Yes, I am a sucker for the 1940’s. Maybe not the 1940’s as they really were, but as the era exists in movies and stories. A time when women were beautiful, not hot. A time when men had style and class, not just attitude. Someone like me tends to look at an era thru silver-screen glasses and not realities. The fabulous forties share many of the same problems with time-racial inequity, war, and genocide. The dates change, but human nature seems to stay the same. Most of the time we only remember the good things. Or the things the think might have been good.
The subway is the great equalizer for most of New Yorkers. Most of us take it everyday, twice a day. Regardless of race, ethnic origin, religion or yearly income, we sit in the same seats, grasp the same polls to steady ourselves for the ride and experience the same delays. That is why we are so subject to nostalgic feelings about seemingly mundane aspects of this city. We yearn to feel what our ancestral New Yorkers felt before us as if to connect in some practical, visceral way. Our daily commute is about a practical and visceral as you can get.