Every day, I ride the subway to and from work. Every day, I want to stab at least one person for pure idiocy. Every day, it gets harder to suppress that urge.
I always say that the worst part of public transportation is the public part. I’m positive I didn’t make that saying up, but it is SO TRUE. Putting a large number of people in a small space seems to lower everyone’s IQ exponentially, to the point of it being insufferable to anyone who takes ten seconds to notice. And you better believe that I have numerous specific issues with the way people behave on the subway.
First off, the people who block the doors for no good reason need to go to hell immediately. Right now. During rush hours, there are sometimes so many people in each subway car that it’s impossible to not be blocking the doors, so I’m not talking about that. I’m talking about the people who get on in the middle of the day when there are SEATS FREE and decide that they really need to stop right in front of the door. Sometimes when there are still people behind them trying to get on the train. GET THE FUCK OUT OF THE WAY, ASSHOLE. Even if you’re getting off at the next stop, the people behind you still need to get on the subway. And frankly, getting off at the next stop still isn’t a good enough excuse. Move the extra foot into the car and hold onto the pole. There are only signs everywhere that say DO NOT BLOCK THE DOORS and DO NOT LEAN ON THE DOORS. I didn’t realize so many people were fucking illiterate. I wonder how they even manage to navigate the subway if they can’t read. IT’S A FUCKING MYSTERY.
I mean, do they think that if the subway crashes or something, they’re going to magically survive because they were nearest to the door? Breaking news: If the subway were to crash, everyone would die. And if it just breaks down, everyone will be able to get off. SO THERE’S NO FUCKING POINT. Not to mention that if there were to be some kind of accident, you’d be better served standing near the doors at either end that you can (usually) slide open yourself. And yet I see more people blocking the other doors than those at the end of the cars. I just utterly fail to see any reasoning here except that these people are lazy, self-inflated assholes.
I draw that conclusion because 99% of the time, these people blocking the doors in a non-crowded subway won’t get out of the way for anyone, ever. Doesn’t matter if you’re getting on or off. They won’t even budge. And this just causes so much people traffic for NO FUCKING REASON. Is it really so important for you to stand in front of the door, even when the subway is stopped at a station, that you can’t move two feet to let everyone else on and off. Really? Is that location so coveted that you won’t even abandon it for the 30 seconds it takes for people to embark and disembark? You can’t just sit in one of the available seats? Or move to the center of the car and hold onto one of the numerous poles made available just for this purpose? No? You really need to stand there like an oblivious asshole? Then you better believe I’m going to hit you with every bag I’m holding as I enter/exit the train.
Anyone who blocks the door deserves to be shot in both kneecaps. Sadly, I do not own a gun.
But one of the biggest problems I have/see on the subway, which encompasses a lot of tiny qualms, is people who have no sense of the amount of space they are taking up. And this applies to people of all shapes and sizes. Sometimes, I’ll be sitting on one of the benches in a comfortable but not roomy way. There’s enough space between everyone on the bench that nobody is touching one another (a miracle!) but nobody is taking up two seats. This never lasts long. You better believe there is always someone who sees that “air” between people and asks everyone to squeeze together so their ass can sit. People, just because it looks like there is “space” doesn’t mean there actually is. I’ve seen people try to shove their kids on a bench where there just isn’t any room, and then suddenly the person next to me is practically sitting on my lap because some entitled asshole thought there was room for them on the bench. Now nobody’s comfortable, and I’m wondering what the fucking point was. Is it really such an effort for that asshole to stand that they need to make everyone else extremely uncomfortable so they can sit? They’d be better off just asking someone to give up their seat, because then they wouldn’t have five angry and uncomfortable people glaring at them. People come in all shapes and sizes, I know. But all of those shapes and sizes do not always fit well together spatially: sometimes it looks like there is a seat when really there isn’t. I just want people to be fucking aware of how much space they actually take up no matter what their size is. There are plenty of times when I avoid sitting on a bench because I think I might fit, but I’m not sure, and I don’t want to be that person that inconveniences everyone else for the sake of my laziness. It really is not that fucking hard to stand on the subway. And if you have a real reason for needing to sit (plenty of people have real problems, such as back issues, that aren’t immediately obvious), you really are better off politely (THAT IS THE KEY WORD) asking for a seat instead of making everyone grumpy and uncomfortable by squeezing in where you can’t fit.
