My old roommate Julia and I shared the belief that crying in Duane Reade is a rite of passage for New Yorkers. There is this ineffable quality to the way the fluorescent lights flicker in tandem with the beeping of the price scanner as you spend $75 you don’t have on four products you genuinely need that somehow says, “It’s ok, this is a safe space to cry.” YA FEEL ME?
I’ve cried in the pharmacy several times. First and foremost they are typically situated underground in a bat cave that lacks cellphone service — so no distractions! All other customers milling about are on a mission as they quickly pluck tampons and Advil off the shelves, and frankly could give a rats ass that you are welling up in the condoms aisle. Here, you are anonymous, and that is a beautiful thing.
Julia recently admitted to me she took advantage of DR’s all-night hours, dipping in for a late-night inebriated cry, thus escaping the unnecessary public drama of sobbing on the street. Then yesterday she sent me Crying New York, a Tumblr rating different establishments solely based on their ability to house a good cry.
For the record, they agree with me regarding Duane Reade:
“I cried here yesterday during my lunch break in the vitamins aisle and experienced NO problems at all! It was a wonderful 10-15 minute cry that is so rare to come by these days. Come cry here quick before the word gets out! Highly recommended!”
So now it’s your turn to talk public water works. We have tissues, so spare us no detail!
Image shot by Inez Van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin