There is life and death on the subway

  Some people really don’t like big city life. They say that man is like an ant when he is on the ground and a mouse when he is underground. The roads in the city are getting wider and wider, and it takes a long time to cross the road. People are like ants, looking at the cars coming and going, fearful and flustered; they are even more reluctant to take the subway and drill around in the city’s underground pipes , feeling like a flustered mouse. Who wants to be an ant, and who wants to be a mouse?
  I have been a “rat” for many years, but I have been in love with the subway for a long time. Over the years, I have to go to work from the northeast to the southwest of the city, which is farther than across the whole city, because I “span across”. If I didn’t use the subway, I would inevitably be late again and again and endure the pain of traffic jams. The physical and mental costs are too great. Colleagues in the unit who drive to work or take the bus to work will inevitably be late sometimes, objectively because there are too many uncertain factors on the road. I don’t need to get up early to get an early schedule, and I don’t need to take into account factors such as weather and traffic jams to start early. The subway can always take me to arrive on time. When those colleagues who went to work by other means of transportation stumbled into the unit, I had already made tea and sat there, looking at them calmly and full of sympathy. The subway is like an emotionally stable person, I trust it and am willing to entrust myself to it. Trust is definitely a scarce resource these days, and there are fewer and fewer trustworthy things. Let’s talk about transportation. Safety and punctuality are the biggest promises. Except for subways, airlines, passenger ships, buses, and self-driving cars, punctuality is often not expected.
  Moreover, the subway is the most indiscriminate means of public transportation. There are no soft sleepers, boxes, first-class seats, second-class seats, business seats, ordinary cabins, or first-class cabins. Rich businessmen and wage earners, even beggars, can and can only sit or stand together. I like this feeling.
  The “rats” are delighted: the ideal of the ancient alchemist “earth escape” has finally been realized! It escapes from the soil at one point, and emerges from another point even dozens of kilometers away. If you think about it in ancient times, you can’t be too excited or happy. Moreover, the subways around the world are in different shapes and styles: the architecture and decoration styles are different, and the crowds are different; in the subway, you can feel the largest flow of people and see the most different faces. Even the same subway is experienced differently by each of us, and the subway creates countless situations and psychological landscapes. In a sense, the richness of life experience has been realized to the greatest extent on the subway.
  Taking the subways in many places around the world, if I have to say something in common, it may be their smell, the earthy, damp, slightly musty smell under the surface. This is their base smell, and the differences are only superficial. For example, the smell of sand tea sauce in Guangzhou and Hong Kong subways, the mutton smell in Istanbul subway, the perfume smell in Paris subway…these are just differences in personality, but the essence is the same, and they are all “underground flavors”. I think that only in this point, the olfactory enjoyment of humans and mice may be roughly the same. The smell of the London and Paris subways is even older, which is why they have a long history: the London subway was completed and opened to traffic in 1863, and the Paris subway opened in 1900.
  However, commuters who take the subway every day rarely have the secret joy of “earth escape”.
  too crowded. Especially for those petite girls, it is too difficult to squeeze or be squeezed in the subway. People stick to others, so some people take advantage of the opportunity to pickpocket, and some people take advantage of women and take advantage of them. There are too many mysteries of mind and body here. But at least in theory: it could be a man or a woman who mopped, and a man could be mopped too. Just because of the physical characteristics of men, it is more difficult to control themselves, and it is easier to be discovered and reported. It is undeniable that sometimes men have sufferings that cannot be expressed, embarrassing, and unable to justify. Once, I had dinner with a male teacher, and he talked about his experience when he was young. At that time, he had just arrived in Nanjing to work, and he had to take a popular bus every day. During commuting hours, that’s crowded (how can there be crowded subways for commuting)! “Especially in summer, when flesh is sticking to flesh, there are at most two layers of cloth. You just cling to a big girl, and you can’t help but rub against the bumps of the bus. You were only in your twenties at that time, you said I don’t respond physically, am I still a human? It’s too embarrassing and uncomfortable!” Another male at the same table said a little lewdly: “Isn’t that good!” Whether it’s good or not, my The teacher later refused to take that bus again, preferring to ride a bicycle, no matter it was windy or rainy, it took nearly two hours to ride one way. He said that it is too uncomfortable for girls to wear so little, really too uncomfortable. What is aggrieved is that such “discomfort” is difficult to win the understanding of others.
  I can only sympathize with this passive sexual response and the great physical and mental restraint required. In the subway in summer, such “discomfort”, women’s discomfort and men’s discomfort happen every day. The subway creates awkward distances. If it is not in the subway, but in a relatively loose place such as a square, and strange men and women stick so close, then it must be hooliganism. People are in the subway, clinging to others, being clinged to by others, and losing effective control over their bodies.
