Here’s a couple of things that have irked me recently:
###Team sports apparel that supports all the teams at once
What is with the hats (and occasionaly ridiculous pants) with the embroidered logos of every sports team in a given major sports league? Is it so hard to come down on one side of the pressing “which team do you cheer for?” issue? It’s not complicated like universal health care or the death penalty for crying out loud!
While I’m at it, what’s with leaving the holographic stickers and tags on hats while wearing them around town? Is it to show everyone how new your hat is?
###People with an apparent lack of intellectual curiosity
Every day I ride the T to work, and there are far too many people who either sit and stare blankly, or read the crappy free non-paper, the Metro. Is it too hard to bring a book or magazine that you might be reading at home along? Is reading too hard in comparison to watching Survivor or the reality show du jour? I bet in a couple of years, everyone will have video ipods, and they’ll all be entranced by whatever crap they couldn’t get watched in the 7 hours they watched TV the night before.
7 thoughts on “Mini Rants”
In Defense of Those Not Reading on the T
While I agree that a T commute is an excellent opportunity to make a dent in a book, I have to disagree that non-reading reflects a lack of intellectual curiosity. I’m currently in the middle of about 5 intellectually stimulating books and I carry one of them with me almost every day for my commute, but only read it about 40% of the time, for various reasons.
First of all, not everyone has the luxury of getting on the T toward the end/beginning of the line, effectively ensuring a seat. It is much more difficult to read a book when crammed in a stairwell and body-pressed against random strangers.
Secondly, sometimes I actually like to LISTEN to the songs on my iPod rather than just having it on as background noise as I go about my commute. Of course, I have the ability to iPod and read simultaneously, but it cuts down on the appreciation level of both.
And most importantly, in a world that increasing leans toward constant over-stimulation, I find that I often like to use my 70-minute-a-day T time to engage in uninterrupted deep thought. While you may read this as a blank look on a passenger’s face, I maintain that there is a liberating feeling in being somewhere where no one can contact me and I can let my thoughts wonder. Rather than needing to entertain myself with music or books or other media, I take some time to further ponder issues I’ve been thinking about and assess the things impacting my life. Taking the time to do this lowers my stress levels, allowing me to more effectively balance my priorities to allow for activities, such as reading, at other times.
My point is that you should not assume that those not reading on the T lack intellectual curiosity only because they are not choosing to read at a time that YOU find to be most convenient for them. For all you know, they read at other times and while riding the T they are in the midst of earth-shattering deep thought or music appreciation–equally important ways of utilizing one’s mind.
Reading is dangerous though. I like to read the Metro on the subway because it’s quick, and I can listen to “next stop 59th street!” without having to listen toooo hard. I have missed stops because I’m one of those readers who gets totally lost in a book and literally hears nothing around me.
Just because you’re not reading something on the T doesn’t mean you lack intellectual curiosity. I have a hard time reading books with fine print because I have bad eyes, and the constant motion of the T would only compound that issue and probably make me sick.
I also don’t like to carry things with me, lugging a book around requires I keep it around until I find a good place I can set it down where no one would steal it, like when I’m all the way back home. Case and point, I constantly take my keys apart and only take the keys I need with me because otherwise it’d be too bulky. My cell phone I guess I’ve learned to live with.
I would also rather be really aware of everything around me…everything from the smells, to the sights, to the bumps of the tracks as the train barrels down the tunnel. I like to be curious about my surroundings, they change everytime I walk through a door, turn a corner, stand up, turn around, etc. It’s also fun to put yourself in the same position as every person that you see.
Don’t you ever like to wonder how it is that everyone you see, somehow, someway, their path crossed with yours, and how did you both end up exactly right there, at that point in time? You can think…I wonder what she’s thinking, is she thinking, “Did I turn the oven off when I left?”, is he thinking, “man, tonight is going to be awesome, I’m going to meet my brother at the airport, I haven’t seen him in two years”, is that person he is with, is that his wife, girlfriend, or just really good friend? Anyway, my point is, you don’t have to be nose deep in a book to be intellectually curious. The world around you usually has enough unwritten text all around to think about.
I canâ€™t stand pompous asses that think that just because they read a book they are intellectually superior to everyone else. The T is full of these assbags that donâ€™t cut their hair and they wear their stupid intellectual eyeglasses with Abercrombie T-shirts with some number from a mysterious Abercrombie team. News flash!!! You arenâ€™t fooling anyone! You think you are smarter because you choose to read, we get it. That is great, adopt a cause that nursery school kids can share, but some how think you are supreme to everyone. Just because you were last in gym class to get picked at everything, cry in your pillow at night donâ€™t piss on the people that were just minding their own business because they havenâ€™t had their morning cup of coffee!
Sounds like someone needs a hug.
I like to think that what makes one person better than another has nothing to do with what they do or don’t read while on the T.
What really counts is what is on the OUTSIDE.
Ugly people suck.
There really is widespread lack of intellectual curiosity nowadays, and I wouldn’t just narrow it down to people who don’t read on the T. People can’t (or don’t want to) figure things out for themselves. If they can ask someone else for help, they will. If they turn to Cosmo quizzes to find out if they are a good lover or need psychiatric help, they will. If they can Google for code snippets or 10-page essays to copy, they will. People (with the except of you I guess, since you read on the T) are getting dumber and dumber, day by day.
I also can’t stand people that only read books because they’ve been made into movies or because it’s on the New York Times bestseller list. It’s like everyone’s a part of Oprah’s Book Club or something.