In November, a pre-teen boy on a New York City subway refused to give up two seats, even when three adults wanted to sit. The boy, who was leaning against his mother, stretched out and placed his feet on the seat in front of him, taking up two seats and violating subway etiquette. One man decided to take matters into his own hands and sat directly on the boy’s feet. A woman named Isabel Kim captured the incident in a flipbook of pictures and shared them on Twitter.
The boy quickly scrambled to move his legs when the man sat on them, but one still ended up under the man’s body. The last picture shows the boy giving the man a dirty look, under the impression that he was right and the man was out of line for sitting on him. The boy’s entitled behavior was not only rude but also a violation of subway etiquette, which generally dictates that three people should fit on each bench.
Isabel also shared a video of what happened next, in which the boy’s mother yelled at him. However, she seemed to be blaming the boy, Joe, for making her miss her stop rather than for his rude behavior.
The man who sat on the boy’s feet received applause from hundreds of people on social media. Many people were tired of the boy’s entitled behavior and saw the man’s actions as a valuable lesson in manners for the child. “Not all heroes wear capes,” wrote one person, while another tweeted: “He has 0 s***s left to give, and he is my blood brother.”
The incident is a reminder that we should all be mindful of our actions in public spaces and be considerate of those around us. Some children do not learn good manners from their parents and may have to learn them the hard way from strangers. In this case, the man who sat on the boy’s feet may not have worn a cape, but he was a hero in the eyes of many subway passengers.