After the failed car bombing in Times Square, police officers, theater employees and hotel workers all told street vendor Duane Jackson, "You gotta do a T-shirt."
So he did. The shirts, emblazoned with "I saw something . . . so I said something," will be among his wares when he sets up his stand at 11 a.m. Sunday at Broadway and West 45th Street.
Jackson, 58, and fellow vendor Lance Orton alerted police on May 1 to a Nissan Pathfinder that was emitting smoke. Inside, police found propane, M-88 firecrackers, gasoline, fertilizer and a crude timing device. Faisal Shahzad, a Pakistan-born U.S. citizen, is charged with the attempted bombing. Since the discovery, the two vendors have been hailed by city officials, President Barack Obama, tourists and city residents.
Jackson, a Times Square fixture for 12 years, said his wife helped design the shirt, which shows him with the American flag. He had eight dozen T-shirts printed up. On Friday, he started selling the shirts for $5 each at his stand. "I've probably given away more than I've sold," he said Saturday.
The shirt's slogan is a modification of the Metropolitan Transportation Authority slogan, "If you see something, say something," which the agency began using after the 9/11 attacks. MTA spokesman Kevin Ortiz said the authority allows public agencies to use the slogan for free for security purposes. He said he didn't know enough about the T-shirt to comment on it specifically.
Jackson said, "It's a great PR thing to let people know that if they see something to say something."