Perhaps the saddest of all the NYC subway trains is the "R" train. In my experience, it never arrives when you want it to. Sure, that can be said of most subway trains. But unlike the others, when the "R" does finally arrive, it just seems so sad. Depressed, even. It sorta ambles on up and comes to a slow stop. You can just hear it sighing. "I guess I'm here," it seems to say. "Get on if you want. I know I'm not the 'N' train you were hoping for..." You get on and look for a seat... there's always a seat. This is extremely unusual for subway trains. And the atmosphere. Orange and yellow seats - Gatorade colors - with beige and wood detailing, plus that high school cafeteria floor. It's like walking into 1973 on wheels (do subway trains have wheels?). In my professional opinion, the "R" train is basically the Eeyore of subway trains, minus the tail. The other day, I had no choice but to get on the "R." It was the closest stop to my destination and I was already running late. The "E" was too far and my favorite subway train - the "4" - was too far from my stop. So, as I'm assuming it is for many riders, the "R" was my last choice. I got on, found a seat - easily - and looked out the window into the dark void that is the subway system. All of a sudden, I heard a noise behind me. A few delicate notes. The train grew quiet - not that it was hard with so few passengers - and all I could hear was one melancholy song. I wish subways had official theme songs. If they did, this would certainly be the "R" train's song.
Sit back and take a listen (Note: Readers I know the below footage is very, very real. Maybe too real. But rest assured. You are not actually on the "R" train. It's just what we call in the business a "video clip.")