This seemed like a relevant post to write today as I had a special encounter with a subway rider on my way home.
Typically I get onto the train before/after work with my mind elsewhere, listening to my music, tuning everyone and everything around me out. At 7 pm I got onto an already packed 6 train to go downtown with probably a shit ton of other people also trying to cram in, so I did the typical sideways-slide-in-under-someones-sweaty-armpit thing and squeezed into a spot. Except it wasn’t until a stop in that I realized the man whos body was pressed against mine had a fucking 8 FOOT LONG ANACONDA SNAKE AROUND HIS NECK. What was grazing my leg was not someone’s alligator skin purse, but in fact, a goddamn snake.
Surprisingly I remained calm, to my credit, but concentrated instead on others on the train in our proximity and their look of horror / shock / anxiety once they saw what I saw. I desperately wanted out of that train, and prayed that perhaps this man would be getting off before I was, but I also wanted to cuss him out for bringing his snake on a crowded train… until flashbacks of that Harry Potter movie scene when the snake eats the woman on the table (sorry, I’m not a Harry Potter fanatic so excuse me if that sounds like the most juvenile, unversed thing you’ve read). But it was his prerogative. He could bring his fucking snake on the train if he wanted because its the MTA.
If you don’t have the luxury of cabbing it / having a car to get to your office every morning, or you live close enough to work to walk (God bless you), you’re more than likely stuck taking NYC’s MTA be it in the form of subway, bus, etc.
Most of the time this is a creepy dude in some shape or form who is staring at your face as if you had a flesh eating bug crawling into your mouth. Like, what the fuck could I POSSIBLY have on me that is so interesting you can’t look away for all of two stops, bro?! Usually when I catch someone staring for a long amount of time I’ll give them crazy eyes or throw a double chin their way. Talk about a deterrent. I do have to admit, however, that I often find that I am the stare-er. Sometimes peoples conversations are far more intriguing than looking at my phone or the ground. I’ve also learned that other people don’t like to be stared at as well, so I’ve learned a new trick… sunglasses on the subway. You’re welcome.
The Candy Crushers
They clearly have nothing else better to do on their morning commute than engross themselves in their Candy Crush game or 2048. Doesn’t your battery die at some point? How the hell are they already on level 3924760283?! Do you ride the subway/bus back and forth and play Candy Crush all day because that is an actual serious inquiry as I think people MUST.
They’re scrambling to look at the map on the side interior of the subway to figure out where they are / where they’re headed. Or they’ve pulled out their own map, which I don’t understand still remain relevant when we all walk around with our smart phones and google maps. Do kids nowadays even KNOW how to READ maps? I know I don’t. But that’s only due to my poor navigational skills, hence the google map app on the iPhone. Also, easy to spot on the subway as they are the only people separated from New Yorkers, considering they probably are the only people smiling on the train.
I’m sorry, but WHO THE FUCK DO YOU THINK YOU ARE GETTING ONTO THE 6 TRAIN AT GRAND CENTRAL STATION DURING PEAK RUSH HOUR TRAFFIC WITH A GODDAMN STROLLER!? Dumb. That’s what. At that point youre not only inconveniencing yourself and your spawn, but also everyone else cramming into that train. I’ve had plenty of instances where I’ve had strollers jammed into my legs for the sake of closing the doors. You know what I say? Carry the damn child (My theory is that if a kid is still being pushed in a stroller then you should still be able to carry it. If you can’t carry it anymore, then make that spawn use its own two legs and WALK BITCH. There’s your YCKMS parenting tip of the day, you’re welcome), fold up that monstrosity of a stroller and get on the train.
The People That Should’ve Taken A Cab
Trust me, I get your’e trying to be economical, but if you’re coming home from IKEA or Bed Bath and Beyond with 3 pieces of furniture and 20 bags and probably a baby in a stroller to because you’re the worst person ever, then man up and throw down for a cab. Don’t put yourself through that struggle just to save a few bucks (okay, more than a few, but its worth it). One time on my way to work during rush hour I saw a woman carrying a living room rug (rolled up) onto the subway. The best part was when she realized she couldn’t fit it horizontally or narrowly into the doors of the car, thus holding up the subway doors from closing for a good 2 minutes. Let me tell you, there wasn’t a person on that train that wasn’t livid this chick made our punctual commute 5 minutes later than it had to be.
