Travelling by Train

Catching trains is very humbling.

Wait till you’ve had another train-traveller (with body odor only his mother could endure) sleep leaning against your shoulder before you ponder your significance upon this planet.

Any amount of time on public transport, wherever you are in the world, will teach or give you these four things:

1. Private conversation is an all time oxymoron.

Nothing is sacred, not anymore. Open air discussion about feminine problems is not yet on the agenda, but the eating problems of breast suckling baby’s is definitely acceptable. But, men, this is not a midnight supermarket, these women don’t need nor want our input.

2. We are extremely lucky to have the right to allow personal space.

Because on public transport you forgo that right, all space is given up for high school bags filled with emo-eye-liner & dog-eared books. For prams filled with show-bags. For grease-covered bicycle pedals. For sugar-toting toddlers who continue to bump the back of your head until you explode with apoplectic & apologetic fury. Except you don’t explode, because for every action there is a consequence that pales the original act into obscurity.

Any attempt to retrieve said space will be met by a wall of skin, skin that will appear to melt in summer, whereas in spring will balloon from the midriff & armpits of all-manner of species if humans.

In the event that you find yourself in possession of more than one padded bum-seat, feign sleep. Deep sleep. That way when the she-devil feminist prods you with the PRADA-covered TAZER, you’ll never see it coming. That’ll look better in front of the rest if the jury. You don’t want them seeing defensive arms raised in the televised replay.

Though the TAZOR incident is yet another metaphor for , oh heck, anything you’ve had to endure whilst sitting on public transport, it’s a possible reality that keeps corporate men awake at night wondering if a high-flying office job is worth two hours of horror on public transport, both morn’ and night.

3. Attempting and failing to validate the prepaid ticket is every commuters fear.

Many a mans’ ego has been bruised significantly upon hitting the spinning barricade at the gates leading commuters out into the CBD. Whilst your ticket may sound like it’s validated, be very sure to check you get a green light. Otherwise efforts to surge forward will hit upon all lower appendages with the force of a Rhino’ in reverse. In the event that you put your hip into the effort, ensure one foot is firmly planted on the ground. Or else suffer the indignity of face-planting the marble beyond like an Olympic hurdler who missed the point of jumping whilst running.

4. Escaping the carriage with only the shirt on your back is all you need to care about.

Losing all your accessories to a large dude whose vocabulary consists of grunts and swear words is nothing.

Having him take everything except your freshly skid-marked jockey-shorts is the lowest point, right after pleading just to have your shirt back. Even the rippling six-packed-man will avoid this embarrassment.

Thankfully this is just a metaphor for indignity of having no recourse when forced to disclose why a machine failed to validate the ionized sliver of cardboard.

And now my journey home is over. Ticket validated, shirt on back, ego intact.

Written upon my Apple Touch whilst upon the journey home this evening. It’s amazing what a day of seemingly important nothingness will produce in the human mind.

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