March 24th, 2015
Inside the Stockholm subway system subtle stuff often happens, especially when attempting to enter or leave a train. Upon standing up, waiting for the train doors to open so that you can leave, some people seem to think that slowly pushing themselves onto you (always from behind) is a sure-fire way to get a running start to somewhere.
Just a little while ago a guy basically tried to push me through the person in front of me, as though I were a plow or a ghost. I turned around and had the following conversation with him.
I: are you a magician?
I: I said I wonder if you’re a magician.
Swedes are often very apprehensive and introverted while on public transportation, and if you talk to strangers most of them will probably immediately think you’re nuts, regardless of what you say; they turn wide eyed and physically inch away from you. This guy did just those things, suddenly standing at an OK distance from me.
He: what do you mean?
I: I’m searching for a logical explanation as to why you’re trying to push through me, and the only thing I can think of is that you’re a magician, practicing your new trick on me. Am I right?
He: I, well, I didn’t see… I don’t know–
And suddenly, from nowhere, a shrill, angry, old voice that now unleashed a lifetime of frustration in a few seconds.
Tiny old lady with the voice of a hungry death metal singer: I’ve seen you before! You bastard! You ruffian! You wear that ugly jacket in vile colours and you always behave like you want to impregnate someone! Always! Get some fucking manners, will you? Tell your mother to fucking raise you! Go to hell! Grow up!
Even the most mild-mannered Swede who heard that voice shriek those words erupted or imploded with laughter. Everybody just died.
The lady must have been at least 70 years old, and she sat a few feet away from us. When I finally saw her, she had her hands on her knees. White, short locks curled. Tidy outfit. Hat. She fell silent after that short, ultra-sharp attack, but her face and that voice actually ringing throughout the train left me feeling that I would not ever want to mess with her. Or possibly see her again.
Thanks, lady. I’ll be your fan forever. That guy quickly – and carefully – left the train looking more like a sheep than an impregnator.