With the end of midterms and the beginning of finals just around the corner, the intensity of studying is about to break semester records. For commuters like myself, study time is almost always during the hours of commuting on public transportation.
So, while you’re on the F this testing season, trying to get an A, here are some important tips on being both a master transit rider and a master in your classes.
Tip 1: Using your phone to study
Perhaps the most common way to study these days is by reading notes off of your smart phones. It’s understandable; digitized information definitely beats the hours of long and nuanced note taking that will hurt your hand the next morning. Even better, it’s much easier to scroll through pages on your phone while standing on a crowded train than to awkwardly meddle with paper pages while trying not to bump into the person next to you.
However, for those 7:30 a.m. classes, you might find yourself a seat, whip out your phone and doze off while going over info. Unless you’re standing up, do not use your phone to study. Subway cars are hot spots for phone thefts.
In fact, according to the New York Times, cell phone thefts are so high that the FCC and the phone industry have created a central database for stolen phones.
When you haven’t had your cup of coffee yet, you leave yourself completely open to having someone take your phone if it’s out.
Bottom line: use your phone when you’re standing up, leave it in your pocket when aren’t fully awake.
Tip 2: Giving up your seat
This second tip is based on instances that give me and other riders an awful lot of annoyance. Subway riders are diverse: some are men, some are women, some are workers, some are students, some are young and some are old.
The older you are, the worse your balance is, and we all know that the 20-minute gap between Roosevelt Avenue and Forest Hills is a bumpy ride. There is nothing more embarrassing for an elderly person than watching them flop around, grasping the pole for balance, while you ignore them and study for your test. To quote Bob Dylan, “how many times can a man turn his head and pretend he just doesn’t see.”
Please give up your seat for the elderly. It’s so important that you get your A’s, but it’s equally as important that the elderly get their seats. It’s great to take the initiative to crack open a book and get your learn on,.But, you’re at the beginning of the rest of your life. Plus, when you’re standing up, you can easily use your phone.
The elderly have spent years toiling for a buck, raising and supporting a family and dealing with very adult things we haven’t even touched on like mortgages, debt (us freshmen might empathize with this in four years) and, for some, even war.
Bottom line: while you’re studying and thinking about your future, consider their past and give up your seat to the elderly, no matter what it is you are doing.
Will you protect your phone from robbery before your next big test? Will you give up your seat to the elderly in spite of your studies? You know my answer and, hopefully, I’ll know yours when I see you next on the local or express.