Tony, he who answers Questions

While in Philadelphia, I got lost and almost stayed there until Sunday!

Anyway, that’s not what I want to write about. I want to write about a conversation between a stranger on the Septa, me and my sister.

It was only us three in that car on the train.  We noticed Tony board the train right away because he was wearing a bright red.

My sister and I were snapping pictures of each other and at first Tony was just watching us then he asked us where we were from.

Wow, New York?


I never been. I’ve been in Philly all my life.

All your life? Like, you never left?

Well, I traveled before. but only south. I was born and raised in Philly. 

He began to tell us how he liked Philly and how the neighborhoods were changing. We spoke demographics for a while then I asked him something my sister and I were talking about…

Tony, we notice that a lot of men wear full beards…is there a reason?

He looked cautious. His neck went low into his shoulders and he whispered Muslims.

I have no idea why he said the word Muslim like that. There were young people in the next car and a guy who had a beard…but they didn’t look like they were Muslim!

All of them are Muslim?


But then that makes almost everyone here Muslim.

All of them.


Yeah, it’s the Muslims. 

He was still kind-of speaking weird. We would have continued, but our stop came. We still wonder if almost all the men in Philly are Muslim.

Leave a Reply