One bizarro thing that's happened to me as I've gotten older and worked more and more is that I find myself pleasantly tolerant of big problems and hopelessly annoyed at small things. As such the NY subway gives ample opportunities to be pissed off at many things. In a city where the concept of personal space is a pipedream, the trains take it to the illogical extreme. I've already waxed poetic enough about trains before ("on the #4 train," August 1, 2006) so I'll keep today's list of annoyances short. Sure I've been ticked off about people who try to get on the train before I can get off, or random Indian people who like to unapologetically stare at me, but what I'm about to say takes the cake.
More often than not, a train ride means that you're gonna be standing up for some duration of your journey and more often than not you're holding on to a pole or handle in front of someone who's sitting down. This in a vacuum is rather funny if you think about it because you're basically standing with your pelvis in complete strangers face for several stops. This may be enjoyable for some readers out there. In fact for some of you out there this may be a normal weekend occurrence, but not I said the fly. But I digress. It seems to me that as a person who is paying the same amount as a sitting passenger, I'm getting the short end of the stick. But do not fret, I'm not one to complain, after all first come first serve. Besides, we Standers are a proud and noble motley crew. Just because we started our train journey in the middle of a line's route and cannot get a seat doesn't mean we abandon public transportation altogether. Au contraire bonjour we relish our time to stand. I would rather be a Stander over a Sitter any day. Unless of course there is a seat available that is not next to a smelly man.
What I cannot stand is that when the train starts approaching a Sitter's stop, they feel the need to stand up and try to move to the door while I'm still standing there. It's as if somehow they have a right to take your spot. The worst part is that if you don't move they sorta get pissed as if you're depriving them of them exalted Sitter's Status. Well fuck you I say. Little do most of them seem to realize also that I can't easily move aside because (a) there is no place for me to go, and (b) I'm trying to hold onto a pole or handle so I don't fall down in the train...because unlike them I have to keep my balance instead of just sitting on my ass like they are. By virtue of the fact that I'm standing in line, I'm ahead of them and they should wait to get out behind me. If I don't get off well it makes it easier for everyone if they just waited for the train to stop.
If all of this sounds like I'm terribly worked up over the lack of a simple common courtesy then it's true. Little things annoy me. I can live with the fact that my microwave I had bought from Sears had a small crack in it potentially spewing radiation into my kitchen on a daily basis, but making me prematurely move aside on a train is going too far.