7 Unspoken Rules Of The NYC Transit System

7 Unspoken Rules Of The NYC Transit System

Just like the "bacon-egg-and-cheese," these rules are essential for every New Yorker.
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If you're a New Yorker, you know that the MTA is just as essential as your "bacon-egg-and-cheese" in the morning. Even though I'm sure many of us have a love/hate relationship with the system, it's undeniable that many of us wouldn't be able to get from one point to another without it. As a native New Yorker, you learn to utilize the train and bus system like no other. If you bet me one hundred dollars that I couldn't get from the Upper East Side in Manhattan to Bay Ridge in Brooklyn without setting foot above ground, I'd be one hundred dollars richer. As I'm sure the same with many New Yorkers no matter the destination.

Just like every culture, there are a set of unspoken rules that go along with the MTA and the riders who rely on it every day. In my 20 years of using the MTA subway and bus system, here are some rules that I've noted, and firmly believe all New Yorkers know even if it's part of their subconscious.

1. Step aside as people get off the train or bus

Subway push

Every day there seems to be someone who believes they're brave enough to stand right in front of the doors as people get off the train or bus. It's almost common sense to move aside and let people off the vehicle before you get on. Not only does it help the train move faster, but you won't have to get stared down by literally everyone next to you because you decided to be inconsiderate.

2. That middle seat is a "no no"

You know what I'm talking about. That one seat on the train or bus that's right in between two other perfectly reliable seats. The one that no matter what, you refuse to sit in because why would I ever want to sit next to two people instead of one? Unless the vehicle you're on is absolutely crowded, this seat is usually avoided at all cost. It's pretty sad actually. The seat just wants to be loved like every other seat, but is condemned to a life of holding bags instead of backsides.

3. Yes, you should probably give that seat up

As a young adult, I've dealt with this far too many times. Imagine you're on the train or bus after a long day of school or work and all you need right now is a place to rest your legs while you venture home. An elderly, pregnant, or disabled person gets on and you know your conscious is literally kicking you in the face. What do you do? Well, just give it up. I know it's hard, but just know that person has been through enough to deserve that seat especially if you're a bit more able-bodied and willing than them. Honestly, to me, there's only one exception to not giving your seat up to someone that fits under those categories, and that's if they're a complete asshole before you even get the chance to stand up.

4. If you hear "SHOWTIME" just look straightforward and avoid eye contact

very New Yorker knows this (more often than not) dreaded sound. Usually designated to only the subway system, "SHOWTIME" is most associated with someone performing a dance on the subway platform or in the train cars. Sometimes the acts are pretty good, and you might even enjoy seeing someone flip in between the seats. Nine times out of ten though, you're rolling your eyes whenever someone almost kicks you in the face. Now, this isn't to take away from the performers. As an artist myself, I know that it takes not only guts but charisma to perform on any platform in front of people, let alone New Yorkers. But when you're on the way home from work or school and exhausted from a full day, this is something that may not necessarily make your day better.

5. It's not a dining car

People are always on the go in NYC, so this one I'm pretty lenient about. I've been the one devouring a sandwich on my way to class and I've also been the person holding their nose because I can't stand the smell of whatever it is you've decided to drag on this vehicle. Either way, I think it's important to be aware of those around you and just waiting to get wherever you're going to before you decide to chow down. Even though it's kind of innate for some New Yorkers to be inconsiderate, you never know what allergies, restrictions, or just what mood someone may be in when you decide to break that meal open. Unless you're on the literal verge of starvation, give it some time. Not only could you spare someone from using an EpiPen, but it's also an act of consideration that all of us greatly appreciate.

6. NYC wildlife are passengers too

Listen, if that "pizza rat" video amazed you, then you're not a native New Yorker. Whether it's rats, pigeons, squirrels, raccoons, possums, or even the occasional dead shark, these animals are basically passengers too. I see rats playing tag every day in various stations. I've dodged pigeons who've mistaken my head for a large piece of bread. Once you live in NYC, you realize these miniature passengers are just a large part of NYC as you are. As long as they're not dropping bubonic plague everywhere, I think you're good.

7. We're all in this together

At the end of the day, it's important to remember that no matter where you're going or what you're doing, we're all experiencing the same emotions on this ride. Every delay, every disruption, every late arrival, every stop missed, we all feel it. Remember to be considerate of those around you. I've met some of the best people while being on the bus or train because of the pure fact that we all knew we were going through something together. We may hate it, but NYC's transit system does unite us even when we least expect it.

