Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Talker

"Did you ask your father?"
"What did he say?"
"So I guess the economy's getting better."
Why do you need to do that?'
"Did you finish your homework?"
"What should we do for dinner?"
Blah blah blah blah.

As I'm riding home on the 6:52 peaker, selfishly enjoying the first quiet and peaceful minutes of my endless day, these are the truncated conversations that I hear coming from the woman in the seat across from me. I wait. Patiently. I'm sure she'll make this a quick call and hang up because this a peak train full of hard core commuters, no rookies, and we know the rules and they are as follows: Have your ticket ready when the conductor comes around, keep your station bought bevy on the floor, not the seat in case it spills, and, unless you need to convey immediate information that will save American lives, stay off the effing phone. You most certainly do not ramble on with your daughter about dinner, homework and sleep plans. That's why nerd geniuses like Bill Gates inventing texting lady. WTF.

In cases like this, I have a few options. I can ask her politely to keep her voice down and try to keep the conversation short, which is exactly what Mr. Rodgers would do because he was very calm and patient man and he truly loved humanity. But you see, I got about 5 hours of sleep last night, and I've been at a stressful job all day, and I'm sitting under these interrogation strength fluorescent lights, so the Mr. Rodgers in me is not going to show up.

The second option is to stare. Fix a concrete hard gaze on her that lets her know exactly what I think about the fact that she's sucking up all of my relax time with her inane conversation. So I try the stare. And, well, she just stares back. Go ahead lady.

Another option, which I can only use if I get lucky, is that I wait until she gives the person on the other end of the conversation her cell number. "I might lose you. Just in case I do, my number is blah blah blah - blah blah blah blah" and you write that precious number down r-e-a-l-l-y carefully so you make sure you have it correct, and when you get home you her up for automatic phone messages from the home shopping network. "Please alert me by phone when you have a sale of any Wizard of Oz figurines. God bless".

Unfortunately, I have no such luck tonight. The digits are not forthcoming, and so finally I resort to my last option (and my new favorite). I pull out my iphone, take her picture, and blog about her.
Remember people, the train is a community, and if you aren't a good neighbor, well, chances are someone's going to leave a flaming bag of dog shit on your step.

Oh wait, she's getting off. Chappaqua. Figures.


  1. thank you, i've been waiting all day. tom

  2. Yea, Chappaqua's the worst. I should know...

  3. Whaddya know?

    You do know how to write.

    Effing funny blog.

  4. John, who knew you were a closeted writer behind all those fancy fonts? Enjoying the blog, it's nice to hear your cynical voice shine through.

  5. that's a WOMAN???