From the Products We Don't Need file comes Metro Mitt, a little plastic bag for you to put over your hands while holding the pole in the subway. It's supposed to make your commute more sanitary. God, this thing is stupid.
Yes, the subway is a filthy place, but a little piece of plastic over your manicured fingers isn't going to help. After all, you're probably sitting in a seat that a bum peed on and standing on a floor that has been covered in every substance from spilled coffee to drunk sorority girl vomit (especially on the 6!). Also, you are standing cheek to jowl (that is your ass cheek to some fat guy's jowl) with humanity. You're sharing air and germs and microbes. There is no way around this. If you think a little plastic glove (or even a surgical mask) is going to help you, then you're seriously deluded. The only way you're going to escape the filth is to not take the subway, and who can afford that?
But it gets worse. Not only is it something we don't need, it's something we don't need that will have advertising on it. Because, yes, that's just what we need, another surface for Dr. Zizmor to remind us all of our blemishes, New York Sports Club to call us fat, or Manhattan Storage to call us hoarders. No, thank you. I'd rather get giardia from a feces-smeared subway pole.