Monday, March 08, 2004

No hookups on the 4/5 trains

Occasionally (as in when I think about it) I enjoy the sarcastic commentary over at For example, I particularly enjoyed the latest "Black List," the weekly review of pop culture phenomena and/or things that annoy other New Yorkers. I, too, received a check from the music CD settlement thingy to the tune of $13.86, and I'm equally perturbed at the thought of low-carb orange juice.

But what really moved me to write today was "Week in Craig," Amy Blair's review of strange and disturbing personal ads on This week's column is all about personal ads from F train riders trying to hook up with each other on their daily commute. Apparently there's an effort to designate certain cars for meeting people, like a mobile singles' bar without the alcohol or ambience.

I haven't been single for nine years, so I'm completely out of the loop on how and where single people meet these days. If the F train works for lonely Brooklyn and Lower Manhattan residents, more power to them. I can't imagine trying to get acquainted with someone new between stops on any subway train, but especially on the East Side 4/5 train that I take to and from work every day. The 4/5 trains are cramped, crowded, poorly lit in some cases, and always unpleasant. It's tough enough just finding a place to stand without hitting someone with my bag or stepping on their toes. Over the winter, with everyone wearing heavier coats, it was stifling most of the time. As much as I love the subway system sometimes I wish I could get to work using any other mode of transportation. I don't see many people hitting on each other and getting phone numbers on the way to work. Like me, everyone seems to be suffering with the overcrowding and just trying to make the best of the situation. Music helps: I've been listening to MP3s on the train instead of reading, since there's not even enough room for me to break out a book. At least the music takes my mind off the utter discomfort of riding the only East Side subway at rush hour. The F train must look like happy hour by comparison, if all these craigslist folks are finding love.

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