  The humanitarianism of the meaning of space is: to give lovers a private space—the housing space of urban dwellers is small, and lovers often can only make out in public spaces, flustered; It is also a kind of inhumanity to keep a certain distance between men and women.
  In the crowded subway, even our gaze has nowhere to rest. Where can you look when a woman is standing with her face or back to you? In fact, you can’t look anywhere, chest, back, waist, legs, neck? These could all be “erotic” parts. Some people say that the sexiest part of a woman is her calves and ankles, so it’s not right for you to lower your head. As far as the eye can see, there is no place that is not sexy, and no place is not a spectacle of sex. It’s okay to glance at it, but you have the nerve to watch it for a long time? There is nowhere to look, to see, and you have to close your eyes whether you want to, if you want to close your eyes. Some people say that you can read with a book and a mobile phone. If the woman standing in front of you is graceful and attractive, and she just stands in front of you, can you concentrate on watching? Those who intend to become a monk can practice in this situation, so that they can be calm and relaxed.
  Giving up seats is also a problem. Especially males like me who are neither young nor old enough. Do you want to give up your seat to others, how old you are, and what kind of person you are, all are questions. There will be a voice prompt on the subway: Please give up your seat to the “old, weak, sick, disabled and pregnant”. However, these five types of people can only be identified with obvious “disability”, and the other four types of people are difficult to identify by visual inspection. Who is old, who is weak, who is sick, and who is pregnant? Some women look like young girls even though they are pregnant, and some big girls with yellow flowers grow a little fatter, with a little more abdominal fat, which is suspected to be pregnant. If you decide that the girl with yellow flowers is a pregnant woman, and give up your seat to her, aren’t you afraid to get a big mouth? Because I take the subway to and from get off work all the year round, at the beginning I was entangled and distressed about whether to give up my seat to a suspected pregnant woman, and carefully observed and thought about whether she was pregnant or not. When a pregnant woman is old and fully pregnant, of course you can tell. You definitely give up your seat to her, but people often smile at you: “No, thank you!” Tell me: “Because my stomach is too big, it’s uncomfortable to sit down.” I pretended to be affectionate and gave up my seat too much. The history of taking the subway is long. As I get older, when I get on the subway, I just close my eyes and have nothing else to do. Moreover, I can read on the subway, even if a beautiful woman is standing in front of me, even if she is full of charm, my attention is still on the book most of the time.
  Closing your eyes sometimes doesn’t help either. Once, a beautiful woman was standing in front of me. I forgot to bring the book, so I had to close my eyes and feign sleep. After a while, I suddenly felt hands on my knees. I opened my eyes and found that it was the girl who squatted down in pain, with sweat on her forehead, holding my knees with both hands—because after squatting down, Without space, her hands could only hold on like that. She was clearly ill and I quickly helped her into my seat and she made an apologetic effort to smile at me and say thank you. I am very pleased that I have finally succeeded in giving up my seat on the subway.

  Then the problem comes again, if you are standing and someone offers your seat, but you are not that old, even you feel that the person offering your seat may be older than you, haha, how do you feel in your heart!
  If you don’t want to worry about giving up your seat, there is only the old way: close your eyes, even if you are standing. In fact, every car has a special seat for the “old, weak, sick, disabled and pregnant”, but almost all the people sitting in this special seat are “normal people”. How to guide these five kinds of people to their special seats, how to squeeze these five kinds of people into their “special seats” when commuting subways are full of people, are all topics that need to be studied and guided. Otherwise, embarrassing incidents about giving up seats will continue.
  The subway not only helps me commute to and from get off work every day, but also allows me to see people and life through another window-people in the subway, life will inevitably be in a different state, with a different mood. Life on the subway is full of different flavors and styles. There is “Jing” on the subway. There is also a beautiful “environment” in the crowded subway cars. I have seen this kind of scene many times: a tall man, with the help of the carriage wall or railing, supports his female partner with his arms, forming a circle with his chest. No matter how crowded and noisy the surroundings are, the woman in the arms can stand gracefully, listen to music, read a book, or do nothing, and the world outside the arms seems to have nothing to do with her. Such a quiet time, this is probably the so-called “happiness harbor”. Life is full of ups and downs, if men can hold up even a small piece of space on the subway for their women, and women can enjoy and be content with such a small harbor, then it is probably the so-called happiness.
