March 12th - Riding the Metro

On the Metropolitan, I have to balance on my toes so as not to crash knees with the woman sitting across from me.

The girl sitting to my left works her frizzed side-pony like it's 1986 and entertains the boy opposite of her with a story about a phone call. Katie would say she speaks “common.” The woman three seats away and diagonal to us continues to glance at her from time to time. She's telling her to quiet down with her eyes. Pony tail doesn't see her. Her story continues to entertain the whole carriage.

Periodically the train pops as it rattles down the track. The smack reminds me of my older sister, who taught me the magic of swiping your finger across the inside of your cheek in order to make the 'pop!' during the Lollipop song.

The woman to my right has her head inclined towards me and from the corner my eye it looks like she's trying to read my notebook, but her eyes are closed. The Japanese teenager across the aisle from her looks like he is about to be sick. His head is slung low between his knees and he is clutching his ears. Maybe he has been to the Fat Duck.

My leg begins to shake uncontrollably as my muscles buckle. The girl on my left has finally stopped talking and now music rockets out of her earphones. I'm not sure which I preferred.

Graffiti has been scratched into windows with No Smoking, Please Keep Your Feet Off The Seats, and CCTV stickers pasted in their corners. The CCTV sticker has a picture of a helicopter on it. I'm not entirely sure why. Cameras are everywhere in London, but I think this sticker is a lie. Maybe the helicopter pushed it over the edge. Or maybe it's because “Dorpz” managed to tag two separate windows. He did choose the windows without the stickers, though. Maybe that's the secret.

I'm 7 stops away from my station and none of my seatmates have left. The lady next to me is still sleeping and now the woman with a daffodil pin on her lapel who is sitting kitty-corner to me has nodded off. I don't know how much longer my legs can take this. I'd like to switch the song on my i-pod but it's in my pocket and I don't want to jostle the sleeping woman beside me.

I can't wait to get off this train. Another Metro just passed me. Fast Track. I never catch fast tracks. I think it may be a cruel joke.

Neil Young will be in concert on June 27th in Hyde Park. I know this because the woman directly in front of me, the one with whom I've been trying not to collide knees, has sheltered her face with her newspaper and the full-length, orange advertisement has caught my eye.

I'll bet Neil Young doesn't ride the tube I'll bet he hires a private car service.

I hate you, Neil Young.

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