Friday, January 17, 2014

Return to the subway

I don't know how I did it, but I forgot all about the subway situation in NYC while I was gone.. Don't get me wrong, I think that public transportation is a great way to travel, it's good for the environment, and good for you wallet, but in a city of 5.4 million riders a day on one of the oldest subway systems in the world, you notice some things.

Today on my way home, in particular, I noticed a man dressed in a batman outfit. Normally it wouldn't phase me as there are many workers in Times Square that dress up as movie characters for their job. However, this man was literally dressed in his costume, his pot bell protruding out of his dress and a rather high thigh flash was happening. To add to the drama of wearing a Batman suit, he yelled, "Yeah baby" a few times between each stop, making sure to stare at passengers and lick his lips, and shouted the stops along with the MTA announcer. I apologize if there was something "wrong" with this man, but you have to take the good with the bad and see the humor and sarcasm in life, regardless of the situation.

The icing on the cake was "Friendly Rick" the General Contractor who sat down next to me and said, "Die Fledermaus must be in down," with a flashy smile. Thanks for the input and funny joke, Rick, but if this creepy Batman dude comes tunneling over here, I'm expecting you to throw yourself in front of me to protect me. Thanks! (Yes, my sass has returned and my coldness meter is dropping a little since being back, and I love it)

After transferring trains, I was waiting for the next train and noticed a woman in front of me with a rather large pony tail and silver thumb ring. The thumb ring, okay I get, I used to wear one because a cool Native American was selling them and I just had to have it. The pony tail, however, is another story. This is the point where I stop blaming Pony Tail Polly, and get angry with her friends. Polly's friends, please advise her on a new hair do. For example, I know that my hair looks rediculous in a pony tail because my hair is pin straight and my head is far too small for my body. Thus, a pony tail isn't my most flattering do. So, here's to my cynicism about long-haired-pony-tail-wearers and to hoping their friends step it up and suggest a change.

The most precious thing I noticed on the subway was actually a Con Ed worker. He was resting his eyes, or something, and held a notebook in his hands. Being incredibly nosey and curious, I stared at his notebook until I realized that it said "SAFETY" on the front in bubble letter that had been colored in. Little things that I notice, like that, always make me imagine what the person's story is. Where did he come from? Did he drawn in the letters or did someone he love? How long of a shift does he work? After mulling over these questions a wave of gratitude strikes me. This man sitting across from me on the subway is working hard to ensure the city-dwellers have heat, hot water, electricity, etc. and I'm thankful for him.

I finally deboarded the train once arriving in my temporary town of Williamsburg. For those of you who are unfamiliar with Williamsburg, it is essentially just a huge neighborhood almost entirely filled with hipsters. For those of your unfamiliar with the term "hipster", it is a person who spends far too much time looking for vintage clothing, trying to be an original, skateboarding, smoking American Spirit cigarettes, eating vegan food, drinking PRB, any or all of the above, and believes he/she is (here's the kicker) first person to have behaved in that manner, believe those beliefs, or create that certain thing. No one else did that, they were the first. The issue therein being that they all believe that. In true tandem with the quote, "If everyone's different, nobody is," their lives are mocked, in turn, but those the hipsters mock. It's a big circle of mockery and it works. I'm not saying "Don't Feed the Hipsters", some of them are delightful human beings, but the chances are the more you feed their egos, the skinnier their jeans will get.

However crowded, smelly, hot, cold, creepy, etc. the subway is, it always provides me with an entire rotation of emotions by the time I get off--IF I'm paying attention.