Most of us reading this are urban folk. And today I’m writing for you.
As a daily rider of the New York City subway service, I can tell you first hand that taking the trains are not as glamorous as one might perceive it to be. From multiple delays due to signal problems, unsanitary conditions, mice, and increasingly annoying fare hikes, public transportation has become the bane of many of ours existence. Despite all of the problems that any rail system might possess, the bulk of the problem isn’t the flaws of system. The problem that needs to be addressed, are the people.
Yes. The people who ride the subway are horrible. And you might be one of them.
I’m most likely not referring to you all reading this post right now, mainly because I assume everyone that reads this site is quite classy and in possession of common sense. I could be wrong though, so today, I decided to address the problem head on. Allow a cynical, people hating, New Yorker to vent.
There is just a certain decorum that you must follow in order to be in a public space. I don’t know if certain people who ride the subway are invalids, raised by wolves, or what, but there are few acceptable reasons to behave like Donnie from The Wild Thornberries in a public setting. In honor of the maddness, I’ve complied a list of the top 10 things you’re doing wrong while taking taking public transportation, stated in no particular order. Read, absorb, and pass it on. You never know who might need a lesson.
1.) You listen to your music without headphones.
I’ll never understand why this makes sense to some of you. The good Lord of technology graced us with the ever beautiful gift of headphones; some cheap, some expensive, some meet you down in the middle. There’s literally a pair headphones out there for every budget, so why some people refuse to invest in a pair and wear them on the train beyond baffles me. Gone are the days where people carried boomboxes and blasted the best of Run DMC at every train station. Why do you assume that EVERYONE on the train wants to hear your music, blasted at ignorant levels, with you singing with it? Which leads me to my next point…
2.) You rap/sing to your music out loud.
This might be my favorite of the bunch. Using your outside voice to rap/sing the entire Magna Carta Holy Grail album from Union Square to 161 street in the Bronx is never okay. Nobody wants to hear your rendition of any song at ANY time of day, especially on a crowded peak hour train running with delays. We know that the music is so good that you’re just bursting with excitement to share it with the world, but
3.) You preach about your religious beliefs at incredibly high volume levels.
listen here, I believe in a higher power as much as the next person. However, there is no earthly reason that you should be preaching about how much you love Jesus/God/The Quran/Your Goat loudly at any given time on the train. I once sat on a train while I was heading into work at 6am, and listened to a woman YELL about Jesus for a strong 25 minutes straight. Ma’am, we respect your views, but we don’t need you to be screaming about the Lord on the train. Ever.
4.) You take up 2-3 seats by purposely sitting widely.
I don’t know where people (mostly men) get the sense of entitlement to sit spread eagle on a crowded train, but allow me to humble you. You are not the Royals of Zamunda and this peak hour 4 train is not your throne. Do us all the courtesy of making yourself small in order to accomadate your fellow travelers. Our legs are tired too.
5.) You refuse to move to middle of the train while people are trying to get on.
Talk about irritating! I don’t know if people have this incredible sense of pride but this is just a damn mess. Wouldn’t common sense tell you to move into the train while people are getting on and off? Half of these delays would be avoided if you just moved out of the way.
6.) You don’t give up your seat for pregnant women/the elderly.
Well, this needs no explanation. You’re just mean.
7.) You push your way on to the train before giving other people the chance to exit the train
Where does this make sense? There is still such a thing called courtesy and patience — two things that seem to have gotten lost in this realm. Do us all a favor, wait 20 seconds before you decide to trample everyone coming off the train in order to race for a seat or to be first. You’ll get on a train eventually boo, I promise.
8.) You feel that the entire subway needs to hear the conversation you’re having.
This applies to many people, but I’m speaking to the teenagers that ride the trains after school. Your high school drama fluff is not important, and no, you don’t need to be the center of attention while riding the subway. There is no reason why I should be able to hear your incessant giggle while my headphones are turned up to the maximum level. Inside voice, please. I’ve been at work all day.
9.) You put your bags on the empty seat next to you.
And you wonder why you’re getting the side eye of the century from the girl in heels standing for the next 6 stops. Your bags don’t need to take a seat, put them on the floor like everyone else does.
10.) You don’t respect the meaning of personal space.
Yes, I understand that sometimes, the trains might get a little crowded and there doesn’t seem to be much room for elbow space. However, when you’re riding the subway, it is never acceptable to not be aware of your surroundings. Sitting right next to someone when there are a thousands empty seats in the car or you’re falling all over a stranger because you’re fooling around with your significant other is the definition of rude, and insufferable to many riders. If you do this, consider sitting on a wasps nest for an extended period of time. We all hate you.
Did I leave anything out? Hit me up in the comments and let me know!