For the past few months I’ve been cruising to work solo and the only things I’ve had to keep me company is my iPhone, the ever impressive opinions of the people on Twitter and of course, my fellow NJTRANSIT commuters.
Oh yea, before I continue with the story, I have a Twitter now ….
Back to the story …
However today is a new day and my illustrious wife has returned from Maternity Leave. She also works in the City and as most loving couples would do, we take the train together in the morning and do our best to coordinate our commutes on the way home. Our first commute went off without a hitch. She was face down in her phone catching up on emails and I was looking around waiting for something to occur, so that hopefully I could catch it on video, put it on the internet, go viral and become an overnight sensation. Currently she’s up to date on her emails and I’m still a nobody praying someone of status with a checkmark retweets this.
Today though? Well, today was Day 2 and the adrenaline had worn off my wife from the day prior. She was extra tired adjusting to the new schedule of working woman and Mommy. I sensed this right away as we parked our car, so I came up with the great plan to seduce her with caffeine, which as we all know is a women’s best friend. We stopped into this cool local joint and got two espressos. This instantly put her in the great mood. It also gave her energy … to talk … so naturally I talked back as well. We hit up the gossip train a bit and then she hit her transfer stop …
So here I was again, alone and on my way to Penn Station. I arrived on time/not that fucking late and put a fork in that morning’s commute. No harm, no foul. I even experienced a good deed from a fellow NJTRANSIT rider!! Ya see, I fell asleep as the train was pulling in, so when I got up I hadn’t realized that my Apple earpod case was left on the seat. As I went to exit the train, I got a tap on the shoulder. Naturally, I turned around all aggressive and shit was all like “What’s up, dude … what’s up?!?” …
He pointed to my seat and there was my ear pod case. Humanity isn’t dead and I need to show a little bit more faith in the human race so it seems.
Now, the next part is important. I had a late meeting which meant my wife and I could not coordinate the ride home which also meant I was destined for a later train, which usually means I get royally fucked. On top of that, she has the car so I have to Uber home after paying for NJTRANSIT. WONDER-FUCKING-FUL.
As I approached Penn Station I felt a sense of anxiety begin to creep up on me. The station was packed. People were looking at the LED boards like a bunch of mindless asshole losers and I was one of them. Then I saw it … the dreaded words next to my train …
Stand By basically means “you’re in transit purgatory”. You could be there 5 minutes OR you could be there for 3 hours. Bottom line, you have no idea. As each minute went by the stench and amount of people in Penn increased by the dozens. It was getting tight quick and I had to make a move. This is something us commuters go through daily. You have to make split decisions and believe me when I tell you, some of them hold major consequences.
My train was the 6:14 Express. It gets me “home” in 32 minutes. There was also the 6:16 Local Train, which gets me home in 45 minutes. Now, if the 6:14 is gonna be delayed, you just KNOW that the 6:16 is not only gonna be a shitty option, but a smelly and packed one as well. Getting a seat comes down to whether or not you have the luck to be standing right by the doors of the chosen track. Sensing this, I actually made my way closer to the announced track for 6:16 in case I decided to take a plunge and hit the stairs down to my backup plan. I had 5 minutes until departure so I started to inch my way to the track door when I heard those fateful words …
“Attention NJTRANSIT passengers, the SIX ………
This felt like a million years ….
FOURTEEN! … YES! YES! YES! I could not believe it. My train was entering the station. I b-lined it for Track 10 and it was a fucking mob scene, very similar to the “Battle Of The Bastards” from Game Of Thrones. It was a mad house, but luckily at this point I didn’t give a shit – I had a monster headache and was sweating my balls off from my over-dramatic panic and wearing a North Face in 66 degree weather. I’m also pretty sure I was severely dehydrated since I think I only consumed coffee since 11AM. #Parenthood
Finally, I landed an aisle seat next to some burly fella who was watching The Office. Be less sterotypical, you can’t! He was big, but kept to his side, so I appreciated his big man awareness. With me I had my earbuds and a BANG Energy Drink which I usually use for Pre-Workout since, as you know, I lift bro. I sucked that down and put up a photo of it on Instagram with my perfectly symmetrical jaw line in hopes that Bang Energy would see this post and ask me to be a sponsor.
Sidebar: I was devastated for a good 10 minutes because I didn’t get any likes on my Zoolander-esque picture. Fortunately this was ill-advised thinking as I had actually lost connection on my iPhone down in the depths of Penn. When we came above ground, I had 12 likes. Pathetic, but I’ll take it.
I can hear the jingle now … “BANG ENERGY! FOR THE COMMUTERS WHO DON’T WANT TO GET ROBBED ON THE TRAIN!”
The moral of this commute is that us commuters have to make decisions like this day in and day out that will either make or break our night. We never know what the train schedule will bring us. Stand By? Delayed? Boarding? Entering The Station? It’s all a mystery. For me, on this day, I almost called an audible and it would have been the wrong play call. It would have cost me the night and forced me to stand/be fucking smashed in a vestibule next to a group of equally miserable people. Luckily, the commuter gods were looking down upon me on this occasion. Maybe it’s because I’m a Dad now and have already created a miracle and they can sense that. Who knows? I’m just happy I got home before Cinderella’s carriage turned into a fucking pumpkin. By the time I got home my wife was already in her pajamas. I put my bags down, changed and dragged my dead, tired carcass to the gym. FUCK. THE. DAD. BOD. You feel me?
As for Bang Energy and the sponsorship, they haven’t called.
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