Friday, December 28, 2012

This Scares The Hell Out Of Me

From the Chicago Tribune:
A man was crushed to death Thursday night in New York after a woman shoved him into the path of an oncoming subway train, the second time this month that a commuter was killed after being pushed onto the tracks.
This is one of those persistent fears I have, much like my fear of being hooked by a casting fisherman while bicycling through Busse Woods Forest Preserve (the bike path crosses several dams that are popular with fishermen). Like that fear, I hoped that my fear of being pushed onto the subway tracks--particularly by a random stranger--was unreasonable, perhaps a bit paranoid. Apparently not.*

Knowing New York, these two incidents will lead to a jackbooted crackdown on homeless and/or crazy people in subway stations by NYPD. Then liberals will protest to protect the rights of these mostly harmless folks. I'm not sure which side I'd be on, considering that I've been afraid of being pushed onto the tracks for quite some time.**

If this happened in Chicago, probably nothing would change except that I'd wait for the train with my back up against the subway station wall.

* I don't mean to make too much of this fear. It's not like it paralyzes me or anything, just that I try to be aware of whether anyone is behind me on the platform (always good to know if only for the safety of one's wallet) and especially vigilant if someone is. Actually, I'm way more scared of being hooked by a fisherman at Busse Woods. Especially on the ear.

** Incidentally, the fear has worsened a bit since I stopped commuting regularly. I'm not sure whether I'm at greater risk now or not. On the one hand, I used to stand on train platforms two to four times a day (depending on whether I transferred) where now at most it's a few times a week. On the other hand, I used to ride when the platforms were more crowded, meaning that if some random person got pushed onto the tracks, it was less likely to be me.

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