Entertainment By Force

Picture this. You get on the train for your commute home from a long day at work. Against all odds you find a seat and you’re instantly happy. The people sitting next to you aren’t too fat for comfort, no one near you smells bad, and you remembered to bring your book this time. Life is bliss. But as you put on your headphones you hear the door between the train carts open up. A bead of sweat trickles down your face. You don’t want to look up to confront the reality of what’s about to transpire but you do it anyways. As you look up you see three teens with a boombox that confirm your worst fears. You accept this new and cruel reality, turn off your music knowing that the sheer volume of they’re “act” will overpower your headphones even at full volume, and allow these teens to rob you of the next ten minutes of your life. Street performers are bad enough but putting them on the train is basically torture. These fucking people, whether they’re dancers, a mariachi band, or an acapella group, are amongst the most rude and inconsiderate people with in modern society. Not only do the force you to listen to whatever brand of garbage they blast on the train but they expect you to give them money for it. Not only that, they GET OFFENDED IF YOU DON’T GIVE THEM YOUR MONEY. “How dare you not give us the money you earned from your rigourous nine to five job after we just tirelessly danced for an entire tenish minutes! This is our livelihood! We forced our low quality entertainment upon you, and you give us nothing! What gall!”

I know this sounds like I’m just blowing off steam and I am… but only because I am currently stuck in a train cart with a kid pole dancing to 90’s rap music who almost kicked me in the face a minute ago. It’s not like they don’t have another option. Street performers are tolerable. They play on a street corner and if people like what they’re dishing out, they’ll congregate around to watch and give their money. Hell, whenever I see a guy playing the sax on a street a corner, I’ll throw him a dollar. Train performers on the other hand are different. I know all of the tourists out there love train performers. They find it amusing to see these performers on the train and ten years ago I thought the same. But after the tenth time seeing these performers it gets old and insanely annoying. These people basically trap you in a confined space and force their suckage upon the unfortunate souls of that train cart.

Furthermore it’s 2019. I don’t need people to entertain me on the train. I have this magical device called a smartphone. If I wanted to watch teens dance to loud rap music I’d download a video. If I wanted to hear mediocre acapella I could go on Soundcloud. There is absolutely no need for these people to perform on the train and demand money. If we need to declare a national emergency about anything it’s train performers. I know it’s already illegal but we should really consider upping the ante here. Let’s change the punishment to jail time, than these train performers may get the message. If it sounds like an overreaction, try using the New York City subway for a month.

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