Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Boy, I guess you picked the wrong train

I have an hour-long commute to and from work. In the mornings, it's OK. I read, I listen to music, I wake up properly. Or go into the commute coma, which isn't OK, but better than the ride home.

Going from work is hell. I almost always travel during rush hour, so there are all these people around to annoy me. Why can't people just stay home when I go out? Today a woman sat down across from me on the train, and within thirty seconds she tapped me on the leg. I removed my headphones, and she asked me to turn the music down.

What. The. Fuck.

Next to us were two teenage girls, talking and laughing, loudly. Further down a baby was screaming. And she asks me to turn the music down?

I told her that if she had a problem with the volume she could just move. Then I put my headphones back on and resumed my reading. I was tempted to find the most bass heavy track I could, and turn the volume all the way up.

I realize people can find music spilling out of headphones irritating. I don't care. If that makes me an asshole, so be it. Again: I don't care. If you have a problem with noise, stay indoors. Or wear earplugs. Squealing teenage girls and all them annoying children/babies/toddlers/goblins are much worse noise pollutants anyway.


eva said...

Oja jag håller med dig om att musik är nödvändigt för att stänga ute omvärldens irriterande brus.

paddy said...

Personally I find music leaking from headphones very very annoying. Not because of the noise level, but because music always grabs my full attention and demands that I listen to it.

There are lots of other noises on a subway, but they are random and can be pushed into the background, while music just takes over my tired morning brain and shakes it like a dog shaking a rag.

So I must say that I agree with the bitchy old lady on this one. But I would probably just have moved.

EGE said...

But but but... you'll go DEAF!!!

To which I say: who cares? They're your ears. Break 'em if you wanna.

Rock on, Beardo.

Just don't sit next to me.

Obviously, I'm having a hard time deciding which side of this one I'm on. I think what it boils down to is this: if I'm the one with the headphones, then the old lady is a bitch. But if I'm the old lady, then you're an asshole.

Got it?

beardonaut said...

eva: Precis så. En sköld mot omgivningen.

paddy: I understand that sentiment, but then again, if you have problems with noise around you (like I do, and thus I disagree about being able to push it into the background) then shut it out. Using *drumroll* headphones. Or just buy a set of noise reducing headphones and spend your commute in total silence.

My point is, if you get on a commute train, you need to be ready to deal with noise. And people. Gods know I would rather not have to, but it's not an option.

ege: And that's sort of the point. Not knowing which side we're on. I know my side, but that's only cause I'm always the guy wearing the headphones. Always. Even if I just walk the five minutes to my grocery store, the headphones go on.

So yeah. I got it. I can live with being an asshole here. You can't please everybody, and I certainly don't intend to.

mistlur said...

i guess your reaction here is "i have a problem with all the noises around here and now you are asking me to eliminate my solution to them?". thus the collition with the lady.

i too have headphone leakage problems, but i must say (and in no way is this a racial thing, more just a weird and funny thing) my worst noise is foreign languages. I CAN'T SHUT THEM OUT!

and to bring you the sollution to everyones problems: there's a new baby on the market called IN-EAR PLUGS. they work like ear plugs only that they are headphones as well. they don't leak sound and having the ear plug function they don't leak in either. that way you don't have to crank you music so loud. it's a win-win.

but of coure i expect protest against this solution. but i'll care about them as much as i do about people bitching about the "new facebook" or you do with other peoples commute-problems.

erhm. anyone still reading this?

beardonaut said...

That's exactly the thing. Headphones and music are my shield.

And in-ear plugs are a no-no. So there. Your expectations are fulfilled.