This is me to myself, a neurotic person with a tendency toward social anxiety and slight claustrophobia, when I take the subway:
- "Don't look for the train. Don't look for it. It doesn't matter if you can see it, it'll be here when it gets here. Looking doesn't make it get here any faster. Relax. Read your book. Oh, see, but that guy is looking. He leaned right over and took a stare down the tube then he turned around and frowned, so I bet the train is not coming. Shit. I need to leave sooner. Maybe I'll just have a peek."
- "Can I fit there? I want to sit down, these shoes hurt so much, but I don't think I can fit there. That dude could really take up less space. He's all splayed out. That's a perfectly good seat with my name on it and Mister Wide Knees is using it to get nice and comfy. Wouldn't want to have to use your leg muscles to keep your legs in place, no sir. Although, maybe he's tired. I should have more compassion. I don't know what he's been through today. He's playing Candy Crush, but maybe he's just lost someone he loves. Maybe he's worked an 18 hour day walking on hot coals. I'm sure he's fighting a battle. Just like I'm fighting the battle not elbow my way in there."
- "Oh God, her hair is touching me. It's touching meeee. It's literally tickling my upper arm, and I want to die. Oh God, how can I make it stop? Here, I will scratch my arm in a very dramatic fashion. Maybe she will get the hint. No, this is going to go on for 19 stops. I'm going to have to have her hair tickling my skin, and I can't take this. I'm going to come out of my skin. But I can't stand up, this train is packed to capacity. Maybe I should offer her a hair tie. Ahhhhh! It's touching me again! Okay, breathe. It's just hair. You will live. Deep breaths. Breathe. Oh Jesus, what if we get stuck down here. What am I going to do if this train just stops under the tunnel. What if it's for hours? Will I be able to keep it together? I have a plum and a lemon in my backpack, along with Dentyne and lip balm. No water. I should get an emergency Valium in case I'm ever stuck on a packed train. Will doctors give you, like, a disaster Valium? Just to have? A break glass in case of emergency type deal? Also, who would I form an alliance with should the need arise? I'm thinking Mr. Patagonia with the strappy hiker's backpack over there."
- "What is that smell?"