Hey you! Yeah, you. Do me a favor. Look around the subway car you're in right now. Are you an able-bodied person who is capable of standing? Do you see any pregnant women who are standing? You do? Then get off your lazy behind and offer her your seat.
No. Don't bury your head back in this paper and pretend you didn't see her. We both know you did. Get up.
It's well documented: This city has a major problem with not offering seats to pregnant women . . . which is surprising considering that every single person riding this train right now started out inside a pregnant woman.
I was a pregnant woman once, and I almost never got a seat on the subway, even though I rode it pretty much every day. I had to rub my belly, moan and act as if my water were going to break onto someone's lap to get a seat.
Pro tip for the pregnant ladies: This works. Make like you're about to show everyone on the F train the miracle of life, and seats will magically open up to you. Throw in some contractions and Lamaze breathing if you want.
One time I even gave up my seat to a woman who was more pregnant than I was! Nobody, NOBODY else offered her a seat.
Why aren't people giving up their seats? I started asking around. One guy actually gave me a straight answer. He said that he offered up his seat to a woman who turned out not to be pregnant (maybe she had just been drinking too many large-sized soft drinks). She got angry, the man got scared, and from then on he only offered up his seat to women who were beyond-a-shadow-of-a-doubt pregnant. Like, month 10.
He's a coward. One unpleasant incident and he turned into a spineless pile of goo for the rest of his life.
Guys, one day, if it hasn't happened already, you're going to have a baby mama who's going to need a seat on the subway. Build up some good karma for your future child and offer your seat to anyone you think might be pregnant. If she turns out not to be pregnant, then you'll just be a nice guy who gave up his seat for a lady. She'll be happily sitting in her seat, and you'll burn off those extra-large soda calories from standing.
Rachel Figueroa-Levin tweets as @Jewyorican, @EveryGentrifier and @ElBloombito.
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