I had thought about writing this blog post a few weeks ago. Unfortunately, Cracked.com beat me to it. Well, frack it. I’m writing it anyway. Go read their article… and then come back and judge which one is funnier. (I’m putting all my chips on Cracked. But only because he inadvertently stole some of my bullet points. But hey, I’m not being paid for this, so it’s an unfair match. Or so they say…)
I sold my car about a year ago and became a Public Transportation junkie. Since then, I feel like I’ve have taken every single bus, train, subway and taxicab Washington, DC has provided for our riding (dis)pleasure. Actually, it’s not that bad… putting aside the time commitment (public transportation isn’t known to get you anywhere on time), and the inconvenience of always being outside, waiting for the train (i.e., getting sunburnt and/or wet)… I more than make up for it in savings. Owning a car is expensive these days. With gas, insurance and maintenance (among other costs), I save exorbitant amounts of money taking the metro. I can also say that I’m doing my part to save the environment. Yada, yada, yada.
But there are inconveniences and annoyances that I still haven’t been able to get over. The “riding public” can be quite rude. Let’s count the ways, okay?
1.) Loud people are evil.
On every plane, train and bus, there is always one grade-A douchebag that can’t keep their noise to themselves. They’re yelling at their homies in the back. Or if they lack friends in the general vicinity, they’ll get them on the phone and proceed to honk and guffaw their way through an inane conversation. And if they have no friends at all, they’ll turn up their bangin’ Ke$ha/Justin Beiber mix on their iPod up to an 11. Or even worse, they’ll start talking to ME! While their unsupervised, screaming kids are running back and forth in the aisle.
Listen folks, I don’t want to hear about that rash you just discovered in your no-no area. Or your crappy tunes. And don’t get me started on the drunk guy who started screaming and throwing food last weekend, because he lost his cellphone at the last bar he frequented.
Please people, just shut yourselves (and your kids) up and sit the f down. I just want to go home relatively unmolested.
2.) People that bring their whole life on board.
What do you do with the person that fills up half the subway car with their crap? They bring their ten kids (eight under the age of 5… which involves strollers), their groceries, and a couple of boxes (because they’re moving…) just for good effect. Because of their thoughtlessness, the rest of us poor souls have to contort ourselves to fit in amongst their mess.
I know, sometimes you can’t avoid bringing bulky items on board, particularly if you’re carless. But damn. Don’t you have a friend with a car that you can bum a ride off of?
I try to be empathetic; when I’m a tourist in other cities, I’m just as clueless as you. But I try not to inconvenience regular riders unnecessarily. Research the Washington Metro system online before you arrive. Figure things out in advance. Talk to the station managers and bus drivers if you have questions. Don’t yell at passerbys when they ask to run past you on the escalator… We already spend wayyyy to much time on the metro. We don’t want to miss our next train because of your asshat-ery. (Hey, and some of us consider running up/down the long escalators as part of our daily exercise routine.) Keep your kids and your suitcases out of the aisles as much as possible. And please, for God’s sake, take a taxi if all of this subway stuff is super-duper confusing to you.
4.) Taxi drivers that just will. not. shut. up.
Sometimes when it’s late and I’m tired; or because the Metro doesn’t go anywhere near where I need to, I end up taking a taxi. Again, as a commuter, I just want to go from A to B with minimal fuss. But as usual, I get more than I bargained for.
Last Saturday, a friend was celebrating a birthday, and we decided to take a cab from a lounge to a dance club to continue the festivities. From the moment we stepped into the smelly taxi, the cabbie ran his mouth. I couldn’t quite follow what he was blabbering about (and I was sitting next to him, quite sober), but I knew the conversation was inappropriate and dick-ish. Luckily, we did not have far to go, but man. That ride was painful. Oy. Can you be a chauvinistic pig somewhere else?
Cabbie: I hate engaging in small talk anyway; why would I start talking s**t to you for no reason? Unless I initiate conversation with you, I don’t need your life story. I know that a cab driver’s life sucks and that it’s a boring job, but I’m employing you to drive, not to be your therapist. And please, for the love of God put down your cellphone. I signed up for a car ride, not a roller-coaster. I really do want to get home in one piece, with all my body parts attached correctly.
5.) Falling over is never fun.
Riding public transportation during Rush Hour should be classified as the tenth circle of hell. People are crammed into hot subway cars and buses like sardines, and are understandably more irritable. Many of us are forced to stand if all of the seats have been taken prior to our embarkment.
I’m a short girl. I cannot reach the overhead grips. Pleeezzzz…. don’t lean on the subway poles and give me a space to wrap my wee fingers around. I really would prefer not to be thrown to the front of the train every time it stops. Otherwise, I’m going to take it anyway, working my fingers around the pole… and your flabby fat. It serves you right… for being so chubby. Fatso McPlumperton.
And please. Don’t be a dick. Always offer your seat to the pregnant, disabled and elderly.
I won’t pretend that you’ll remember my words the next time your pay and board your next bus. But if you’ll play nice, I will too. If I run into you on the next train and you’re lost, I promise I won’t intentionally give you wrong directions… really.