Today’s Metro Lesson: Hold onto something or there might be a boob incident

I had outpatient surgery on Friday and I’ve been couching it since then. This morning saw my return to the Land of the Living and by extension, The Place of Lawyerly Things. I was totally bummed about leaving behind the Chinese delivery and teen melodrama DVDs for real work. Because really, couch time rocked. Especially the part where I got pain killers and people sent me flowers and I got to watch Joseph Gordon-Levitt over and over and… Anyhoodles, to get to The Place of Lawyerly Things, I had to take my first real walk and Metro ride post-op. It didn’t go so well.

Picking up any Metro at Rosslyn means a crowded car. Everybody and their second cousin twice removed are already on the thing, riding into The District. It’s a sea of commuters and this time of year, tourists are thrown into the mix. That makes the ride akin to transportation in Hell. If I catch a Blue, a few people usually get off and I can squeeze on with minimal sardine-ness. But an Orange. Well, let’s just say I don’t like Orange. Orange in the morning means Cranky Katherine pulls a personal Incredible Hulk and becomes Rampaging Katherine. It’s ugly.

For some mysterious reason, I was running early today. Since Metro Fate has it out for me, as I was walking to the platform, an Orange pulled in. The next train (another Orange) wasn’t coming for 6 minutes. In the perfect timing that defines my life, a Metro Voice started talking about Orange and Blue delays running in my direction. I took all of this as a sign that I was supposed to get on the Orange pulling into the station, regardless of my distaste for Early Morning Orange rides. Of course, not a single person got off the stinkin’ train. Not. One. But there were about 10 people who wanted on through the particular car doors I was using. Just like every other day I ride an Orange, I was swept up in the rush of Metro Humanity and shoved onto the train.

Usually, I try to hug the walls or beeline for a pole or seat back grabber jobbie. On a good day, I am 5’ 3” (well, two and ten-twelfths so in the interest of optimism, I round up) and reaching the overhead horizontal pole things is a wee bit difficult for me. I can do it if I sorta stand of tip-toes, but it feels like my arm is being jerked from the socket when the Metro moves the least bit. Not fun, but do-able in a pinch. A few times, when I’ve not been able to get to something to grab onto, I’ve barely come out alive. Apparently, I have no sense of balance and a moving Metro is not the friend of the balance-impaired.

This morning, I tried to hug the walls. I tried to make it to a pole or a seat back. No dice. Instead, I was wedged in between a guy with a backpack, a girl who was in a fouler mood than I was, some linebacker behind me, and an unidentified but still very much not moving body. I stood smack dab in the middle of an aisle. So, I looked up with the intention of doing the over-head bar thing. There was nothing. Instead, the overhead bars were not in the middle of the aisle where I was, but along the sides. I was on a newer Metro Car. Drat. So there was nothing to hold onto. Not a pole, not a seat back, not an overhead arm jerker. I was literally in a no-man’s land in the center of the aisle, adrift with no stability once the Metro started moving. Plus, by this point I was hurting a bit. Not a lot, but enough to know that I really needed minimal jerkiness or there was going to be real pain and then there was going to be tears. I don’t do pain, especially pre-morning Diet Coke. So I tried one last time to wedge my way toward something to hold onto. I really did. Heck, I even shoved. But I never got a handhold. I was deadlocked by the Linebacker and the Grumpy Girl.

When then Metro started to go, my balance-less self was jerked into Backpack Guy’s bag. And then when Metro went around a bend, I was smooshed into Unidentified Human Mass. I got thrown around and around. Not enough to fall, but enough that I was really struggling to keep steady and minimize the post-op pain. It got worse at Foggy Bottom, when more people got on the train and I had even less room to plant my feet and try to maintain equilibrium. By this point, I flat out hurt. I wanted to demand Grumpy Girl stop glaring at 5’3” me and move her grumpy, tall, overhead-bar reaching rump so I could get close to a seat back and thus something to hold onto. Or better yet, I wanted to play the surgery card and get a seat. But I’m a big girl so I kept it together. Despite the particularly bad start-and-stop action the Metro driver was engaged in, I kept my balance. Even with the pain, I was going to make it.

Well, that was before the Metro approached Farragut North and Linebacker decided that he needed to be first off the train. Forget the 13 people between him and the door; he was going to lead the Commuter Charge off the Metro and up the escalator. So he pushed me. Maybe not intentionally, but the result was handhold-less me lost any semblance of balance and went hurtling straight into Grumpy Girl’s happy morning face. Then, in some act of Metro Physics, I was rebounded off of her and into the space where Linebacker had been. With nothing to stop me, I kept going, into a sleeping bald guy. (Dear Dad: please don’t read this part, because I love you and want to spare you) I landed straddling his lap, with my generous chest cradling his face. My hands were wrapped seductively over his shiny noggin. It would have been great — if I were staring in a Metro Porn. When I am able to disentangle myself, the boob-attacked Bald Guy said, “Well, good morning to you, too.” I wanted to pull an Anna Karenina.

So, the long and short is that I’ve begun to realize that I need to look into getting my chakras realigned or something. Metro hates me. It knows I’m coming. It just knows. And it’s angry.


One Response to “Today’s Metro Lesson: Hold onto something or there might be a boob incident”

  1. Today’s Metro Lesson: Thank You Metro (and I actually mean that) « Who Invented Roses Says:

    […] or other support), no matter how cramped, is not a good idea. I didn’t want to a repeat of my last no-hands Metro ride, so I jammed myself in the direction of a vertical pole. Eventually, I got close enough, only to […]

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