  The subway has become a unique social field, and its situation has long been the content of literary and artistic expression. Chen Baiqiang’s song “Dating for a Few Minutes” in the 1980s is an earlier subway love song: “The drama is over when you reach the peak, and love is hard to end. I hope to see you for a second.” Although the space of the subway can be secretly connected It’s a song, but the time is too short after all, it can’t do good things, it’s just sad. The male and female protagonists in the Korean film “My Sassy Girl” meet on the subway, and Zhang Yibai’s movie is simply called “The Subway to Spring”. In the future world in Wong Kar Wai’s “2046”, people pick up their lost memories and arrange them on the subway. It is probably because underground memories are more likely to leave traces on people’s hearts. In Godard’s “Outlaws”, the standard-bearer of the French New Wave movie, the heroine Anna Karina expressed her feelings on the subway: “People in the metro always look so sad and lonely.” (People in the subway always look so sad and lonely. It seems so melancholy and lonely.) This kind of melancholy and loneliness is also because the subway journey is too hasty? The physical contact, eye movement, and smell entanglement on the subway are all fleeting. The search for beauty and love, whether you find it or not, is “hasty”, so there is melancholy and sadness. For memory, worthy of fun. Sitting on the subway for many years, the drawers of our hearts will be filled with all kinds of feelings in life, tactile, visual, and taste… There are a lot of people on the subway, men and women come and go every day, people of all classes and colors,
  etc. . For men and women who are looking for their other half, in the anxious search, they always feel that they can meet their own one and that one by chance. Maybe, fate will really help you a lot, and just squeeze that person in front of you on the subway. The appearance, temperament and even the breath are exactly the person who searched for him thousands of times in the dream, and dreamed of him… If so Well, the more crowded the subway this time, the better; it would be best if the subway was also jammed, and it would last forever.
  Although the light and shadow on the subway is different from that on the ground, if it is not commuting time, the space is relatively loose, and passengers have leisure time. There are no beautiful women standing in front of you, and no one is so close to you. The field of view is better, and you can observe people on the subway. One year, on Valentine’s Day, at around four o’clock in the afternoon, I took the subway from the suburbs to the city center to run errands. There are not many people on the subway, and a considerable proportion of passengers should go to the city to spend the holidays with their boyfriends or girlfriends. The girl diagonally opposite me was dressed up beautifully, her face was full of joy and anticipation, and she undoubtedly belonged to the festival. After two stops, she received a call, her face quickly turned from sunny to cloudy, from happy to sad, and when she hung up the phone, she was already in tears… As soon as the subway reached the next station, she got off the train with sobs— — This station is far from the city center. I couldn’t help guessing: probably because her boyfriend canceled the Valentine’s Day date, she had to take the subway across the way and go home. In fact, men and women, which one has not been let go of pigeons? At that time, the scene, the picture, the rapid transition between joy and sorrow, hope and disappointment left a deep impression on me. Getting on the car with longing and happiness, and getting off the car because of disappointment and pain, similar scenarios are played out every day.
  The subway in Paris is considered to be the most convenient and accurate subway in the world. Because of its reasonable design and clear signs, if you get lost on the ground, you will be able to find your way and reach your destination smoothly when you get on the subway. That year I went to Paris, and my old friend Mr. F left the team to hike Montmartre together. I heard people say that “Montmartre is the most charming place”, it really is not false. The tall and holy Sacred Heart Cathedral, the hill square where artists gather, the Rabbit Bar, the Rose Restaurant…a collection of religion, art, love and more. The sky is wide and the earth is big, the sun is beautiful and the wind is clear. At that time Mr. F was trapped by an underground love affair, and the customs of this place just aggravated his “illness”. Everyone knows that this is a love disorder. This type of patient is deeply involved in the situation and it is difficult to find the right direction. It happened that we also lost our way, and it was obviously difficult to walk back from the ground. I said to Mr. F with a pun: “Have you lost your way? It is said that if you get lost in Paris, you can get back as long as you get on the subway.” So we went to find the Montmartre subway station together. On the way, we passed an underground passage, which happened to be the famous “Wall of Love”. The “Wall of Love” is densely written with the same sentence – “I love you” in 311 fonts and 280 languages. Love, overwhelming. Standing in front of the “Wall of Love” all of a sudden, Mr. F cried bitterly and choked up for a long time. While comforting him, I pointed out to him that there was a cartoon at the top of the “Wall of Love”, a girl in a dark blue suspender dress, with a line of small words beside it: “soyons raisonnable exigeons l’impossible” (keep sane , do not force).
