How to get a Train Moving after an Altercation

Don’t you just hate it when the train won’t move? Especially when you have to be somewhere. But when it’s done for avoidable reasons, it makes me wanna piss on a fire-hydrant.

I was on the 1-Train a few weeks back at the 103rd St. Station, southbound, close to the afternoon rush-hour. The conductor refused to move the train due to a passenger altercation. He apprised everyone the police were on the way.


We sat there for ten minutes. Slowly, people migrated off the train. I guess they had decided to walk to the 96th St. Station. I got off myself, but really to see what all the hoopla was about. I stopped when I heard two people arguing. They were surrounded by a crowd.

Here’s the gist. A woman apparently kicked a guy, maybe by accident, who knows. The guy then clocked the woman in her head. The woman who got clocked was standing on the station platform, while the guy who clocked her wouldn’t get out of the subway car. We’ll call this guy, “The Wife-beater.”


People were yelling and arguing over who was in the right and who was in the wrong. Most seemed to side with the woman.

I’m shaking my head throughout all this. The entire NYC subway system will now have residual delays because two people — rightly or wrongly — refused to go on with their lives and instead made thousands of people suffer for their slights. I mean, it wasn’t like someone was holding in their intestines from a stabbing.

I took it upon myself to play Mighty Mouse and save the day. I said to both combatants, “Do you want to get arrested? Handcuffed?” In response, each pointed a finger at the other. (Though some in the crowd did raise an appreciative eye at the “handcuff” reference.)

I said, “Police won’t care who started it. Their job is to keep the trains moving. Why don’t you both play it smart; walk away and let the rest of us go home?”

Incredibly, the Wife-beater wouldn’t budge unless someone gave him his train fare. A stranger pulled out $2 and the Wife-beater took it. But he did so as a measure of victory, as if somehow he were vindicated.

So the Wife-beater got off the train, but he did so pushing a baby carriage. Holy son-of-a-mother, this guy was a dad and even that responsibility wasn’t enough to convince him to avoid police involvement. Then again, he did clock a woman.

Get’s better. As the Wife-beater strolled away with his carriage, the woman who got clocked followed him until they walked side-by-side. Then she wrapped her arms around his. What the–! They weren’t strangers. They were probably MARRIED!!!

Hey, man, whatever floats your duck. I at least got to play superhero for having resolved this dispute. Some people had even cheered and clapped my deftness, my diplomacy, my superlative . . . ok, I’ll stop.

But this was diplomacy, a special kind of diplomacy. This was Yoga Diplomacy.

I came upon this phrase while browsing Integral Yoga Bookstore. As I flipped through the pages of the book I was reading, it made me stand back and ponder things I ordinarily wouldn’t have, such as . . . if Yoga and Yogurt were related.


Point is, Yoga incites you to stop, look around, and appreciate the little things in life. Isn’t that the essence of art? — to magnify the ordinary? Yoga’s emphasis on breathing techniques helps one to focus on one of the most ordinary yet vital thing in our lives — our breathing. I will never take my breath for granted again.

Yoga is art — living art. We all live it. But only a few of us are aware of it. Even fewer practice it.

If you can’t take a class in Yoga, do the next best thing — read about Yoga.

Warmest thanks to Ultimate Vapor Source for supporting this article


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