Posts Tagged ‘subway’

NYC: On the Street

Thursday, September 21st, 2017

I’ve been in New York for about a month now, and what an overwhelming month it was. Between cramming everything I own into my tiny car and driving from Michigan, to meeting my ten (ten!) new housemates, to getting scammed, to getting scammed again by the stupid transit system, to navigating the New York University campus, to getting off at the wrong subway stop, to getting utterly lost while on a run– it’s been anything if not exciting.

One of the most immediately striking features of New York City is the swirl of languages, food, and dress on every corner. Of course, it would be silly for me to see this diversity as proof that NYC is post-racial or completely harmonious. New York has issues, as does every city.

A metaphor I’ve developed for thinking of the city’s culturescape is the subway. Essential yet hated by most New Yorkers, the subway is dirty, unreliable, and overall frustrating- but it’s most people’s only option. NYU is exactly 6.1 miles from my house in Brooklyn- it takes 50 minutes to commute into Manhattan, and that’s on a good day. After dodging drips from the sagging ceiling, I jump the gap between the platform and the train to squeeze in with the other haggard commuters. The subway is the great equalizer: in the dark damp, it’s hard to be superior to others when you’re lumped into a mass. Fancy clothes are at risk of being soiled, and uncomfortable shoes don’t lend themselves to the constant walking required to transverse the city.

One of the stations I frequent. Courtesy Tumblr

One of the stations I frequent. Courtesy Tumblr


In the subway, there are no barriers. The privileged cannot use tall gates, expensive cars, or newfangled security systems to distinguish themselves from the “rabble,” us common folk. We are the human condition, pressed into a small, shabby subway car together. We are all subjected to the same delays, the same discomfort, the same noises and smells. We all pay the same price (3 bucks a pop!) to push past the turnstile and descend.

The only method of separation available to subway passengers is a bit of flimsy plastic: earbuds that provide music, but also sound barriers against the din of the subway. Our earbuds denote a small pool of personal space- a little island of privacy in the dense crowds of people, not to mention the sometimes alarming squeal of the train on its tracks. This personal space, however, is an illusion- someone can sway into and bump you when the train jerks to a stop. Also, safety is at least at the back of each passenger’s mind- especially if the passenger happens to be of the female variation. At any point, the 1% of the crowd that harbors unsavory intent might slip a hand into a pocket or worse.

Every time I curse the faulty public transit system, I know I should remember that this is how most of the world travels- via feet, bicycle, bus, or creaky subway train. At the very least, I should take it as a reminder of privilege, and that my entitlement is as illusory as that personal space we try to claim when crushed in amongst the crowd.

By Anna Lindner

Anna is a Campus Clipper intern and a first-year Master’s student in NYU’s Media, Culture, and Communication program. Her research interests include critical race and gender theory and their resultant intersectionality. When she’s not studying, Anna enjoys visiting friends, catching up on TV shows, and lifting weights. For over 20 years, the Campus Clipper has been offering awesome student discounts in NYC, from the East Side to Greenwich Village. Along with inspiration, the company offers students a special coupon booklet and the Official Student Guide, which encourage them to discover new places in the city and save money on food, clothing and services.

At the Campus Clipper, not only do we help our interns learn new skills, make money, and create wonderful e-books; we give them a platform to teach others. Check our website for more student savings. 


Stay Strong & Carry On (and get some college discounts while you’re at it!)

Thursday, July 25th, 2013

There was a story not too long ago about how a kid in NYC licked an entire handrail at the entrance of the subway for a dollar. It may be advised to lick a toilet seat instead. Each subway car can hold about 240 people at one time, both sitting and standing. With every stop, the pole exchanges owners.  With every breath, the air changes just a little. Wrap your hand around the pole, lean your tired back against the doors that say “Do Not Lean” and you are automatically in contact with a million other people.

I must say, its important not to become that crazy lady who carries a yoga mat everywhere just so she can sit on the train, or the man who wears gloves in a hot subway car just to avoid direct contact with the pole.

One way to solve the problem of germs on subways is to master the skateboard stance. The way to do this is to stay free of anything that would support you from falling. Comfort obviously does not come first. You must learn to balance on your own two feet during the fast and sometimes bumpy ride. This might be a bit hard when you are carrying a heavy bag and some sketches under your arm, but it’s worth a shot.  Maybe it’s your hidden talent!

The second thing you can do is to lean against the door with your book-bag (if you wear one). That way, you get support without actually having your body touch anything. You should keep in mind the safety issues that come with leaning against the subway door. After all, the ‘Do Not Lean’ sign is there for a reason, but let’s be honest everyone leans on the doors, you just have to stay awake for the duration of your ride. Remain alert and make sure to not lean on the door too much so that you don’t fall out when the subway stops and the doors open. It’s not so hard when you get the hang of it.

In addition, keep the germs in mind when you plan your outfit for the day. If you plan to wear a skirt, it would be advised not to sit on the subway. Walking up and down the stairs during transfers is a hassle on its own, but doing it in a skirt is even worse. Plan ahead and wear some boy-shorts under to avoid any mishaps, especially if you know you will be tight on time.