  Finally found the Montmartre metro station. At the beginning of the 20th century, Hector Guimard, a representative of French Art Nouveau, designed 140 subway entrances for Paris. The cast-iron lampposts above the entrance are intertwined like two cobras raising their sickle-shaped necks. The logo is yellow with angular black bold text. At that time, some people called this novel shape design “subway style”. As for the railings at the entrance of the Montmartre subway station, Guimard all use undulating and curly plant patterns, which are more individual. In 1970, Montmartre Metro Station was listed as a first-class antiquities protection in France. It’s one of the most beautiful and stylish subway stations I’ve ever seen. Because of Mr. F, the Montmartre subway station always has a bit of poignant color. There is a sentence I want to tell Mr. F: Contrary to the subway, the love between men and women is not suitable for running underground, although it is a kind of “underground love”. Even the emotions generated on the subway will eventually return to the ground and under the sun. Hannah Arendt said: “Unlike friendship, love will die once it is displayed in public.” The “love” she said should refer to underground affairs and extramarital affairs. Back then, only she knew how much hidden sweetness, how much unspeakable bitterness and even hurt her love affair with teacher Heidegger was.

  It is said that the most beautiful, artistic and magnificent subway is the subway in Moscow. Unfortunately, I have not been to Moscow yet. The station names of the Nanjing Metro are all calligraphy by famous calligraphers, with a dominant Chinese style. Every city will work hard on the cultural connotation of the subway. The style of each subway line is different, and each platform on the same subway line will also have different patterns, leaving you with different material space and imagination space.
  Even for the same subway station, the inner style is of course always determined by the people who take the subway at that time and that place. Once, I took the subway home, and a middle-aged man and woman sitting diagonally across from me were talking softly. They should be husband and wife, quiet and peaceful. After years of running-in between husband and wife, life has entered the broad water surface, with sparkling waves and calm waves. When the subway entered the station, I got up and walked out of the car. The middle-aged couple also stood up and prepared to get off. Suddenly I heard a “boom” behind me, I looked back and saw the middle-aged man fell straight down, with half of his body in the carriage and half of his body outside the carriage. The screams of the middle-aged women who were traveling together sounded at the same time, and the subway staff also ran over and dialed 120. I heard later that the person was still not saved. The subway cars and platforms became their farewell places.
  Because of the high density of people, the subway has also become the target of terrorist attacks. Terrorism has been rampant in the past two decades, and terrorist attacks on subways have been reported from time to time. Hate, violence and even the underground world are not spared.
  I forgot who said it: the subway is a walking tribe, a mobile society. Undoubtedly, the subway is the loosest tribe and the most complex society. The section of the subway near my house is elevated from the ground. Especially at night, when I look at the moving windows that are lit with lights, I can’t help feeling in my heart: There are still all kinds of life that I have never seen before, and there are many things that I have never seen before. All kinds of people are waiting; it will continue to move forward, swallowing people. Some people, I may meet in the future, and some may never meet again.
  In the subway, sometimes with eyes open, sometimes forced to close them. Sometimes I really fell asleep, sleeping staggeringly, drooling, and became an indecent spectacle in the eyes of others. In and out of the play, I am an “audience” in the subway, and at the same time, am I not an “actor” in the eyes of others? Once, I took the subway into the city with my second son, and there was an old lady sitting across from me with a kind face, looking at us with a smile on her face. I’m sure I don’t know her, so I can only smile at her and continue talking and playing with my son. The subway came into the station, and the old lady stood up to get off. When he was about to walk to the door, he suddenly turned back and walked in front of us, pointed at our father and son, and said excitedly, “You two look so much alike, so much alike!” The finger pointing at us even trembled. It is normal for the father and son to look alike; it is so similar, so similar, it became a secret discovered by the old lady. She couldn’t resist coming back and telling us the secret. If the car door was not about to close, the old lady would definitely stay and discuss with us about blood relationship and human relations. After returning home, she will definitely tell her family about her major discovery today: How can they look so similar?
  ”Everyone who sees men and women, the earth, forests and swamps is always a state of mind.” Between people, they are each other’s artistic conception. It is the secret of life to have these two tasks at the same time.
  ”Five Lanterns Huiyuan” contains Zen master Hong En in Zhongyi: “For example, the moth borer nests on the eyelashes of mosquitoes, and calls clouds to the cross streets: the land is sparsely populated, and few people meet.” They build their nests and settle down there, and they have the feeling of “the land is sparsely populated”. The subway network extending in all directions underground can be described as spectacular. Even if it is crowded and small like us, it is still fully capable of gaining a certain amount of psychological and emotional space, and being a happy “mouse” can freely enter and exit on the ground and underground. Moreover, there are many people who meet each other on the subway, so it is “where in life do not meet each other”, on the subway platform, in the carriage, and on the way to catch the subway.
  On the ground and underground, there are our cross streets.

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