How I Have Missed the Subway

by agoodnow

When I first started this blog many moons ago it was aimed toward commenting on life in NYC and some of the things that were going on in my life in my late 20’s.  Sometimes it was funny.  Sometimes I was venting.  Sometimes it was because it felt right to write.  Today’s post comes from a guy in his mid-30’s who can’t figure people out…

I’m on my way home the other night.  It was probably 7:30 PM and I was on a subway platform that wasn’t crowded but certainly wasn’t empty.  I have my headphones in listening to the latest Bill Simmons podcast and I’m just another guy, waiting for another train on a rainy May evening.  Next to me there was a woman who was probably in the exact same mindset as me.  Waiting for the train. Headphones in.

I was standing toward the end of the platform because the front and back of trains are least crowded and typically have less tourists on them.  So that means I was about 20 feet from the end of the platform.  The end of this platform was particularly dark.  On subway platforms you are looking down the tunnel to see if the train is coming, but the woman next to me started peering down the tunnel looking at something.  I turned my head to see liquid streaming from the dark end of the platform.  She and I looked at one another and then we both saw it.  A human being was causing this cascade of liquid.  It was a woman.  Suddenly a few tissues are being thrown onto the tracks like confetti in a parade.  She finishes causing subway Niagara Falls  and walks out from the shadows.

I have seen plenty of crazy things.  The fact that a person urinated on the subway platform is hardly a story of note.  It was that she was dressed like she just left a boardroom meeting and had a Louis Vitton (I’m 1000% ok if I spelled that wrong.  I’m not even going to look it up) bag that really caught my attention.  This is a person who came from a place in polite society where urinating in public and then throwing person hygiene items on subway tracks isn’t an accepted practice.  And it isn’t like there wasn’t a Starbucks around the corner. Or a bar.  Or a restaurant.

Mind you – maybe she was the best dressed homeless person in NYC.  Maybe she had a real life emergency and couldn’t wait.  Maybe she had mental health stuff happening.  I’m all about giving someone the benefit of the doubt, but this looked like a confident, well composed person who did not seem to care that other people would have to clean up after her and/or stand in her mess.

What is it about subways that brings out the worst in people?  I get it, it is crowded, the trains are constantly delayed, and people can be rude – but if we are going to starting using them as a toilet at 7:30 PM because we can’t be bothered to use a restroom with a sink (I hope she got a seat on her next train and didn’t grab onto the communal pole) then those stations are going to continue to be gross and continue to smell of what was once that’s woman’s Fiji water.