Monday, August 04, 2008

Is That a Cannon?

The time between posts has been some months and hopefully I'll start regularly again...

It's been quite some time since I've had to travel regularly, but recently the location of work has enabled me to utilise the network. Oddly enough I still recognise people who caught the same train 3-4 years ago, and it requires a quick double take to connect the face to just a fellow train traveller than to a person I actually know. Fortunately while there's been an increase in passengers, seating is still available by the time the train pulls up at the station. While I do not encourage spying on other passengers, the short time I conducted this I generally found most people can be categorised in some distinct groups:
  • The guy with an apparent 'cannon' between his legs and therefore proceeds to spread his legs as far apart as possible, encroaching on valuable adjacent space.
  • With neither music nor book, the nosy parker who reads whatever their fellow passenger takes on board. (The information for this blog was discretely observed)
  • The princess who decides their designer bag requires a seat all to themselves. (I have no issues with this in an empty train, however in the morning it's just annoying when you're trying to maneuverer to a vacant seat or have to stand)
  • The loud talker or apparent deaf passenger who has their ipod full blast pumping out whomever is at number one on the dance charts. Sadly I was once this person in highschool with my tape walkman in the 90's with my band of choice, but thankfully the volume has now been toned down. How much harder was it to listen to your favourite songs in those days? Tape or CD -> tape or radio -> tape with the annoying announcer cutting in before the song completed.
  • The just plain rude idiot who I encountered who ticked off points 1-3 as well as sneezing all over the place. (The worst feeling was actually being able to smell the sneeze afterwards.... thanks...)
The way in which seats are filled can dramatically effect later travel and passenger comfort. The diagram below may help to explain some of my strange thoughts, where I've tried to number the seats in each section to maximise comfort and ease of access.

Pink - Probably the premium seats (If there are no elderly or disabled passengers that require them). Parallel to the door, you have a nice separate space to yourself.
Grey - Away from the main thoroughfare people will generally head to the main section of the carriage rather than the end. (Also on a less than jam packed carriage will allow a bit of room to stretch out your legs)
Blue/Yellow - Starting to get a little uncomfortable with a higher chance of stray elbows and bags.
Green/Orange - Tough to get out in a packed carriage and seats 2 and 5 will remind you being in the back seat of the family car as your siblings encroach on your space and give you matching bruises on both arms. (Not too different in the train either)

Oh well, at least I can now go back to reading my novel now.