I work in New York City. It's full of nutters. Go figure.

Monday, October 18, 2004

Monday October 18th.

Most days I don't have to be in work until 9.30am. Ish. We work such long hours that start time is reasonably flexible and that means I generally have a mellow commute. It's only five stops on the subway and by the time I hit the station, most of Manhattan is already at work.

Except Mondays. I used to have to be in by 8am sharp on Mondays. Again, that's before most of the rest of the commuting herd thunder down to the station, so again, it was a mellow commute.

Then our bosses inexplicably said we could start an hour later on Monday. Seeing as how we're usually still in the office at 10pm on a Monday, that's kind of nice of them. But dear God, what a horrible, horrible thing it is to join the 9am rush. I can't believe I did it for so many years.

First, it's the stress of getting a seat on the way in. I know it's only five stops, but I like to read my NYTimes in the morning and that's really hard to do when you're standing up surrounded on all sides by fellow veal cows, swaying and stumbling as the train bumps along. Everyone lines up aggressively on the platform as the train comes in, and even if you decide to let a train go in the vain hope the next one isn't as crowded, the interval is JUST long enough to ensure the platform's eight deep in commuters and it's the same stressful tense squeeze to get a seat yet again. Some people go on the other side of the platform where the doors open first to let people off. We are torn between admiration and deep hatred for these people. Someone today muttered they were "cheaters". Even I think that's a little extreme.

Then, when I got out at 33rd St today, I had to queue to get up the subways stairs. This was because a bunch of fucking tourists had decided to stand in a large huddle in front of the hotel on the corner of 32nd and 6th, gazing like mentally retarded moo-cows at a car with its doors open that they were clearly considering getting into. Just not any time soon. In the meantime they were blocking almost the entire width of 32nd St, forcing hundreds of people in both directions to squeeze past them single file. Hence the fact I had to queue to get up the subway stairs.

I am so consumed with hatred for these tourists that I am grinding my teeth as I write this. I'm not sure an extra hour in bed is worth all of this.


Blogger L'Emmerdeur said...

Under Article 3 of the Jay Treaty of 1794:

"It is agreed that it shall at all Times be free to His Majesty's Subjects, and to the Citizens of the United States, and also to the Indians dwelling on either side of the said Boundary Line freely to pass and repass by Land, or Inland Navigation, into the respective Territories and Countries of the Two Parties on the Continent of America (the Country within the Limits of the Hudson's Bay Company only excepted) and to navigate all the Lakes, Rivers, and waters thereof, and freely to carry on trade and commerce with each other."

So, please do your civic duty as a Subject of the Queen and PUSH THOSE MOTHERFUCKERS OUT OF YOUR WAY.

Your welcome.

8:49 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, you obviously haven't been in New York very long-- you get to push them out of the way. Put some shoulder into it, as their center of gravity is usually pretty low.

3:15 PM

Blogger la depressionada said...

Actually, I was thinking the exact opposite. Only a New Yorker can really work up a good head of steam w/r/t subway foot traffic patterns -- and I really liked the heightened indignity that the delay was caused by tourists. When you're born here after you learn to walk, but before toilet-training you learn: Tourists are the enemy.

2:29 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...


4:37 PM

Blogger euro said...

Why thank you, la depressionada. You see, I grew up in a city of 7.2 million people. Manhattan has about 45,000. I KNOW crowding and irritating tourists, but in London they don't tend to congregate in the business areas. Problem with Manhattan is it's so small there isn't really any one business area. And the landmarks are everywhere. So are the tourists. Gak.

And yes, Anonymous, compared to my commute in London (an hour on the tube - in a packed Japanese-style rush hour that New Yorkers would probably shoot people if they had to endure, God love them - with rarely a seat), five stops is a mellow commute indeed.

5:04 PM

Blogger euro said...

Oh, and definition of mellow is:

Main Entry: 1mel·low
Pronunciation: 'me-(")lO
Function: adjective
Etymology: Middle English melowe
1 a of a fruit : tender and sweet because of ripeness b of a wine : well aged and pleasingly mild
2 a : made gentle by age or experience b : rich and full but free from garishness or stridency c : warmed and relaxed by or as if by liquor d : PLEASANT, AGREEABLE e : LAID-BACK
3 of soil : having a soft and loamy consistency
- mel·low·ly adverb
- mel·low·ness noun

I was thinking of the "PLEASANT, AGREEABLE e : LAID-BACK" aspect as I typed.

5:11 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I was thinking about the song - Mellow Yellow.

8:56 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Another definition:

Born high forever to fly,
Wind-a velocity nil.
Born high forever to fly,
If you want your cup I will fill.
They call me mellow yellow Quite rightly
They call me mellow yellow Quite rightly
They call me mellow yellow.
He's so mellow, mellow fellow

11:07 AM

Blogger L'Emmerdeur said...

Violating international treaties will only end in tragedy.

11:10 AM

Blogger la depressionada said...

Yes. It is true that in most European cities the inhabitants have had the good sense to locate tourist sites from any functional part of the city. In fact, Italy has created entire cities to distract tourists, I presume so the Milanese and Turinese can do business in peace.

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