Train stations provide the cliché observation of people running to and fro trying to catch that train. It’s a microcosm for our crazy society.
I’ll be meekly showing the Amtrak cop my train ticket lest I be banished from the station. Good that I have a train ticket and also purchased a burrito at the food court. Wouldn’t want a homeless person crashing out on the floor, now would we?
Think of the children: we can’t allow them to be scarred and marred by the sight and scent of these trod upon bums. Let’s just sweep the problem under the rug and pretend that it doesn’t exist. It’s the Reagan deal all over again. We’ll push it out of sight and out of mind. If we pretend hard enough, it might just go away.
But for the moment I am safe from being jettisoned from the station since I am a paying customer. Lah Dee Dah, aren’t I something special?
I sit there chomping away on my burrito. I see self-important people with their cellphones. They make unimportant phone calls to unimportant people. Their smugness reeks worse than any of the homeless. I’m not too impressed by any of it.
Now I’ve heard on numerous occasions that Penn Station is a microcosm for America and that scares me—especially when I am threatened with arrest for buying food for a starving person while so-called good Christians, many of whom laud Mother Teresa, look on approvingly at the cop’s efforts.
So this is America in a nutshell and it ain’t a very pretty sight anymore. It sure as Hell isn’t even what those dead white guys envisioned a couple centuries ago.
Someone fucked it up and this is what is left: a rebuilt train station populated by heartless, soulless people who bought a latté which will donate an entire nickel to charity. They can walk about holding their noses high and marvel at their good deed.
And it really sucks regardless upon whom we finally decide to pin the blame. Guys that couldn’t make the grade at the Academy are all self-important in their little station. I’m just left feeling a bit nauseous and I no longer have an appetite to finish my food. Maybe I will just give the rest of my burrito to a homeless woman who needs it more than me.
I just watch the people scurrying for trains. I’ve much been an admirer of rats—and less so the human kind. I’ll be delighted when it’s my turn to leave.