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The Yellow Line
Luce Smith, Features Writer
The Thin Yellow Line - photo by Douglas Hall
I feel ever so naughty. I am about to write about a commuter who I have had to sit next to. Not really ideal, but not done before, so why not!

Standing on the platform, there is a clear yellow painted line, which everyone knows you stand behind. Health and Safety, but sensible health and safety. There is even an announcement on the PA system that reminds you to stand back, which is played repeatedly. Ok, a little annoying if your train is delayed and you have to listen to it numerous times, or if you make it to the platform with hours to kill, I dare say you would be fed up of hearing it. But it makes sense. Unlike the labels on peanuts that alert you of the fact that 'this product may contain traces of nuts'.....well, you'd hope so, otherwise you could take them to court using the Trades Description Act.

Anyway, back to the platform.

Also by Luce Smith...
New Words, New Skills
Diversion
Time Flies
The Full Monty
Runnin' In The Rain
Everyone is at their chosen positions, which, until recently, I wasn't aware of. You see people have got clever. They stand on the platform where they know the train doors will be located once the train has pulled in and stopped. Give or take a few shuffles to the left or right. I have seen how this is quite an efficient method. We are all standing behind that yellow line, as we are a) obedient and b) would like to get to our destination as opposed to the train track.

A lady walks up from under the subway, walking with a bit of a swagger, and wearing her sunglasses. I already feel I ought to have made more effort wth my own appearance today, but I did well, I did brush my hair at least. Not only does this lady have it all, she then decides to ignore all health and safety and stands at the very edge of the platform. Over the yellow line we are all keeping behind. For a good reason. I know I'm staring at her, but I can't help it. She's not even blonde so I can't allow her any slack. How is she so important that rules don't matter, which are for her own good? (Am I ranting? I feel I am but am going to continue). I don't think I'm the only one looking in disgust. There are others thinking 'what a.......'.

It doesn't stop there. Due to seatage options (that's a fab new word!), I am forced to choose between standing up, or sitting next to the yellow line hater. I take a seat.

The ticket staff come round asking to see all tickets and passes. I dutifully show mine, but notice the lady is too important for that, and stares out of the window.

Imagine being that important.......

How can lightning have such a detrimental effect on transport systems? One strike and that's it, trains come to a standstill. Not only do they come to a standstill, but they then remain stuck listening to commuter problems. Such as how can they get to the rear of the train when they have a suitcase and the train is packed? Do they get off and re-embark on a carriage further down the train that's actually going to get to the airport? Will the train get going again to be able to catch the flight? Do I need to book another train ticket? Another flight?

I feel lucky. If I miss my connection, I will go and do a sweeping browse round a few shops until my next available train. I might even sit and read about the EU referendum. I will be honest and say that I don't know which way to vote. Many people have got their minds made up and won't read anything now, as they know what to vote for. Done. However, I am still learning and want more information before I feel confident about which way to go.

Funny. Some poor guy has obviously been gullible. When working in kitchens, you get used to the 'go and get some chicken lips from the fridge', 'have you got that long stand?' Or other such phrases that can create entertainment. But this guy is on the train carrying a plant. It's almost a A Dirty Dancing moment when she carried a watermelon. He carried a huge plant. And he looks very uncomfortable in doing so. I want to say something, but don't. At least he was standing behind the yellow line!
The Yellow Line, 9th June 2016, 9:09 AM