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Another Reason To Hate Stairs

, , , , , , , | Romantic | March 7, 2020

My local subway station is elevated, meaning that you walk up about two flights of stairs to get to the platform. I leave for work rather early and head away from downtown so my side is typically not very crowded. A few years ago, there was a certain man who would wait for the train just a couple of steps from the top of the stairs. You’d have to pass him to get anywhere on the platform.

While waiting, he would try to hit on almost every woman who passed by him if she was alone. He’d say things like, “Hey, baby, you’re so beautiful, you’re so beautiful! Do you have a boyfriend?” Even though he didn’t follow anyone, it was pretty obvious that he was making them uncomfortable. I wanted to do something but he was a lot bigger than me. Plus, past experiences confronting people on the subway have not gone well for me.

However, I noticed that he didn’t do this on days when it was crowded. This gave me an idea. On days when I saw him, I started waiting for the train as close as I could to where he was standing without it being weird. I kept my phone out to be less obvious, but whenever I saw him about to turn toward someone, I moved my body or made noise in some way to remind him that I was there — nothing confrontational, just stretching and coughing. Surprisingly, this worked extremely well. Whether out of embarrassment or perhaps because I’d put myself between him and the stop of the stairs, he stopped.

Then, one day, I reached the platform to find him in a heated conversation with a woman on the other side of the tracks. She’d noticed what he was doing and he was trying to defend himself by saying things like, “It’s just a compliment,” “I’m just being friendly,” and, “I ain’t hurting nobody.” She was having none of it and basically told him that he needed to stop, permanently, or she’d get station personnel to remove him the next time she saw it.

After that, he kept to himself.

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