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This is Joe

If you look closely at his left eye you will see a bandage over his left lens.  He lost vision in that eye after a failed surgery. 

Joe was born in Charleston, South Carolina and related to me some of his stories of the Jim Crow era.  He left South Carolina by joining the army. 

He is 90 years old.  I met Joe while he was sitting on his walker at 73rd. street and Broadway smoking his pipe.  Joe was a doorman for 27 years, only a few blocks from where he was sitting.

I commented that you don't often see someone smoking a pipe these days.  He said he used to smoke cigarettes  But he gave them up about 30 years ago.  He smoked Pall Mall as did his mother.  He told of how he would sneak her's after he would run out of his own. He remembers a carton of cigarettes costing $1.50.

Joe said getting out was really important to him.  He lives alone and like many other New Yorkers, he said getting out makes him feel alive and keeps him from feeling lonely.


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