"Of COURSE I'll stand so your briefcase can have a seat!"

Idiots. Commuter trains. This morning the aisles were packed to the gills (no, my train does not actually have gills) and there were a good half-dozen seats taken up by idiots’ briefcases and overcoats. All of the people standing were too damn timid to say, “excuse me, could you move your coat so I could sit down?”

As you may suspect, I am not so timid. I shoved my way through the crowd and approached the first seat. “Excuse me, could you move your coat so I could sit down?” The woman glares at me like I had just spit in her coffee. She puts her coat on her lap, but instead of shoving in or standing up to let me through, she makes me STEP OVER HER to get to the seat. Needless to say, I left as many bruises on her shins as I possibly could.

What IS it with people? I don’t know who annoys me more: selfish people who take up two seats for themselves, or cattle who can’t bring themselves to ASK for a seat.

You’re kidding, right? It’s not possible that this actually occurs. There is no way I can imagine anyone taking up space for their ‘stuff’ while other people are standing.

I used to take MUNI in S.F., and many times offered my seat to seniors and women (yes, it was still acceptable then, and all women gladly accepted the offer), but I’ve never heard of yeilding to a briefcase. Hell, no! Case must go!

God, how dreadful, Eve! What an asshole. (Yes, Matt has been known to get quite upset about public transit assholism.)

[slight hijack] You know what’s worse? Having some vicious person stare at you with hatred in their eyes because you didn’t give your (own) seat up to them, when there is AN EMPTY SEAT ONE METRE AWAY.


The problem is simple. People don’t have manners.

I hate commuting. I hate taking my service-animals-in-training on busses. And hell, this is CANADA, and it’s far more courteous that in the States (from what I’ve seen)… but…

Damnation, there was once this idiot woman who wouldn’t give up her seat for a visually impaired man with a guide dog… I have also seen the briefcase/coat thing here too (pisses me off no end)…

Now I might get flammed for this, but the ones that piss me off the most are those annoying young mothers who take their whiny brats on crowded busses at rush hour, in the world’s largest fucking strollers. Those fucking things are so wide that cadilacs roll home hanging their heads in shame! Fercrissakes, they don’t even always fit in the bus aisle! Try doing it with 50 people standing, cramped in like sardines!

I guess I’m pissed off since one of my trainees got his tail rolled on by an idiot woman with a huge stroller. She wouldn’t wait for the next bus (this is a commuter line, the bus comes every 5 minutes, bitch), argued with the driver who pointed out the service animal to her, and proceeded to roll her monstruosity (the kid) in the stroller (feckin’ cadilac), over my service dog. The dog yelped twice: once for having his tail squished by the stroller, a second time when she walked on his paw.

Bitch again. I took a chunk out of her. She said she’d complain, so I told her to go ahead and make my day. The driver offered help. She shut up. I wish my dog would pee on command, cuz her little brat in his cadillac woulda been soaked.

I hate commuting.

#$&!(@#. (sorry for the mild hijack)


What, briefcases are supposed to sit in the back of the bus?! Worse yet, stand?! Briefcases and other pieces of hand luggage have died to secure equal rights for all inanimate objects. You are threatening to turn Leather-American rights back 40 years.


I used to see this shit all the time on BART. This happened a few years ago:

I used to get on BART at the Civic Center station heading for the East BAy. At the time there were three trains you could catch Concord, Richmond & Freemont. As all the trains used the same platform, a cue would form. If you didn’t need the train that came first you stepped aside so that people behind you could get on.

Well one day there’s this asshole who decides fuck everyone else, let them walk around me. This is a problem as the train doors are open about 30 seconds or so before moving on. Well after the third day of this shit and having no regard for my safety. I waited. Till I heard the door closing horn (i think that’s what made that sound). I then shoved the guy right on to the train with me.

The guy turns around and calls me an asshole. I say, well you could have gotten your ass out of the way like polite people do.

I actually got cheers!

