Local News to CTA Riders: Beware the Harlem Shake

The “latest flash-mob craze” is “shaking up public transportation safety concerns,” says ABC7’s I-Team. But CTA riders have nothing to fear—besides mild irritation.

According to a new report by the ABC7’s local “I-Team,” CTA riders need to watch out for the Harlem Shake. As the local news report puts it: 

“The latest flash-mob craze is shaking up public transportation safety concerns—on the ground and in the skies.”

I’m not sure it’s so much a safety concern. A quality of life concern, maybe, but as the report explains:

“During a recent investigation of violence on the Chicago transit system, the I-Team also discovered that passengers doing the Harlem Shake have taken over CTA trains and buses. Many participants, wearing odd masks or carrying unusual props, hurdled seats and passengers who chose not to join in.”

A brief explainer, if you have somehow missed the Harlem Shake. A DJ did a song called “Harlem Shake” (it has nothing to do with the actual Harlem Shake, which is sort of a contemporary version of jake leg and conceptually kind of depressing). There are 30 good seconds in the song. One person dances to the first 15 seconds in a weird costume; then there’s a jump cut and lots of people are dancing to it in weird costumes. People will stop doing that by tomorrow or next week, when they realize it has been overdone. Miles Raymer wrote the only interesting thing I’ve read about it.

Videos of the Harlem Shake shaking up the CTA, like the one below, are readily available on Youtube. But a transit authority official told ABC7 that the CTA has not had any reports of such wild dancing taking place. The CTA prohibits loud music and disruptive behavior, so this is technically against the rules. According to ABC7: “If incidents of the Harlem Shake were reported, law enforcement would be called in.”

Whether you want to call the cops or not, this is the kind of “risk” CTA passengers face during a Harlem Shake encounter. Dutch house squeaky high-synth, and a PBR box atop a dude’s head.

[via Marcus Gilmer.]

 

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