Commuting on Metro North, or anywhere for that matter, is a matter of survival of the fittest. Every morning thousands of grown men and woman jockey for seating positions like it’s the god damn Kentucky Derby. Real estate (seating space) becomes the hottest of commodities, as people look for various ways to dose off or read their
paper Ipad’s while coming in as little contact with other human
beings as possible. I like to think of myself as somewhat of a Jedi Master when
it comes to isolating myself from fellow commuters so that I can make up for
the hour of sleep that I missed the night before because I deemed it necessary to
watch not one, but two, re-run episodes of “The Office” on TBS.
The most ideal resting spot (on the particular train that I take in every morning, the 8:12 from Pleasantville) is either wall seat of an empty six seater. See below for a visual of me, all smiles in my home away from home.
Now as you may (or may not) know, I’m a pretty tall dude. Nearly 6’4 to be exact, and despite my nickname of Lee Torso (a play on words from the popular College Gameday analyst’s name) my legs are nothing to scoff at either. So yes, I enjoy a good sprawl out session, occupying both the seat I’m planted in and the one across from me. Usually this is never an issue, because as common sense would tell us, if you’re the sixth person to hop into a six seater, you’re a giant dick. I’ve outlined below the proper order number that the seats should be consumed in a six seater, taking into consideration important factors such as comfortability for all, who got there first and the size of the men or woman in question.
Unfortunately, as with most things in life, things don’t always go according to plan. Sometimes you get a noob (or an inconsiderate prick) who decides to go against the social grain and fucks things up for everybody. Normally when this happens, internal rage ensues. The below diagram is what happens when person #2 to enters the six seater and opts to sit diagonal from person #1, rather than on the same side with a seat in between.
As you can see, it leaves person #3 with a difficult choice to make. Do I sit next the person on the inside? Or next to the person on the aisle? Chances are they opt for the middle seat next to the wall passenger, completely shifting the balance of power of the commuters. This exact situation happened to me today, and I saw it coming from a mile away. As the double-chinned businessman approached, my spidey senses began tingling. It was obvious this man had no respect for the social norms of commuting, and proceeded to prop himself down diagonal from me.
Having anticipated the unavoidable conflict that was destined to occur the moment we hit White Plains train station, I could have been the bigger man and switched sides myself. Only I would never do that because A) I have too much pride and B) if I did do that, then I wouldn't have the pent up anger that drove me to write this blog post. Sure enough, another man boarded the train and headed in our direction. Only this guy had the decency to first ask our commuter #2 (the man diagonal from me) if he would like to switch sides, allowing our new guy (commuter #3) to sit in the middle seat on the opposite side, this way no legs would have touched. I was shocked, never had I seen such intuitive manners from a complete stranger. But just as my lips began to arch towards a smile, all my hopes and dreams were crushed by the harsh, unforgiving sound of the word "No."
I couldn't believe what I had just heard. This guy hung me out to dry like an errant Tebow pass. The next thing I knew, I was snuggled up with John Candy's twin brother and my moral was at an all-time low. I starred down the culprit to no avail, cursed under my breath and after seething for ten minutes or so fell asleep. All was well until we stopped at 125th St. and we were joined by another visitor, who this time chose to sit DIRECTLY ACROSS from me.
I was awoken at 125th St to an orgy of denim
So for those of you scoring at home- I went from rollin' like a big shot, to packed like a sardine while my arch nemesis was over there living the good life, all because some selfish asshole didn't play by the rules. Mornings suck enough as it is, so follow these steps in all of your future commuting endeavors so that nobody's commute has to be any worse than it already is.