Breaking the rules on the silent, sweaty commute to London: Blaise Tapp

As the nation recovers from its collective sunburn there will be a hardcore of curmudgeons who will be willing for November to come early.

Friday, 28th June 2019, 5:10 pm
Updated Friday, 5th July 2019, 4:39 pm
The commute to London in the summer heat has not been pleasant for Blaise Tapp

It is the British Way.

Let's be brutally frank though, anything above the mid-20s is too much for the typical milk bottle-skinned Brit – Mad Dogs and Englishmen and all that.

It is because of days like last Saturday that I am grateful for the fact I am not a slave to public transport as I would rather share a sofa with Boris Johnson than spend any length of time stuck in the oppressive heat on a bus or train.

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I have to say, I feel sorry for commuters, especially during the summer.

The idea of regularly having to inhale the body odour of a complete stranger who couldn’t be bothered to shower before work is something that has always troubled me.

Rail bosses will point to the millions invested in shiny new air-conditioned trains but a carriage is always going to smell like a teenager’s bedroom when people in polyester suits are standing on tiptoe to ensure they are in the office by 8.30am.

Over the past few months I have had an insight into this world having had the need to catch the rattler into The Big Smoke.

There are a series of rules you need to abide by when travelling on trains and the Tube in London with the most important being not to make eye contact or, heaven forbid, attempt conversation with fellow travellers.

These are rules I frequently break; attempting ice breakers with people who would rather not discuss the weather with you is never easy but I don’t enjoy the sound of silence.

I do enjoy making a big deal of offering up my seat to anybody who looks like they need it, even if it involves clambering over a sea of briefcases to make my point.

Commuting would be much more fun if people shared their croissants and talked about the previous evening’s Newsnight or Love Island.

It would be even more of a laugh if commuters partook in a home time singalong and would certainly take their minds off the sweaty armpits of the bloke next to them.