Sunday, March 16, 2008

Why books are bad.

So a few days ago I leave work and am waiting in the subway for my train home. I am excited because I've managed to make it to the station by 6:06, and the C train normally comes between 6:08 and 6:11 and then doesn't come again for like 10 minutes. The C and E trains run on the same track until they diverge at 50th street, and there is usually an E train that comes through just before my C. Sure enough, the E whizzes past as I'm coming onto the platform, so I pull my book (The Time Traveler's Wife, v. good so far) out of my purse and smile at my good fortune. Two minutes later I am absorbed in my book when the train comes, and I step on and away we go. By 34th street some seats have freed up, and I settle in to read comfortably for the duration of the trip, as is my wont.

About 20 minutes into the ride I realize there must be only a few stops left before my station, so I glance up from my book to see where we are. The doors have just closed on an unfamiliar looking station, and I realize with dawning horror that I am three stops into QUEENS. All of my satisfaction and enjoyment have dissolved into despair and I cannot believe I didn't notice that it was another E train that I had boarded, and not the C train that held the sweet, sweet promise of dinner and pajama pants. Anyway, I mentally grumble that I'll just have to get off at the next stop and double back. As if it could be so simple. At that moment, the train shudders to a stop and the lights flicker and the conductor announces in a tinny voice that we will be moving again shortly. I am foolish to believe him. Twenty minutes later, the large lady who was standing in front of me has wedged her way into the small space on the bench next to me and is laughing loudly at the conversation between the gentlemen on her other side and my rear is falling asleep and neck hurts and my book is seeming considerably less enjoyable and the conductor says that actually, there may be a bit more of a delay due to a passenger on the tracks at the next station. Also, there is a police investigation being conducted there, and he's not sure how long that will take. OUTSTANDING. I consider asking if the conductor would mind backing up to the previous station so I can get off, but ultimately I decide against it.

An hour and a half later, I arrive home after stopping at the grocery store for the ice cream that I feel is so richly deserved, and vow never to read ever again.

8 comments:

  1. I think the word "outstanding" is under-utilized. I am so sorry. That sounds like a nightmare.

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  2. I'm laughing so hard! The other night, I was headed home from church and had to transfer to the C at 168. Since there was already a train in the station, I sat down to wait for the doors to open. I guess I got a little absorbed in my conversation with my friend, because next time I looked up, the train was GONE! I never heard the doors open. I never heard the little bell that they ring before the train starts the route. I never heard it pull out of the station.

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  3. haha. I responded on my website my opinion of why books are bad. Yours is good, but I don't think I've ever missed a train because I was reading...haha.

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  4. Oh man, that sucks! You do deserve ice cream after that.

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  5. This is a really funny story. I love it. It sounds like you are doing so well out in New York. That seems like such an adventure. You are amazing. That is all I can say at this point! :)

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  6. Ha-Ha! You read books!

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  7. Mr Darcy's Diary by Amanda Grange. It was good.

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