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Subway Odds

When I was in my first trimester and not showing, I couldn't wait to develop the telltale bump for the sole reason that I'd be able to get a seat on the subway. I have a 45-minute commute to work on the train and typically don't get a seat until about 20 minutes into the ride after we make a few stops.

If people knew I was pregnant now, I thought, they'd definitely give up their seat for me. After all, I'm pregnant!

Oh, the young, naïve me! Four months later, there's absolutely no mistaking that I'm "in the family way," but I'm still standing. At least 60 percent of the time. I've calculated my chances of some kind soul actually relinquishing their cherished seat for me, and it's about 40/60, with the odds not in my favor.

I've never seen so many people completely enraptured by their book (or newspaper, or magazine, or receipt, or whatever else they can quickly dig out of their bag to read when they see me) as I have since I've been pregnant. And curiously, people seem to fall into a comatose-like sleep as soon as they catch sight of my belly making its way through the subway doors, not to open their eyes again until they reach their stop.

I know that nobody asked me to get pregnant and I know that in New York, it's every man and pregnant lady for him/herself, but you can bet I've promised myself that one of the very first lessons I plan to teach my sons is this: For god's sake, stand up for the elderly, handicapped, and expectant!

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