On how not to make it out of your daily commute alive and why I'm very passionate about Facebook's management.
So today I had a conversation with a man on the train who begged me to punch him in the face. Which is super weird, because you’d think he’d totally know that I wasn’t the sort of gal who has ever punched someone in the face, and so he tried really, really, really hard to give me a reason.
First of all, violence isn’t the answer kids.
Second of all, sometimes envisioning your fist meeting someone’s face is the only thing that will keep you from actually losing your mind on public transit.
And I blame reality television – specifically the Jersey Shore cast and the Real Housewives of Anywhere in America – for this phenomenon. Because if you spend too much time watching any of those programs, you will determine that: (a) pulling someone’s hair while your underpants inexplicably become exposed from underneath your dress is a really good way to get thrown out of a bar and (b) fighting solves everything within 22 minutes.
But I’ve somehow gotten off of my point. Let’s get back to my mental fist-fight.
Usually, my commute is rather boring. It consists of me sitting or standing with approximately 150 other strangers for 5-7 minutes, listening to books on tape and, generally, just zoning out. However, today was one of those days where you have the Talkative New Jersey Guy standing next to you who clearly hasn’t gotten the memo that mornings are for quiet time and insists on commenting about everything he sees out loud.
You know the guy I’m talking about. He doesn’t necessarily have to be from New Jersey, though it helps. He could be from Staten Island, New York, Long Island, or hell, East Lansing, Michigan for all I care. He just has to have zero social boundaries, potentially a borderline personality disorder, and a penchant for being incredibly loud.
Today’s guest appearance by said guy all started with his observations of various individuals boarding the train.
Upon noticing that someone was wearing rain boots and carrying an umbrealla :
“Woah, someone didn’t get the sunshine memo.”
Upon noticing that there was an attractive woman on the train (shockingly, not me):
“He-l-oooo…..” and then creepily looking too long at the poor woman.
Upon reading the various news items that flashed across the tv screen on the train:
“They’re letting some woman run Facebook? Now I’ve seen everything.”
And that’s when I made the mistake of chiming in.
I KNOW, I KNOW! It’s my own fault and I take full responsibility for the mess that ensued. You can hold your commentary, I realize the error of my ways.
Me: Actually, I think she’s the COO. Mark Zuckerberg is the CEO.
Me: The guy who actually runs Facebook.
NJG: Oh right, the guy from that movie.
Me, staring blankly and realizing I should abort mission immediately.
NJG: The nerdy guy.
Me: Haha, yeah, I guess so.
NJG: Then who’s this chick?
Me: She’s the COO.
NJG: What’s that, like, the Vice President?
Me: Kind of. She basically is in charge of running the daily business aspects of the company.
NJG: Why is a woman doing it?
NJG: Some Title 9 bullshit.
Me: Uh…I doubt it.
NJG: Of course, she’s one of yours.
NJG: She’s one of yours.
Me: One of my what?
NJG: One of your kind.
Me: Right……but what does that have to do with anything?
NJG: Just that I’m sure they had a guy just as qualified to run the company but they wanted to look politically correct.
And then he paused and patted me on the shoulder.
NJG: Don’t be offended, sweetheart, I’m sure she was qualified.
And then he winked.
And then I lost my mind.
Me: First of all, please don’t call me sweetheart. My boyfriend doesn’t even call me sweetheart. Second of all, I think it has little to nothing to do with her gender and nearly everything to do with her qualifications.
NJG: Woah, relax sweetheart.
Me: I’m just saying that it’s unfair to assume she got the job because she’s a woman since you wouldn’t assume that a man in her role got it because he was a man.
NJG: Who really cares anyway?
Me: Apparently me.
And then I nervously laughed because I realized that I probably sounded insane and engaged in a conversation with a guy whose opinion meant nothing to me. And also, I heard CB’s voice in my mind telling me not to get involved with people on the train because they might shiv me.
We all remember the incident last fall where I got all Detroit on that one really rude woman and called her a “terrible person.”
Them’s fightin’ words.
Anyway, I then came back inside of my own body and realized a few things.
- You really shouldn’t talk to me before I’ve had my first cup of coffee.
- I’m apparently very well-versed in the educational and professional background of Sheryl Sandberg.
- Once in a while, to everyone’s shock, I get completely fired up about something that really doesn’t matter.
- No, I’m not saying women’s right’s don’t matter. Just that they don’t matter when you’re talking to a guy who watches “The Soup” to get his news fix.
- I may want to really start thinking about working from home so I for real don’t get murdered on my way to or from work.
But ok, please tell me I’m not the only one who sometimes loses control of my own mind and words and will debate with anyone watching a subway television.