Parisian metro

11 Mar

If all the world’s a stage, then the Parisian metro should be raising ticket prices.  Theatre of all forms lurk inside the cavernous walls of the this city’s underground public transportation system.

The absurd, grotesque, comical, romantic, in-the-round, fourth-wall, and musical all manage to co-exist throughout the tunnels, stops, and cars as one hops from location to location.  Above ground the city maintains a gorgeous plethora of sites, art, and architecture,  but underneath-the actors never stop playing.

Perhaps you need a short cast-bio to really understand what I’m talking about.  Let me display tonight’s program for those of you who are new to Paris.

The role of the absurd shall be performed by the woman I once witnessed changing her pantyhose in a metro car, while it was moving, while standing.

The role of the grotesque has a profound number of understudies, but tonight shall be performed by the man who pulled out his penis and rubbed it while staring at me.  When I refused to look at his disgusting member, he spat on my shoes.  And they were my Chucks, which are my favorite.

The role of the comic shall be performed by the idiot who muttered disgusting profanity to my friend and I before attempting to dive off the metro as the doors were closing. I say attempted because his jacket got stuck in the door and he required our help out of the situation before being let free.

The romantic goes to the homeless couple I once witnessed having sex underneath a piece of cardboard, next to a poster displaying a Louvre exhibit.  Seems the two were quite taken by the art housed above them.

The in-the-round theatre exhibit goes out to the groups of little Parisian thugs who like to enter one car at opposite ends and move their way toward the middle, harassing everyone in their way.  In particular, the group who once set the ends of my friend’s hair on fire, and then stole her phone.

The fourth-wall acting method shall be performed by the schizophrenic who lurks on line ten.  He once sat next to me and shouted about farm animals for ten minutes (there was no one else on the train)-but never acknowledged my presence.  I must say, he kept that fourth wall barrier up quite well.

and finally

The musical cast shall be performed by a collection of the many accordion players who insist on playing the obnoxious songs they think we adore.  These cast members will undoubtedly be shoving their overturned hats in your faces immediately after completing said songs.  Never mind that you’ve already paid for a ticket to ride the metro-they have separate licenses allowing them further income.  From you.  For no reason other than playing an instrument that should have died with the polka.

If you need me, I’ll be up above.  Walking my dog.  Sorry, just couldn’t bring myself to buy another ticket.


12 Responses to “Parisian metro”

  1. Man-shopper March 11, 2010 at 5:42 pm #

    Better all this shenanigans on the metro than catastrophe in a car (e.g. woman driver shaving her cha-cha while her ex-husband in the passenger seat takes the wheel).

    Yes, but I agree, loads of weirdos on the Paris metro. Like the guy who came up behind me, smelled my hair, and whispered in my ear that he liked my shoes.

  2. Holly Renee March 11, 2010 at 5:58 pm #

    What an eclectic cast. They set her hair on fire!!! What? I can’t even imagine this. I think I would be too whimpy to return. That’s hardcore.

    • wanderingmenace March 11, 2010 at 6:54 pm #

      hahaha yes they did. we noticed because of the smell and the noise of a lighter clicking over and over. Fortunately her hair was really long, so she had to cut off about two inches, but it’s not like her whole head caught on fire.
      Public transportation in any big city is full of freaks-it’s weird how you just learn to deal with it.

  3. Juliana March 11, 2010 at 6:41 pm #

    very very entertaining. the Chucks – i’m wearing my black hi-tops now. the only times it’s been washed were in the rain, so a little spit may not be so bad…

    even with the hair being lit on fire, your post reminds me of how i need to leave the ‘burbs asap… can’t wait till june!

    • wanderingmenace March 11, 2010 at 6:54 pm #

      It is my goal in life to own a wall of Chuck. So I applaud you rocking the hightops.

  4. Courtney March 11, 2010 at 8:21 pm #

    Nice descriptions, and I think I can picture most of them. As for me, my second day in Paris on the metro, a rather filthy man came up to me, bent down at my knees and smelled from there all the way up to my ear and whispered, “Mmmmmmmm.” I’m not sure if he fits the grotesque role, but perhaps, for me, I would describe him in the role of disturbing or slightly traumatic.

  5. Shauna March 12, 2010 at 3:01 am #

    “And they were my Chucks, which are my favorite.”- that made me laugh out loud 🙂

  6. Fishy March 12, 2010 at 11:39 am #

    Really enjoyed this. You paint great pictures with your words.
    *Plentymorefishoutofwater – One Man’s Dating Diary*

  7. PB March 12, 2010 at 7:07 pm #

    What an unusual group of individuals. I suppose it’s good they can live uninhibitedly underground.

  8. Just B. March 14, 2010 at 4:28 pm #

    I was literally laughing out loud while reading… People are such freaks!! I mean who doesn’t like to be groped during rush hour or see a glimpse of vag or peen. I know it makes my day.

  9. marakita March 16, 2010 at 3:03 am #

    Oh the Parisian metro system, how disgusting it is! Seriously, for what is dubbed a romantic city people there really know how to make you vom! Or maybe that was just the smell of piss and fish that seemed to permeate underground.

    Also, I applaud the fact that you adore your chucks so much…best shoes EVER. I have quite the collection myself… and still growing!

  10. Mom March 20, 2010 at 11:06 am #

    Well all that said, I still missing running all over Paris in the Metro’s. Better the metro cliental, than the Parisian cab drivers.

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