The Commuter’s Thrill

A Pictorial Travelogue of 
a Fatigued Hand for Hire

Commuting freezes time the same way traveling can extend it. But while staring at fast-moving surroundings can hold the anticipation of wherever one’s is heading to or not, the destination is not really the point of commuting. It’s just getting there and back in time and still in one piece.
So you update your reading, bite your bagel, finish your coffee. Or most likely, fall asleep. Traveling short distances repeatedly has a numbing effect on the mind. Most never get to the sports section. But whether time’s wasted, or enhanced, commuting may offer you a whole lot of things – except the option to abbreviate it.
It’s a way of cutting through a million life stories happening outside your window, that you can’t or won’t care to attend, either because most last just a few seconds, or are simply not that interesting. Commuting is a lesson on indifference about the world around us.

Yet, a lot of us spend an obscene amount of time committed to it, squeezed into it, unmoved by it, back and forth, day in, day out. Like Sisyphus, we keep pushing that hard rock of a day towards the top of the mountain for as long as it’s required. Until someone else takes over and we’re no longer needed. That’s no joyful occasion either.

Being on a set schedule also breeds an odd wish from deep within that still sleepy mind of yours: that nothing ever happens to it. You’d rather not talk, hate if someone sits close and, knock on wood, dread the possibility a maniac lurks on the loose, or a faulty track lays ahead.

So you default to this limbo where you hold the alertness of a ninja with the moroseness of a deranged monk, ready to spring into (more)
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Read Also:
* Butt Tally
* Skimmed Vacations
* Street Smarts
Continue reading

Train of Moths

A Pictorial Travelogue
of a Fatigued Wanderer

Commuting freezes time the same way traveling can extend it. But while the starring at fast moving surroundings can hold the anticipation of wherever one’s about to get to, destination is not really the point of commuting, just getting there and coming back.
So you update your reading, or most likely fall asleep. Traveling short distances repeatedly has a numbing effect on the mind. But whether time’s wasted, or enhanced, commuting may offer you a whole lot of things but won’t give you the option to abbreviate it.
It’s a way of cutting through a million life stories happening outside your window, that you can’t or won’t care to attend, either because most last just a few seconds, or are simply not that interesting. Commuting is a lesson on indifference about the world around us.

Yet, a lot of us spend an obscene amount of time committed to it, squeezed into it, indifferent to it, day in, day out, going back and forth, in a Sisyphean task we come back to repeat as often as required, till that blissful day we’ll simply stop doing it. Oh, what a joy that’ll be.

Being on a set schedule also breeds an odd wish from deep inside that still sleepy mind of yours: that nothing ever happens to it. You’d rather not talk, hate if someone sits close and, knock on wood, dread the possibility a maniac lurks on the loose, or a faulty track lays ahead.

So you move to this secret limbo, the kind that combines the alertness of a ninja with the moroseness of an angry monk, ready to spring into (more)
_______
Read Also:
* Butt Tally
* Skimmed Vacations
* Street Smarts
Continue reading

Curb Your God

And You Thought You
Were Doing a Great Job

It’s easy to see how we get so annoyed with our fellow humans. After all, it’s clear that we’re constantly surrounded by a multitude of one-track minders, rude and insensitive people, specially when it comes to meeting our needs, and we’ve got this unsettling impression that the world, and its odds, are all heavily stacked against us.
Problem with such a myopic generalization is that often, we are them. Which means, it’s our sense of unbound entitlement that turns every passer by into a fiery competitor for that promotion, that seat on the train, that last piece of cake. Plus, we waste a great deal of time thinking how wonderful we’ve been for even having thought about that.
But it’s not that we’re willing to try our hand on this messy business of helping out or lending a hand, mind you, since we’re pretty sure we already are generous tippers, exquisitely well behaved in public and certainly admired by our peers for our superior emotional intelligence. Except that not even our own mothers would believe in that.
But since when we’re willing to let contradicting evidence to get in the way of us feeling so good about ourselves? That’s perhaps what’s behind the assumption that, since you’re alive, you must pursue life to the fullest, no matter what, social constraints to be damned, and I’ll sue you if I don’t get to park on my favorite spot, you fool.
It may be also what fuels the drive to survive at any cost, even when you can hardly function as a body, and long after all your sense of connection with the surrounding reality is gone. At that point, the medical establishment, for one, would be more than interested in extending your permanent oblivion, for obvious reasons. And you didn’t say otherwise on your will, when you could, anyway.
Thinking about that, we’ve published a compilation of slightly related topics, as wide and all over the place as we like them, that may help enforce the point that, well, whatever point we were making then. It was sometime ago, anyway. Let’s just hope you can relate to them too.

THINGS TO DO IN THE CITY
* Smell the Ol’ New York, Circa 1970. 190th Street Station (“Take the ‘A’ Train”), by the elevator to Fort Tryron. Feel as glorious as a crackhead may have felt in those cheery 1970s of out of control rioting and experimental lawlessness. Let the waft of a day-old dried urine awaken your adventurous personality and inebriate yourself in the pungent body odor that only someone who’s been partying on crystalmeth for over 72 hours is capable of emanating.
* Have Some Private Quality Time. West Street between Continue reading

Butt Tally

Your Wide Behind May
Weight on Commuting

Planes, trains and automobiles. Subways and ferry boats. Pretty much all forms of transportation these days are going through a gradual but inexorable change: all are widening their seats to accommodate our enlarging girths.
In other words, either transit authorities accept our outsized behinds or they’ll be the ones to be kicked in you-know-where. It’s a costly change, to be sure. But there’s something else, besides concerns about bottom line costs, or comfort, at play: safety.
It’s a bit ironic then that some of New York City subway trains are manufactured by Kawasaki, a Japanese company. And that it comes from there too the latest innovation in car seats: the butt-recognition system.
THE JAPANESE EXCEPTION
It’s ironic for two factors. As the U.S. population, as most industrialized nations, is getting alarmingly fatter, Japan has the lowest obesity rate in the developed world: 3%, compared to the whooping 32% for Americans.
The other factor is that in the 1980s, another Japanese company, Hino Motors, got a contract to build NYC buses and failed miserably. The reason: the seats were too tight. Something you can still see it Continue reading