Sunday, January 24, 2010

An eL Story

The other morning I was running to get the eL, and I barely made the second car.

Usually it is filled with boring business-casual like myself, and on Fridays the occasional creature who has been partying until 6AM and realizes that they need to get home. This morning was slightly different. In the car stood a hooded figure in a long, dirty jacket with its back to us.

It was clearly a deranged person, and then there was a complimentary giant figure in the back seat, who seemed to be sleeping peacefully despite the harsh light, cold, and constant bumping and noise. I'm a city girl, and I can handle this without complaint.

We, the innocent, sweet-smelling riders of car #2 couldn't do much before the next few stops, since the train only stopped for a few seconds, and slowly but surely we became aware that we were going to be stuck with the stench.

It was
homeless + old clothes + no hygiene + urine
and it was terrible. These mystery figures just stood/sat there crazily. The stinker kept rubbing its face maniacally, and those of us who were not crazy but not wanting to catch the next train 10 minutes later were looking out the window. No one was going to say anything for fear of being impolite. No one was going to call the police to get rid of this crazy person, because it was 6AM, and even police had better things to do at that time, so we sat and prayed for our stops to come quickly, or a panicked skunk to run on board.

Finally, 4 painful stops (really, "pause" describes their duration better), the conductor broke in
"you in car #2, you don't want to be in there.
We'll be stopped longer for you to get out."

We dove out of car #2, just as the rather crowded platform was emptying into the train, holding our noses and pointing to the cars in front of or behind us, to warn off potential riders. I ran full-tilt into the car directly to the south of me, #1, and let me tell you that Car #1, though still the el, smelled like roses.

No comments: