50-Word Story: Hauntings (For Toni & Vern)

Poet Rummager

IMG_1039 Digital & Hand Illustration by Poet Rummager

He never really left.

His clothes and belongings were gone. Yet, every time I made tea or pet the cat, he sat there. Every time I bathed, his hands were soaping me. Having lunch with friends, I’d glance at my phone; expecting him to call.

He’ll never set me free.

“… but real hauntings have nothing to do with ghosts finally; they have to do with the menace of memory.”  -Anne Rice


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The villains (and heroes) behind the subway mess


NY Post

You’re likely aware subway trains are breaking down partly because parts of the signal system date back to the 1930s. The succession of bad decisions that got you stuck in that tunnel goes back nearly as long — to the 1950s, at least. The list includes politicians and other leaders long dead or, at least, long off the public stage.

In 1952, Robert Wagner Jr., then borough president, protested any attempt to raise the transit fare from 10 cents, despite acknowledging that “the transit operating deficit” — about $500 million in today’s dollars — “is just about as large as the additional money we need this year for pensions for [city] employees.”

Wagner became mayor in 1954. Even as budget gaps grew, Wagner gave most city employees the right to collectively bargain (transit workers were already unionized, as the subways had started out in the private sector). He…

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