I see this pretty much every morning and evening in Atlanta. Now, if the train is empty, I’ll set my briefcase on the seat next to me, but as soon as people start getting on, I set it in my lap. Hell, that’s just common courtesy.

Easily the rudest thing I saw happen was a man getting up so an older lady-she had a cane, white hair, etc-could sit down, since the train was full. As soon as he stood up and picked up his briefcase, this young man-he looked younger than me, possibly late teens or early 20s-slid into the seat. When the man who was giving up his seat saw this, he gave the kid a blistering like you had never heard. The kid got up. :smiley:

I take mass transit so rarely and when ever possable I like to stand. Beware strangness ahead. When I read the title and poster the first thought from my warped brain was “Eve, as long as I have a face, you’ve got a place to sit.” Flame away.MTS

It’s stories like these that make my western living, gas guzzling world seem mighty peaceful. Even in the worst of traffic jams, the thought of being packed into a commuter train with stinky, rude and nasty people gives me thanks that I live in urban/suburban sprawl country.

Ah the joys of Colorado living.

< BTW, I am self employed now so I avoid commuting altogether >

Once, I saw an old man and three old ladies get on a bus together. Three kind people stood to let them sit (I was in the back), and the three ladies thanked them and sat. Now, the man was obviously having trouble standing, and as such, it’s perfectly reasonable for him to ask someone for a seat.

The manner in which he went about it was not.

A ‘Excuse me, may I have your seat?’ or something similar would probably have sufficed. Instead, he walked up to two people sitting together, and demanded ‘I NEED TO SIT!’ very loudly and with a greatly impatient tone. Not only that, he had chosen two people who were carrying quite a few bags, piled on their laps and on the ground between their legs. In the few minutes it took them to gather their things and stand, he glared at them impatiently.

I see a lot of what you guys are talking about. This was the one time I saw it happen the other way around, as it were.

Oh, and moron? When you see your stop is coming up, move towards the door. Dont wait until the bus is stopped and THEN try to wade through the crowd, hoping to get there before the bus leaves. And if this happens to you, dont bash on the door and scream until the bus driver stops just across the intersection to let your sorry ass off. It’s your OWN DAMN FAULT!

Dont even get me started with bags/feet on seats…


What I’m curious about is: Where do all the rude people go after they get off public transport?

Off public transport, I have never come across one single person who does not think that taking up two seats is rude. Everyone here agrees that it is not acceptable and so do all the friends/acquaintances I’ve ever mentioned it to.

Where are the people that actually do it?

Well gosh, you don’t think I was going to admit to being one here, do you?

SuaSponte—Har! Though I suspect in this case, it was “Cheap-Plastic-American” rights.

Booker57—[blushing prettily]

I am known as the Diana Trent of the Waldwick Train (for you “Waiting for God” fans). I tell people shrieking into cell phones to pipe down, and if I see a seat taken up by a coat or a briefcase, I head right for it, just so I can get into a satisfying row. I also glare at people who chew gum with their mouths open, though that has no effect whatsoever . . .

Once, I was trying to get off a bus at my stop, and some man was blocking the aisle and refusing to move aside. After two polite “excuse me’s,” I bellowed, “OUT OF MY WAY, YOU GREAT HULKING PEASANT!” Worked like a charm.

And that’s why Eve should be a hero for all right-thinking peoples.

Thanks, Eve. What a morning pick me up.

Ok. That does it. I’m in love.

Eve, you are so awesome. This is a great thread.

My pet peeve is people who lean against the pole on the subway, preventing others from grasping it. I really don’t want to touch someone’s butt. I always tap the leaner on the shoulder and make the universal move-forward hand gesture.

I usually keep my mouth shut about the sitting/standing thing because I like to stand and because of something that I witnessed once on a MUNI train in San Francisco.

A young woman of about 18 was sitting near the front. An old man came on and the 18 year old didn’t get up or offer him her seat. A woman of about 40 years started yelling at the 18 year old saying, “how can you just sit there? Kids these days are so rude!”

