I can feel the rumble of the train beneath my feet on the platform. A woman freezes at the top of the stairs, plugging her ears with her fingers as the screech of the train crescendos. A fragrant oily-smoky blast of air blows hair and papers and people as the train pulls in. The sheer power of its arrival makes me take a step back. Others are less cautious. They’re inches away from the cautionary yellow stripe that screams, “stand back!”
But some don’t stand back. As if defying the thunderous beast, they stand, face to the gusting arrival: calm, still, close. Too close for my comfort.
I wait until the train comes to a complete stop before I make my move, mistrusting of the beast, cautious of all the unknown people around.
I wonder if people always pick the same type of seat on the train?
The forward facers, the backward facers, the aisle facers, the strap hanging stand-uppers. Surely someone somewhere has done a study on this.
The subway. The only place where it’s common for people to be sitting face-to-butt and not find it unusual to be staring into the backside or crotch of the strap hanging stander as we sit and sway with the train.
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