“Why are we talking? Um, is it because you wanted to meet me?”

29Aug06

I got in this odd little confrontation on the subway this morning. It’s hard to even call it an argument, because neither of us seemed to want to admit the issue at hand or that both of us were really kind of being dicks. Here’s how it went down: I got on the subway and moved toward the middle of the car, where this guy was leaning against one of the poles, reading a newspaper. Leaning flush against the pole and hogging it is selfish, as it makes it hard for anyone else to hold on to it, but I wedged my hand in there between the pole and his back and grabbed on it nevertheless. He pushed back hard against my hand, trying to dislodge it, but I held fast. He turned and glared at me in naked irritation. I looked back innocently.


Guy: Excuse me?*

Me: Yes?

Guy: What’s the problem?

Me: Is there a problem?

Guy: You tell me.

Me: I don’t think so.

Guy: Then why are we talking?

Me: Because you started talking to me.

Guy: No, you started talking to me.

Me: I really don’t think so.

Guy: Yes, you said, “Yes?”

Me: That was after you said, “Excuse me?”

Guy: No, it wasn’t.

Me: Well, would you agree you’d like to end this conversation now?

Guy: Yes.

Me: Okay. Have a good day.

Guy: [irritated glare]

Me: [staring straight ahead, hand on pole]

* Apologies for all the italics, but that’s how this guy talked&#8212emphatically diagonal, the same way he was leaning slanted against the pole, in fact.



6 Responses to ““Why are we talking? Um, is it because you wanted to meet me?””

  1. Ah, that’s great!
    “Well, would you agree you’d like to end this conversation now?”

    He must have felt so confused. But bearing in mind that he forgot that he actually started the conversation 5 seconds ago, I don’t think that confusing him took all that much effort.

  2. that conversation is hilarious. thank you for having the balls to do that – i’ve been tempted so many times. perhaps your actions will kick off an anti-pole hogging movement and change the world forever.

  3. 3 Jay Pinkerton

    Now if you could just tackle those idiots who stand directly in front of the subway entrance stairs, talking on their phones like they own the place. Maybe a push down said stairs.

  4. 4 hilly

    You should have just shot him with a tranquilizer dart. Or perhaps you might have applied some sort of powerful electrical current to the pole, thereby either rocketing him across the car or holding him helplessly fast as his limbs twitch in a scorching dance of death. It all depends upon whether you subscribe to the “Jurassic Park” or “Goldfinger” school of movie physics.

    Hey, why have all this science lying around when it’s not being put to good use?

  5. phuck that is so funny! being a Kiwi, my only experience of subways is from american movies. eg. predator 2. so – I’m glad you didn’t get eaten.

  6. 6 Mary Beth

    Wouldn’t it be hilarious if you HAD started the conversation?

    …imagine just looking over at someone and saying “yes”…

    LOL

    You should try that one Peter!


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