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Saturday, February 05, 2005

Pissed on / Pissed off

I was gutted... sooo gutted & pissed off that I did not have my camera with me (for once) when going home last night to take a photo of what I'm about to describe.

I went via Richmond, which I don't normally do and was changing from the tube to the train there. As I got off, I noticed a tramp on the platform that started harrassing a suited city gent type for money.

It was quite a hardcore down-and-out sort of guy, he had a long tangled messy beard, his clothes were all just filthy, he was carrying what once used to be a white duvet over his shoulder, and he smelt quite disgusting as I walked past even at quite a distance so as to avoid him.

Oh, and he was drunk and was clutching the almost obligatory can of super-tennants in one hand.

I walked past, ignored him, forgot about it, but was still up in the concourse area (checking out train times) a few minutes later when I heard a commotion back down on the District platforms.

The drunk/tramp in question was now merrily taking a piss, standing on the edge of platform and weeing merrily down onto the tracks.

My first thought was "He'd better be a good aim, or he's gonna get 400V shooting up through a senstive part of his body", my second thought was "That's going to annoy the driver of this train coming in now, isn't it?"

And indeed ... a train was attempting to pull into the platfrom where the chap was having his leak. So the driver edged the train up really slowly to where the guy was, leaned out of his window, and offered some suggestful advice that the guy might like to cease from peeing on the track, or he'd have him removed from the station.

But the tramp had other ideas, and so stuck two fingers up at the driver who had to sit and wait a few more seconds until he'd finished his business and went back and collapsed on the bench on the platform.

The driver brought the train in, and I watched him as he spoke to the station supervisor to go about getting security down to turf the guy out of the station. Whilst he's doing this, I notice the tramp pick up his grubby belongings and stagger onto the now empty train that the driver's just brought in.

The driver comes walking back throgh the concourse towards his train. "Er.. you might like to know he just got on the third carriage down mate", I say to him

"He's not staying on my bloody train!" he replied and walks down to the carriage in question to go and find him.

It takes a moment for the security people to wander down too, and I'm just pointing them in the right direction of where to go as they get to me when we all hear "Fight! fight! fight!" - and we all turn and look at a bunch of guys (passengers) on the platform, pointing and waving at the third carriage down.

We all run down, and catch the tail end of what I suspect was the drunk taking a swing at the driver, and in a blur, the security guys storm the train, ping the drunk down and drag him off the train as he's yelling and screaming at them. The driver chips in with a few more verbal suggestions of his own, dusts himself down and walks back to the front and gets in the cab.

"This would never happen back home!" offers up one of the three who'd seen it - a bunch of New Zealand guys, who I then got chatting to and who seemed quite amused by the whole episode.

"That's because you don't have super tennants" I said, and with the smell still lingering in the air of tramp who was now being carried through the barriers by the two brave security guys of Richmond station, I scurried off to catch my train home.

Who'd want to be a driver eh?

Cartoon by Ralf Zeigermann from One Stop Shrot of Barking


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