part time jobs just gets in the way of a well-timed commute some times. Actually, whether or not I depart in a timely fashion in the morning has everything to do with whether or not I have to wash and style my hair. Let's be honest. This is a mighty undertaking, and I prefer to take care of it at night, but there are times that this doesn't occur, and then *this* happens:
I forced myself onto a too-crowded L train this morning, when I saw a little spot of room just inside and to the right of the closing doors. How lucky I thought I was. I got in there and had the usual sensory assault of smells and sounds. The Russian woman directly to my left must have just bathed in cheap cologne (yes cologne, not perfume.) It, was of course, impossible not to notice the headbanger directly to my right since he was, well, headbanging. Also (like many others on the train every morning) his i pod was blasting loudly enough for most to hear. I figured he was the reason that the spot was open. No one wanted to risk it.
As it turns out, the reason that the spot was empty probably had more to do with the pile of chicken bones that were at the feet of the person sitting directly in front of me. (I was standing.) The train was almost too crowded for me to even look down, but once I finally could, I noticed the small pile of bones and tracked it back to a sleeping man (? I couldn't tell because the person was all covered up with a giant coat.)
I have become a bit compulsive in the examination of people's hands/fingernails on the subway. This is a new development and I have tried to stop myself, but I can't look away. It started when someone who was holding on to the same pole as I was sneezed into his hand and then grabbed the pole again. I just stared at his hand imagining all the germs that he was transmitting, and wondering if they would run down the pole onto my hands. It never stops. I look at everyones hands now on the subway and imagine all of the terrible (and germy) places they've been.
Today's subject of obsessive scrutiny was in a bad way all around, but the fingers were particularly bad, of course dirty (particularly under the fingernails) still greasy from the chicken, and twitching a bit from sleep. I had just long enough to fixate on them when the person woke up and resumed eating the chicken. A few minutes later he/she dropped a greasy chicken bone on my foot. That was when I no longer appreciated the humor in the situation .
There's nothing like a greasy chicken bone on your boot first thing in the morning to completely ruin the charm of psychotic compulsions, cologne-bathed Russians and head-bangers.
King of the Road: 1940
1 hour ago