Every morning when I go to work, and every night when I come home, there is something guaranteed to happen on the PATH train that I wish someone would have warned me about. No, it’s not panhandling. I saw much more of that on New York subways. Panhandling is refreshingly rare on the PATH Trains. And no, it’s not crazy people talking to themselves, twitching, or otherwise showing signs of withdrawal. Again, there’s way more of that on the New York subways, and I used to think I was so lucky to be getting away from that until I realized what I got in return: Farting.
I’m not sure if it’s the diet of people in Jersey or the different mix of cultures from what I had seen in New York, but there is way more gas released on the PATH train than on the subway – at least comparing the Newark train to the NYC 1, 2 and 3. I’m not saying it was unheard of on the Upper West Side train (a longer ride, for me), but it’s a bi-daily occurrence on the PATH. Maybe there’s a shift in air pressure as the train goes under the river that causes toxic gases to want to escape. I don’t know; I’ve never timed it. I just know that twice a day I’m going to be on a train when an ass-bomb goes off.
I remember when New York banned boom boxes on the subways. The fact that I remember boom boxes is embarrassing enough, but I also remember the campaign against them. I also remember the campaign against taking up more than one seat. Seriously, people use to put their feet up on an available seat just because they didn’t want someone sitting next to them. So the police started handing out fines. Granted, those fines sometimes reached a pretty ridiculous stage, like fining someone for putting their bag on the seat next to them – on an empty train. Still, these campaigns served a well-intentioned purpose: to create common consideration among subway riders.
I want something similar on the PATH. I want a no-fart rule, a ban on ass-gas, a stop to the stink. I’m not suggestion fines, but at least some signage to let people know that it’s just not acceptable. I often wonder if they know that their shit really does stink.
::CC also writes at Lowbrow Life::