The sixth avenue subway line. The F line. F for Freaks. F for Fucks. I used to extend my hand in the arriving train’s path to high five it. My sisters screech louder than the train and pull me away. I planned it so well. The train almost always grazed my middle finger like dusty little kisses. Kiss, break, kiss, break, kiss, break. When I did it last week, the wind blew my hand back. I missed it. Today, this train is empty for a Thursday afternoon.
F for Forgotten. No one in their right mind rides this train. It’s old. These trains still have the intercom for the conductors. They still have conductors! The intercom drones on in a raspy tone. It reminds me of a Strokes song.
I saw a guy commit suicide on this line once. Business guy. Typical middle-aged White guy who hated his job and was too pussy to do anything about it, until he did. Dressed in a mediocre suit that looked like his wife got it for him on sale at Macy’s as a reconciliation gift for fucking his eventual replacement at work. He didn’t do the old fashioned “fall” into the track and smile as the track sliced him below a group of worried and indifferent commuters. Ha, everyone worries about the delays he’d cause. He cautiously lowered himself onto the track and opened his arms wide, as if he was going to give the train a bear hug. To my surprise, the people on the platform had enough time to yell “What are you doing?!” or “Police! Stop him!” or “Train, stop! Please!” Like the train would comply “Okay then” like some friendly farmer and break. Nope. The train pushed him for a few seconds like an air hockey puck, and then he went under. The screeching covered up any slicing or screaming. To tell you the truth, sounds don’t come to me well. Mostly sight.
I’d use the subway to kill myself (how New York of me?). As soon as I saw the train enter the station, I would do an epic dive to the third rail and fry my brains out before the train had its way with me, current slithering down my arms to my core, my soul even, down to my legs and thrill me to death, the hum of electricity cruising through my watery veins like ohm. My last thought would be a prayer to God to bring me back to life just before the train runs me over, just so I could die twice and experience the mass cutting me like knife through butter, to experience how something so valuable turns out to be worthless under a twenty ton machine. Every man, woman, child of any race, culture and weight dies just as easily under a million dollar piece of metal. That’s equality.
A building falls on all people at nine point eight meters per second squared last time I took physics. Thirty one seconds from about a thousand feet, over a hundred stories.
I’m just an aimless traveler. Maybe I’ll ride this train to Jamaica for the hell of it, get some jerked chicken (never had it). Right now, I’m in the former Lower East Side. LoHo, or one of the other ‘ho’s. They just built a Whole Foods, the modern day equivalent of Columbus planting a flag before, during and/or after raping a bunch of islanders. I don’t get it. You can call a piece of shit gold, but it will still be a piece of shit, like this station, Second Avenue. The conductor has an impediment that adds the last letter on the next word. Thi si secon davenue. Pleas estan dclea ro fth eclosin gdorrs Fucking idiot.
Water rust corrodes the sign indicating that you are currently in hellHo. Welcome. Bienvenue. Bienvenidos. New York likes to be multilingual. Good ol’ Mayor Bloomberg failing to speak Spanish in the middle of Hurricane Sandy. I’m sure in the middle of a blackout and flood that all the New Yorkers, White and Hispanic, sat together in front of a TV or computer with Internet and watched and laughed hand in hand.
Lo see-en-toe par-a toe-dose. Es-perr-oh kay tu air-ez buen-o.
I’m not feeling suicidal today, just reminiscent. This train is empty with the eyesore of colored seats. Orange orange orange orange yellow! Thank God it’s empty. The air conditioning flows better. Try getting a cool breeze on the fucking six train during rush hour. Packed like sardines. It’s funny how no one objects to invasive personal space when everyone’s personal space is violated. Like looking in someone’s bowl to see if they have more than you. If everyone has one soggy sardine, they smile because they have the same. When packed, you don’t get touched; you feel pressure, like dead weight on you. The response? Pressure back. Fight fire with fire.
You can get touched on the subway. I remember my ex and I coming back from a movie on the six train filled to the tetas. We got on at Fourteenth Street going downtown, pressed against the door. She gives me a full hug and pressures me against the door. Her breasts smother me. I still feel that to this day, the imprint on my lungs. She puts her head on my shoulder and bites it. Hard. No one around me reacts. That’s what I love about New York, public solitude. She puts her head to my ear and whispers te quiero and lowers her hands and grabs my ass. This girl was five inches shorter than me, but she almost lifts me up. About a minute later, she takes her right hand off my ass and grabs the bulge in my pants. No one turns a head. That was the greatest pressure I’ve ever experienced. Fucking bitch.
I like this empty train. My curses get to echo in and around the cart, in and around my head. If I ignore the screeching and potential screaming from whoever jumps in front these days, I hear the universe like Ohm. I like grabbing the subway pole and exchanging hot for cold, switching hand placement when adequately heated. Best thing about this line? No terrorist would blow it up. No one gives a fuck about anybody on the F line. Bloomberg takes the six. The Lexington Avenue line trains take more people in a day than every other transit system in the country does put together. They wanna blow up the stockbrokers, the hipsters, the Whites, the Hasidic Jews, the Yankees fans and Grand Central. Anything but Grand Central. How else will I take an overpriced train at a shitty pace around the country?
After Eighty-sixth Street and before Houston Street, the terrorists don’t give a shit. They couldn’t give a flying fuck about this schmuck, this Duracell battery selling black man. He smells like subway. Goowwwd mowning I am a buiznez man. Buiznez man, buiznez man. I got dur-a-cellll alkaline batteries. Only a dolla a pack. One dolla. Buiznez man, buiznez man. Thank you, sir, gawd bless. Buiznez man, buiznez man.
As soon as this guy comes out of the train, he drops his African accent. Fucking genius. Like the great Jay-Z Line “I’m not a businessman, I’m a business, man.” Terrorists could easily attack the subway. I just think that they don’t like the pressure of the four, five, or six trains. So many other targets that are not my insignificant ass. Hope they get Times Square. No real souls there. Except the workers. Crap. Right here is where it’s at. Ohm.