…looks like closed blinds, cranked a/c, laying on the ground and not moving.
…sounds like scores of cars honking loudly trying to get home.
…feels like someone forgot to close the oven after taking out a pie.
…tastes like a diet that starts tomorrow.
…smells like garbage on the sun.
1. Dead or Asleep? This one is lots of fun early in the morning and is better with friends. Find a person who appears comatose and decide whether or not that person is deceased or just sleepy. Let’s be real though, no one wins if the person is deceased.
2. Find the Duracell Battery - You can exchange Duracell Battery for “rat” if you want an easier game, or “cell phone” if you want a more challenging one. While waiting on the train platform, choose the tracks on which your train will be arriving and look for a Duracell Battery. There may be more than one, but there is always at least one. The first one to find it, wins! (Or play alone, for personal gratification).
3. How Much Longer? - Self-explanatory (Bonus if you’re waiting on the G Train). Try to predict how many more precious moments of your life will be wasted because of “Train Traffic” or “Lost Signals.”
4. Will That Kid Catch the Hat during “Showtime!!!” - If you’ve ever ridden an MTA train, chances are good that 3-to-5 kids with a boom box have shouted “It’s showtime!” and started dancing and doing tricks. The best, most challenging trick involves having a hat on the shoe and kicking it behind the back and onto the head. I have yet to see a kid complete this trick, but I feel like they wouldn’t attempt it if it was completely impossible. Wagers start at 50 cents, but you can’t exchange money until they get off the train or else they’ll think you’re donating to their cause.
I think I’m going to be appending this list every so often to keep it interesting.
I’m admittedly a cheapskate when it comes to NYC transportation. I just don’t see the point in blowing $30 on a trip to midtown when it takes the same amount of time to just take the smelly train at the bargain-basement price of $2.50*.
But maybe sometimes you’re exhausted and you can’t bare the thought of standing with your bags in Grand Central with all of the humanity and all of their…fragrances… waiting for the 7 Train to arrive on the humid platform. Last night when I decided to splurge on a serene cab ride home, I knew it would be different. Upon entering the cab (that actually stopped for me, what?!), the cab driver offered me some homemade baklava that I would have taken him up on if I weren’t dieting for swimsuit season. We got to chatting, and he gave me these 5 ridiculously helpful wisdom bits:
1.” Once you live in NY for 1 full year, you’re officially a ‘New Yorker.’” You have to make it through some natural disasters, a never-ending winter, Christmas season, rush-hour traffic, overreactions, germs, language barriers et al. —12 months is the duration period of the sadistic hazing ritual that is the big city.
2. “If you drop something on the ground in NY, let it go.” Not big things, obviously, but if you lose a dollar or some change you absolutely should not pick it back up. He claims that (a) it will come back to you 10-fold and (b) the germs your item will have accrued in that transaction are not worth the risk.
3. “Don’t trust ANYONE who talks about how short life is.” To directly quote, “The older I get, the longer my life seems.” He is of the opinion that people use it as an excuse to do things they ought not do, under the false presumption that regrets don’t exist. This is part of the reason I’ve always been a little leery on the term “YOLO.” He says enjoy your life, but absolutely be smart about it.
4. “If you can, live near the water.” I think this goes without saying, but he went as far to explain how we’re all mostly just water, and how there’s nothing as calming, even if it’s just on the Hudson River or something. I’m game.
5. “Just enjoy the life.” This particular cab driver was an older, well-traveled, Yiddish man originally from the Ukraine. While discussing this abysmally sad winter, we talked about how beautiful St. Tropez is during Carnival, how soothing Aruba is year-round, and how San Francisco is where he’ll go to die. We started chatting about how balls-hot it is in NYC in the summer and how there are tourists everywhere when he sighed and simply said, “Just enjoy the life.” Sure, people stopping to take pictures of median-sized at best buildings is disruptive, but I live in New York Mutha F*%#ing City. I don’t have it so bad.
*at the time of this post, the MTA had just raised prices to $2.50. I’m sure it’s higher by at least 10x if you’re reading this even just a month after its original post date.