A one-act play: Isn’t This a School Night?

megaphone-11- UPTOWN A- INT, NIGHT

Three teenagers (ASSHOLE, DICKHEAD and DOUCHER) sit in the back corner of a car on the uptown A at like, 2:30 in the morning when everyone is tired as hell and just wants to relax a little bit. They are all crowded into one corner so none of their mouths is more than 18 inches from another. Still, they insist on shouting at each other at a level that you’d think even they would find uncomfortable.

THE LOOOK ON EVERYONE ELSE’S FACE indicates that every other passenger is independently imaging different ways in which these boys might die horrible deaths before the next stop.

 

ASSHOLE

Yo!

[shouts some unintelligible Spanglish]  

Right?

DICKHEAD

Yo, she was like, she was like…

[shouts some unintelligible Spanglish]

and I told the bitch…

[shouts some unintelligible Spanglish]

Yo, listen! Listen! Fuck that!

DOUCHER

Yo!

[stands and laughs, then shouts some unintelligible Spanglish]

THE LOOOK ON EVERYONE ELSE’S FACE

Shut the fuck up!

 

They do not.

Stockholm syndrome

wowThe text of an actual add for Varian Medical Systems that I saw on the train one day:

 

“Dear cancer,

This is your stop. Get out!

Love,

Me”

 

Who loves their cancer?

A Christmas miracle?

papi

They played this commercial in November, December and a little bit of January:
 
A young woman who probably owns a cat approaches her favorite newstand in the dead of winter to purchase a stack of lottery tickets from the proprietor who looks like Papi from Ugly Betty. She takes the tickets, gets in her car and stuffs them into a Chrsitmas card that she then turns back and gives to the old man as a gift. Papi gazes at her in awe as if she just handed him a key card to Fort Knox and she looks extremely pleased with herself. Viewers are then encouraged to throw their money away on the New York State Lottery, a concept that my high-school Calculus teacher* used to call “a tax on being an idiot.” 
 
Are you fucking kidding me?
 
Lottery tickets? You’re going to give a guy who sells lottery tickets a bunch of lottery tickets for Christmas? Lottery tickets that, statistically, are probably worth less than the paper they’re printed on? Lottery tickets that, if they’re winners, may get him into even more trouble for trying to cash in since they came from his own stand? Lottery tickets that, if they’re losers, will only serve as a depressing reminder of his terrible luck? Is there any worse possible gift than one that you can only receive after winning a nearly impossible game? It’s like spending Christmas with Mr. Burns; she would’ve been better off just putting a twenty in the card and keeping it moving.
 
The ad was quite heavily featured over the past few months. Worse yet, it frequently popped up as the mandatory add on Hulu anytime I tried to watch It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia since I was logging in from a New York IP. After having to see it so many very times, it even took on a vaguely racist subtext, joining “stupid” and “deceptive” to hit the Terrible Commercial Troika. I’d like to think that I’ll never have to see it again now that the holiday season is firmly over but I have the feeling it’s been playing for years and will be back in November. 
 
I mean, seriously… lottery tickets? 
 
 
*Tom Madre, who led one of the best classes I ever failed. I still learned enough about statistics to know that a lottery ticket is a terrible, terrible gift. I’d be so mad…

An open letter…

172127__cedric_lDear employees of the On The Run a couple blocks from my place,

You don’t have to keep explaining to me how to use the debit card thing in that condescending voice you always use. They’ve got those everywhere and I know how to read.

Sincerely,

A grown-ass man

I’ll never know: When knitting caught on

knit

This has probably been going on for much longer than I realize, but it seems like every time I get on public transportation lately, there’s a woman knitting somewhere in the car. I might expect this as a suitable diversion for matronly old ladies, but lately, the knitters are actually younger women in their 20s who fuss with their ball of yarn in knee-high snake skin boots while humming along to Duffy on their iPod touch.

It’s actually kind of interesting to watch, but I have no idea when this old-world craft suddenly overtook plugging away on a pink Nintendo DS as the most popular activity for trendy single ladies. I’m guessing it was recent because, as far as I can discern from my limited knowledge of the trade, most of these girls don’t seem to be very good at it. Nevertheless, I wish someone would tell me what episode of Gossip Girl featured a subplot about knitting or show me a picture of Kristen Davis tying together a bonnet at LAX.

More than anything, I’m concerned for the recipients of these shoddily made crafts who were unpleasantly surprised on Christmas morning with a hideous, itchy toboggan that has no corresponding gift receipt. I have witnessed a few men wearing frumpy, frazzled scarves lately that don’t look artfully distressed enough to be from a real designer but are too detailed to be from The Gap so there may be a connection. Hopefully for them, it’ll soon be warm enough for the scarves to get tossed in a closet only to be miraculously lost or, for the more creative, errantly left on the couch one afternoon only to be destroyed by That Darn* Cat.

Luckily, the knitting craze will probably be over by the next gift giving season (February birthdays, beware) only to be replaced with cat’s cradle, recorders or coloring books.

*Get it? “Darn” cat? Like with stitching? And that movie? Nevermind… it wasn’t that funny.

Why I usually take the A

shut_the_fuck_up_large

The following things all happened concurrently in my car on the C this afternoon:

-A portly woman sat on a loose, squeaky bench. 

-Some dumbass listening to his iPod rocked and nodded his head distractingly hard while flailing his jazz hands all about.

-Apparently on the way to some sort of audition, another guy stood next to him practicing choreography, nearly falling over at every stop.

-A man with a large bongo drum decided to play for no other reason than that he had a drum.

-A man who apparently had ribs for lunch sat next to me loudly sucking the meat remnants from between his teeth.

-A woman struggled to feed her baby a piece of pound cake that the baby didn’t care for. He naturally expressed himself with piercingly loud crying.

-A couple bickered about nothing.

-Teenagers.

-My head exploded.

An open letter…

drunkgirlDear Drunk Girls,

 

It is unacceptable for you to take your shoes off and walk through the train station barefoot. It makes you look trashy. There are no exceptions. 

 

Sincerely,

People With Some Class

 

P.S. Have you seen what people do in the subway? Gross.