paris-subway-metro-etiquette-guide-body-odor-smellI arrived at the Bus Park tired from work, and I had no desire to be assaulted by sweaty, dirty, people, so I looked out for my public transport seat of choice: the window seat on the first row of passenger seats. I prefer the window seat because it gives unlimited access to fresh air, and less contact with sticky human skin. On this day however, I was not so lucky; the seat had been taken. The man who sat there seemed nice enough. He wasn’t dirty, at least not obviously, and his skin wasn’t glistening with sweat, so I figured it wouldn’t be so bad. I figured wrong.
The journey was smooth for a little while, and I felt happy with my choice of seat until the man in the window seat raised his arms and rested his hands on the demarcating mesh behind the driver’s seat. The stench that assaulted my nose was so much that I’m sure I reeled back in shock. I could not breathe. I tried holding my breath, thinking that he would surely put his arms down after a few minutes, but this was not to be. It was as though the man came prepared to teach me a lesson. He seemed to be saying “you will learn today. This gift is yours and you must receive it in full measure.” I tried not to make my discomfort obvious, so as not to embarrass him, but breathing had become difficult and nausea was setting in.
The thing about window seats and odours is that the breeze from the window only amplifies the odour. I covered my nose with my cardigan, but it didn’t work; this was the legendary stuff, the kind they make nasty potions from.
I had started to seriously think about what I would say to the bus driver if I threw up in his bus. Would he understand if I claimed someone’s armpit emissions had been stirring my bowels in the anti-clockwise direction for the last hour? What about the other passengers? Would I become one of those weird bus people? These were the thoughts in my head when I heard the conductor make the call for my bus stop. It took a few wraps of TomTom, and a full minute of just standing and inhaling, but finally, I could breathe again.


  1. Lmao!! Legen—wait for it —-dary!! Legendary!! No story just gags from yours hahaha

  2. lmao!..Its actually wicked to assault anybody wt a bed smell..its not fair!..i blive God will raise an army of pple dat wil have guts to tell pple in question that dey stink..chai! deres God o!

  3. Lmao….urs was quite alright.
    Have a friend who said one time he was seated where odours came from left and right, tried to rest his head on the back rest of the seat in front of him and the smell of the mix of Goya and sweat made him shout ”conductor!!! Next bus stop o wa”.

  4. OMG! I cant stop wondering hwu survived….LOL

    1. I didn’t think I would make it, but I did. Thank you for reading, Andy.

  5. I looooooooooove this. Ts so well crafted.
    Luckily u survived.

  6. Its same as dealing with a close friend’s mouth and body odour. Thanks to God for survival.

  7. LOL!. loved it! Not unnecessarily recondite! 🙂

  8. Can’t stop laughing! Kent deal biko! ???

  9. A trick I learned for such times. Take an inhaler- regular one and a perfumed handkerchief. Use alternately.
    The disadvantage; no more stories like this 🙂

  10. Rotflmao choi see suffocation. What I do is breathe in so loud that the armpit owner will understand from my body language. The way I go dey breathe in and out ehen and be giving u side eye and muttering, the armpit owner go jasi. This has always worked for me as I am not ready to come and go and suffocate rara

What do you think?