Commuting Tips for the Modern Man

Be a gentleman above all else. You measure a fellow about town by his conduct and presence. When public transportation is your ideal means of conveyance, always be mindful of your etiquette.

Plan ahead. No one wants to be the guy working up a sweat as he dashes through a crowd, knocking people over on his way to the platform. Never run unless absolutely necessary and avoid the sweat stains at all costs. On the days when you’re not in a hurry to beat the clock, remember to step to the right side of the escalator. Never stand in place on the left side, this is for those who are in a hurry. Regardless of how much of a daredevil you think you are, do not stand too close to the edge of the platform. Your mother will thank you when you make it to your next family dinner.

Speak with dignity. Vulgar language is unbecoming of a gent in public spaces, and you do not want to be responsible for teaching a toddler his first curse word. It is also a good idea to avoid specific work banter while on public transit as you never know who may be listening. Strive to speak intelligently, distinctly and with an inside voice.

Be neat. Slovenliness or body odor will not flatter anyone. Draw attention to yourself on your own terms, especially if you are trying to catch the eye of that attractive young professional a few seats behind you. Finally, do not litter. Leave your space just as it was when you arrived, even if you think everyone should read the front page of today’s paper.

Value time. Always make good use of your time. Catch up on current events, read an interesting article or book, brainstorm ideas, vibe to some tunes, or meditate . . . Whatever you do, make it constructive. You cannot recycle wasted time.

Be considerate - a true trademark of a gentleman. Don’t disrupt a crowded train or bus with an oversized or improperly placed bag. Save seats for actual people, and always give up your seat for small children, the elderly and expectant mothers. Be attentive to the volume of your music – it shouldn’t be audible to others.

Be light on your feet and check the weather. Carry only the essentials and an umbrella if the forecast calls for it. Do not ignore your weather app, even if it can be comically inaccurate at times, otherwise, you are likely to find yourself cold or wet, and terribly unhappy.

Lastly, additional things to keep on your person along the way include:

 A sensible watch. A gentleman always knows the time and his timepiece should reflect his taste.

Comfortable and tasteful shoes. A gentleman does not compromise comfort for flair, and, if possible, his shoes should be built to withstand the elements.

A classic and well-organized wallet. A gentleman’s money, credit cards, personal identification and other necessary documentation are easily accessible. Avoid bulginess.

A quality messenger bag, or hand-held bag (this is adieu to your JanSport). A gentleman carries his belongs with care and style.  

An easy disposition. Do not stress the small things and always take the highroad.

An engaging book, magazine or article. A gentleman is well-read and free from boredom wherever he travels.

A place to collect his thoughts. A gentleman is ready at a moment’s notice should creative genius strike.

A charged phone. A gentleman is not out and about without a means of instant communication.

A sense of humor. A laugh between two strangers is one of the simplest and most human interactions.

Chivalry. Thankfully, it is not dead. In fact, it is still one of our greatest hits.