In absence of coconut water.

He's Canadian

“Who is that? Obama?”

(I nod)

“I’m getting my Bryan Adams button next week!”

What?! Anytime I walk into this deli I always get an earful.


August 5, 2007. Barack Obama, Bodega. Leave a comment.

Free tea

Being the library mercenary that I am, I volunteered to help organize a new library in East New York a little while ago. Now if you know anything about East New York, you know the place is not over flowing with cafes where one can buy a cup of tea. So I wound up at the bodgea. The Arab guys who run the store are from Yemen and they practically freak out on my button.

“Tea? All you want is tea? You can have anything in this store for free because of your pin!”

Why are these guys so enthusiastic about Obama?

“He wants all troops out of Iraq NOW! Hillary voted for the war. George Bush was wrong to go to Iraq. He made America the enemy of the Arab people.”


There’s a guy who doesn’t speak English sitting on the newspapers, so the guy behind the meat counter is interpreting this conversation that I’m having with the cashier. He’s also adding his two-cents.

Meat counter says, “He says your button is nice. Obama looks nice, like a happy person.”

My Obama button gets me free stuff–I walk out with a hot tea.

March 30, 2007. Barack Obama, Bodega, New York City. Leave a comment.

Up in the Bronx…

Walking to the deli by my school to buy my butter roll and freaky coffee, the man on the pay phone starts in–

“Hey lady! Hey lady!”

Which can mean only one thing: he must know who’s face I’m wearing on my coat. So the guy hangs up the phone and follows me into the deli. I guess he called back later.

“Hey lady, who is that guy? I keep seeing him.”

Barack Obama. He’s running for president.

(I find in these conversations its best to give as little information as possible in order to prevent from hindering the conversation, so I just keep my mouth shut.)

“America is never gonna elect a black. The woman, yes, I think so, but not the black. In America there is still prejudice…but not so bad for women anymore.”

(and in almost the same breath)

“I never met a black I could trust. He’ll never get elected.”

Thank you for sharing your two-cents!

March 29, 2007. Barack Obama, Bodega, New York City. Leave a comment.