Try as you might, it is inevitable that you will end up touching something on the subway, to keep your balance at the very least. So just make sure to carry hand sanitizer with you and avoid touching your face while on the subway, just in case. Now that you know the ins and outs to how to ride the subway, go to Cuba, a restaurant on Thompson street for a Campus Clipper discount!

Bon Voyage!


Sofia Khiskiadze, Baruch College.

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College Savings for the College Commuter

Tuesday, September 11th, 2012

Point blank, commuting is very expensive—especially for college students who don’t have the time to work a lot of hours. I am a veteran college student commuter. I’ve traveled from everywhere and I’ve had to find as many college discounts as possible. I dormed my first year at Hofstra University, but made the 5 hour public transportation commute every weekend to my home in Newburgh. I became well-versed in Long Island Rail Road travel. The following year I transferred to CUNY Brooklyn College, and made the R train my home for an hour twice a day from Bay Ridge to Flatbush 5 days a week.  My second year, I moved back upstate and commuted via the Metro-North 6 hours round-trip for 3 years so I could continue getting my education from Brooklyn College.  I could have probably bought an amazing luxury car with the amount of money I’ve spent on my commute.

 Whether you’re traveling from the Hudson Valley, Long Island, or just within the New York City area, the expenses of public transportation are an absolute drag on a college student trying to enjoy the Big City. Luckily, there are some deals that MTA commuters are privy to.


Madame Tussauds New York: Show your MetroCard and receive $5 off per ticket. This is an AWESOME attraction for both tourists and locals. Make sure you check out the new Marvel 4D attraction featuring superheroes like Thor and Captain America.

New York Botanical Gardens: Save 10% with your MetroCard! Whether you’re a nature person or not, the New York Botanical Gardens are a must-see for beautiful gardens and exhibits.


Yankees getaway: Overnight packages to accompany your Yankees tickets!

New York City getaway: Stay and rail overnight packages for a New York City getaway.

Also discount rail tickets for the American Museum of Natural History, BODIES: The Experience, Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum, and Ripley’s Believe It or Not! Times Square.

Long Island Rail Road

Rock of Ages: Ride the Long Island Rail Road free and get discount tickets when you see the musical Rock of Ages. This fun musical features music from Journey, Styx, and Bon Jovi, among others.

Belmont Park – The Long Island Rail Road and NYRA are teaming up together to give LIRR customers a discount and easy service for the fall racing season at Belmont Park.

After all this commuting and adventuring, you will surely be starving. Head to Cuba and enjoy their Happy Hour!


Amanda, CUNY Brooklyn College. Check out my blog and follow me on twitter.

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Why Is It So Hot in the Subway?

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

image credit:

As I was listening to the news on TV while cooking my light dinner, I heard something like “there is about 105 degrees inside the subway stations in New York City.” 105 degrees the temperature there is, indeed.

An ex-camper, I love walking long distances, and I do walk whenever it is possible and not too far. Now that it is so hot in the city, walking is not as pleasant as always. And still, waiting for a train is even harder to tolerate.

Imagine: you are standing inside a station for about 10 minutes. You inhale hot air, far from being fresh, not mentioning the smell of garbage or something even worse that people, not too concerned about others, left there. Sweat is rolling down your back. Your hair is all wet and sticky. A little relieved, you see a guy selling bottled water, which seems a bit refreshing for a moment – until you ask him for the price. And you keep wondering: where the hell is the train? And also: why is it so hot in the subway?

Overheated and wet, you get on the train that finally arrives. Sitting inside, you indulge in fresh air and think, “God bless air conditioners.” However, your happiness doesn’t last long: you are slowly feeling colder and colder, as your wet clothes and hair, soaked in sweat, do not feel so good and refreshing anymore.

If you find yourself complaining about being cold now, then just get off on the next station and wait for another train in 105 degree heat. And think about other countries that do not have air conditioning either in their public transportation system or their homes, so maybe, you have really nothing to complain about.

Ekaterina Lalo

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Commuter Blues: How to Make the Most of Your Daily Ride

Tuesday, May 25th, 2010

For some students, the optimal college dorming experience is not a feasible financial option and the only choice available to them is to make a daily commute to campus. Although it is oftentimes a long, tiresome affair – Believe me I know!  I commuted almost two hours a day from Queens to the Bronx for over three years! – there are some things you can do to make the most of the time that you spend stuck in the car or on the train. That way when you do finally make it to your destination, you will have less work to do and will have more of a chance to relax after a long day of commuting and learning.

If you are taking public transportation to get to school, then your commute is probably the best time to get all of that assigned reading out of the way. So before you bolt out the door in the morning, check to see what needs to be read for your classes and try to devote your commute to completing that task. It’s a relatively easy way to get things done. Honestly, there is not much you can do on a train or a bus, so remembering to grab those books or that e-reader (i.e. Kindle, Nook, iPad) in the morning will also save you from countless hours of commuter boredom. And, on the plus side, when you finally get home, you will have less to do and can maybe even squeeze in a little relaxation time before you have to start the cycle all over again.

Even if you drive a car to school, there are still ways that you can get some of your homework done before you pull into your driveway. Although you can’t actually read a book while driving, you can listen to one. So my advice would be to see if you can find the audio book versions of those novels for English class, and listen your way to some free time.

-Christina Brower

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