I was in Union Square with a buddy the other day and as we walked past Max Brenner’s we saw a statuesque woman, completely naked save for some strategic body paint, having her photo taken in front of the restaurant. I’m not entirely sure what she was doing there, or who it was taking her photo (at first I thought it was a tourist unaffiliated with the model, but from the way she was directing her and talking to her I suspect they might have been together), but the whole scene just stood out so much I just had to stop and make a few snaps of my own.
The thing I loved most about the whole tableau was the fact that, aside from one or two lookie loos, hardly anyone even batted an eyelash. Dozens of people walked right on by without even glancing in her direction, almost as though it really was every day you saw a tall, beautiful, naked woman standing on the sidewalk. Further testament to the typical New Yorker’s ability to be completely unfazed by anything they see.
I think perhaps New Yorkers’ unflappability might be born in part of their disdain for tourists. Out-of-towners gawk. New Yorkers, worldly wise and having seen it all, simply go about their business. And while there might be some merit to not gaping wide-eyed at every little thing you see, if you spend all your time walking around in a cloud of disaffectation you’re gonna miss out on a lot of the fun stuff.
Like tall, beautiful, naked women standing on sidewalks.