Not to mention that in the summer, nothing is more gross than having a part of your bare arm come into contact with the bare arm of someone next to you, who is potentially sweaty. DO NOT WANT. And unfortunately, I am not able to voluntarily dislocate my shoulder, although more than once I’ve wished I could to avoid having some sweaty person come into contact with me when someone else shoves their ass where it doesn’t fit. STOP TRYING TO SIT WHERE YOU WON’T FIT, OKAY? IT IS NOT COMFORTABLE FOR ANYONE.
This problem with space also comes into play during rush hour. People can be packed in tight during rush hour, so you just need to expect to get knocked into. But at the same time, there are ways to minimize this. Of course, not many people seem to take that into consideration. For example: if you have a big bag, put it on the ground between your feet. Everyone is skinnier at their ankles than at their shoulders, so putting your bag down there SAVES SPACE and then you don’t have to be hitting me every ten seconds with your giant bag swinging off your shoulder during rush hour. Because I really want nothing more than to rip it off your arm and beat you to death with it. JUST PUT IT ON THE GROUND.
Then there are the people who move into the car to hold the poles in the middle, but stand their full arm’s length away from the pole. That makes it impossible for people to get around them, and also takes up extra space because nobody is going to stand in the space between them and the pole where their arm is. BEND YOUR FUCKING ELBOW, ASSHOLE, AND MOVE CLOSER TO THE POLE. During rush hour, this behavior is entirely unacceptable. STOP TAKING UP UNNECESSARY AMOUNTS OF SPACE.
The other space-related issue I have is what I call clustering. When the subway is moderately full, meaning all the benches are full but there’s plenty of standing room, there seems to be a strange phenomenon where all the people standing want to be near one another even if they’re all strangers. I HATE HATE HATE this, because I value my personal space very much. I adjust it for the situation (for example, during rush hours I know to expect little to no personal space), so when the subway isn’t crowded, I expect to have some fucking breathing room. And yet, Significant Other and I will often get on a subway at a busy-ish stop, go into the middle of the car so as not to be blocking the door, and suddenly everyone who boarded the train with us is standing all around us, while the rest of the car is fucking wide open. WHAT IS THE POINT OF THIS? Trust me, I do not look like a friendly person. Nobody is going to be talking to me or trying to make friends. SO GET THE FUCK AWAY FROM ME. Usually, Significant Other and I will move to the empty areas of the subway car when this happens. But it’d be great if people didn’t feel compelled to cluster around me in the first fucking place when there’s no need to.
The final space-related issue I have is people who fall asleep on the subway and use their neighbors as pillows. Of course this is fine if your neighbor is someone you know. But man, the number of times I’ve been sitting next some stranger who nods off and then tries resting against my shoulder is RIDICULOUS AND UNACCEPTABLE. I don’t know you. You could have lice, or any number of diseases that I do not want. DO NOT PUT YOUR FUCKING HEAD ON MY SHOULDER. If you can’t manage to stay awake for a 20-minute subway ride, maybe you need to go to bed earlier or something. BUT DON’T PUT YOUR HEAD ON ME. Now, most the time it’s unintentional–they’re sleeping and can’t keep their head upright. But I don’t care. Don’t fucking fall asleep, because you know your head is going to fall forward or to either side. And I’m not just going to sit there and let it happen, because that’s fucking rude of you and I think it’s gross and creepy. I’ve been known to lean really far in the opposite direction (into Significant Other, not into a stranger) just to make sure some asshole’s head doesn’t touch me. My favorite is people who DO NOT TAKE THE HINT the first time they’re woken up by their head tilting to the side and continue to DOZE OFF AND TILT. KEEP YOUR FUCKING EYES OPEN, ASSHOLE. I AM NOT YOUR PILLOW.
Trust me when I say I have about a million more pet peeves when it comes to public transportation and the subway, but I’ll save those for another time. If I get even ONE PERSON to stop doing any of this shit, I will be happy. For five seconds. Before I start raging again.