Now You Can’t Even Sit Like a Man

I’m all for equality between the sexes insofar as it’s reasonable. But when government officials start telling men how to sit in public, well, I just can’t stand for that.


The busy beavers over at the transit agency in New York — of course it’s New York — are planning to spend beaucoup taxpayer bucks on an ad campaign to stop the public safety scourge they call “manspreading.”

I’m going to go out on a limb and guess this is the brainchild of some mad feminist or her man-child partner, but “manspreading” is defined as the way many men sit with their legs apart rather than daintily held together with knees touching. Allegedly, this allows men to take up two seats rather than the allotted one on MTA subways. As the phrase suggests, women are claimed to be the most frequent victims of “manspreading,” being denied the opportunity to wedge themselves into a seat next to a fat, sweaty working stiff.

In the city that brought you the ban on large-size sodas, it’s not really surprising that city officials would feel themselves entitled to crawl up between your legs with a protractor and measure the width of your sprawl.

Officials haven’t released a chart yet showing allowable spreadage, but there has to be some leeway. We’re all human beings, after all, and most people just don’t walk like they’re trying to keep something from falling out. Still, referencing the crotch as the geometrical point of origin, any angle between the legs of greater than 20 degrees is a bit unseemly. Greater than 45 degrees is just rude. And 80-plus degrees, like we’ve all seen some people do? Put on your catcher’s mittĀ because that baby’s going to be flying out any moment now, probably at extreme velocity.

Of course, busybodies make their own fun, so the MTA nags aren’t stopping at targeting “manspreading.” Also on the no-no list: pole dancing, pole hogging, primping, eating and blocking doors.

I have to say something about pole hogging. Having been on my fair share of public transportation vehicles, I can tell you that if you don’t get a seat on most trains or buses, you need to have a kung fu death grip on the nearest pole unless you like the idea of flying through the windshield as the operator tries to stop a 20-ton vehicle on a dime after some genius in a Honda cuts in front of the bus and slams on his brakes to turn in to a driveway.

Pole dancing on the other hand. …

Let’s just say it sounds like the New York public transportation system is a lot more entertaining than transit on the Left Coast.