Interestingly, the story makes no mention of the fact that everyone who rides the subway is miserable and heinous. The last sexy person I saw on the subway was myself as a reflection in the scratchittied plastic window after I had too many margaritas. Damn, girl, you look good, I thought while I wobbled in the way of some N-train acrobats.
The subway is ridden not out of choice, but out of necessity. The only people who are able to pull off a "sexy look" on or anywhere near an MTA-operated venture are the ones who find the subway novel, a fun rite of passage for Living the Dream in the Big Apple™. The minute I board the subway, if I am not completely collapsed into a pile of self-loathing, I am asleep. If I am not either of those things, I am not on the subway.
The Post suggests that perhaps I am wrong for assuming everyone on the subway is ugly like me. Maybe I've been spending too much time on the bus, or attempting to walk everywhere has let perfectly fuckable people slip through my fingers. One thing is certain, however: I know where you can look your worst and commute without fear of anyone thinking you're attractive. I know because I've been there. And Hell is prettier.
West 4th Street
West 4th Street station can only be described as a sweat dungeon or a steam room where all the steam is specially imported from the inside of your pores. Magically, the West 4th Street station remains as hot as the Caribbean well into the fall, and sometimes into winter. Watch as all my makeup melts off my whole face onto the platform floor. Alligators living in the bayou of Louisiana have a better shot of looking acceptable at your engagement/book/pregnancy/breakup party that I don't want to go to.
Wanna rub wet body parts together?
Being pressed up against someone coming from their hot yoga class is the surest path to celibacy. Do you equally dislike men in bespoke suits and women in rompers? Have you ever felt the feeling of a lumpy case strapped to someone's back being pushed into your body, only to learn it doesn't hold a guitar and but a saxophone? An alto saxophone? The most crowded subway station in the city's most insufferable neighborhood is inevitably New York's worst spot for picking up a sex friend.
Hey, baby, wanna fuck? Hold on, lemme put on some tunes to get us in the mood.
[Streams four solid hours of an erhu playing "A Whole New World" from the Aladdin soundtrack.]
34th Street - Penn Station
Not only is Penn Station one of the more confusing subway stations in the entire labyrinthine public transportation system, it is also full of wild cards. Tourists, travelers, commuters, New Jerseyans, even people who ride Amtrak trains across the country (?????) come through Penn Station. This may mean that the numbers are higher for you to find that one good bone, but the pool is so large that it's like stabbing at a solitary M&M encased in a baby pool full of grape Jell-O.
Everyone walks fast enough that you'll never catch them anyway.
The G Train
You can barely even ride this train right now so all those would-be hotties are resorting to Uber and "working from home." The current darkest and most upsetting people in New York are at this very moment waiting for a G train that will never come (in more ways than one, heh).
This place was a nightmare long before the Barclays Center moved in and made it even more packed than it was before. Now it's just a hellhole of calamitous proportions. The kinkiest sex with a dismally unhappy person would definitely go down here, on a bed of yet-to-be-unpacked extra-large Target shopping bags while waiting for the 3 train to come (guess what! It's running local).
I don't know about you, but I like a nice stab in the side from the box of a freshly purchased shoe rack while I'm getting down. The crinkle of cellophane gives sex that extra pizzazz it's always been missing. Oh, and let's change into our new discounted Uniqlo puffer coats afterward—yeah, that's how I like it.
East Broadway is forty thousand feet beneath the earth and the fact that no one gets any credit for the years they spent walking up the four flights of steps before realizing that there was an escalator is enough proof that the MTA is a product of Sartre's mind. If you ever rode the dollar Chinatown bus to anywhere outside of New York, and had the lucky chance of carrying luggage up the four flights of stairs to then get on a bus that smells like a horse farm, then you know how disgusting you look when you emerge into Chinatown. Turns out, you are the reason the bus smells like a horse farm.
Jamaica Center is a remarkably well-organized subway station. It rarely smells that controversial and there are a lot of different things going on, but all in wide enough spaces that nothing feels unmanageable. It's really not so bad. But it is very, very unsexy.
Jamaica Center is where you will find the most stubborn assholes in New York, the people like me who refuse to spend $45 on a cab, no matter how tired or troubled or jetlagged we are, in order to take the AirTrain either to or from our homes. And we have luggage. Lots of it. And we come with nice, robust coughs to spread our bacteria all over the subway car.
When Shea Stadium was demolished, the MTA removed the stadium name from this station, changing it from Willets Point-Shea Stadium to Mets-Willets Point. Rumor was Citi Bank couldn't afford to pay the MTA to tack their name onto the subway stop. The fact that anyone traveling to a game at Citi Field has no verifiable evidence that they are even at Citi Field is so sad that it renders itself unsexy. Where even are we????
More importantly, have you ever seen an attractive Mets fan?
Bay Ridge - 95 Street
The end of the line, no matter where that line leads you, is a place of despair. When I lived in Bay Ridge and the train stopped at 95 Street, the pressure of hot air that emitted from the train sounded just like a giant letting out a wearied sigh.
Well, this is it. The end of the line. The final road. There's nowhere else to go from here. Just an order of Indian food and a three-hour stream of the Sopranos on HBOGo under a thin sheet with a fan on my face. Home, sweet home, at last.
In retrospect, this may have been the best example of Living the Dream in the Big Apple™ all along.
[Image by Jim Cooke, photo via littleny / Shutterstock.com]