Spatial Discord

Photography: Guy Bourdain

I want to take up this much space on the transit system. I want to sit, oblivious to others, because I have been taught that it is my right to occupy all the space I desire with no concern of others, and I want to look good doing it.

If you take the transit system, as I do, you will realize that the gender divide is ever most present and literally knocking you off of the seat you are already perched on. What fascinates me is the unapologetic nature with which the male gender takes up space on buses, streetcars, and subways alike. There is no logical or physiological reason that require men to extend their legs so far apart, taking up one and a half of the two seats available, except for the simple fact that society has nurtured men into making their presence known through the occupation of space. It seems like a simple and trivial annoyance, but it reaches much farther in our society. The transit system flexing its gender divide muscle is a microcosmic example of what happens elsewhere in our society.

Although I believe I have the right to occupy such space myself, I will always be considerate of the space I share with others (because as a female I have been nurtured as such). Also next time, I will not sit on the edge or corner of my bus seat. I too will occupy my space, even if that means expanding my legs to ensure that the person next to me is respectful and moves theirs. I will single handily begin a movement to gender equalize the transit system. Are you with me?