Monday, April 20, 2009

All aboard...even the annoying people.

One of the things I love most about NYC is also one of the things I hate about it.

The train.

Now, I know I've written about it before. But train rides never cease to amaze me. Since we're all forced to commute together, we are forced to come into close contact with lots of people we normally wouldn't. This can be good. Or bad.

Like this morning. I got on the train at my usual seat to be found. Which was fine; I had on comfortable shoes and a new book so I was good to go. Until some guy slammed me in the back with his duffel bag. I looked back to see who'd smacked me and the guy glowered in my direction and said "Life's rough, isn't it. Living in the big city." Really. And a fine Monday morning to you too. I've come to realize that being nasty back would just feed into this kind of person so I just give him a look and move on.

It shouldn't bother me. I should be used to this, I've been here long enough. But I still don't understand the lack of common courtesy. The worst instance of train rudeness had to be on an Acela from NYC to Philly where a man claimed I was sitting in his seat (I wasn' was empty when I plopped myself down). To prove his point, the man decided to sit down ON TOP OF ME. I should also add I was pregnant at the time.

Then there was the time on the F train when a man started sniffing me and asked if I had just shampooed. And who can forget the morning when a man dragging a Cinderella suitcase burst through the subway car, threw a penny on the ground and sang out "who want to get their balls licked?" Yes, folks. All true. Though I don't if that counts as rude or just bizarre.

Still, there's the good stuff, too. Like the fact that A. has played peek-a-boo with many a random stranger. Or that it's always the roughest, toughest-looking teenager who gives up his seat for pregnant chicks. Or that when A. says good-bye to everyone in the subway car, almost everyone waves good-bye back.

In the meantime, to the fellow who slammed me in the back this morning, I would like to careful. Karma's a funny thing. And it can be a whole lot more impactful than a duffel bag in the back.


Karen Shelley said...

While riding the B77 down to Red Hook with my folks last week, a little old lady got onto the bus. She had a wheely cart with her. She sat in the specialty seating area. The driver stopped the bus and rudely shouted, "Granny! Hey, Granny! You can't sit there with that cart open." I don't think the woman had much hearing. She didn't hear him at all. The bus was packed. She didn't move. The driver stood up and came over to her, calmly but rudely, and repeated himself. Someone woman on the bus went NUTS screaming about how she's an old lady and she is a senior and she needs to sit down and her cart's not bothering anyone, blah blah blah. The driver got totally huffy. The screaming woman rattled off a series of four-letter words, then she screamed at the driver, said she was calling 311, and insisted that he let her off the bus.

Ugh. I turned to my parents and said, "This doesn't usually happen."

I have such a love/hate with public transit.

Nanette said...

I have a similar love/hate relationship with it. Sometimes I think it's magical, other times I feel like I have entered some circle of hell.

Today was just about a freaky guy with an attitude. Everyone around me rolled their eyes.

Poor old lady in Red Hook.