Commuting to and from work or school is a great opportunity to focus on some of the things we might not find the time for during our busy schedules. Like reading. Since you’re stuck on the subway (aka the metro or the tube depending on where you’re from), you might as well sharpen your mind with some great literature.

However, some of the books that people read on their commute are so interesting and peculiar that others couldn’t help but snap a photo and send them to the Subway Creatures Instagram page. This community has over 2.1 million followers on IG and is dedicated to sharing all the weird things people see on public transit. Scroll on down, upvote your fave New York City subway book covers, and let us know what you like to read on your commute, dear Pandas.

Rick McGuire, the founder of 'Subway Creatures,' told Bored Panda that the subway always has the most interesting and unusual people because commuters are forced into a confined space and have no choice but to deal with each other. "The NYC subway is still one of the most efficient ways of getting around and if you need an audience, this is the perfect place to find one. This can sometimes work out for the best and the worst," he said.

Read on for our full interview with McGuire, as well as for Bored Panda's chat about productivity during commutes with certified career coach Rita Friedman.

More info: Instagram | Facebook | Twitter | YouTube | TikTok | Reddit

#1

Subway-Commute-Book-Reading

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

It worked.

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#2

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Neon
Community Member
1 month ago

A guide to best imposter

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#3

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Aleksandra Elias
Community Member
1 month ago

Where's the popcorn?

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McGuire said that he started the 'Subway Creatures' website in 2011 and then moved on to Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook a short while afterward. "I was commuting to work in NYC everyday and seeing the wild, bizarre, and crazy things the city has to offer and noticed there really wasn't a place where it was all being documented." That's why 'Subway Creatures' came into existence.

"NYC has this unspoken rule of 'keep your head down and mind your own business' but I'm a huge people-watcher. There's so much going on around you at all times and it would be a shame to miss some of these typical 'New York moments.' When I'm on the train I always find myself looking for obscurities and checking my surroundings. You never know what you'll see!" McGuire shared his love of people-watching on the subway.

#4

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Helen Haley
Community Member
1 month ago

Good dang question.

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#5

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

My life story.

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#6

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

Either he needs glasses, or there's some interesting pictures in that book.

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Career coach Friedman told Bored Panda that a lot can be said in favor of not always being productive. "A commute is literally a transitional unit of space and time, and a lot of commuters use it as their break between the responsibilities of home and the responsibilities of work or school, so it's the perfect moment to look at pictures of failed cakes or animals making funny faces. It's just nice to have time where nobody is holding you accountable," Friedman told us that it's alright to cut ourselves a little bit of slack sometimes.

Friedman said that it can be very therapeutic to "disassociate and zone out" during our commute. Especially when we're feeling stressed out. "That might be scrolling through social media or half-listening to a podcast. I'll also say some of my best ideas have come to me when I've been staring out a window or at a wall," the career coach said. "If work is really taxing, you might find that bringing something on your ride lets you focus away from the distractions of the office—it actually might be a lot easier to knock out a report without a chatty coworker hovering nearby."

#7

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Tina-Marie Tarrant
Community Member
1 month ago

Couples therapy, working out who is the optimist in the relationship.

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#8

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

...and Other Fascinating Facts

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#9

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

Well, since he was Jewish...don't hold your breath.

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According to Friedman, your commute might also be a great time to catch up on personal communications and manage your calendar and get things in order for the day or the week. This way, when you walk into work, you're ready to dive in.

"You might also find yourself more productive at work if you spend your commute doing something like reading or playing a strategy game that gets your brain warmed up. If you are actively walking / driving / biking, taking a different route can help shake things up and break up the monotony," she added.

"Unless you have a very long commute, it's probably pushing it to try to get into any kind of study or meaningful work that requires a state of flow, but it could be a good time to watch a 5-minute refresher tutorial on a new skill you're working on or to skim through an article your colleagues will also have read."

#10

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

He's even wearing the red shirt.

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#11

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

While listening to music.

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#12

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Marigen Beltran
Community Member
1 month ago

I really want to read this book, it's written by a mortician that I follow in YouTube.

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Obviously, reading, people-watching, and browsing Bored Panda are all fun ways to spend your time stuck on public transportation. But there are other activities that you could do to make you feel just as productive, energized, or relaxed, depending on what your goals are.

