This has nothing to do with WoW

October 14, 2009 § 3 Comments

Alright, so I wanted to share a little bit of real life frustration this morning.

I live in New York City.  Part of living here means I have to take the subway.  When I first moved here lo those many years ago, the subway was a magical place.  A new and exciting experience full of action and adventure.  I grew up in a small(ish) city and had never seen a transit system before in my life.  And when I moved I was very excited about this train that would take me anywhere I wanted to go.  I also lived very close to the school I was attending so I didn’t actually have to take the subway, which meant I only took it when I wanted to.  Eventually though I moved to an area of the city that required me to take the subway every day.  And the magic of the transit system quickly faded.

Anyway, what’s my point here…oh yeah.  There are two things I hate.  People (re: crowds) and the subway.  It’s phenomenal how rude people are.  There are 4 things that people do on the train that absolutely make me want to hit them in the face:

First: People on the platform who will stand right in front of the train door and don’t get out of the way for people who try to get off.  Typically these people will also get offended if you are trying to get off the train and try to get off before they get on.

Second: People who get on the train and then don’t move past the doorway.  Move to the center of the car you idiots!  Then the rest of us will fit on the train!

Third: People who will stand up on a very crowded car before the train has had a chance to pull into the station and try and shove their way to the door.  Where exactly do you expect me to go?  The freaking car is full.  When we get to the station, then you can try and shove your way off the car.  Although, if you shove me again, I may turn around and punch you in the face.  I don’t care if you are 10.  And wearing glasses.  And a girl.  Don’t. Shove. Me. Again.

Fourth: (I know this one will be most controversial) People who expect that because they are older, or a woman, or have a child with them, simply expect me to get up and give up my seat.  Now don’t get me wrong, if I see someone who is clearly disabled, or looks like they are in pain, or tremendously tired, or pregnant, and sometimes even if they are carrying something, I will get up (if there is room to do so) and offer them my seat.  I have nothing against offering up my seat to someone else who might need it more.  What bothers me is people who expect me to get up simply because they are a woman or older (note, not old as in 60+ because I try to get up for them because they look like they can’t stand–I mean older like 40 or 50+ who are perfectly capable of standing on their own two feet).

First of all, I have my own physical disability.  Granted, you can’t see it, so it’s not readily apparent, but there are days where standing up feels like thousands of tiny pygmies stabbing me with red-hot daggers.   Needless to say, some days I just need to sit.  Secondly, the mere fact that you are older than I am and/or happen to not have a Y chromosome does not earn you some fundamental right to sit down.

Now I know what you may be thinking.  “Fizz, if you yourself have a disability that people can’t actually see, shouldn’t that make you more sensitive to other people who may need to sit down because they have disabilities that you can’t see?”  Well, yes actually.  In fact, it makes me that much more aware of what’s going on.  Which makes me more aware of when people cop the attitude that they deserve a chair simply because that’s what might be socially expected.  Oh, you’re tired?  Suck it up.  So am I.

Maybe, just MAYBE if you said things like, ‘please’ and ‘thank you’ instead of, ‘what’s wrong with you’ and ‘I can’t believe you are so rude’ I would be more inclined to put aside my own pain and let you sit down.

It is entirely possible that I am way off base here and am just a cranky old gnome, and that maybe I should relax a little.

Or maybe the people on the subway should stop being such assholes.

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§ 3 Responses to This has nothing to do with WoW

  • Leah says:

    while I generally agree with you, having been in your situation, allow me to give you a counterpoint to your 3rd pet peeve. you are on a train going to work right? its rush hour (when else do new york train cars resemble a can of sardines this much) you are lucky enough to be living far enough away from the most populated areas to have snagged a sit. you are unlucky enough in that your job requires you to get off somewhere other then the major hub where half the train is getting of (like 34th street, or 42 street or Columbus circle, well you get the drift)

    From a personal experience, if you do not get up when the train is getting close to your station and start making your way to the doors? you WILL miss your stop. generally, I try to be polite and go with profuse “excuse me”s rather then shoving, but ..

    such as new york subway, that even if you leave early and give yourself extra time when it comes to missing your stop and having a chance to walk back (been there done that too) at least half the time, your slack is eaten up by train delays, or people getting sick or train unexpectedly being detoured, etc.

    I hate New York subway. but as bad as it is, its still better then going to Manhattan from any of the borroughs by car during rush hour :/

    • thistlefizz says:

      I have been in the situation where because the car was so full that I missed my stop–but that was more factors that just me not moving in time. It was a combination of the car being so full no one could move (no exaggeration), I didn’t say ‘excuse me’ or ‘getting off’ or even ‘hold the door,’ and the door slammed shut in an oddly fast amount of time. But, in general I have never been in a situation where it’s been necessary to shove people out of the way before the train has even arrived at the station. I don’t want people to miss their stops, and I have no issue with moving out of the way. If I’m standing in the doorway, I don’t mind getting of the train and stepping out of the way. My issue comes in people trying to move on a completely crowded train when the car isn’t even close to the station; there’s nowhere for me to go. I can’t magically create room so people pushing against me or staring at me like I’m the devil isn’t going to create a wormhole in which I can sidestep into to make more space. But I get where you’re coming from. Missing your stop is a totally awful experience, especially when you’re running late because of train delays. I just don’t like being shoved.

      And as a final point, I have to disagree with you; driving through Manhattan is actually preferable to taking the subway. I know, I had a car for a year (before it died), and will get one again (when i can afford it) because I much prefer driving to taking the miserable, awful, crowded, noisy, smelly, subway. I would rather sit in traffic than sit on a delayed train. Mainly because on a delayed train there is absolutely nothing I can do, and usually I don’t have any idea why the train is being delayed, I have no control over the situation. In a car, I at least have a modicum of control. And you’d be surprised, if you don’t take the main routes, traffic isn’t actually that big of a problem. It’s parking that’s the issue. Also, the cost of metro cards these days, it’s actually not a lot more expensive to drive.

      ~Fizz

      • Leah says:

        I guess my experience come from I went back to school and carpooled a few times before just giving up and going back to taking a train. it took us on average twice as much time to get to Brooklyn by car as it did by train and its not like we had to go to a variety of neighbourhoods..I carpooled with people who lived literally within few streets from each other.

        yeah, parking is a huge problem and is probably the major reason why its still cheaper to take a subway for most people. you either break down and buy a parking spot at one of the numerous garages (that usually comes up to close to 200 dollars, I don’t think i’ve seen a spot for less then $140) or hope you are lucky enough to find a spot by the sidewalk (not reliable enough in a long run, especially if you commute to a vicinity of 6th avenue). then there are ridiculous car insurance prices that you get in New York City..

        yes, subways are kinda terrible, but I’m far too cheap to keep a car here :/ i guess it also depends on where you work/leave. some companies have their own parking. I’ve never worked for such a company though, might be working in a wrong field 😛

        shoving is annoying yes, I usually get up when the next stop is announced, which is when train is about to pull into a station. most times, someone takes my sit immediately and by letting people know I need to get off with excuse me’s and such, I at least raise my chances of actually not missing a stop.

        control well…when you are stuck in the middle of the highway, with cars to all sides of you, the only advantage you have over being stuck on a subway is that you can conceivably get up and walk…maybe..

        I really need to get out of this place, but I’ll miss New York libraries too much…

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