Top five types of commuters that piss me off

As fellow blogger ThePenguin already mentioned, rain has returned in full force to Tokyo, meaning that all the sub-human troglodytes who usually commute to work by bicycle or flopping themselves about in whatever unnatural ways of motion they usually employ are once again cluttering up the subways with their pale, flaccid bodies.

Thus, as a companion piece to my entry last week about the top five people appearing in Yamanote Line ads who genuinely piss me off, I present to you the top five types of passengers on public transportation who genuinely piss me off, written as it was in the grip of despising most of what counts for humanity these days. (Which excludes the fine people running the websites I’ve linked to in the Blogroll on the right. And of course you, dear Reader.)


5. The porno comic-reading pervert
Much as the idea of engaging in ocular masturbation to hand-drawn tweens having their various orifices penetrated in glorious 2D might appeal to some, I wonder if perhaps you wouldn’t mind going about it at home and not in front of everyone’s faces. Are you honestly oblivious to the fact that women, children and my less-than-enthused ass are within eyesight of your fap material and are none too happy about it, or do you just not care? My bet is on the latter.

By means of illustration, here’s the cover for the current issue of Pervert Weekly. Seriously, look at it. I’d be embarrassed to hold the thing up in public for the cover alone, never mind the contents. Reading this bad boy on the train doesn’t bother you? Congratulations, you suck.

4. Unwarranted self-importance man
Unfortunately, this breed of miscreant isn’t confined solely to the railways, and can often be found lumbering around busy pedestrian areas, mouth agape at the sheer indignity of having his sweat-caked business suit brushed up against. When on the trains, the true unwarranted self-importance man will have his beefy frame parked into a seat and be loudly flicking his newspaper every few seconds, a clear signal to everyone in the cabin that his is a newspaper being read, goddammit. He will also be pointedly ignoring the frail-looking couple looking on from a few feet away.

3. Offensive grooming man
There is a pattern to offensive grooming man. Initially, he tends to be looking wistfully off into the distance, or perhaps enjoying a bit of reading. He will begin by caressing his nose gently, even thoughtfully, as if recalling some poignant moment of youth or re-reading a profoundly relevant passage from his book. And then suddenly he will ram his pinky into his nostril, burying it to the joint and twisting it around like it’s doing the nasal samba. Any items uncovered during this initial excavation will be flecked disinterestedly onto the floor or possibly his briefcase before the offending digit once again goes in for the kill. As an added bonus, offensive grooming man will often, after having performed exploratory surgery on his nasal passages for a half hour or so, then use that same hand to begin grooming his face and hair. Ladies and gentlemen, class such as this cannot be bought at any price.

2. The cutmeister
Spend any time at all in a park here and you’re bound to hear Japanese parents chiding their children when they’re playing with others. The most commonly uttered admonition is invariably junban, which means basically, “Wait your turn.”

Wait your fucking turn.

Subway passengers, at what point did you forget what your mom told you every time you went out to play for the first 10 or so friggin’ years of your life?

You know why I chose to stand in this line? You know why it’s here? It’s to establish the order in which we shall be boarding this train. I understand your eagerness to engage in the scramble for an Empty Seat, that holy grail of the mass transit system, but if you happened to have been behind me in line when those doors open, guess what, you get to fucking stay there. Anyone who attempts to cut in front of me gets the elbow; no, I don’t go throwing out elbows like some hooligan, I merely “wing” the arms at my sides such that the elbows protrude out at an angle, cutting into the attack path of any would-be cutmeister. Never fails to halt the uppity buggers in their tracks.


1. The leaner
Worthless pricks whose skeletal systems are composed mostly of cartilage, leaners will board a train with but a single goal in mind — to expend no energy whatsoever toward the preservation of balance during their commute. How is this accomplished? By leaning up against their fellow commuters, preferably getting in a bit of shuteye during the process. I have had this happen to me more than once; in the most blatant example, the fellow boarded the train, looked over his left and right shoulders to gauge his surroundings, and then settled back for a good long lean, complete with dream twitches. Needless to say, he soon found himself rudely awakened by a rather pissed-off foreigner.

People of Tokyo, this is your public transportation system. Does it not bother you that those who routinely use it apparently mistake those dangly things with the round bit on the end hanging from the ceiling of the train cabin for what their mothers used to place over their cribs to spur cognitive development, when in fact they are meant to be fucking held onto? Because it sure bothers me.

7 Responses

  1. The overwhelming majority I see are the “The porno comic-reading perverts”… not a civilized as people might think..

  2. That is so true! It really scares me when the greasy Japanese businessman next to me begins to start picking his nose and flicking it all over the place.

  3. “Wait your fucking turn” ….. can read that all day.

  4. Ok, without going off into a rant here, I would like to give some defense to the readers of Young magazine and similar teen oriented manga compilations. It’s hardly “porno manga” and you’ll only find pictures of girls with swimsuits and no nude pictures, hardly pornography in my book. Granted, some of the comics feature sex to some extent, but Japan doesn’t have the same moral background as the Christian morality that most foreigners bring with them. On the other hand, there’s also the real hardcore manga magazines and those are another story…

    But yeah, you forgot the type I hate the most; The “Train Rager”. That’s the guy who can’t accept that trains sometimes can be crowded and when you’re forced to push up against one of those due to the pure tide of fellow traveller who uses whatever limbs he has at his disposal to discreetly attack you. Most common means of attack are the elbow thrusted backwards and the foot stomping…

  5. Meh, I got Young Jump confused with Young Animal, the latter of which I think is the hardcore one I’ve seen that rankles. The cover has been traded out.

    (p/s – Christian morality has nothing to do with it — I just don’t want to see your friggin’ porn, and I don’t think the people next to me want to see it either.)

    Aah, the Train Rager. Yeah, I’ve seen him, too. But for me, The Leaner wins the No. 1 spot.

  6. Are you certain it has nothing to do with Christian Morality?

    When I’m on a train, the main reason I don’t like people reading porno next to me (or, more common in Sweden, couples making out on the train/buss), is because I am embarrassed by it, not because I find porn somehow disgusting.

    As we all know, embarrassment is one of the worst feelings we can experience, it’s worse than pain or anger, and we’ll do anything to get rid of it. We’ll also do anything to blame the reason for it on something other than ourselves.

    Now, why am I embarrassed by porn (in public that is)? Christian morality! I’ve been brought up to think of sex as embarrassing, in front of other people at least (embarrassment only occurs with a crowd). Now, Sweden’s a pretty liberal country, so it’s not particularly bad for me, but I can just imagine what it’s like for people from other places.

    The japanese on the other hand, are not the least embarrassed by sex. Hell, my (male) japanese friends talk about sex like they talk about the weather.

    So, yeah, I agree that I’d rather not have people read their porn on the train, but I also think that it’s not a universal value, and that the japanese maybe don’t mind.

  7. I’m positive, at least in my own case, that it has nothing to do with Christian morality. You know why? Because I like sex and I’m not entirely unfond of porn. You know what I don’t do with my porn, though? I don’t flash it in front of everyone’s faces. I think such behavior is pretty damn crude, and I don’t think it’s too much to ask that you don’t flash your fap material in front of me and everyone else on the train.

    Wait till you’re in the privacy of your own home — is that so much to ask?

    And as much as people like going on about how “sexually enlightened” the Japanese are, the fact of the matter is, porno comics being read in public gets to them, too. You know how I know that? I’ve talked to them about it. And I’ve been here for more than a couple years.

    I have no idea how you found my site, but thank you for stopping by. Take care.

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