Saturday, April 30, 2011

Dear Certain Subway Riders (An Open Letter),

I can understand why you might want to take the subway. It's fast and moves underground, like those weird-faced snake monsters from the Kevin Bacon movie Tremors. Plus, despite the frequent delays and reroutings, on certain days it works like magic. Like those times when you spend the entire morning reading on the toilet and, by all accounts, are an hour behind, then somehow the stars (and trains) align to take you to your destination not just on time, but minutes early! Planes, automobiles, time machines, Jason Statham -- nothing could deliver such miraculous transport!

Whatever your reason for riding the subway, I don't care. If you are like most of the people I encounter there, you are doing it badly. Here is why.


(I shall now address a few letter recipients directly.)

To the Large Man Serenading Himself to Headphone Music Only He Can Hear,

Sir, please stop this. While I fully respect and laud a man who can appreciate a good Whitney Houston ballad, you are in a public space, not your shower. And, if you can believe it, headphones are tiny speakers that only you can hear. Crazy, right? All this time you were hearing a symphonic swell of synth, sax, and drum kit, the rest of us were hearing only the shrill and terrifying sound of your voice. Take your feeble riffing elsewhere.

To the Screaming Baby On My Morning Commute Who Haunts My Dreams,

Hey! I know you're only a baby or whatever, but please consider not crying for the entire half-hour duration of my commute. What are you even doing out and about this early? I didn't think babies had 9 to 5 jobs! We, on the other hand, do -- we, the folks who are covering their ears, massaging their temples, and wishing they had never been born. I know, I know -- it's not your fault! My only request? As soon as you have the capacity to speak, ask your parents, "Parents, why did you bring me on the subway when I was a wee child with lung power that could fell a small tree?" Thank you for your time!

To the Space Cadet Hipster Who Rocks and Sways On the Platform,

First of all, I love your heeled moccasins and spandex capris; you have a great male fashion sense. Second of all, I would like to submit a humble request that you do not carelessly mill about the train platform, unexpectedly lunging forward or back when I'm trying to pass you. People who use the subway to get places, as opposed to for long bouts of reverie, are often trying to walk with purpose. As I'm passing by you near the yellow line, it would be super fun if you paid attention and didn't knock into me, nearly sending me into the tracks below. Also, cool 1970s grandpa glasses!

To Anyone Who Gets On the Subway Car Before Others Get Off,

A fiery pit awaits you. No, I'm not talking about one of my armpits, I'm talking about hell.

In conclusion, I urge you subway riders to read (or have read to you, in the case of the baby) this blog post on one of your many buzzing mobile devices, whose media sounds and alerts you have no doubt left on, at their fullest volume, for everyone else on the subway to hear and enjoy.

Sincerely,
Felicia Lisbeth Ricci

6 comments:

  1. Unfortunately, half the time the man serenading himself with the headphones has them turned up so loudly I CAN hear the music. And I really don't want to hear the music from his mouth or his headphones!

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  2. "First of all, I love your heeled moccasins and spandex capris; you have a great male fashion sense. Second of all, I would like to submit a humble request that you do not carelessly mill about the train platform, unexpectedly lunging forward or back when I'm trying to pass you. People who use the subway to get places, as opposed to for long bouts of reverie, are often trying to walk with purpose. As I'm passing by you near the yellow line, it would be super fun if you paid attention and didn't knock into me, nearly sending me into the tracks below. Also, cool 1970s grandpa glasses!"

    Sounds like you live off of the L.

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  3. What's the 'L'?
    And yeah, people not letting others off the tube first - WHAT'S THAT ABOUT??! How on earth are you going to get onto a packed train if you don't let us off? The carriage won't magically enlarge to accommodate you, will it? No. So lye us off first, or next time I will stand in the doorway and SCOWL. You asked for it..

    Nazreen :)

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  4. ^ The L is a majestical subway line that provides speedy service through the Hipster meccas of Williamsburg and Greenpoint to Union Square in Manhattan, home of the best farmer's market EVER and lots of people with clipboards that want your money (for various charitable causes, obvi).

    My favorite group is the Pack of Middle-Schoolers With Obnoxiously Large Backpacks They Won't Take Off. Unless it contains a lifesaving device that must be physically attached to you at all times, put it on the damn floor. Also, if you could do that without hitting me in the face, all the better.

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