Everything I've Tried to Stop Sweating on the Subway


Everything is stupid, and so are we. Welcome to Jezebel’s Stupidest Summer Ever, a season-long celebration of our worst, most idiotic thoughts and opinions.

I am a very sweaty woman.

No matter where I am or what I’m doing, I guarantee that I will greet you there harried and wet, my flesh coated with a salty slick of shower-negating hell beads. I don’t know which witch’s cabbage patch I accidentally trampled through in my youth, but it’s always been this way.

Just Me. Mrs. Sweaty.

I sweat when I wake up, and I continue sweating after. I’m sweaty on the floor, and I’m sweaty in the rafters. I’m sweaty in the morning. I am sweaty through the night. I am sweaty in a car. I am sweaty on a flight. But it is on the New York City subway system where I find myself sweating the hardest, especially in the summer, no matter what I try to do counteract that nemesis bitch I call an eccrine gland.

For example, this summer I’ve tried:

  • Wearing very little clothing — Like short-shorts or cutoffs. But then my thighs start rubbing together, creating a horrible new thermodynamic heat source that activates the Nivea Cocoa Butter Body Lotion I slathered on ‘em earlier, transforming my nether-adjacent regions into something wholly other.
  • Wearing a lot of clothing — Gaslighting doesn’t work on sweat!
  • Wearing skirts and dresses — I really thought I’d hacked this two weeks ago, until I realized that the hot air was rising up through the bottom of my high-waisted skirt, which I’d tapered a few inches below the knee with a makeshift knot, and getting trapped. I felt like a hot air balloon but replace “air” with “swamp.” Hot swamp balloon. Did not work.
  • Drinking an iced coffee — All the ice melts by the time I get to my transfer stop, and then I’m just holding room-temperature coffee in a very hot room!
  • Holding a yet-to-be-consumed iced coffee to my wrists — Five or six years ago, a friend told me that if you run your wrist under cold water you’ll stop sweating because there’s so much blood circulating through wrists and if you can cool down that blood you’ll soon cool down yourself. By the transitive property of doing shit, this method for cooling down should’ve worked, but blood is too hot and melts iced coffee very quickly. Two stars.
  • Sitting on the subway — And stew in my juices????
  • Standing on the subway — And engage my thigh, calf, and quad muscles to steady myself, inadvertently activating my juices????
  • Wearing one of those mini-fans around my neck that squirts water at you — I’m not a nerd!
  • Accepting that no matter what I do I will be very sweaty on the subway this summer — I’m not a quitter!!
  • Getting armpit botox like that guy I saw on TV in like 2002 or something — I don’t think I can expense that!!!!

In the end, I’ve learned that the only way to not be sweaty on the subway is to never take the subway. Work from home if you can. Turn on the A/C. Marry an ice cube. Never sweat again.

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