aside from the shouting woman) as a sign that everything was okay?
The woman who shouted explained that the person had had a seizure. At that point, the train emerged from the tunnel to cross the Manhattan bridge. A couple passengers whipped out their cell phones.
I felt guilty. Should I do something? Should I have done something? How could I be shocked by people napping when I was equally inactive?
When the train pulled into the station a couple minutes later, an MTA guy jumped into our car. By then, the sick person had come to and was fine, refusing medical help. The train doors closed and we were off to the next stop. I quietly promised myself never to get sick on a train.
On my way home tonight, I saw a man trip on the sidewalk in the semi-darkness. A couple older men nearby came over to help. One rescuer picked up the man's hat, the other helped the man get on his feet.
I shouldn't give up my faith in New Yorkers quite yet.