My #1 Annoyance: The Metro Charade

It is hard to believe but there is something that drives me more crazy than nail clipping, spitting, and the lack of traffic laws China. Getting on the metro drives me crazy.

To enter the metro platform you must pass through security where there is usually a minimum of 3 “security” people there. I have seen 4 on occasions.  They say something to you, in my mind it is “put you bag on the machine”  and raise their arm towards the x-ray machine. There are banners of photos from a bus incident explain why such precautions are required. They remind me of the films we had to watch in Drivers Ed.

How many does it take?

For some reason I respect folks in fancy uniforms and security checks. You might be wondering why I am not happy about the security procedures keeping the city and me safe. Well that is because in my opinion it is a charade.  It is not uncommon for the person assigned to the x-ray duty to be sleeping, reading something, or overall just not paying attention.  I never thought the  screening was optional so I of course put my bag into the machine, not the case for many locals, they they just breeze on by (as the lady in photo). These “security” folks in their official looking uniforms have no power or control they can’t make you put your bag in the x-ray machine. Same I have heard can be said about the police here but I do not risk it with them but the metro security I do. I sometimes play a little game.

Scenario 1: I don’t feel rebellious and just do it. I do wish the x-ray belts were on high not turtle crawl.I want my bag to launch out of the machine I have places to go and I could be missing my train.

Scenario 2: A local is in front of me and they breeze by, ignoring the security check. Sometimes I will as well. To stop me and not everyone else, well that would just not be right. They would also need to speak English.

Scenario 3: I put my bag on the belt but the person behind me is is trying to be breezy. In this case I make them slow down by puffing up like a cat, using  my big ol’ American booty and block their way so they can’t pass. Sometimes they are really skinny and can get around me and all I do is just slow them down a little but that makes me happy.

Scenario 4: I compromise and open my bag and show it to #2 & #3 standing that I have nothing of interest in there.

I had to ask some co-workers what is the deal with the metro and security for it just doesn’t seem right or a fun job for these folks.  I was told it was put in place for the 2010 Expo and has stayed on for they don’t want these people to lose their job. China is a really big country with a lot of people.  I do feel sorry for them for they have no power, they have to stand wearing a uniform, pointing their arm and telling folks to put their bag down and no one listens. I am sure it is frustrating.  I do feel I provide some entertainment to them when I do my scenario 2 block maneuver.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Mark
    May 18, 2012 @ 16:36:34

    Hi Rebecca, nice blog! very funny and observational. for me, the x-ray machines are ‘ok’, but it’s actually getting onto the train and getting a seat that makes me go ‘hmmm’. I swear I should start lining up in a 3-point stance as soon as those doors slide open, then just hit the first ‘hole’ I see and grab a seat. (sorry for the football references). – CELL Bikes Mark (in Taicang)

    Reply

    • Rebecca
      May 18, 2012 @ 18:42:55

      Hi thanks for your comment. I have yet to write about getting a seat on the metro. I think it is because I have given up on even trying but you are so right! I love watching the middle aged ladies going for it. Normally, a pretty violent free society, right? But when it comes to seats on the metro they will cut a B^$%# to get one. I don’t need to be in the middle of that… although it could be interesting.

      Reply

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