Annoying Transit Habit #6 : Seat Crushing

I had finally reached the end of my cross-city travels for the day, having run around for the last several hours picking up much needed items for my trip.

Having just missed the Middlefield bus, I raced toward the McCowan bus, which luckily had no driver as yet. It was barely even full, which was a bigger bonus.

I lugged myself and all my bags (including a new carry-on backpack for my trip) to the very back of the bus – in the corner – and sat down.

Of course, I noticed a couple of the passengers staring at me. I hate people who stare. It makes me feel like I’ve got two heads or something. Plus I think it’s just plain rude. So I stared right back at them until they’d look away. Then I’d catch them staring at me again (or maybe in my general direction), so I’d look right back at them.

Then one of them, a middle-aged East Indian guy with one of those briefcases with all the compartments (who had been standing mid-way down the bus from me), decides to sit down. Not in a seat where he could take advantage of all the space. Not in the middle of the empty back row, which only had one other passenger, sitting at the back on the other end of the row. Right next to me.

And the ride only got worse from there. Until the man got off at Finch, it was like he was trying to crush me and my multiple bags out of my seat. He was practically pressing up against me. At one point, I’m pretty sure I was leaning to the right to avoid his elbow, which was practically digging into my ribs. For serious – he was sitting with his elbows sticking straight out. I kept trying to straighten up to regain some of my buffer zone and to let him know without saying anything that he was crowding me out. Apparently he either didn’t get it or was used to sitting among people smaller than me.

At one point, I straightened up and nudged him. Of course, stupid me, I said “sorry”. (I’ve GOT to stop doing that.) I was so relieved when he got up.

I know that the seats themselves don’t allow for a lot of room. But what happened to respect for personal space?

This isn’t the first time this has happened. I remember getting crushed against the wall of a subway car months ago by this really thick black woman. Not fat. Thick. And the winter jacket only added to it. She pinned me in the bucket seat for, like, 14 stops. It was unbearable. I couldn’t even take a nap, it was so uncomfortable.

Seriously, seat-crushers – ease UP! Maybe I look slender or something to you. Believe me, I’m not. Give me a couple of inches’ worth of buffer space! It’s folks like you that make me hate public transit. Grrr!

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