Frances discovers a strange sudden scarcity

By Frances Sedgwick
True North Perspective
Frances Sedgwick's keen eye and ear for the human condition reveals the heart and soul of Parkdale in southwest Toronto, one of the country's most turbulent urban areas where the best traditions of human kindness prevail against powerful forces that would grind them down. True North Perspective proudly presents a column by writer Frances Sedgwick. Her critical observation combined with a tender sense of humour will provide you with something to think about ... and something to talk about.

On the subway returning from my husband's nursing home, I looked around me, I only saw three, yes just three. I mentioned this to the young man sitting next to me.
I said isn't it interesting I only see three and usually I see at least fifteen.  He replied I think it's just this particular car.  I said maybe, but remained very curious.
The next day on my way to Harbour Front to meet a friend, again I looked around the subway car and only saw one.
Gee only one.
I mentioned this to the young lady sitting next to me, did you notice there's only one? She looked around and said, yes you're right. There is only one.  Then she said, "Must  be this particular subway car."  Hmm, same answer to the same question.
I checked the streetcar next. Sure that there must be lots there. I remember I wrote about how annoying they were. 
Can you believe it? There were only four!
This was too much! It wasn't just that particular subway car, or that street car.
I mentioned this to a middle aged gentleman sitting next to me on the street car.  I said that until now, every time I got on the subway or street car there were so many people  with wired devices attached to their ears, sometimes very loud music vibrating for everyone to hear. And others just sitting there in "another world".  
But now I notice there is a serious decline, as I'm sure you can see.
He looked around and said yes, you're right. 
I said I guess the stick-it-in-your-ear "fad" has been replaced with something else.
After all the industry has to get you addicted to something new to keep up their profits.
My Parkdale

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