When you see my children on the subway

A free, informative pamphlet for strangers

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Hello.

Thank you for taking the time to read this guide, “When You See My Children On The Subway.” These quick tips will help you (and me) have a more enjoyable ride together through the underbelly of the city. If you happen to encounter my children on the subway, please:

Don’t make direct eye contact. This is important if you have any intention of reading that newspaper you’re holding or hearing whatever is coming out of your little ear buds. Direct eye contact with my children signals your willingness to hear a long explanation from Miss D. of how elves are running her boat factory or an almost understandable rendition of “A whole new world” from The Belle. Our don’t-talk-to-strangers strategy is still a work in progress. If my children catch your eye and begin talking, I cannot save you.

Don’t roll your eyes at me. Should my children sit down beside you while wearing the plastic quackers their daddy bought them on a Duck Tour, don’t look at me and roll your eyes, sister. I’m immune. I’ve had eyes rolled at me several times a day (at least) for the better part of five years. You don’t want to hear ducks quacking on your way home from work? Turn up your iPod.

Don’t take the staring personally. It’s not everyday little girls from Alabama see neck tattoos like that. They’re learning all about the world. Today, they are studying you.

Don’t feel the need to give up your seat. No, really. It’s fine. The Belle can probably hang on tight enough to stay upright on her little legs as the train takes a sharp turn. And she probably won’t fall against you when we stop abruptly. Or stomp on your feet. Because I certainly haven’t taught her to do that to people who won’t give a little kid the last seat on the subway car. Nope. Certainly not.

Respect the inequitable rules regarding personal space. My children will not recognize your right to personal space. They will sit criss-cross-applesauce in a way that makes their knees poke into you. They will twirl in your vicinity. They will throw their arms wide right in front of you to explain how big something is. Sorry about that. Please don’t take that to mean you can invade their personal space, however. I have mace in my bag. Oh, yes I do. It’s right here under the sippy cups, sunscreen, hand sanitizer, crayons…

Thank you for reading. Look for our other informative guides, including, “When You See My Children in a Restaurant,” “When You See My Children at the Movies” and “When You See My Children in the Grocery Store.”

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