Entertainment (the actual worst)
What about getting onto a subway screams, I WANT TO BE SUNG TO! I WANT YOU TO DANCE FOR ME! SING TO ME! DANCE ON ME! ?????
So it’s really unclear to me as to why acapella groups, street dancers, mariachi bands and one man bands think its a good idea to sing on the subway. Are you making dinero? Is this improving your fan base? Do you get more Facebook likes by doing this? I want to know these things in some serious way.
They’re like the 10% of people who are shameless enough to bring food onto the subway and eat it in transit. I never feel good after being stuck in a car with these people because I either A) get nauseous from being trapped in the subway with the smell, or B) leave feeling incredibly HANGRY. For godssakes I hope they have some Purell on them.
Of course you give up your seat to a pregnant woman or an elderly person! It’s the right thing to do and you probably go home feeling like a better human being, right? 10 points for you! However, sometimes it goes too far. I am an able bodied- young woman, who can stand an entire train ride need be. So when a man gets up and offers me his seat, it doesn’t make me feel cute or make me want to say “Oh thank you, kind sir, you are so handsome and manly! You’re certainly one of a kind!”, No, for some reason I just feel insulted, like, are you saying I’m weak? And then, theres these guys who get onto a jam packed subway during rush hours who literally stand in front of an open seat rather than sitting on it. And then someone makes eye contact to there’s this awkward squished tango of “oh no, you go” and “no, really, you sit!” “no, its all yours” and its just like SOMEONE SIT DOWN ALREADY GODDAMMIT I NEED MY PERSONAL SPACE.
That One Crazy That Makes You Nervous
Ever since there was that string of crazed, deranged people pushing random passerby’s off the platform and onto the rails I’ve been even moreso, acutely aware of the crazies around me when I’m underground. ESPECIALLY if I’m on their outside closest to the train. So maybe you aren’t that paranoid, but you’ve seen some crazies waiting for a train and PRAY and HOPE that they do not get into the same car as you. Don’t lie.
The People Who Apparently Don’t Know How to Walk Up Stairs
If you KNOW you’re going to take 20 minutes to climb a set of 10 stairs, FIND A GODDAMN ELEVATOR. Think of the subway as a vein or artery, and the blood / people need to pump up and out. Except when some slow (read:obsese) person is taking their goddamn time, causing a blockage. Okay, you don’t have to be fat or slow. I’ve been stuck behind people who decide whatever text/email on their phone is more important than A) walking up stairs B) alleviating the traffic behind you, or C) tripping up stairs. Like, do you REALLY think the stairs is a good place to respond to emails? NO. You know what happens when a blockage occurs? People get pissed, and may even cause a heart attack.
The RUDE People
- Pole hogs – I can’t tell you how many times I’ve almost eaten shit on a train or almost fell and broke my back due to the fact that some asshole decides to lean on the middle pole, thus making it unavailable for everyone to hold onto. Such an asshole.
- Inconsiderate assholes – I mean this is pretty much an umbrella term for just about EVERYONE. But one of my peeves is when someone’s stop is upcoming and they try to make you let go of the pole just as the train is approaching the station. If you give in, you end up lurching probably half way through the car and falling on your face and I could imagine breaking your nose. So don’t. And don’t be that asshole who requests someone lets go of their pole/livelihood at the moment just so you can get off the train faster. And speaking of which, I HATE the people who shove and yell to get off – like as if you’re the ONLY person that needs to get off at Union Square, bitch. So does half the goddamn train!
- The seat hogs – They either violate the seat by sitting completely spread eagle so no one else could possibly sit next to them, or they use the spot next to them for their 10 million bags. Also, bag ladies on the subway are the worst. YA HEARD ME.
- The yellow line lurkers – These people stand usually on the sides of the stairways where traffic has to split into two. I don’t know why they stand there, but they do. And because they’re taking up space, they force you to slowly creep around them as you border the edge of the platform AKA your death. Tread lightly.