The 18 started crying and got off at the next stop. But we could all see that she was disabled by the way she walked (cerebal palsy?). The 40 year old felt terrible and let the whole bus know it. She really learned her lesson.

Even if the kid was completely able-bodied, that was rude. The woman didn’t know her story. She could have just gotten off work after an eight-hour shift at some thankless McJob. She could have just had the cast removed from a broken leg, or just been able to go back to school after spending a week in bed with the 'flu. She could have been pregnant in the early stages where it doesn’t show but you sure feel like hell. There are other excuses for needing a seat besides being old.

My peeve: The buses and trams here in Oslo helpfully have open spaces in the middle for baby carriages, bicycles, and other large items. Why do some braindead people insist on standing right there when there are plenty of seats available? And why won’t they at least move to the side when someone is trying to board with a stroller - or a wheelchair?

Sax—wouldn’t it be great if that 18-year-old was actually healthy, but did her “cerebral palsy walk” to make the 40-year-old feel like crap?

I’m starting the statue now. Eve, do you prefer the “sainted nun” habillement (sp) or the “Greek goddess” toga type thing?

You should meet my wife sometime, Eve. She’s a one-woman force for justice and courtesy on public transportation.

Story 1) Ann is sitting on the (London) Underground on the window side of one of those two-person facing forward seats. Next to her, on the aisle, is a large man with shaven head and dour expression. As the train reaches her station, she stands up and asks him politely to let her out so she can get off the train. No response, no movement. “Excuse me, I want to get off the train here!” No response.

Right. She delivers a sharp kick to his shin, at which point he begins to swear up a storm. As she shoves past, she says, “Aha – so you do speak English!” and walks off.

Story 2) Another Tube journey. The carriage is mostly empty, but she’s only travelling a few stops and so is standing up and holding onto a pole. A strange man standing nearby begins bumping against her in a casual fashion. Now while any given rush hour will force you into a full body press with random strangers, the car is not that full. But she gives him the benefit of the doubt and shifts over. No such luck, he shifts over as well and commences to press against her again. She turns to him, looks him in the eye, and without saying a word places the heel of one foot on his shoe and puts all her weight down on it. This lasts for about five seconds. She removes her foot, and he limps away.

Story 3) (just wait – this is the best one). She’s sitting on a train (overground) with her bookbag on the seat next to her. The strap is dangling, but she has her wrist looped through the handles. Suddenly, this teenaged boy runs past, scooping up the bag strap as he goes.

Now, I don’t know where this kid was going – you can only run down a train so far, it was another five minutes to the next station, and getting off a moving train onto an electrified line isn’t the brightest thing to do. Anyhow, he’d already scooped up two other purses from further down the train, and one of his previous victims was in pursuit.

Unfortunately for him, as I said, my wife had her hand through the handles, so when he scooped up the bag, she got dragged along with it. There is a brief struggle as the thief is shouting “Give me the bag, bitch!” and she attempts to either get the bag back or at least get her hand (which is stuck) back. Finally, recalling her self-defense training, she kicks him in a sensitive spot. No, not there – in his ankle. With her hiking boot.

He falls to the floor screaming (again, taking her with him). By this point, the other victim has caught up with him and is screaming at him and kicking and punching him, stopping only to pull the intercom lever to alert the driver, who comes back and starts laughing at the scene before him.

To make a long story short, the driver calls the police who meet the train at the next station. They arrest the guy who is insisting “I didn’t do anything” despite having three bags still draped over his arm. The paramedics are called. The thief asks the police to charge my wife with assault and gets laughed at (they’d already taken witness statements). And he ends up with 2 1/2 years in prison and a broken ankle.

You can see why I love that woman. :slight_smile:

{Edited for coding. And I love jr8’s wife, too, without even meeting her. Lynn}

[Edited by Lynn Bodoni on 04-06-2001 at 11:34 AM]