There were some jerks on my train.
Completely disregarding the understood awkward morning silence previously mentioned.
There’s something about unfunny people that makes them think they’re funny. But there’s also something about idiots that makes them laugh at things that aren’t funny.
So the cycle continues, I guess.
They were brainstorming bad, lame ideas for t-shirts. Discussing the fact that the train was so quiet, in the loudest voices possible. One of them cawed.
I fucking hate people.
But then one of them said something that actually had some merit.
“Whoa where is everyone?”
We were pulling up to the next stop on the train and there was no one there.
Usually one of the more crowded stops.
As we were pulling to a stop we saw a firewoman yelling at people to get off the platform. The doors opened briefly to no one, closed and we moved on.
People were silent after that. Even the jerks.
Except for one, that whispered what a bitch that firewoman was. Then he laughed.
No one else laughed.
I had my sunglasses on because it allows me to look at people without them knowing I’m looking at them. But, suddenly it seemed a little darker than normal and something smelled weird.
I took my glasses off, there was smoke in the train and it was getting heavier, turning from a haze to actual wisps. I was surprised that no one was freaking out.
They were just kind of looking around, seeing if everyone else saw what they saw.
We pulled into the next station to catch the tail end of people running away from the train. The doors opened and let a couple people in.
Somebody asked one of the newcomers what happened and she said that right before the train came through a giant plume of smoke poured into the station, and most people ran for the exit.
Of course they did. That’s crazy.
But part of me scoffed at all the people that ran. That asshole part of me. The part of me that has been growing larger and larger since being in New York.
I was kind of an asshole before I moved to the city, but something about this city gives you this false sense of ability to deal with shit in a much better way than other people.
Everything that everyone else is doing is retarded until you do it, and then you had a good reason to do it so shut up.
When you’re rushing through the station to get to work and someone in front of you is walking slowly (at a normal pace) your first thought is ‘Jesus, don’t you have somewhere to be? Just coasting through life huh, fatty? Get a job.’
And then when you’re not late for work and are a little early to meet up with a friend and casually strolling to the train, you watch people run by and think “Haha, you dummies, speeding through your pathetic lives. Relax. Idiots.”
And so on and so forth.
I was confronted with this dichotomy of acceptance in the midst of the train fire situation.
A giant plume of black smoke pouring from the tunnel as a train comes through is terrifying. Anyone would picture a series of flaming cars blasting into the station with screaming riders scraping at the windows as their clothes crisp to ash. But not in New York.
There are any number of things that could have happened to lead up to the smoke and my mind immediately goes to the less threatening one.
Which in this case, is exactly what it was, a small fire on the tracks on the opposite side of the tracks.
But it kind of makes me wonder what it will take to feel scared enough to accept other people being scared, and therefore justify my own fear without feeling stupid.
I am actually pretty terrified to find out. So there’s that.