Teri Hockett, chief executive of What’s for Work?, says that your commute can be the perfect time to check in on your goals, reflect about your life, and make any adjustments that you feel to be necessary.

Meanwhile, career expert Connie Thanasoulis-Cerrachio explains that you should use your morning commute to work to get tasks done while you’re fully awake and raring to go.

#13

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Daria Z
Community Member
1 month ago

Very specific :)

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#14

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Neon
Community Member
1 month ago

Preparing for 2021....??

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#15

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Slinkman
Community Member
1 month ago

There has to be a whole book to answer that question?

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Checking voicemails, replying to emails, drafting up to-do lists, and checking in on your family and friends are just some of the things that you could do instead of mindlessly scrolling through your social media feeds and wishing you were anywhere but on the subway.

However, your commute back should be spent relaxing and reenergizing. One way to do this would be to get some much-needed sleep. Just make sure to keep your belongings close to you as you nap. And don’t miss your stop!

Listening to music and audiobooks or just plain letting your imagination roam free can also help you relax and feel more inspired. Of course, they might not be a substitute for grabbing a strange book and smiling to yourself as others take photos to share with their friends.

#16

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Slinkman
Community Member
1 month ago

Step 1; Do not read these kind of books in public while looking for a female.

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#17

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Cathelijne van Weelden
Community Member
1 month ago

That looks like a good read!!

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#18

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

A guidebook on how to survive the rest of 2020.

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#19

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Slinkman
Community Member
1 month ago

The book we all need and hate at some point ;)

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#20

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

sp0
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

I love seeing a masculine gender expressed person so publically respecting the wants and needs of women

Kubu
Community Member
1 month ago

Also, if you prefer this kind of newspeak, you should write - I love seeing a masculine gender expressed person so publicly respecting the wants and needs of feminine gender expressed people.

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Ivana
Community Member
1 month ago

I respect this man and his research.

Reginald Joseph
Community Member
1 month ago

This should be required reading in all high schools

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Sasha Kuleshov
Community Member
1 month ago

Yay, another one I own :D

Tyna Harrison
Community Member
22 hours ago

I am sure that is the 2nd book the first is "I am Boob"

Brandy Johnston
Community Member
1 month ago

Looks like a guy reading about how to please a woman. Wtf is this argument about? It's clearly a man. A woman already knows

Bama Belle
Community Member
1 month ago

If this is a book about pleasing a woman sexually, I can't think of a more clever title.

Azziza
Community Member
1 month ago

All men should read this! Hahaha!

Abrielle
Community Member
1 month ago

No no no no no no no no no no no

Radek Suski
Community Member
1 month ago

Would be great book for conservatives but they most likely wouldn't read that

Rustyn Birch
Community Member
1 month ago

A subject that should've been taught in Health Class! :)

Hailey Hall
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

So whats cilitarate!

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

Found on the same shelf as the Kama Sutra.

Adam C
Community Member
1 month ago

This comment is hidden. Click here to view.

I guess marriage is not going well.

Felix-Marie Badeau
Community Member
1 month ago

Oh I would imagine it's coming along quite nicely.

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#21

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

What's the second issue? Guacamole and Manslaughter?

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#22

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Sonja
Community Member
1 month ago

hey, he could be studying how to be the best dad to his daughter, to understand the world of her...don't judge...

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See Also on Bored Panda
#23

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

That'll keep you busy.

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#24

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Serial pacifist
Community Member
1 month ago

Don't hold your breath...

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#25

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Deniz Vitvitskiji
Community Member
1 month ago

I read this and now Im the head russian mafia boss. 10;/10 would recommend if I didn't use my drug money the buy all the books

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#26

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago (edited)

What!!!??? It's a book about cats.

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#27

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Judi Michelle
Community Member
1 month ago

This book is pretty interesting if you're a low key bio nerd 10/10 recommended. And great book to have in the guest bathroom. That way people are not stuck reading the ingredients of the hand soap

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#28

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

Raine Soo
Community Member
1 month ago

Cannibals like to eat in. Ahem.

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#29

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

El Dee
Community Member
1 month ago

Book's about stress - but ulcers, as we know now, aren't stress related..

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#30

Interesting Reads For Your Commute

subwaycreatures Report

BusLady
Community Member
1 month ago

He reads it for the articles.

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Note: this post originally had 124 images. It’s been shortened to the top 30 images based on user votes.