That One Crazy on the Train

If you’ve taken the 4 or 5 or 6 train out of Grand Central regularly over the last 10 years, you’ve run into her at some point. The short, mid-30s white woman who comes aboard and starts with the sob story about needing money for her and her children because:

  1. Her husband the soldier died in Iraq.
  2. Her husband the soldier died in Afghanistan.
  3. Her husband the first-responder died in Sandy.
  4. Their house burnt down and her husband died in the fire.

Last night, her story had changed to her ex-husband was abusive and she was trying to get herself and her two children (one of whom has to be old enough to vote by now) away from the bastard. She layered the story, too. She was also going to grad school. GRAD SCHOOL. (Hey, dream big!) For a masters in social work. (Okay, maybe not.) And her ex-husband had screwed up any chance she had at financial aid because he claimed her and the kids as dependents. (Great detail.)

This woman really grates on my nerves, but I’ve always kept my mouth shut because a) she’s obviously unwell and b) though she sounds sweet and helpless, she can switch gears in the blink of an eye.

The woman sitting across from me — who also has likely seen the same woman telling multiple stories over the years — muttered a few things under her breath. It wasn’t loud enough to set our story-teller off, but it did prompt this as story-teller left our car for the other:

“Yeah, you bitch? Well I hope my fucking ex-husband finds you and beats your ass. Hope he chokes you. That’ll show you.”

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