Putting up with people's idiosyncrasies on the metro is a fact of mass transit life. That doesn't mean we can't complain about those people who go out of their way to get on our nerves. Today I'm fed up with metro surfer guy.
Not sure who I'm talking about? I guarantee you three things:
1. You've seen the metro surfer guy.
2. You know the metro surfer guy.
3. You hate the metro surfer guy.
He's easy to spot. He doesn't sit. He stands. He doesn't hold on to the various poles provided for your safety. He simply spreads his legs wide and rides out the motion of the train like a boss an asshole.
This idiot can't be bothered to hold onto something as the train speeds up and slows down - he's too busy playing games on his phone for that shit. He's so much better than the rest of us, he wears sunglasses on the metro and holds onto to nothing when the conductor selects "warp speed" and mashes on the accelerator. He's likely told someone "hand rails are for pussies" without a hint of sarcasm in his voice. He thinks women are impressed with his amazing balance and cat-like reflexes. He is why people hate riding the metro.
The truth is that no matter how hard this guy tries, he always ends up stumbling to catch his balance as the train both starts and stops. That means he temporarily loses control of himself and either knocks into you or steps on your feet. Captian Dipshit cares none that this might annoy you or in some cases injure you. Obviously a guy wearing sunglasses on the metro is not too worried about how others perceive him. This ridiculous idiot repeats his little stumble and recover act at every single stop because he's too stupid to realize that he can not actually surf the metro without almost falling with every change of speed.
And when these guys aren't falling all over the place, they've got their legs spread so far apart they take up the space of three passengers. This is especially annoying on a crowded train where room is pretty tight to begin with.
Thumbs down all around for metro surfer guy.
There are two kinds of surfers to look out for.
1. The traditional surfer has his feet running parallel to the train's line of motion and tries to surf the exceleration or deceleration by shifting weight from one foot to another. He's never prepared for the turns and often falls backwards or forwards when one is encountered.
2. The "Smooth Criminal" surfer mimics the leaning scene from Michael Jackson's famous "Smooth Criminal" video - as seen HERE. His feet are placed perpendicular to the train's line of motion and is either facing toward the front or back of the train. The major problem with this style is that the leaning stunt only works in one direction. When the train is accelerating he must be facing toward the front of the train and lean forward. When decelerating he must be facing the rear of the train. If this guy doesn't turn around in between stops - he's going to fall.
Well, even if he does turn around, he's going to fall. The surfer never properly adjusts the amount of his lean to the eventual sustained speed or stop. This means he's still leaning forward when the train reaches it's cruising speed and that means he's going to have step forward to catch his balance because the inertia created by the acceleration is gone. The same thing goes with the stop - he's leaning way too far over for when the train actually does come to a rest and he has to take step to keep from falling over.
Do you part the next time see a metro surfer - when you see him lose his balance, give him a little extra nudge and see what happens.