87 Thoughts Everyone Has Commuting On The Tube

Because if you’re going through hell, keep going.

thebureauinvestigates.com / Dan Kitwood / Getty Images

1. I really don’t want to take the tube.
2. It’s raining, I have to.
3. But that means it’s going to be soooo busy.
4. Headphones on. I want to limit my engagement with reality as much as possible.
5. I also want a copy of the Metro.
6. I hope there’s something good in the first 5 pages that I’ll actually have time to read.
7. Today’s totally the day I appear in “Rush Hour Crush.”
8. Are…are people queuing before the barriers? This isn’t a good sign.
9. I’m like 85% sure I have credit on my Oyster. Risking it.
10. Why does that person not have their Oyster out? Do they not know the RULES?
11. Wait, where’s my Oyster?
12. I can’t find my Oyster.
13. If I’ve forgotten my Oyster and have to go back to my house I am going to be FURIOUS.
14. Oh, there it is.
15. Still not at the barrier.
16. This woman next to me is definitely trying to push in front of me.
17. I’m going to very subtly reposition my body to cut her off.
18. She’s too polite to carry on. WE BOTH KNOW WHAT’S JUST HAPPENED HERE.
19. My Oyster isn’t working.
20. I don’t have credit. I’m going to have to awkwardly walk back through the queue.
21. I am the worst. Everyone is judging me. I am judging me.
22. I assume the top-up machine at the front of this queue is working.
23. OK. Through the barrier. To the platform.
24. 3 mins to train. Time to work slightly further along where the carriages are emptier.
25. This is the spot the doors open at. I think.
26. Wait, that guy’s already standing slightly further along. Does he know?
27. 2 mins to train. I think he knows. I should stand behind him.
28. Hang on, people are standing behind me. They agree, so I must be right.
29. Unless they’re only standing behind me because they think I’m right?
30. Now someone’s standing behind him!
31. 1 min to train. What if neither of us are right?
32. Maybe we’re all wrong.
33. HE’S MOVED ALONG A BIT. What do I do now?
34. Wind. Train imminent.
35. We are underground, please stop with the wind, why so much wind.

36. Train. I was wrong. But on the plus side, so was he.
37. I can make it on this carriage. Just. This is going to be tight.
38. Why aren’t those people moving down? There’s so much space on there.
39. I’m going to yell at them.
40. I mean, I’m not, but I’m definitely going to imagine doing it.
41. There’s going to be space. Just lean in and you’re good.
42. Ah, this is…FUCK. DOOR. HEAD.
43. OW. OW. FUCKITY FUCK. OW.
44. Don’t let anyone see your pain. But seriously, that hurt.
45. Not enough room to open the Metro.
46. Except for that guy, who appears to be reading it on the back of someone’s head.
47. Not my stop, and the doors are opening on the other side. I don’t need to move.
48. Just relax and try to ignore the warmed up smell of so many humans in a very small space.
49. Not my stop, and the doors are opening on my side. I do need to move.
50. Why is everyone changing at this stop?
51. I’m in a stampede. This must be how Simba felt.

52. Rucksack to face, thanks anonymous man.
53. Shins kicked, also thanks.
54. And more people are getting on. HOW?
55. Now in the middle. No more blows to the head imminent.
56. Which I think is bleeding, incidentally. Ignore it.
57. Nothing to hold on to without elbowing someone in the head.
58. Just try and balance as the train moves. And shakes.
59. NOT WORKING. I’ve got to grab the pole.
60. Yes, other commuter, you are now smelling my forearm.
61. I’m not thrilled about it either.
62. Only one more stop.
63. Also only one earphone, as the other is now attached to this dude’s bag.
64. Oh god, he hasn’t noticed. This is making removal much harder.
65. I could just leave them? What value do I place on avoiding awkwardness?
66. Pretty high actually. I’ll just leave them.
67. No, then I’ll be exposed to sounds from the world around me. That’s much worse.
68. Got them. Wasn’t trying to steal your bag, dude, but you moving it away from me feels fair.
69. My stop!
70. No-one else is moving.
71. Literally, no-one else is moving. Why does no-one else need to get off here?
72. Elbows and shoulders. Just gently force yourself through.
73. Like a baby and a vagina.
74. OUT. Don’t fall over from the sudden freedom to move.
75. That’s urine. Well, it’s something wet. So urine.
76. Somehow I’m now late.
77. I assume I’ve been through a wormhole at some point. Probably Bank.
78. And there’s a queue up the steps. What.
79. And a queue to get out. What.
80. Why is there only one machine letting people out?
81. Person in front, stop tapping your Oyster, it’s clearly not working.
82. Step to the side. Please.
83. And.
84. I’m.
85. Out.
86. Oh, the semi-clean air of London. Every man is free who breathes it.

87. I wasn’t in “Rush Hour Crush.”

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