Cover Image Credit: Fancycrave / Pexels

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To The Girl Who Hasn't Been Herself Lately

Your spark return, and you will shine like you were meant to.
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Life gets tough. Life gets too much to handle sometimes, and those times make you stronger. However, right now, it seems like you have lost yourself.

It’s difficult when you catch yourself not being you. When you do something or act a certain way and just wonder, “what did I do to deserve this? Why is this happening? When will it get better?” The way you’re feeling is not so much that you’re unhappy, you just feel weird.

Your day will come. I promise you. This is just a phase.

The day you realize how much you have grown from this point in time will be your reward. It is so hard to see now, and I feel your pain.

Your light will return to you. Your pure bliss moments, they are seeking you. Your laughter where your tummy aches is in your reach.

Our moods change far too often for us as humans to understand why, but the encounters you make every day have this effect on us.

You must remember the pure happiness you experienced before your first heartbreak, before the first friend became someone you thought they weren’t, before you lost your innocence. That was a time of true joy as you had not a care in the world for the things that would harm you. Better yet, you didn’t have the option to experience them because you were just a child.

The world can be an ugly place, and your attitude towards life can change every day. One thing is for certain: you did not lose who you are internally. We all put on a face for the world. For the people who we try to impress. For the life we want to live. For the things we want to achieve.

Your definitive personality is still in the works. Believe it or not, it always will be. Times like this change us for the better even though we can’t see it.

Your happiness will return. You will be a better, stronger version of you. In fact, you will be the best version of you yet.

Once this phase is over, you will be okay. This I promise you.

Cover Image Credit: Megan Sutton

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10 Signs You're From New Hampshire, Wickedly So

I'm never cold, apparently.

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I have been told that everyone from New Hampshire is always obsessed with New Hampshire; I can't blame them since is it a wicked cool state. If you or someone you know is from New Hampshire I guarantee these are 10 things they can relate to:

1. You love Aroma Joe's.

Anyone not from the northern New England area probably has no idea what Aroma Joe's is. It's basically the Starbuck of New Hampshire. Known for flavored coffee and energy drinks all Rush. Every other high school student would stroll in late to school with the iconic Aroma Joe's foam cups (which have now been changed to clear plastic to help the environment).

2. The Sheetz and Wawa's debate means nothing to you.

There is a huge debate among select states over which GAS STATION has better food. Yeah, weird right? Of course, we New Hampshire citizens have spent our fair share of time at the Chill Zone at a Cumberland Farms or 7/11 but getting real food from a gas station is a whole other story.

3. You know what fried dough is.

One of the most shocking things I learned while living out of state is that not everyone knows what fried dough is. They have a similar treat called Funnel cake (which I had heard of but never actually ordered somewhere before moving to PA) and I assure you we are not missing out because fried dough definitely takes the win.

4. You pronounce Reese wrong.

In New Hampshire everyone (including myself) pronounces it "Rees-EES," but after highly offending some Hershey, Pennsylvania residents and a heated debate I have finally admitted defeat that the true pronunciation is "Rees-IS." But I will always say "Rees-EES" because to me, that is what it is called.

5. You use the word wicked a lot .

I honestly didn't believe it when people told me the word "wicked" was a New England thing. Majority of people understand the meaning but are just shocked by how frequently I use the word. But in the past, people have actually asked me what it meant!

6. When you say it's winter you actually mean it...

I am talking temperatures in single digits or even the negatives, multiple feet of snow that doesn't melt for months and snow storms that resemble blizzards. I have been to parts of the country where people freak out about two inches of snow that melts within 48 hours and are wearing winter coats when it's in the upper to mid 50 degrees.

7. People assume that you don't get cold.

Don't get me wrong, New Hampshire residents have to go through some tough winters but that doesn't mean we don't get cold! Yes, we need to wear a jacket when it's below freezing too! We are just less bothered by snow.

8. A beach day isn't a big deal.

Some parts of New Hampshire are further from the beach than others but overall the drive shouldn't be that bad. After working full time all summer and only making it to the beach about five, I was shocked when people kept telling me how exciting my summer looked via social media. Then I was reminded that for some people the closest beach is hours away and they are lucky if they make it there once.

9. Everyone assumes you ski or snowboard.

Don't get me wrong, A LOT of New Hampshire residents grew up either snowboarding or skiing, but for those of you who didn't (me), everyone is always shocked.

10. You love your state.

People actually make fun of me for how much state pride I have. I love the beautiful colors in the fall to the mountain views in the north and the ocean sunsets that you can't see anywhere else; no matter where I live no state will match up to how gorgeous New Hampshire is.

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